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Can a Brown love a Coakley?

Posted by Meredith Goldstein  January 25, 2010 07:00 AM

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The venue for the Love Letters pre-party has been chosen. The festivities will be held on Feb. 12 from 8 to 10 p.m. at Noir at the Charles Hotel. Mortified ticket holders can walk to Oberon for the 10:30 p.m. show from there.

The folks at Noir are excited to have us (and yes, they're considering a grilled cheese recipe for an appetizer). They'll also be offering a special room rate at the Charles for LL readers who want to make a night of it. Details to come.

Even if you don't have tickets to Mortified, please come to the pre-party. That's where we can eat cheese on bread, socialize, etc.

And now for politics.

Q: Hi Meredith!

Hope you and the gang can help me answer a rather basic question that I'm struggling with at the moment.

The Senate election on Tuesday brought to the surface some underlying political/religious/fundamental differences between my boyfriend and I. We've known all along that we fall on opposite sides of the spectrum, neither one of us too far out there, but fundamentally different all the same. The results of Tuesday's election made me very upset. I felt like it was 2004 all over again.

I tried not to think too much about how I felt about the implications about politics on our relationship. He is the most wonderful man; generous, kind, caring, go-to-the-ends-of-the-earth for you ... but we are as opposite as opposite could be. Here's where it breaks down: He believes in God, I don't. He doesn't believe in evolution, I do. He finds conspiracy theories entertaining, I don't. I work in an office, he works in the service industry. He voted for Brown, I voted for Coakley.

As we all know, pushing emotions aside leads to catastrophe. I had a few beers, spilled my guts, and ended the relationship. I wasn't particularly nice about it unfortunately, and he stayed calm and tried to quell my fears, but to no avail.

The next morning I was flooded with an unsavory mixture of emotions and a massive headache. Part of me was relieved that I was able to give voice to my reservations. The whole experience left me wondering ... can a relationship work (and by that I mean ultimately lead to marriage, kids -- something we both want) if you disagree on so many fundamental ideals? Will these differences slowly eat away at our emotional bond, ultimately leaving us strangers?

I asked him to meet with me so we could have a sober discussion about our relationship. He doesn't think our differences are big enough to cause a problem. He said he loves me more than any of those things. Obviously, I put a little more weight on these issues.

I don't want to walk away from this and 10 years from now realize that love and trust in a relationship is far more important that politics. I also don't want to find myself 10 years from now married to this man, possibly with children, feeling tied for eternity to someone who I don't understand. (What if he votes for Palin?!)

Thank you for your insight!

– Love or Politics?, Boston


A: LOP, if your letter was just about Scott Brown and Martha Coakley, I’d tell you to stop worrying so much. Many couples manage to stay in love despite political differences. It’s possible.

But your letter isn’t about the Senate race. It’s about religion, evolution, and everything in between. Your boyfriend says his love for you is stronger than his love for Scott Brown – and that doesn’t surprise me. But does he love you enough to teach your children about evolution? Do you love him enough to raise a family with his priorities in mind? Does he plan to go to church on Sundays? Would he want you there? Would you go?

This isn’t about health care, Sarah Palin, or taxes. This is meaning-of-life stuff. You need to talk to him again and discuss whether it’s possible to have a family with someone who just doesn’t buy into your philosophies. Has he thought about children and how they would be raised? Has he considered the tough questions? The life-and-death stuff?

You’re talking about love vs. fundamental beliefs about the world. Take your headache seriously. It’s a legitimate one.

Readers? Can this work? Is this about politics or something bigger? Was this election a stress on any one else’s relationship? Discuss. And thanks for all the anniversary wishes on Friday. Lots of virtual paper gifts. Very sweet.

– Meredith



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ABOUT LOVE LETTERS: Welcome to Love Letters, the place for love advice (giving and getting). Globe relationship columnist Meredith Goldstein and Boston.com readers are ready to take your letters and tell you what's what. Have a question? Click here to submit or email us at loveletters@boston.com.
Blogger Meredith Goldstein

Meredith Goldstein is a Boston Globe columnist who follows relationship trends and entertainment. She offers daily advice on Love Letters — and welcomes your comments. Meredith is also the author of "The Singles," a novel about complicated relationships. Follow Meredith at www.meredithgoldstein.netand on Twitter. Love Letters can be found in the print edition of The Boston Globe every Saturday in the G section.

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