Handling the discussion of politics over Thanksgiving Dinner

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump and Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton campaigning in West Virginia. (AP file)
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump and Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton campaigning in West Virginia. (AP file)

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Usually the biggest argument at Thanksgiving is who gets the last of Mom’s coveted stuffing, but this year it might be a little different.

Here are some tips on whether or not you should talk politics over the dinner table.

“If you’re going to have discussions of politics that may bring out significant differences in those of us around the table, we should wait,” said Dr. Frank Doberman, Clinical Director of Karner Psychological Associates.

Doberman says if you’re going to stomach talking politics at Thanksgiving, it might be best to wait for dinner to be over.

“Set a stage for the discussion; Don’t pretend it’s not going to happen,” Doberman explained.

People said they already have a plan for the inevitable conversation.

“I think it’s a topic that’s probably to be avoided, but I’m sure it will come up,” said Carl Ackley from Cambridge. “It always does.”

“I don’t think we’re going to be talking about the election because we don’t get to see each other often,” said Kathryn Bartley from Albany. “It’s time to spend time with family and it’s not to argue over things like that.”

“No rules, no fighting, but no rules,” said Christine Schoeffler from Guilderland.

On how to respond to family members, they may not agree with:

“I acknowledge your opinion,” Bartley says. “It might be different than mine but that’s okay.”

“I will lay low,” Ackley added. “I’m the one who would probably elevate it so I will be on my best behavior.”

Doberman says whether it’s faith:

“I’m thankful for what He’s done in my life and what He’s doing in other people’s lives and that’s really what I’m thankful for the most,” Ackley said.

Or family: “Family and being together,” Schoeffler said.

What’s most important is, remembering the meaning of Thankgiving.

“We really need to talk about what we are appreciative of,” Doberman said. “We really need to talk about appreciating each other.”

Follow those simple suggestions and you can make sure the biggest drama this thanksgiving is whether grandma’s classic pumpkin pie or mini cheesecake bites are better.

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