Ask Scott: Acceptance

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Ask Scott: Acceptance

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Dear Scott,

This election is no doubt divisive.  I have happened to lose many friends since the beginning of this election cycle and I fear I may have more to lose the closer we get to the 8th.  My question to you is: what do you recommend I do to maintain my remaining friendships, even if we happen to disagree politically? -From Politigate


Dear Politigate,

I, along with many others, have all expressed concern over this election.  A cycle like this one is almost unheard of.  Every subject raised is polarized to the point of bitter contention, leaving all sides fuming.  A simple Facebook political meme or post can turn into an explosive argument aimed at undermining the other side.  It’s happening more than is par for the course on online forums, it seems. 

What I recommend to you, Politigate, is to have a frank and sincere talk with your friends.  A one-on-one talk about how you wish to move forward as friends in this political landscape could work wonderfully.  Some friends will require less talk (especially if your views coincide) whereas others could require a much deeper conversation.  

I’ve personally had to navigate a few arguments over this election with a few close friends.  What I’ve learned from those arguments is that in some friendships, if you wish to keep them, your political opinion is not needed. Understandably the issues are important and important to you. But sometimes it is prudent to avoid unnecessary or particularly volatile arguments, as they can leave all sides feeling horrible.


Dear Scott,

A new resident has just moved into my complex into the apartment a door down from mine.  I have seen them in the hallways and passed them in the parking lot and they seem like genuinely nice people.  But I have a problem.  They are pot smokers and how pungent the smell can be is almost obscene.  Our apartment complex is technically not pot-friendly but a few tenants break this, but it’s usually not an issue.  I don’t care that they are getting high per se; what really bothers me is how pungent and heavy the smell is.  How do I go about politely asking them to can the puffing?  -Nosy Neighbor Needs Air


Dear Nosy,

Kindly asking that they tone down their use because the smell bothers you is an appropriate request, especially when delivered without persecuting your new neighbors.

You could try asking them to be more aware of the tenants around them.  Obviously their use has already caught your attention, and you did say that your complex was not pot-friendly, so you could bring up that they might attract the attention of someone who might be willing to report them, potentially putting them at risk for losing their lease.

Perhaps you could approach them with a baked good or “peace offering” in tow, to appease both their sensibilities and their munchies.  Not to stereotype marijuana users, but we do seem to have a propensity for food — especially free or gifted food.

Just stay kind, stay firm, and perhaps this pungent little issue will work itself out quite nicely.

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