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Should You Unfriend Your Politically Different Relative On Facebook?

Culture

Or Nah?

Your Thanksgiving dinner will touch on politics this year. It's inevitable. Because many of today's hot-button issues are rooted in identity politics, even talking about ourselves is political now. For tips on how to navigate those conversations IRL, head here. But what about those conversations or comments that happen after you've said your goodbyes and sent your well-wishes? What about the debates that continue online, in your curated newsfeed and in front of everyone in your social network? You'd think by now, after a year living in the most politically divided time many of us have ever experienced, we'd know the proper ways to go about political differences online, but alas.

The answer to whether you cut that family member out of your social media network isn't black and white. None of the psychologists, therapists, and family experts I've spoken to agree on the proper way navigate these differences. "Unless your relationship with a particular family member has become toxic, you don’t necessarily need to go as far as unfriending them on FB," Dr. Gary Brown, a licensed marriage and family therapist in Los Angeles, tells me. "A game changer for me is if they continuously post toxic and mean-spirited content that becomes truly offensive and hurtful to others. In that case, I would at least unfollow them, so you don’t have to consistently see hostile comments on your newsfeed."

Unfollowing is the nice middle ground for wanting to distance yourself from a relative you don't see eye to eye with. You remain friends; their posts just don't show up in your feed. You can always catch up on their life by going to their profile. "Your Facebook community is your network," Carlota Zimmerman, a career coach, says. "How you present to your network is how you’ll be perceived. If relatives and friends are bullying you—since that’s what this behavior is, it isn’t an expression of free speech, it’s a matter of bullying and shaming you—protect yourself by any and all social media means necessary."

Of course, constant unfriending and unfollowing turns our newsfeeds into echo chambers where everyone shares the same opinion as you and the room for debate is off the table. Differing opinions help strengthen your own. "The question shouldn't be to unfriend or not to unfriend, but rather how can I peacefully coexist on social media, with those who believe differently than me," Tristan Coopersmith, a licensed psychotherapist and founder of Life Lab, tells me. Instead of letting our differences rattle us, it's vital we question why we're being rattled in the first place and strive for common ground. Differing opinions aren't new; the way we go about making those opinions known is. We can fire off a status update or share an article and instantly inform our circle where we stand.

"It is clear that it is becoming increasingly difficult to simply debate policy issues, without people calling each other names, and that is coupled with a lack of assumption of goodwill on the part of those who may disagree," Dr. Brown says. Unfriending a relative may cause more of a rift than unfollowing. How comfortable you are with handling that fallout, when and if it happens, is up to you. To better deal with these differences, Coopersmith suggests honing some self-assurance in your beliefs and opinions, "so that defensiveness is unnecessary because a quiet steadiness overrides the need to defend." You can also have compassion for another's viewpoints without seeing that compassion as a threat. It's about recognizing the other's right to differing opinions on anything. 

Your sanity, however, is paramount. Renowned relationship expert Audrey Hope says, "Your relationship with yourself and your integrity is the prize, and if you lose some relatives in the unbuttoning, then so be it!" Taking care of yourself takes precedent. "If [a relative's] posts become directed at you, personally, because you hold a different view, then you might seriously want to consider unfriending them completely," Dr. Brown ultimately advises. "There’s enough toxicity going around.  Do you really want to expose yourself to that?"

Photo by Imani Givertz

Premiering today via NYLON

Small Talks, aka Cayley Spivey, has come a long way since starting a band, then becoming the entire band herself and forging her own fan base from the ground up. On her recent album A Conversation Between Us, she began to unpack any lingering baggage with one particular song: "Teeth." Today, she premieres the accompanying music video exclusively via NYLON.

"'Teeth' is about my personal battle with letting go of the past," Spivey tells NYLON, admitting that it's easily her favorite song off of A Conversation Between Us.

Watch the video for "Teeth" below.

Small Talks - Teeth (Official Music Video) - YouTube www.youtube.com

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FROM THE WORLD WIDE WEB
Photos by Joe Maher/Getty Images, Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for TIME

Must have been pretty awkward

Taylor Swift and Sophie Turner were guests on the U.K.'s The Graham Norton Show together, which must have been awkward for Turner's husband, Joe Jonas, seeing as he also happens to be Swift's ex. I wonder if his name came up?

The interview doesn't come out until Friday night, but promotional photos show the two sharing a couch. Swift is making an appearance to perform her new single, "ME!" while Turner is promoting her new film, X- Men: Dark Phoenix. But it seems necessary for the two to be asked about Jonas.

Swift was just on the Ellen DeGeneres Show earlier this month, where she brought up the fact that she felt bad for putting Jonas "on blast" on DeGeneres' show back in 2008 by telling the audience that he broke up with her in a record-setting short phone call. But, according to Swift, she and Jonas are chill now, since it happened pretty long ago, which means she's probably already hung out with Turner and maybe even gossiped about him with her.

We can only hope that they get the chance to spill some tea on television.

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Screenshot via YouTube, Photo Courtesy of HBO

"That's! His! Auntie!"

Leslie Jones has rewatched the Game of Thrones finale with a beer in hand, Seth Meyers at her side, and a full camera crew ready to take in all her glorious reactions. Spoilers ahead, but, if you haven't watched last week's episode already, that's kind of on you at this point.

When Jon Snow started to make out with Daenerys, also known as his aunt, only to stab her through the chest moments later, it was emotional whiplash for everyone watching. And, Jones' reactions—both from her first and second viewing—sum it all perfectly.

"That's! His! Auntie! [gagging noises]," Jones says before making an aside about calling the police if her uncle ever tried to do the same. But then the knife goes in, and Jones screams. "Did you see that?!" Jones asks, "Yeah bitch, that's a knife in you." Meyers points out the funniest part of all: "Why are you so upset about someone kissing their aunt but totally fine with someone killing their aunt?" Jones replies, "Because that bitch needed to go," and, well, same.

Other highlights from the comedians' rewatch include comparing Dany's victory speech to a bad improv gig, predicting that their dogs would have less of a reaction to their deaths than Drogon did to his mother's, and more.

Watch all of Jones' reactions from this Late Night clip below.

Game of Jones: Leslie Jones and Seth Watch Game of Thrones' Series Finale youtu.be

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These lyrics are a lot

Robbie Tripp, aka Curvy Wife Guy, is back with a music video, titled "Chubby Sexy," starring his wife and a trio of models. In it, Tripp raps about his bold choice to find women with an average body size attractive.

The video begins with a series of statements laid over some pool water: "Curves are the new high fashion," "Chubby is the new sexy," "We Out Here." Tripp posits that these queens deserve an anthem, which they do. What they do not deserve is this Cursed Song. As he lists all the names he knows to call them by (thick, thicc, and BBW), one model (who I really, really hope was paid well) squirts some lotion down her cleavage, and Tripp begins dancing.

"My girl chubby sexy/ Call her bonita gordita," Tripp states in his chorus, before going on to compare "big booty meat" to the peach emoji. Another thing he mentions is that his wife can't find a belt that fits her waist, and that's why he calls her James and the Giant Peach. He then tries to dab. Here are some of the other Cursed highlights from his, uh, verses:

Got those Khaleesi curves/ Knows how to dragon slay
She like a dude that's woke/ We like a girl that's weighty
Some say a chubby girl that's risky/ But they ain't met a curvy girl that's frisky
Imma dunk that donk like I'm Andrew Wiggins.
Thick like an Amazon/ Built like Big Ben.

Tripp says one thing in the video that I couldn't agree more with: "She don't need a man." No, she does not. Please run. If you must, watch the entire video, below. Or send it to your nemesis!

Robbie Tripp - Chubby Sexy (Official Music Video) www.youtube.com

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Photo by Emma McIntyre / Getty Images.

See the promo here

It was bound to happen. The Kadashians and Jenners have committed themselves to letting the cameras roll on their lives, for better or for worse. So if you thought that the Jordyn Woods and Tristan Thompson cheating scandal was off limits, you thought wrong. The trailer for Sunday's episode of Keeping Up with the Kardashians was just released, and it involves the famous family working through the fallout of what happened when Woods went to a party at Thompson's house.

The teaser includes the infamous clip of Khloé Kardashian screaming "LIAAAARRRRRR." It's still not explicitly clear who prompted that strong response. She could be responding to Thompson, who clearly isn't always honest. Or she could be reacting to Woods account of the events on Red Table Talk. But the most revealing moment comes when we see Kylie Jenner—who was Woods' best friend before all of this happened—react for the first time.

In a heart-to-heart conversation, momager Kris Jenner says, "For you and Jordyn, it's like a divorce." Kylie only offers this in response: "She fucked up." Based on Woods' version of events—which I'm inclined to believeThompson is the one who fucked up. Still, I'm hoping for some kind of reconciliation between the two longtime friends. Perhaps we'll have to wait until next season for that.

Check out the promo video below.

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