Why You Need Friends Who Disagree

We often surround ourselves with like minded people who agree with the same things we agree with, and when we meet someone who we disagree with, we cast them out of our social group.

However this is not healthy, I have a friend who disagrees with me on pretty much everything.

At first I was tempted to shun him, because the issues we got into were highly fractious topics and I thought ‘how can I be friends with someone who thinks this’, but generally we get along well and so I didn’t, and I’m glad.

He always calls me out on anything I post that is remotely political and, although I still do not agree with him on many issues, it’s helped me to take a step back and think about things more clearly.  To see things from the other side of the fence and to think about things in a way I would otherwise have not.

It’s easy to agree or disagree with things without thinking about them too much, but when you have a friend who disagrees with you it helps you work out why it is you think that way.  Helps you analyse your beliefs, maybe you still hold the same opinion at the end, maybe that opinions shifts, the important thing is to keep thinking.

 

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5 thoughts on “Why You Need Friends Who Disagree

  1. Well said. Most people only spew out their opinions, but they never take time to evaluate them. It’s not even about changing them, it’s about to understand how the other side’s opinion is as true to them, as our own is to us. Having a friend like that helps a lot.

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    • Exactumundo, if more people made the effort it would help take away the mentality that the other peoples opinion is wrong and therefore stupid.

      Liked by 1 person

      • But! Sometimes their opinion is wrong and stupid. For example: The self-centered morons who refuse to get their children vaccinated due to “Big pHARMa trying to keep us all sick so they can make all the munies.”

        It’s one thing to not get the child vaccinated if they suffer from say – an allergic reaction, or some other medical reason, but it’s entirely different when you willfully endanger your child’s life because of fears of “teh chemikillz that are filled with toxic toxins which toxify.” The later I want to beat with a sock filled with ha’pennies.

        Oh, and that friend? He sounds like a real asshole. You should totally shun him.

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        • And I still have the right to think that, except I will have seen their point and be more informed about why and by how much I think the other side is wrong, rather than just the default position of ‘you’re wrong and I don’t care why’.
          The anti vaccers are the exception that proves the rule of course, but without debate you can’t hope to change minds, if you tell someone their opinion is stupid they will resolutely refuse to listen to anything said afterwards.
          As for the friend, I think I’ll keep him, because :p

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