how do “dissonant” {couples} maintain collectively? | EUROtoday

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” EShe comes from a right-wing family, which could be described as “traditional Catholic”: military father, five brothers and sisters, mass on Sundays. I grew up with parents in their sixties, unmarried and rather anticlerical…”, smiles Louis*, 29 years old. The young man met Marie in 2015, at university in Paris. Very different, the two twenty-somethings also fall very much in love.

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We think about them stunning, even “dissonant”, questions their compatibility, then their sturdiness… If 60% of French folks in {couples} come from the identical social and cultural background as their partner (Insee, 2023) and 75% of them vote of In the identical approach (Ifop, 2017), many {couples} cope with distinct social origins, religions, values ​​or political sensitivities.

And trying into it’s “exciting”, enthuses Anne Muxel, analysis director in sociology and political science at Cevipof, who surveyed them in You, Me and politics: Love and convictions (Threshold, 2008). These {couples} invite us to know “how, despite differences and divergences, a gap for love is formed…”

Dissension and wishful pondering

“I think I was curious because he was different from all the people I was used to meeting,” confides Margot, 26 years previous. The younger girl, who now works within the administration, met Thibault three years earlier, at a celebration organized by mates.

We are in the midst of the presidential marketing campaign. She is Parisian, research at Sciences Po and voted for Emmanuel Macron. He educated as a notary in Pas-de-Calais, declared himself “protectionist, anti-Europe, anti-immigration…” and was making ready to vote for Éric Zemmour. “At the beginning, his beliefs were a problem,” she admits. But after the election, we determined to cease arguing on this topic. And as a result of I had fallen in love, I even hoped that over time, I might rally him to my trigger…”

Wishful thinking. As the news unfolds, dissensions multiply, Margot struggles to make her voice heard. After three years of relationship, the couple separated. “There were several reasons, but it was also because we had not resolved this problem,” she confides.

If differences are the lot of all couples, “those which relate to moral and/or political values ​​are among the most difficult to overcome”, comments, when mentioning this story, Aurore Malet-Karas, doctor in neuroscience. and couples therapist.

“Democratic intimacy”

Clever, some nonetheless find “arrangements”, as Anne Muxel observed in her investigation. There are those, radicals, who decide to no longer talk about it (“it’s a taboo subject”), those who are content to skim over it, to “avoid going to clash”… But also – they exist –, those who resist political disagreement and embody what the sociologist calls “democratic intimacy”, or “respect for differences and the valorization of pluralism of ideas”.

Charlotte is at a crossroads. In a non-cohabiting couple with Rémi for five years, the forty-year-old is deluded: “I'm not very honest about my lifestyle…” He is an environmental activist and on the decline, she “would like[t] be an exemplary eco-friendly”, but loves clothes. “As soon as I wear something new and he gives me a compliment, I say that it's old, that I took it out again… On the other hand, if it's eco-responsible or made from recycled cotton, then I make crates! »

On strictly political subjects, “nothing confrontational,” she confides, however. On the contrary: “He is from the extreme left, I am more in the center, and our differences give rise to big conversations, long debates. It is an asset for our exchanges. » This relationship “made us less sectarian, opened us up to others and allowed us to be more nuanced about things…”, adds Louis, Marie’s companion, from a traditional background.

A “mix” between two worlds

However, concord was not achieved. Their cultural and spiritual variations even led the couple to separate twice. “The first time, because she thought I would convert to Catholicism, the second, because she insisted that we get married. »

In fact, “when the arrangements put in place by the couple no longer hold together, when one or the other no longer recognizes themselves in the relationship or when there are too many efforts to make to “join” their associate , this nearly inevitably results in separation,” observes Anne Muxel.

“Because we love each other, we got back together and we took a step towards each other,” reassures Louis, with a smile. Notably Marie, he explains, “who put a lot of water in her wine and understood that she could not impose a model and a vision of the world on me…”

“The question of a functioning couple is less that of the resemblance of the partners than of their capacity to be able to live in harmony and TO DO couple,” underlines, on this regard, therapist Aurore Malet-Karas. An elementary distinction “if we want to build in the long term”.

A mission that Marie and Louis have at coronary heart, since they made the choice to get married. “The idea is to create a “mix” between our two worlds, neither proper in his nor proper in mine,” rejoices the younger man. And the church? “I do not guarantee my total involvement, but I will not dissuade our children…”

* All first names have been modified.