During the first four years of President Donald Trump’s time in the White House, our politics have become so contentious that friends and family are shredding their relationships.
Mothers and sons, fathers and daughters, husbands and wives, and lifelong friends have been at each other’s throats because of their voting decisions.
And as the election draws closer, it is now less than 24 hours until Election Day, the division has gotten exceedingly worse, Reuters reports.
Mayra Gomez, a lifelong Democrat, informed her 21-year-old son five months ago that she had decided to vote for President Trump on Tuesday, and he responded by cutting her out of his life.
“He specifically told me, ‘You are no longer my mother, because you are voting for Trump,’” the 41-year-old personal care worker from Milwaukee said.
She told Reuters that the last conversation the two had was so bitter that she does not believe they can ever make amends.
“The damage is done. In people’s minds, Trump is a monster. It’s sad. There are people not talking to me anymore, and I’m not sure that will change,” she said.
In one of the more shocking cases of what we like to call Trump Derangement Syndrome, a woman left her husband after he voted for President Trump in 2016.
“I think the legacy of Trump is going to take a long time to recover from,” the wife, Gayle McCormick, 77, who separated from her 81-year-old husband William, said.
But it is not only Democrat voters who are going off the deep end and torching their relationships in the name of voting.
Rosanna Guadagno, 49, a Democrat, said she was cut off by her brother after she refused to support President Trump. Then, something horrible happened.
The siblings’ mother suffered a stroke and died six months later. Her brother did not inform her of the death, which she learned about three days after the fact from her sister-in-law.
“I was excluded from everything that had to do with her death, and it was devastating,” she said.
But more often than not, it appears to us, it’s Democrat voters who cannot reconcile someone voting for a candidate of whom they do not approve.
Sarah Guth, 39, a Denver, Colo., Spanish interpreter said that she removed several people who support the president from her life, including her own father.
She and her father talk now, though they avoid politics, but the ties are strained as she could not comprehend why anyone would vote for President Trump.
“We had such fundamental disagreements about such basic stuff. It showed both sides that we really don’t have anything in common. I don’t believe that will change in the post-Trump era,” she said.
Asheville, N.C., bartender Jacquelyn Hammond, 47, has stopped talking to her mother Carol, who supports Trump, and has also encouraged her son to stop speaking to her.
“Trump is like the catalyst of an earthquake that just divided two continents of thought. Once the Earth divides like that, there’s no going back. This is a marked time in our history where people had to jump from one side to the other. And depending on what side you choose, that is going to be the trajectory for the rest of your life,” the bartender said.
Bonnie Coughlin, 65, has toed the Republican line for most of her life, except for when she voted for a third party in 2016. Now she is voting for Biden. But it was she, not her Trump-supporting family, who decided to cut off the relationships.
She said that she loves them but “I look at them differently. It’s because they have willingly embraced someone who is so heartless and just shows no empathy to anyone in any circumstances.”
Dave Wallace, 65, said that his support for President Trump has caused tension with his children, but he has not cut them out of his life.
“The hatred for Trump among Democrats, it’s just amazing to me,” he said. “I think it’s just Trump, the way he makes people feel. I do think the angst will decrease when we’re back to a normal politician who doesn’t piss people off.”
Politics should never divide families. Those ties should be stronger than who wins or loses an election. But for many people, and it appears particularly for Democrats, that is no longer possible.