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Am exchange between my parents has made me uncomfortable

(44 Posts)
PotOfYoghurt Sun 23-Apr-17 08:16:55

It's over the silliest thing as well, it's not even an issue.

My mother was making Yorkshire puddings, and when she took the tray of hot oil out my father commented that the oil wasn't hot enough and it should be smoking. Mum said the tray was really, really hot when it came out and it had been in the oven a long time.

Dad told her to just go ahead, but made a comment about how it wasn't sizzling when she poured the batter in.

He then kept saying how she'd done it wrong, it needed to be hotter, it should be smoking, it should be sizzling, over and over again.

He'd say 'don't worry darling, it's alright, it doesn't matter' in a voice you'd use if someone had just lost their job not messed up Yorkshire puddings ffs.

He'd faux console her, then critique her, then console her again and critique again and again and kept going on about it yet at the same time trying to appear as if he was cheering her up, and being very kind and caring when it was obvious she didn't actually care that much about the bloody Yorkshires anyway and was more upset about the way he was speaking to her.

It just felt really weird from an outside perspective. What was he trying to do? If he really didn't care about the stupid things then why keep going on about it and making her feel bad? The whole thing has left me feeling quite unsettled and uncomfortable about it.

Crumbs1 Sun 23-Apr-17 08:21:17

Meh, their relationship and we're all a bit odd sometimes.

mrsBeverleygoldberg Sun 23-Apr-17 08:22:58

He should cook them himself.

INeedNewShoes Sun 23-Apr-17 08:23:14

This sounds horrid and to me would be indicative that he is nasty to her about all sorts of things. It's a passive aggressive way to keep telling someone they've done it wrong and criticise. If one of my parents did this to the other in my earshot I'd be horrified and pull them up on it.

pincha Sun 23-Apr-17 08:23:16

Eurgh, that's horrible. Sounds like it isn't something you've seen before though?

I'd guess your mum wasn't beating herself up enough for your dad's liking. Like he wanted her to be tearing her hair out saying what an idiot she'd been and how your dad was right all along, and then he could do the patronising, oh it's ok, it doesn't matter, what are you like you idiot, but never mind eh?

She wasn't playing so he kept attempting to provoke it.

Artus Sun 23-Apr-17 08:24:10

Perhaps he has had thirty years of eating soggy Yorkshire puddings despite giving the correct advice on the fat temperature! Although if he cared that much he could make them himself.

CheeseCakeSunflowers Sun 23-Apr-17 08:25:11

Is this a normal type of conversation for them? If it is then I think it's best to just quietly support your Mum but leave them to sort their relationship out themselves.
If this is unusal then I would be concerned about your Dad's MH so maybe ask Mum if it's happened before.

timeforabrewnow Sun 23-Apr-17 08:26:25

You're overthinking this.

Your dad is a bit of a wally - move on swiftly

angeldiver Sun 23-Apr-17 08:27:47

How did the Yorkshire's turn out?
Was he right?

I hate the way my dm talks to my df but having seen the true colours of my df, I now know why she is the way she is.

Gwilt160981 Sun 23-Apr-17 08:31:32

Its only a Yorkshire pudding....

intheknickersoftime Sun 23-Apr-17 08:35:08

I'm following this as my dad is similar with my Mum. There was a horrible exchange on Easter Sunday when my dad shouted at my mum for moving a glass of wine because he was about to knock it over. I was furious with him. But, they haven't phoned me since and it has made me feel as though i shouldn't have interfered. I'm still feeling really anxious now. It's horrible to witness, i get how you feel but i would be careful for your own sake before saying anything.

CPtart Sun 23-Apr-17 08:37:35

Just like my FIL. Controlling and patronising. Is he recently retired?

AttilaTheMeerkat Sun 23-Apr-17 08:42:18


Its all about power and control.

That was passive aggressive behaviour from your dad and it was really never about the Yorkshire puddings. My guess is that this has been the pattern of their relationship throughout their entire married life and before marriage too.

The only people privy to the inner most workings of their marriage is your parents and they alone; I would tread carefully in any and all dealings with them from now on. This is because your father may well just get angry at you but mother may just staunchly defend her choice of man. They also get what they want out of this relationship. I would reassess my own personal boundaries with your parents and perhaps not visit them at home quite as often.

pallasathena Sun 23-Apr-17 08:43:05

If he's anything like my relative who does the exact same thing to his wife, its all about impressing the onlooker with his superior knowledge and experience.
He's a tedious bloke. No friends, his grown up kids don't bother with him much yet he just doesn't 'get it', that his pompous attitude pushes people away.
It doesn't matter to him. All that matters is that he's 'right' and that everyone can see it.
Best to ignore and be especially nice to your mum when you see her.

Moreisnnogedag Sun 23-Apr-17 08:47:01

I think you're overthinking it really unless this is just one example of many? how would you feel if someone stuck their oar in to your argument? Your dad would be upset that you essentially think he's some sort of controlling emotional abuser and your mom be put out that you think she can't look out/speak up for herself.

Fairylea Sun 23-Apr-17 08:48:31

I think next time she should either make him cook or get some ready made ones. Life is too short for that level of stress over a Yorkshire pudding. confused

buggerthebotox Sun 23-Apr-17 08:48:55

I really dislike this sort of behaviour. It's a passive aggressive and sly way of asserting control. Your dad sounds as though he may have issues of his own, or issues with your mum, and, rather than getting them out in the open he uses a seemingly trivial incident to make his point.

Making your mum feel bad and then comforting her makes him feel better about himself. It also prevents your mum from answering back. Not sure I'm expressing that properly a bit early for me.

millifiori Sun 23-Apr-17 08:52:30

Sounds exactly like my dad who is a controlling emotional bully. I can't stand this sort of behaviour. I'd have had to say sharply, 'Butt out dad or make them yourself.' DH tries this shit on me sometimes. I just say: 'Don't backseat cook/garden,' and then completely ignore him. He gets the message.

TheFirstMrsDV Sun 23-Apr-17 08:55:20

This is only significant if it happens frequently or it is new behaviour that is now happening frequently.

If its a one off or occasional its just someone being a bit of a twit.

Does it happen often?
Is it new behaviour that isn't a one off?

senua Sun 23-Apr-17 08:57:42

It just felt really weird from an outside perspective.

What do you mean 'outside perspective'? They are your parents. Have you never witnessed a conversation between them in a kitchen before?confused
You sound like an anthropologist, not their DC.

Aquamarine1029 Sun 23-Apr-17 09:04:32

You should have said "she heard you the first time, so cook them yourself"

Ecclesiastes Sun 23-Apr-17 09:05:40

To be fair, the fat really should be smoking.

ElsieMc Sun 23-Apr-17 09:06:51

Perhaps you are recalling incidents from your childhood and this has sparked recollection. All sounds a bit deep over Yorkshires, but that is not the issue is it?

Recently I attended a family funeral where some comment was made about my parents (long since passed away) and I suddenly thought back to how my mum never visited my grandmother with us. It was clear the family did not like her at all and my cousins were trying to protect my feelings. Sounds ridiculous not picking up on things now.

Just a suggestion but maybe a lightbulb moment about the reality of your dad.

PotOfYoghurt Sun 23-Apr-17 09:11:53

It's the first time I've been home for a very long time, since I was a teenager in fact. My dad was very emotionally abusive and every now and then physically to me, my siblings and my mother (although no physical abuse there) when we were growing up.

While I've been away he's mellowed out a lot- over the years their relationship has got better and better, and she told me he's like the man she married again. He had a few health problems which made him completely change his lifestyle so is now a lot healthier which I think is part of the reason his mood is so much better.

As such no, I don't witness them having these sort of conversations in front of me as I haven't been here. I'm used to seeing him explosive and aggressive and intimidating, albeit not for a long time.

I guess because as an adult I'm more aware of things than I was a teen and that's why the pattern of put down/console/put down stuck out to me as bizarre and wrong- maybe it used to be that way when I was growing up but it was overshadowed by the more outwardly-aggressive behaviour.

I know it's not my relationship. But it's hard and upsetting to see my mother being treated like that, and I don't know what to do- I was always the scapegoat growing up and took the brunt of his anger and I always tried to minimise conflict between them so he wouldn't take it out on her. I don't know what the best thing to do or not do is.

PotOfYoghurt Sun 23-Apr-17 09:14:02

Also, their oven hasn't been working properly and won't get above 150ish so it was never going to get very hot, I feel guilty because they made them for me because I used to love them when I was at home.

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