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To have lost my cool with FIL

219 replies

Poorlyarticulaedbutangry · 09/09/2022 00:06

FIL is a typical baby boomer. Very comfortable in his retirements through property value increases, hard work, and the golden era of defined benefit pension. He is open about his political persuasion. This differs from mine and that if my DH.

FIL started this evening about how Boris had been dealt a rough deal (Covid, Brexit, Ukraine war) but had done well. Better than anyone else would. I enter into gentle discussion.. I try not to, but can’t help it. Yes FIL, Boris did assist in the quick Covid vaccine distribution.. but don’t forget this high per 100,000 Covid death rate in UK.. you know, adding a few inconvenient truths etc.

I don’t know what happened but it all quickly descended and we ended up talking about gas electricity sitch/ poor families/ families having poor diets.. then into free school meals and the fact the threshold is disgustingly low and his total
and complete lack of empathy or awareness and just horrible cold ‘well the government can’t pay for everyone’ and I just lost my rag. Hungry children. Fucking hungry children.

I Lack any eloquence when really bloody angry and I was really bloody angry. Now I’m embarrassed (we are staying at their house for the weekend, they don’t get to see our DC very often), I ended up saying to DH ‘we just can’t come down again’ because I was so completely wound up and upset.

horrible. Why couldn’t I just accept that he has very different views and I will never change them, nor should I even bother to try.

AIBU to leave early or do I brass it out.

I know I stand by my poorly delivered points but I am in their home after all. BOLLOCKS.

(No booze on my part, he maybe half a bottle of red down).

OP posts:

Am I being unreasonable?

573 votes. Final results.

You are being unreasonable
You are NOT being unreasonable
Porcupineintherough · 09/09/2022 06:39

He's entitled to his views - but he's not entitled ro voice them without challenge, not even in his own home. Pity you lost your temper though.

Rinatinabina · 09/09/2022 06:41

You sound like me when I was younger, I was extremely intolerant of others views. I think I believed that people just didn’t understand what I was saying because of course if they actually tried to understand they would agree with me.

I think you need to reflect on why you are unable to keep it civil or agree to disagree.

But yes just apologise.

SpinCityBlues · 09/09/2022 06:51

many older people in this country just have very outmoded and bizarre views that seem hugely uncompassionate to us Gen Z and Millennials. We can't change them, we can only educate them.

To be fair, the last time a younger person tried to ‘educate’ me it was with a load of claptrap about Butlerian identity politics and pronouns and I didn’t feel particularly enlightened.

Younger does not always equate with good educator.

pollyglot · 09/09/2022 06:53

"Typical boomer"? What is that, exactly? Intended as a slight. not a descriptive term.
Presumably you/DH will refuse to inherit all you FIL's property and cash that is likely to come your way, as a matter of principle?

BlodynGwyn · 09/09/2022 06:56

I'm a Baby Boomer.

I don't think you should have had a political argument with someone in their own home. When I'm in someone's house and they say something political I don't agree with, I bite my tongue.

A few years ago my brother in law was staying with us and he started talking about current politics. He was the one who brought the subject up and I found his views shocking, so did my husband and son. He went on to outright insulted us. It became very heated and long story short, he's not allowed on our property again. He was not a nice person to begin with. We were in business with us about 40 years ago and he embezzled large sums of money. He also 'helped himself' to some items of mine on a previous visit, so I'm very glad he won't be back ever again.

Unlike your situation we are the right wingers and the brother in law is the Liberal.

HikingBoots · 09/09/2022 06:57

My MIL is a passionate Tory who thinks Boris is a thoroughly good egg. My FIL voted to leave the EU. And my dad voted to leave the EU, voted UKIP at the last General Election, and doesn't believe in climate change!
If anything gets mentioned I say one of the following:

  • hmm, not convinced
  • it's all such a mess, I'd rather not discuss it
  • it's too depressing to talk about, let's talk about something else
  • no matter how you vote, I think we can all agree that all politicians are egotistical snakes
  • oh, look, what's that, a bird! 🧐
mountainsunsets · 09/09/2022 06:57

OP has already flounced off because people weren't agreeing with her 😉

It's not worth getting into arguments with your in-laws. Mine have often said stuff I don't agree with - I just nod and smile and change the subject.

Not everything has to be some kind of big moral debate. You're always going to meet people who disagree with you 🤷🏻‍♀️

southlondoner02 · 09/09/2022 06:58

I've got into unwise political discussions with my MIL a few times. I find her views very fixed eg as a Tory voter she won't find any fault with Boris Johnson, whereas I'm a labour votes who will discuss the strengths and weaknesses of Corbyn, Starmer etc. she'll also try to argue and argue despite my trying to change the subject, until I eventually end up getting a bit annoyed and then feeling annoyed with myself. What I've learnt is that she doesn't think anything of these conversations whilst they irate me so straight after it'll be on to something else/ next day not thought about. Possibly your FIL will be the same, so I would just see what it's like this morning before considering leaving, which seems quite extreme

GCAcademic · 09/09/2022 07:00

Signing out now as the scum bags have arrived. Tataa

And here we see, on the thread, the very behaviour that got you into the situation you supposedly regret. Name-calling of people with different opinions to you, flouncing and lack of self-control, a belief that you’re superior to those who don’t agree with you or your behaviour.

OfficerArrestThatRuffian · 09/09/2022 07:03

I get the feeling that you were hoping to be told that you're completely in the right and no wonder you lost your temper.

But I'm with the majority - it's not the case that you are self-evidently correct in your opinions and, even if you were, it's an important life skill and sign of maturity to be able to disagree cordially (even on topics close to your heart) and not get personal. You should absolutely work on that. If you can't manage it then you should avoid political/philosophical discussions with other people until you can.

I sympathise to the extent this is a difficult thing for everyone (and takes far more effort than anger and scorn) and none of us manage it perfectly all the time but, yes, it's not on to be so rude to someone hosting you in their own home so you should apologise.

user1487194234 · 09/09/2022 07:04

I could not have any respect for someone with his views
But in his house,and for the sake of your husband,you need to try and not engage in an argument with him

Lemons1571 · 09/09/2022 07:07

I just say to my right wing Tory father “ oh we have such different views! Let’s not get into that. Now, do you want another coffee?” On repeat, when he starts on about left wing tax and spend blah blah blah.

RedHelenB · 09/09/2022 07:14

I think you should apologise for losing your temper, that's all.

Fairyliz · 09/09/2022 07:21

Poorlyarticulaedbutangry · 09/09/2022 00:28

Please don’t get me wrong. I am not bashing him for hard work or his pension, at all. I was simply ‘setting the scene’.

I also work hard, as does my DH. We benefit from that also, but We won’t be as comfortable in our old age. Not a dig, a statement of fact only.

But that’s probably not true is it as the likelihood is that you will inherit a large sum from him if he has a decent house and savings.
Yes I know people will bleat on about care home fees; but in reality most people don’t go into care.

5zeds · 09/09/2022 07:24

I do find him very antagonistic, and maybe like the they live in an eco chamber.. so he doesn’t see the ‘other side’ of things very often. which of you does this best describe?

OrangePumpkinLobelia · 09/09/2022 07:25

So people who don't agree with you are scumbags? Slow hand clap for showing exactly where the problem lay.

I suspect strongly alcohol was involved somewhere. I also suspect that you have over the years of being a 'good little DIL' you have made your contempt for him and your sense of intellectual superiority very clear.

Grow up. Apologise. It might also help if you were humble enough to realise that people have different views based on their own experiences and absolutely NO-ONE has the monopoloy of being right about everything all the time.

RewildingAmbridge · 09/09/2022 07:27

Thing is he's right isn't he, the advert isn't too change the threshold for free school meals, that traps people into dependence, the answer is to increase living conditions, wages, hold companies to account for not paying people an amount that can actually support a family. Empowering people to be able to support themselves, I grew up in absolute poverty and hated being eligible for fsm, would've been much better for my parents to get paid properly even though they had no qualifications both worked hard, DF sixty hours in a machinist job DM full time in a nursery where she eventually got enough qualifications to run it but still needed second and third cleaning jobs on top to pay the bills. When something went wrong like the one family car we got when I was about 9 broke down, we were screwed. My parents didn't want hand outs they wanted fair pay for their very hard work.
You sound a bit like a ranty teenager, without fully considered arguments, just headline positions you believe to be tight and won't have challenged, as an adult you should be able to have measured conversations. You need to apologise for being rude.

Bestcatmum · 09/09/2022 07:27

I never comment on religion or politics with family and change the subject sharply if anything contentious comes up. It's just not worth it.

rookiemere · 09/09/2022 07:28

DF is in his 80s and airs some truly disgusting views.

He is however my DF and in elderly. I basically change the subject every time - sometimes mid sentence - or we complain about SNP ( we live in Scotland) as that is something we have in common.

I'm not going to change his views and it's not that helpful for me to listen to them, so I just try to avoid it as much as possible.

SleeplessInEngland · 09/09/2022 07:29

Johnson got the opposite of a rough deal - he hung on an entire 6 months longer than any other PM would have bend given after the party revelations came out. Your FIL is being a gullible fool in that regard, buying into Johnson’s own spin.

But it also sounds like you should have just rolled your eyes and kept your mouth shut. In these situations no-one’s going to change their mind, so why bother.

YoniWheretheSunDontShine · 09/09/2022 07:29

Op , my fil is patronising pain as well with boorish view's over everything.
What I didn't like in your op is the "tried to gently..."

As though you are trying to gently change his views and enlighten him.

There were starving children under the last labour government as well. It's not all the evil Tories starving children.

YoniWheretheSunDontShine · 09/09/2022 07:32


Your bil sounds very "liberal", indeed 🤣.


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ReneBumsWombats · 09/09/2022 07:33

I don’t know what happened but it all quickly descended and we ended up talking about gas electricity sitch/ poor families/ families having poor diets...

You were talking about politics. What did you think was going to happen? And Tory voters will argue that the leftists are the ones who don't care about hungry children because they encourage irresponsible breeding through too many benefits and don't want to use money for wise investment and good value etc etc. Not saying I agree, just saying that nobody votes thinking, "Haha, I can't wait to starve all those kids!"

Just stay off the topic in future, it's pointless. Don't discuss religion either. To be honest, it sounds as though it's more about your self-image than anything else.

SeasonFinale · 09/09/2022 07:35

5foot5 · 09/09/2022 00:16

FIL is a typical baby boomer.

OK so you lost my sympathy right there by implying that everyone of a certain generation must, by definition, all hold the same views and political beliefs.


Itwasntright · 09/09/2022 07:38

Poorlyarticulaedbutangry · 09/09/2022 00:17

I do find him very antagonistic, and maybe like the they live in an eco chamber.. so he doesn’t see the ‘other side’ of things very often.

But some of you are right, I should just avoid rising to it. Good little DIL.. keep my mouth shut right?

Well yes, keep your mouth shut if you're a guest in their house, don't get embroiled in an argument if you can't stop yourself getting upset.

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