Sad Day…

We were looking forward to a nice visit with my father-in-law, Dan, this weekend.  But per his usual status quo behavior he cancelled at the last minute.  We are now left with an $80 turkey dinner for 5-6 people, and no one to eat it.  I invited a family whose husband is deployed, but I don’t know if they will come, as they were looking forward to a dinner at Golden Coral.  Personally, I’m relieved.  I don’t get along with Dan.  Surprisingly, it’s not for the reason he believes.  He thinks that I don’t like him because of something he may, or may not, have done 30-some years ago.  To me, that’s neither here nor there.  While important, the reason I don’t like him is the way he treats me.  All my life, I have been bullied.  It started with school kids, then some of the personnel in the military, and now Dan.  After I had kids, my toleration for bullying behavior is gone.  So I stick up for myself, and like many bullies, he does not like it when his victims stick up for themselves. 

That leaves me stuck between a rock and a hard place.  I do not want to deny the kids their grandfather, but I’m also not going to be condescended to in my own home.  So I’m left being the scapegoat of a ruined relationship between father and son, grandfather and grandchildren, or so my bullying father-in-law feels.  I, on the other hand, believe in personal responsibility.  I am willing to overlook his bullying behavior for a weekend, so he can enjoy the pleasure of his grandkids.  He, unfortunately, is not willing to declare a truce.  He would rather be a bitter mean man, and blame me for his decisions.  He made his bed.  The realization that he will never have the relationship with his grandkids is his loss.

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