I am sorry if my problem seems a little trivial compared to what you’re used to receiving, but I thought you might be the perfect person to solve this.
I am living with my boyfriend and his parents at the mo which I find to be mostly easy. However, every dinner time they have heated political debates over dinner which is really foreign to me. My family would ordinarily eat dinner with the TV on or have a pleasant chat, so when it comes to the politics I feel really uncomfortable. Most nights it leaves a sour feeling because of a disagreement. It happens every single night and I don’t know if I can take it anymore. I hate confrontation but they seem to thrive from it. I’m a nervous wreck.
What should I do?
Thank you so much for your letter. Do not worry, the mundanities and daily annoyances of life do not simply disappear because of Covid, as trivial as they may seem in comparison. Upon first reading it, your letter did make me chuckle, as you would hate it in my house at dinner time!
The crux of this is, there is nothing that you can do to change the situation. Every family has their quirks and traditions. Whilst you are a guest in their home – one which I am sure they are delighted to have staying with them – you need to respect how they choose to spend their family time.
Whilst these might look like heated debates to you, if it is something that they do daily then clearly there is an element of enjoyment there for them. Every family is different, and one family’s way might seem completely bizarre to another, but this is one of the joys of getting to know your in-laws.
Is there a topic that you are particularly passionate about or have a lot to say on? I am sure they would love to hear your thoughts and give their two pennies worth too. This will help you to feel part of the discussion as opposed to sitting on the side-line. Who knows, you may open their eyes to a new subject matter.
I would recommend that you embrace the opportunity to be able to live with your partner in his family home. It would seem his parents enjoy having you and feel comfortable enough with you to be able to have these discussions in your presence.
I hope this helps.