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Complaining about thoughtless husband/brother-in-law

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Old 03-20-2011, 10:33 AM   #1
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Angry Complaining about thoughtless husband/brother-in-law

Last night my husband and I went out to dinner to a nice steakhouse with his brother-in-law, who is completely lacking in social skills. The brother-in-law has a PhD and is a certified know-it-all. Having a PhD isn't all that unusual in my family or social circle, so I normally kind of try to avoid listening to his bragging and know-it-allness.

Anyway, the brother-in-law is sick and has almost no friends so we have been trying to do "the right thing" and include him in weekly outings. He works from home and would never leave his condo otherwise.

Anyway, I had planned to have a salad, salmon, and a couple of drinks. I almost never drink anymore, but I had planned to have several (2-3) drinks (scotch and soda) that night.

Anyway, we make it through dinner, and at the table, the brother-in-law, who is fatter than I am, leans over to me and says that if I drink like "that" I will regain all the weight I lost and it will ruin my skin. I told him I thought it was an incredibly rude and inappropriate thing to say and got up and left the table.

My husband seems unable to stand up to his big brother due to crazy family dynamics.

Anyway, it totally ruined my night, and I am still fuming at both of them the next day. I need some help letting go of my anger, which is mostly at my husband for putting me in situations with his brother over and over again and then failing to stand up for me. I figure the brother-in-law is just a thoughtless, socially backwards idiot.
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Old 03-20-2011, 11:14 AM   #2
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I have a poster hanging in the corner of my bathroom i am obligated to see/ read daily, brings a modicum of serenity to me.




Go placidly amid the noise and the haste,
and remember what peace there may be in silence.

As far as possible, without surrender,
be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly;
and listen to others,
even to the dull and the ignorant;
they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons;
they are vexatious to the spirit.

If you compare yourself with others,
you may become vain or bitter,
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.

Exercise caution in your business affairs,
for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
many persons strive for high ideals,
and everywhere life is full of heroism.
Be yourself. Especially do not feign affection.
Neither be cynical about love,
for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment,
it is as perennial as the grass.

Take kindly the counsel of the years,
gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.
But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.

Beyond a wholesome discipline,
be gentle with yourself.
You are a child of the universe
no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you,
no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God,
whatever you conceive Him to be.
And whatever your labors and aspirations,
in the noisy confusion of life,
keep peace in your soul.


With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world.
Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.
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Old 03-20-2011, 11:55 AM   #3
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Thank you. I guess if people know you are trying to lose weight and they want to put you down, it just gives them ammunition.
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Old 03-20-2011, 12:21 PM   #4
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Thank you. I guess if people know you are trying to lose weight and they want to put you down, it just gives them ammunition.
You're welcome. Oh yeah, also... to heck and back with that uncouth neanderthal.


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Old 03-20-2011, 12:58 PM   #5
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I suspect you had a strong reaction to his statements because they hit on a topic about which you have strong feelings. His other know-it-all statements probably did not induce you to behave similarly. That being said, I woud have reacted strongly too... although I like to believe I might have the where-with-all to have:

Told to him how incorrect and illogical his statement was. That he shouldn't speak to weight loss and dermatology lest he reveal his ignorance in these and other areas.

Told him you wouldn't need 3 drinks if he wasn't such an obnoxious person to be around.

Just kiding - sort of!

Now you want to let go of your anger and that is a great idea. Anger is such a heavy load.

BIL is an adult and unlikely to change or grow in self-awareness and polite behavior. Accept them with their flaws.

But maybe there is nothing wrong with making him aware of his behavior.

Kill 'em with kindness. If BIL says such things in the future, maybe respond with a smile and say "Do you really mean to be so rude and obnoxious with your comments?" (Hard to say YES to that, hard for DH to ignore). So he says NO and then you can tell him to try again and you just keep smiling and say "No, that's still rude. Maybe you shouldn't say anything at all." This is the behavior you are trying to encourage. This worked with my BIL.

Good Luck!
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Old 03-20-2011, 01:17 PM   #6
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DixC Chix, that's good advice. I think, however, I will be avoiding the little Ungeziefer for awhile.
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Old 03-20-2011, 01:29 PM   #7
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I suspect he's single. He sounds rather pathetic, so I hope you can shrug his comments off. Congrats on your progress thus far!
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Old 03-20-2011, 01:39 PM   #8
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Ok, so I will ask you "Are you going to dinner with him again"? Lmao. I'm sorry but if you know he is a jack-butt then you either are going to prepare to deal with his big mouth and dish it back or you will avoid being around him. You married your husband, not your BIL, nothing that says you have to hang with him. I'm rude/crude and a pretty mouthy biatch, I probably would have come back with a snotty remark to put him in his place.
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Old 03-20-2011, 01:41 PM   #9
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I love Mandalinn's response to this type of thing: "Did you mean to say that out loud? How embarrassing for you!"
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Old 03-20-2011, 05:16 PM   #10
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OMG, am I the only one who thinks the wicked BIL is right? LOL

Seriously, I don't think what he said is so awful. It's TRUE for me! You say you RARELY ever drink, and here you slam back 2-3 stiff ones... It would seem odd to me if one of my usually non drinking weight losing relatives did that!

There have many discussions on alcohol here at 3FC and the general consensus (though not everyone agrees to this) is that alcohol is full of empty calories and that it lower our inhibitions and make it easier to say WTF when it comes to food. Dear BIL is right IMHO. Sorry.

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Old 03-20-2011, 05:34 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Lori Bell View Post
OMG, am I the only one who thinks the wicked BIL is right? LOL

Seriously, I don't think what he said is so awful. It's TRUE for me! You say you RARELY ever drink, and here you slam back 2-3 stiff ones... It would seem odd to me if one of my usually non drinking weight losing relatives did that!

There have many discussions on alcohol here at 3FC and the general consensus (though not everyone agrees to this) is that alcohol is full of empty calories and that it lower our inhibitions and make it easier to say WTF when it comes to food. Dear BIL is right IMHO. Sorry.
One, whether or not he is right, it's not his place to say. It's her life and her choices. I see people make what I think are stupid choices all the time, but I don't say anything. I may THINK pretty judgmental things, but it's rude to say them. There are worse mottos in life than "mind your own business".

Two, context is everything in a diet. You can't judge someone's diet on one meal.
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Old 03-20-2011, 05:44 PM   #12
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Oh, and there is a time and a place for loved ones to say something if they have legitimate concerns about your health, but a BIL really isn't a loved one, and a restaurant after you've already eaten/drunk the meal isn't really the time or place. If loved ones are really concerned, they will talk to you quietly, earnestly and privately, not make snide remarks over the dinner table.
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Old 03-20-2011, 06:05 PM   #13
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Quote:
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One, whether or not he is right, it's not his place to say. It's her life and her choices. I see people make what I think are stupid choices all the time, but I don't say anything. I may THINK pretty judgmental things, but it's rude to say them. There are worse mottos in life than "mind your own business".

Two, context is everything in a diet. You can't judge someone's diet on one meal.
Oh dear BIL probably should not have said what he did, but the OP did say that they go out with him every single week. They are family, and hang out often. I just don't think he meant to be evil...but more like a clown.

I could see my BIL, SIL, Brother, Sister, Aunt, Uncle, MIL, heck, even my kids all saying something like that to me...or each other and not even thinking about it....BUT we are not "PhD's" but a meer big mouth loving to get in everyone's business family.
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Old 03-20-2011, 07:34 PM   #14
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I suspect he's single. He sounds rather pathetic, so I hope you can shrug his comments off. Congrats on your progress thus far!
walking2lose, Yes, he's a perpetually single J-Dater so look out everyone!

twinmommaplusone, I probably will end up seeing him again as he is my brother's only close relatives, and we live in the same town. We see him so often because he is ill (physically too!) and alone and I generally feel sorry for him. And when he says something rude to me again, I will probably tell him he's being a jerk again.

As far as how much I drink, I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree, Lori Bell. I used to drink a fair amount and now I maybe have a drink a week, but once in awhile I feel like getting a buzz. It's not productive to weight loss, but I also don't feel like I have to fear doing anything not productive to weight loss without getting my hand proverbially slapped.
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