Post # 1
So, today was my uncle’s wedding. It’s his second wedding so it was going to be a small, casual affair. I love my dad’s family (which is Italian so there’s 5 siblings) but they are all very religious and opinionated. They tend to say things without thinking how other people would react to them to the point of being extremely offensive. It doesn’t make sense to me as they call themselves Christians but they sit around the whole time judging other people. (I have NOTHING against Christians as I am one, just the mindset my family has)
First of all, I posted on here the other day that my first poem just got published. I was telling my family, hoping that possibly they would be as excited as I am about it. My aunt asked what the title was and I said it was “Untitled”. She wanted to know why I didn’t have a title. And then they started asked about what the poem was about so I explained that it looked like a word and I chose a bad word to diffuse it. My aunt starts saying along the lines of “In my opinion, people who swear are just small people who try to make themselves larger”. Obviously she was missing the point of my poem, even though I explained it to her. And to me, what she said was pretty hurtful.
And second of all (this is the scene that I caused), at one point in the afternoon I decided to join my uncle and grandpa. I was waiting for them to ask me how I have been doing but all the sudden my uncle says, “So my son was at the store the other day trying to convince my wife for a hat. She told him ‘no’ and all the sudden a man with a big, red purse turns around and in a super high voice and gay accent says ‘having a mommy moment?!?'” *queue laughter from my family*. Next my grandpa says “So I was in the store the other day and this black guy has a tattoo that says *** across his chest so I say, ‘what does your family think about that’?!?!?!” I was so upset that my uncle and grandpa would be ok saying such racial/gay hating comments. I was furious that this happens all the time and I’m so sick of their hypocritical selves.
At this point I walked out of the room to the bathroom to have a moment. I came back still upset but still not saying anything. My dad asked me what was wrong and said “Well, I obviously don’t want to talk about it, do I?” And my uncle says, “Ooooohhhh someone needs a slapping!” At this point I was fuming and I have never EVER confronted my family like this but turned to my uncle and said, “I’m sorry but I’m so sick if you sitting here making racial comments, and saying things that are completely unnecessary about gay people. Talking about them behind their back just makes you small. And I’m sick of it. I’ve had enough!” My grandpa apologized. My uncle “kinda did” and my aunt said “sorry that I hurt your feelings, I just thought it was funny that that man was carrying a purse!” STOP MAKING EXCUSES FOR YOUR TERRIBLE BEHAVIOUR!
After that, my grandma and her friend gave me a lecture. Telling me that I need to tell my gay friends that God is their saviour and that I’m wrong for being offended that my uncle was saying things that were obviously insensitive to ANYONE that was there that doesn’t agree with him. I’m fine with people having their own opinions, but I feel like there should be a line that should be drawn when in public. So frustrating!!
P.S. I didn’t do anything loud. I teared up a little and left for the bathroom. I was just so freaking embarrassed that I even let myself say anything. And the bride and groom didn’t even notice until the hugged me and noticed that my eyes were red.
Post # 3
Aww hun… good for you though!!!
Darling Husband and I have been in similar situations with our families. In fact, Father-In-Law made some comments about how he would never want his daughters bringing home a guy of a different race… ummm… WHAT?? I made kinda a little stink about it… 🙂
It is so hard to confront family, especially when they may be a little closed minded and don’t realize that you have different opinions on issues. But you did the right thing by causing a scene. Hopefully they’ll realize that those ‘jokes’ aren’t jokes to the ones whom they’re about and are incredibly offensive.
Post # 4
Well, if there’s any justification for participating in an argument at a wedding, standing up to racism and homophobia is it.
I’m sorry they were being such giant douchebags. Hopefully they had enough shame to be as embarrassed as you were.
The good thing is that they’re losing. There have been four polls this year showing that for hte first time, a majority of Americans favors marriage equality. And you know, some of that change is going to happen just because of people like you who make it known that it’s NOT safe to assume anymore that “most people” at any given wedding will laugh along with that kind of joke.
Post # 5
Don’t feel horrible. You did the right thing–my family pulls crap like this all the time (maybe not racial slurs but definitely “I’m better than them” and other repugnant, close-minded views). Seriously, you were not in the wrong. It would be wrong in my opinion not to say something. And about using a “bad” word for your poem, words aren’t bad–it’s how people use them.
Post # 6
Oh my gosh, this happens to me all the time! My Fiance and I are very liberal and both of us come from very religious and conservative families. After many frustrating, angry, drawn-out “conversations” we’ve had to realize that, though we love our families, we just cannot talk politics with them(or anything else close to it). Our families are otherwise nice, loving, caring people, besides these offhand comments. When they do say something racially insensitive or anything else innappropriate, I just let it slide- I’m not going to change their opinion and I’m just going to start drama. I try to bring another point of view without totally calling them out. Usually, their comments are just to get me riled up anyway, since they know that I’m the libby libs in the family. Good for you for standing up for yourself without causing a huge scene!
Post # 7
Sometimes it’s very hard to stay silent. My father was somewhat racist. Many years back I was doing social work with a particular minority group and he foolishly failed to stop his comments on holiday. I told him off and left my parents’ home. It was really funny at future holiday meals. If my dad said anything the least bit disrespectful my mom would hush him with “Jeni might leave.” My one assertive move helped for many years. Good luck with your family.
Post # 8
Its hard when family have such different views. My mother is a lesbian, and her and her partner have a baby girl. My mum’s partner is the bio mum, but my mum is legally equally her parent, and I call the baby my little sister. Anyway, while my mum’s partner was pregnant, I was on holiday with my dad and grandparents. We were having dinner and I said something about being so excited that the baby was coming soon, and my grandma said something along the lines of. ‘That child is not your sister, not really, she is just a poor baby being born to two confused women, and probably shouldn’t be on the way in the first place.’ (IVF conception). I was so hurt and quickly left the table in tears. My grandpa came to comfort me, and told me not to be too hard on her, as she was raised in a strict Catholic household and doesn’t know any better. And then he said its our generation’s responsibility to keep on working towards eliminating prejudice, because old dogs don’t learn new tricks.
I think what he said is very wise, its up to us to do our best to be tolerant and accepting and make sure we raise tolerant and accepting children.
Post # 9
I understand why you were upset but I do think you were out of line to snap at your dad the way you did. It sounds like he was just asking what was wrong and you became upset for no reason which probably is the reason things blew up the way they did. Sometimes we need to keep things to ourselves because people ARE going to say racist things that offend people but you can’t sit there snapping at each one of them. It’s better to ignore it and not give them the time of day. I also don’t think that a wedding is an appropriate place to make a scene either. Just my opinion.
Post # 10
@SweetRose2011: Awe I’m sorry you felt embarassed but in the end you really did do the right thing. Its always difficult standing up to those older or with more social senority (lol my fancy way of parents/grantparents and the like) than you, but it does make a difference. Every effort no matter how small is making the world a little more equal.
And as for your poem, I’m exciting for it swear words and all (does it actually have bad words in it? I was a little confused for that part), so you can just send me that aunt’s copy since her eyes might be too delicate to read it 😉
Post # 11
My family does the gay bashing thing as well and it hurts me so terribly bad because 2 of my very dear close friends are homosexuals as is my FI’s father. I have had the same thing happen to me so I know how hard/ flusterating it can be. Good for your for speaking up though… my grandmother recently asked me if my ‘boy friend who likes boys is walking me down the aisle cause she would just die’ and I left nearly in tears. I usually speak up but that one hit extra deep for some reason ='( I should have said something but I knew I’d start crying so I took off. I wish I had your strength in that situation.
Post # 12
Were you with my family?
Mine is also very negative, talks about whomever isn’t around, plus the racial and antigay remarks as well. It’s not so bad when you have them seperated individually, but get them together & add alcohol and…. I have a hard time accepting it too, but I’ve learned that they aren’t going to change 🙁 Anytime I’ve made a fuss over thier rudeness or negativity I’ve been made out to be “too emotional” or “crazy”. That’s right- if you’re the odd one out then something’s obviously wrong with you… All I can do is stay true to myself & not participate. And never turn into them one day & embarrass my children/grandchildren.
You shouldn’t feel embarassed for you, you should feel embarassed for them because I honestly bet they still have no idea what they did so they’ll just continue to be that way. Sorry 🙁
Post # 13
I’m only going to say that you have to realize that they grew up in a different generation than you did. Things were different. it doesn’t make it right, but that was how it was. You aren’t going to change older people, most of the time. I don’t think in anyway that they are right, but there is a generational gap there.We just have to teach the younget generation to treat everyone with respect and dignity. I deal with it to with my Father-In-Law they are crazy like that and hard headed, you aren’t changing their minds for anything. To them, they are right.
Nothing will beat the time I yelled at the bride when we were getting ready at a wedding in front of all of the BMs and a few other people.
Post # 14
@Koala Bear: It’s a poem in the shape of a word. You don’t read the swear word at all but the stanzas all come together to form a swear word.
@ChocolateApple: I know I probably shouldn’t have snapped at my dad like that. I think it’s just been a cumulative series of events where they say something insulting and I let it go. I just had had it. I know I was at a wedding but I was pretty quiet about it.
Post # 15
You know, after reading this I don’t think you have anything to apologize for or be embarassed about. When people are hypocritical, make racist or homophobic comments I actually think that it is perfectly ok NOT to turn the other cheek. You have a right to stand up for yourself, and for your beliefs. If it were my wedding, and I heard this going on, I would be MORE upset with the people that made the comments than I would ever be with the person who retaliated.
Post # 16
Good for you! Standing up for other people regardless of whether they were there or not. You shouldn’t be embarassed at all.
Although I think using religion is a bad excuse to hide behind when you make comments like that. I was raised Catholic and i would NEVER EVER say things or feel that way. And OP said she was Christian and she doesn’t feel that way, so hiding behind religion to say horrid things is just ridiculous.
You get a standing ovation from me for doing what you did! Maybe it will make them think about what they say. 🙂