PasadenaSue This is the year I face my fears and love myself!
My father typically calls once a week and we chat. As long as I can remember he has been rather negative. Today he was “complaining” about the gift my brother and his wife sent. It was a small living Christmas tree that was decorated. I thought that it was a nice gift. He was complaining that it needed to be watered and the needles would fall off.
I told him to put it outside where it wouldn’t make a mess and his neighbors would enjoy it. Then I gently told him he was complaining about something that was actually a very thoughtful gift. He agreed. We discussed his negativity.
If he follows through on sending a thank you email, I will consider this to have been a productive conversation.