More in law crap. TL;DR: My BiL nearly started a fistfight at an 8 yo’s bday party and nobody did anything but me.
Yesterday was our niece’s 8th bday party. We grilled at one park, then moved onto another to play at the splashpad.
We get to the splashpad and some folks take off to change into bathing suits, while others are throwing down chairs and blankets.
My BiL (SiL’s husband) and his son start batting practics pretty much right next to the splashpad and the area where everyone’s sitting. His son hits a ball into the splashpad.
As far as I see, it doesn’t hit anyone but there’s a dad playing in the splashpad with his kids, who picks up the ball and starts yelling at BiL: There are kids playing here! Go play ball somewhere else! Use your head!
Ok, so, that approach is uncool, for sure. But BiL’s reaction is scary and mortifying. Instead of grabbing the ball and moving 20 feet away, he starts screaming back. Basically just: FUCK YOU! over and over.
Keep in mind, this is a sunny Sunday afternoon at a splashpad. There are about 20 kids under the age of 10 all around these two men. And these men are escalating, continuing to scream at each other.
SiL’s in the bathroom, changing, so she’s not there to intervene and no one in Homey’s family says or does anything. I think this is partially from shock and partially they’re mortified and don’t want to be seen as associated with the asshole screaming profanity.
Meanwhile, our nephew is slowly backing away from his dad, also clearly embarrassed and I think scared.
The man on the splashpad is still yelling and his wife joins in, yelling, Are you crazy? Watch your language! There are kids around!
BiL starts yelling back about her husband “being a little bitch.”
I used to work in grouphomes; I know what it looks like before a fight starts and I know if you just stand their allowing people to scream at each other, it will turn violent.
I’m kind of waiting for someone (anyone!) to be the grownup and intervene with BiL. After a minute, I realize, I’m the only fucking grownup here.
I walk over to nephew and BiL and suggest that they move just a little bit away. BiL says, No, we’re fine, and storms off. Nephew is still shaken, I ask him to go for a walk with me and Homey, he says no, I ask if we should go find his mom and he just groans and follows his dad.
While they are walking, the splashpad clears. I mean, of course, right? If you are playing with your kids and some asshole comes up and starts playing baseball right next to them and then starts yelling profanities when criticized, you’d leave, too, right?
After everyone but Homey’s family has left, everyone acts like everything is normal. No one says anything to BiL or SiL—I still don’t know if she is even aware her husband did this.
Anyway, I was very, very shaken by this—frankly, I just don’t live in world where adults scream at and threaten each other in a park in front of kids (or, you know, at fucking all). And mortified! I don’t want to be associated with people who behave this way.
I told Homey, if anything like this ever happens again, I will not be the calm adult. I will go off on BiL and I will not attend events where he’s going to be. I think Homey thinks that’s unfair but come fucking on. People don’t behave like this! Or, at lest, rational adults don’t.
Sorry, I know this got really long but I needed to get it off my chest and see what the rest of you think.