My Dad's sister is an elderly widow, late 70s. She recently got in touch with me, as I did not know her growing up. My Dad was not in contact with her for many years. I was at first glad to talk to her, as we didn't know each other when I was growing up but once my sister gave her # to my Aunt, she has been calling almost every day and she has been telling me offensive sexual jokes and some that are racist and she thinks they are funny. I just don't want to be mean to her. I have told her before I am busy witth work, family, etc and she says she will not call for a while and a few weeks later she is back calling every few days even as late as 10pm.. Besides blocking her # I am not sure what else to do? She is a nice person, she may just be lonely and I don't want to hurt her feelings. She has been calling other family members the same way also and they have been avoiding her calls.
Has anyone dealt with this situation? Any advice helpful. Thanks!
A NICE person does not call people repeatably telling off colour jokes.
Stop her in her tracks. "Auntie, it appears you have different beliefs than I do. I have no interest at all in hearing jokes that are racist or of a sexual nature. I will hang up if you repeat these sorts of jokes.
What do you have to lose by stopping her?
Since you have not had a longterm relationship with her, I would imagine that not having her in your life would really not be much of a loss. She might have something going on like dementia, etc. But that's not your problem either.
If you prefer not to confront her, go ahead and block her number. You don't need this in your life.
Hang up and Walk away immediately. Do this every single time no matter who is present.
You can't control her. But you have absolutely control over what you listen to,
I'll never understand why people think a ringing phone must be answered, especially since caller id has been a thing for decades.
After a couple of months, he stopped using bad words at my house, although I sometimes heard them floating over the fence.
If your aunt is capable of learning and remembering, simply tell her, politely, that you don't like those jokes and you will end the call every time she tells one. Then when she tells you an offensive joke, tell her that you don't like the joke and are hanging up now, but she is welcome to call back tomorrow, or next week, or whatever you feel is an appropriate time between calls.
If she gets angry, she can find another communication partner.
How's the weather. Really hot, rainy here.
I made Grandma's meatloaf the other night. Did you ever make it?
What's your favorite recipe?
My grandson plays first base on his team
And so on.
Your Aunt may just want to talk to someone and doesn't know what else to say, rather than tell jokes.
Hope this helps.
I have a lot of jokes and on occasion I will post some here but I try to be very careful as times have changed and people have changed. What might have been “thought” to be funny in the past really isn’t. So she may think the jokes are funny, and to some they might be. But if you find them offensive you are well within boundaries to tell her so and stop the conversation if she continues. Much like you would stop communicating with a Bully, this is the same. She is assaulting you with words.
You might also be able to break up her calling pattern by taking the initiative and ringing her for a good old chinwag, regularly and at a time that suits you, like every Sunday afternoon or something. Have interesting topics of conversation handy and talk to her as you would to any other lively-minded person you didn't (yet, God willing) know very well.
It is *fine* to tell her if you find something she says offensive. You don't have to be mean back at her or anything, just be truthful. She's a grown-up, she can take it.
All you can do is listen with love and encourage a change of subject. You can gently tell her those jokes are no longer acceptable, but do not be surprised if she doesn't stop. These are thoughts are deeply planted in her memories. Then try to remember that whatever you think is funny today in 50 years will be abhorrent to your grandchildren.
She is lonely and wants to stay connected to the world. Are there Senior Services in the community where she lives? Can you contact them and ask if they have activities she could join? Do they have a support service that can pair her with other lonely seniors? This COVID year has been horrible for everyone but especially for seniors living alone.
And, please, do not rail at her for her jokes. Do not judge her as some people responding have suggested. It will only confuse her and cause pain for something she does not understand. You can limit how many times you talk to her by not answering if she calls too frequently. But think about how you would like to be treated in your senior years by those in your life and go from there.
Best to you and to your aunt.