How does one get along with elderly parents who have radically different views?
I was raised in a rabidly fundamentalist Christian family and moved away as soon as I was able. I’m gay. I have grown into a spirituality that I can best describe as pagan. I have lived all over Asia and a bit of Europe. My life’s experience has shaped me into what I hope is an open-minded, intelligent man.
My parents have traveled little. Their lives revolve around the small town they live in and their fundamentalist, evangelical church. They listen to reactionary radio when they’re driving in the car.
I live very far away from them and see them only every two years or so. However, I call weekly, if not more. The subjects of Christianity, church, Jesus and the Christian god, and their hatred of our current US President come up in every conversation.
I cringe internally when they do, and I say nothing or change the subject.
Should I continue to let these words wash over me, or should I challenge them? Should I write them more instead of calling? Should I ask them directly not to discuss certain subjects?
These are my parents. While they caused me great emotional trauma growing up, I survived and have matured and forgiven. Indeed, I’ve had confrontations about past pain, but that’s all in the past. It’s not suppressed by me, but I no longer dwell on it.
This question is in the General Section. Please, keep the answers close to the topic. This question is not meant to solicit debate on religion or politics.
This question is in the General Section. Responses must be helpful and on-topic.