Am I Wrong for Teaching My Father-in-Law a Lesson after He Tried to Skip Out on the Bill?

When Carmen’s father-in-law, Jerry, invites her and Leo out for dinner, the couple is excited to spend time with the old man. But Jerry, known for his penny-pinching ways, makes the invitation sound like a rare gesture of generosity. Instead, he hands the bill over to Leo, claiming that he lost his wallet. When the couple realizes the truth, they teach him a lesson.

Last weekend, my father-in-law, Jerry, invited my husband, Leo, and me to a fancy restaurant for dinner.

“We haven’t had a meal together in weeks,” Jerry said on the phone. “It’s time for us to just sit down and enjoy a good meal.”

“Should we fetch you, Dad?” Leo asked while shutting off his laptop.

“No,” Jerry said. “I’ll meet you there.”

“This is nice,” I told my husband. “We don’t do things like this very often. I think we should dress up and truly make a night of it.”

“I agree, honey,” Leo said. “Let’s just have a good time.”

The restaurant was exquisite, with soft lighting and a gentle hum of live jazz music in the background.

“He really chose a fancy place,” Leo said, taking my hand while we looked around for Jerry.

“Hey, you two! Over here!” Jerry called out, his face lit up with a broad smile.

“Hi, Dad,” Leo said, bending down to hug his father.

I pulled out my chair and we sat down, ready to just spend time with Jerry.

“Tell me about you two,” Jerry said, eyeing the menu. “What’s been happening with you? Are you still at that law firm, Carmen?”

“Yes, I’ve made partner, too!” I said excitedly. “But the official announcement will only come in the new year.”

Leo went on to talk about work and how he was looking for us to buy a house.

Jerry barely did anything without constant prompting from Leo and me, so his wanting to take us to dinner was a big achievement in terms of his healing.

“But would you want to go alone?” Leo asked, finishing his meal with a long gulp of whiskey.

“No,” Jerry said. “Maybe with a tour group or something like that. It would be cheaper than doing it alone. And there should be discounts for seniors.”

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