Is he retired? And if it isn’t too personal to ask about age … 50-60? 60-70? 70-80?
The only reason I ask is that it helps to know what “season of life” people are in when deciding how much to engage their points of view. I guess the fact that he’s made his opinion known to you means that he does desire engagement of that sort at least in some way! I’m in the 50-60 range myself and have already lost both my own parents. But as I get older and the prospect of me being on the other end of what you are talking about is becoming more real each year. I know that as long as I’m sound enough in mind to know any better, I would much prefer my children to “deal straight” with me and not patronize me by just nodding and smiling while I’m saying stupid stuff. If I had dementia and can’t really be engaged, that would be an entirely different thing. But it sounds like your dad is basically of sound mind. I would rather know what my kids actually thought of me and my ideas (I think!) than to feel shut out of their own very active thought lives. So without knowing any more about your situation, let me just say at the risk of temporarily rousing his ire, (and maybe you don’t really have much fun trying to open such a potentially involved conversation) - nonetheless some part of all that might be a gift to him in the end. In so many cases now, people are probably be happy just to be engaging with others (not to mention their grown, and very busy children!) over something.