Hey Joe, Where you goin with that gun in your hand?
February 8, 2010 6:43 AM   Subscribe

A friend of mine's boyfriend strikes me as abusive, has blown up at me in a completely inappropriate way in the past, and I don't want him at my wedding. My fiance doesn't want to make waves. How to approach this?

Background:

My girlfriend and I are getting married in July. We have a mutual friend (who I'll call Bob) that lives in another city. We are not in regular contact; we see each other maybe four times a year, and conversation between those visits is pretty minimal, but we love him very much, and since he is a photographer we asked him and another friend to photograph our wedding, a request which he accepted enthusiastically.

Bob has a boyfriend who I'll call Joe, whom he has dated for about four years on and off. Before I ever met joe, I had heard horror stories about his behavior. He is taciturn and tends to go off by himself in social situations. I had heard of his hair trigger temper, but since I'd never seen it myself I tolerated him because he basically just hung in the background and didn't make my life difficult in any way.

This past Christmas we visited with Bob and Joe and some other friends for a day. As the day wore on, Joe seemed to be getting more and more agitated (hard to tell because he doesn't really talk and is prone to disappear without explanation) but about the time we were ready to leave, it was clear that Bob and Joe were in a fight. While everyone else was getting ready to leave, they went into a bedroom room to argue.

My fiance and I were ready to walk out the door, so we called out from the living room "Bob, we're leaving and wanted to say goodbye." Joe snarled back at us at the top of his voice "WE'RE TALKING!!!!!" and then proceeded to dissolve into a fit of yelling (directed at Bob, not at us.) As you might imagine, having never been on the receiving end of his wrath, my fiance and I were taken aback by this. Bob came out of the bedroom to apologize to us for Joe's behavior. We quickly said our goodbyes and we left.

The way I see it, I would like to contact Bob and say "Bob, we very much want you at our wedding, but after the way Joe lashed out at us, I don't feel comfortable having him there." It seems clear to me that he is, at the very least, emotionally abusive (I have been made to understand from my friends who see Bob regularly, this is a fairly common occurrence) and I don't feel like I should invite that toxicity in my direction or tacitly condone it by making him a part of my wedding.

My fiance is sympathetic, but since we are friends who only see Bob 4 times a year or so she thinks it's not our place to make a big stink about it. Additionally, she thinks that by confronting him in this manner, it will essentially end our friendship with Bob.

I don't want to lose Bob's friendship, but it seems that no one in his day-to-day life is putting their foot down about Joe's behavior. I recognize that we don't have any control over who Bob dates and how they treat him, but no one seems to stand up to Joe even when he's howling at them like a lunatic. The only real agency I have in this situation is to not invite him to our wedding, agency which I feel I should be exercising in this circumstance.

So, hivemind? Should we deliver an ultimatum, or sweep our feelings under the rug and just endure in the interest of not making waves?
posted by orville sash to Human Relations (34 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
I think you should just let it go unless you think "Joe" will make a scene at your wedding. If your really uncomfortable with him coming then I would explain it to "Bob", but like you stated this could possible end your friendship. You have to decide if it is worth that.
posted by Dick Laurent is Dead at 6:51 AM on February 8, 2010


I think you should pretend the wedding isn’t happening and have a sincere conversation with Bob about his relationship with Joe. If you truly care about him, you must be concerned for his welfare, not just with the idea that Bob will make a scene at your wedding. This IS about Bob, is it not? He’s your friend and you feel he’s in an abusive relationship. First try to help him. Then you’ll have a better understanding of the situation.
posted by yawper at 6:57 AM on February 8, 2010 [16 favorites]


Don't conflate the wedding with the intervention; do one, or do the other, but don't try to make one event do both.

"Bob" is an adult, apparently "Joe" is a shouter but we don't know he's a hitter, and on balance, "Bob" seems to prefer being with "Joe" to dumping him. If you're really frightened for "Bob", talk to him now, don't wait for the wedding.

If you just don't like "Joe", "Please photograph my wedding. But don't bring your icky boyfriend" is a rather suck-ass invitation that "Bob" if he has any backbone, will turn down.
posted by orthogonality at 6:58 AM on February 8, 2010 [11 favorites]


I see your concerns. My advice is to see your wedding day as being about minimising stuff you have to stress about and maximising the things that will make it fun or memorable for you, your partner and your guests.

If "Joe" is going to be an active problem at your wedding then don't invite him. This likely means Bob won't come too, and it will have some ramifications later for your friendship with Bob. I'd use that as your benchmark - if Joe is going to ruin the wedding for more than just Bob, then don't invite him. If Bob enquires why, you should be tactful but truthful.

However, if Joe is just going to be someone at your wedding that you don't like, then don't worry. It's traditional for every wedding to have one. You're barely going to have time to talk to people you do like, let alone spend time with people you don't. I can't say it more often: you'll enjoy your wedding or the lead up to your wedding a lot more if you think about it as just being a cool party that you want to go well, and not an event that defines the past, present and future relationships you have.
posted by MuffinMan at 7:00 AM on February 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


If you're aware beforehand of an issue with inviting this guy to your wedding, then don't invite him. If he behaves regularly in the manner you describe, then what's to stop him from causing a scene? If he just blew up once because he was having a bad day, that would be a different issue.

Contact Bob and explain that you really want him at your wedding, but that Joe isn't welcome. The ball is then in his court to decide whether he comes, doesn't come or completely ends your friendship. How Bob handles it is up to him.

Joe sounds like a complete prick. That's his right, but it's not his right to be a complete prick at your wedding. A wedding isn't the sort of thing to take a chance with - you don't have one every day, after all. If Joe is liable to cause a scene, which he seems to be, that chance isn't going to be worth it.
posted by Solomon at 7:03 AM on February 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


Just don't invite Bob to your wedding. You see him four times a year, with minimal contact in between. Wedding invitations are a quirky thing. Some weddings are small. Some weddings are expensive. Not everyone in the bride and groom's circle of friends gets invited to every wedding.

If Bob writes you a long, sad letter about how you broke his heart by not inviting him, then tell him that it's because you didn't want Joe there. Otherwise, give him some credit for being able to figure it out.
posted by bingo at 7:16 AM on February 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


"Bob" is an adult, apparently "Joe" is a shouter but we don't know he's a hitter

You don't have to hit someone to be abusive.

I would like to have a conversation about his relationship with him, independent of the wedding, but other people have done this in the past, and it hasn't really seemed to make a difference. I don't know why his friends who live three states away are suddenly going to have the impact that friends nearby have not.

I don't think that Joe is going to make a scene, I just think he's a sketchy asshole. I don't trust him and I don't want him around on the happiest day of my life, but I that advising me to tackle it as something independent of the wedding is good advice. It's hard, however, to frame it any other way, because that's most likely the next time we'll see each other in person.
posted by orville sash at 7:16 AM on February 8, 2010


do you have someone you can deputise to handle drama if Joe (or someone else with poor self-control in social situations) decides to "go off"?

that seems to be the very best approach for keeping the wedding calm and friendly without hurting the feelings of dear friends.

by "handle drama", I mean being able to tell the person causing a scene/hurting someone else they need to leave the building if not the premises without creating yet more kerfuffle.
posted by batmonkey at 7:23 AM on February 8, 2010


You leave you friend with this choice--

A: Decline to photograph my dear friend's wedding, possibly leaving friend without a photographer with short notice, further isolating myself, and cancelling an anticipated trip, or;

B: Participate in the public punishment of my boyfriend.

What do you think? Worth it?
posted by kathrineg at 7:30 AM on February 8, 2010 [19 favorites]


I like yawper's suggestion: talk to Bob about your concern for him, to get a better understanding of the situation before deciding about whether to uninvite Bob; invite Joe, or not invite Joe.

Then talk to Bob that you are concerned about having Joe at your wedding. If Joe is not invited, ask Bob if he will still come. Bob may say that he'll come, but then end up not coming. But this is made trickier by him being a photographer at your wedding. It may have to come to having to un-hire him as a photographer (I don't know if you drew up a formal contract with him, and thus, you have certain obligations you have to meet (such as following through with the job)) if Bob says he won't come if Joe won't come.

Basically you have to negotiate with Bob about the presence of his *relationship* at your wedding. I worry about putting Bob in a position where he has to tell Joe he can't come, but he should be able to handle that (I hope). When you talk to Bob, you might want to have the numbers of a few places that he can contact in his area, like for LGBTQ people in abusive relationships. Just give it to him as FYI, not as "please call this number."

If Joe comes to the wedding, have a few point people that can handle him. It's quite possible that Joe comes to the wedding and nothing happens.
posted by foxjacket at 7:39 AM on February 8, 2010


Well seeing as you are having Bob at your wedding to work and not as a guest then you are under no obligation to have him bring anyone unless as an assistant. It would be a different story if he were there as a guest. You don't have any control over who your guests bring as an escort and it would be rude to not allow them to bring whom they wish.
posted by JJ86 at 7:45 AM on February 8, 2010


To me, the fact that Bob is going to be one of your photographers does complicate matters a bit--particularly if you are not going to be paying him for his services.

If he is a professional photographer and he is photographing your wedding for free then he is doing you a huge favor, and it is going to be incredibly awkward if he wants to bring Joe and you say he cannot.

If you are paying Bob, then it might be a bit easier to just invite him but if he lives three states away then it would be pretty reasonable for him to want to bring his partner along for the weekend--and it would be hard to explain why his partner should not come to the event itself.

If you are having a medium to large wedding then I would inclined to not say anything. It does not sound like Joe is likely to actually make a scene so if he comes then just avoid him--this should not be hard to do.

If you are having a very small wedding then it will be much easier to frame it as a matter of simple logistics rather than about you not wanting Joe there (though be careful to use actual solid reasons--if Joe is the only significant other not invited then it will be pretty obvious what is going on). However, if you end up not inviting Joe, then I would treat Bob with kid gloves and make a huge effort to involve him in any events before and after the wedding as well as hanging out with him individually if possible--especially if he does not have friends/family in your area.
posted by pie_seven at 7:53 AM on February 8, 2010


There is a lot of info out there about how to reach out to people in abusive relationships. (google "friends domestic violence" or something)

You are right that you shouldn't condone his behavior, and one upside of your proposed action is that it would send a clear "his behavior is not okay" message. The downside is that, depending on his attachment to Joe, and/or any fear of angering him, he may side with Joe, potentially damaging your friendship and potentially isolating him.

If you do talk to Bob about not having Joe come, be really careful to not reinforce negative messages he might be hearing. Most emotional abuse degrades the victim, and he was already embarrassed about Joe's behavior, so he may be feeling some shame about continuing the relationship. I know this is not what you mean, but he could hear your message as saying, "we are too good to be around this person that you put up with every day." Stay away from "why do you put up with that?" attitudes and instead express your concern for him, and then transition to saying you would feel uncomfortable about being around Joe and would there be a way for him to come alone?

Personally, I would leave the final decision up to him, because depending on how abusive this situation is, your request could be putting him in a tough spot, appearing to side with you in rejecting Joe, or even inviting questions like "were you really at a wedding or were you out flirting with other guys at some bar?"

On preview, I wouldn't minimize the impact your concern could have. Just because his local friends' concern hasn't caused him to end the relationship (or not yet, anyway), you never know what's going on in his head or what your friendship and opinion might mean to him.
posted by salvia at 7:54 AM on February 8, 2010


As you've said people closer to Bob (both physically and friendshipwise) have talked to him about Joe so I'm not sure what you are going to contribute to the conversation. And as an outside observer I'd have to say that I don't think you should add to it. Bob is an adult and he knows that his friends have concerns about his relationship... I think that should be the end of it. For whatever reason Bob chooses to stay and people constantly looking out for his welfare isn't making his life any happier. He knows he has friends to turn to if things are bad, but he has to make his own decisions.

You have admitted that you were set against Joe before you'd ever met him. So maybe you should think about that and make sure that he really was "completely innaproriate" in his actions to you and your fiance. Maybe your preconception of him as an abusive asshole shaded the reality that he's simply anti-social or lacking in people skills.

Unless you have first hand or really really trusted second hand knowledge that Joe is going to make a scene and severly get in the way of your day then is it possible that you are making too big an issue of this? It's more then likely that he'll just skulk around and no-one will even really notice that he's there.
posted by cirhosis at 8:15 AM on February 8, 2010


I would talk with Bob and discuss the realistic side of his being your wedding photographer - can Bob look at this as a job first and foremost, and is that something Joe would accept? Would Joe be understanding that it might be best if he doesn't attend the wedding, because he wouldn't be in a position to enjoy himself without the full attention of Bob? Done delicately, Bob won't take this as an offense. You can make it Bob's judgement call as to whether his SO should be brought to the wedding if Bob's going to be the photographer. If Bob's a true friend then he'll see it as a judgement call on whether to be the photographer or not, based on not bringing Joe.

An alternate option to getting the wedding photography done with Bob is to make an arrangement to get some couple shots (engagement shots?) done next time you're in town, then you still get to use his services. In the event Bob can't make it to your wedding because of Joe, then you have still made him a part of the wedding anyway. Make use of those pictures in the wedding somehow - by the guest book or as part of the slide show, or on thank-you cards, who knows. Lots of options there.
posted by lizbunny at 8:17 AM on February 8, 2010


You don't get say in who your friends choose to be with, wedding day or not. As long as Joe and Bob are together, they're a social unit, and it's rude to split up a social unit when sending out wedding invites. I think you have to invite Joe, particularly if Bob is doing you the HUGE favor of photographing the wedding.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 8:48 AM on February 8, 2010 [2 favorites]


I was in a situation sort of like this once, although it didn't involve a wedding.

There was a fairly large social event in the works, and we had invited a female friend of ours. We didn't invite her boyfriend, who was known to hit her, cheat on her, and verbally degrade her in various ways. She had lots of implausible stories to cover up his behavior -- and at the last minute, she cooked up another one, to guilt us into inviting this guy.

I don't know what he did to coerce her into this, but like a lot of maniacs, he was very jealous of her interactions with everybody. She called me with another cockamamie story about why he Had To Come.

I told her he couldn't come -- and that we had invited her, not the person who beats her. Nobody had ever laid it out so explicitly. I said we would be there for her whenever she needed help, but she was not going to bring a violent person to stay for a weekend in my apartment, and to ruin this event for everyone. She was angry, and she didn't talk to me for a while. But she knew I was right, and eventually she told me so.

I care about this woman a lot, but it was extremely important to me to shield our other friends from this volatile and unpredictable situation, and to not let anyone think for a second I condoned this behavior.

This isn't just about your personal experience at your wedding, or your friend. It's also about making sure your guests aren't exposed to a potentially miserable situation. We had no guarantee that our friend's boyfriend would cause a scene, either. But if it had gone bad, it would have gone REALLY bad. It wasn't worth the risk to me, and this was a far less important event than a wedding.
posted by Coatlicue at 8:54 AM on February 8, 2010 [4 favorites]


I guess that's where my fiance and I differ on the situation. I would be more than willing to have someone else photograph our wedding, because it's important enough to me to not have Joe @ our wedding. My fiance doesn't feel the same way.

Cirhosis, I understand where you're coming from, but it's not so much my fear of Joe making a scene as it is the fact that I don't want to implicitly or explicitly say "I am fine with this relationship, and the fact that your dumbass boyfriend doesn't feel the need to treat us with any respect or apologize for his abhorrent behavior, and I'll just turn the other way while Joe treats you like shit." Regardless of my opinion of him prior to getting together in December, he acted in an outwardly aggressive and completely unacceptable way against me and my fiance, two people who he barely knows.

but a lot of you have made a really good point in this thread that tying this confrontation to our wedding is sort of friendship suicide. At this point, I think the best solution would probably be to just let Joe come to our wedding, and then come to Bob with my concerns afterward. I still think it's something that needs to addressed, but using our wedding as an excuse to do so is not really the best way to go about it.
posted by orville sash at 9:11 AM on February 8, 2010


I don't want to implicitly or explicitly say "I am fine with this relationship, and the fact that your dumbass boyfriend doesn't feel the need to treat us with any respect or apologize for his abhorrent behavior, and I'll just turn the other way while Joe treats you like shit."

It's unclear to me what upsets you more, "Joe"'s treatment of "Bob", or "Joe"'s rudeness (and lack of apology) to you. I'm not sure if you want to save "Bob", or if it's more important to you to admonish/"beat"/put in his place "Joe".

Until that's perfectly clear in your mind, you risk using your wedding as a club to beat "Joe" over the head, for your satisfaction, not for "Bob"'s welfare.
posted by orthogonality at 9:42 AM on February 8, 2010 [5 favorites]


Is it possible to bring it up with Bob PRIOR to the wedding? Like make an effort to be in touch more, try to have the discussion come up naturally and then have an honest discussion about it?

Then, based on that, if you feel the wedding is still at risk you can make a decision but I'm not sure why you can't confront this with your friend before you bring his friend to what is supposed to be one of the happiest days of your life (and most nerve wrenching for your fiance).
posted by Elminster24 at 9:43 AM on February 8, 2010


My fiance doesn't feel the same way

Here's another tip: it makes life a whole lot easier when planning a wedding if you adopt the mantra that if you disagree on something, then person x gets the final vote.

I bucked out of all sorts of decisions for my own wedding - flowers, food, style of invites etc because when push comes to shove none of it really mattered. My wife to be was going to be there and pretty much everything else was peripheral. The same is most likely true of a single guest, however much you think it offends your sense of morals.

The advice you've got about treating your dislike for Joe, based on his abusive behavior, separately from your wedding invite list is a good one. For your own sake, cut the stress before your wedding so that when you come to the day, you aren't thinking what a hassle it was to organise.

I don't know if it will make you feel better or not, but it's statistically likely someone else at your wedding is cheating on their partner or being a dick in other hidden ways. At my brother's wedding, his brother-in-law (very generously) kept it to himself that his then wife had informed him the night before she was divorcing him to live with his best friend. Don't sweat it. If you have 100 guests and manage to spend 2 minutes talking to each you'll have used up more than 3 hours. It is very easy to avoid spending time with people you're not overly keen on at your own wedding.
posted by MuffinMan at 9:45 AM on February 8, 2010


Inviting Bob to your wedding doesn't condone the relationship. It does, however, tell Bob that if he ever decides to ask for help from friends to get out of the relationship, that you and your fiance are not the place to go. It isolates him further, which is of course exactly what an abusive spouse wants. Not inviting Bob to keep Joe away lets Joe win.

If you really want to help Bob, don't exclude him from activities, even if that means he brings the abuser along. Sometimes the 'aha" moment for an abused spouse happens in public.
posted by micawber at 10:06 AM on February 8, 2010 [3 favorites]


Orthogonality said what I wanted to say.

It's not okay for Bob to be collateral damage--this is a battle that you can't win.
posted by kathrineg at 10:07 AM on February 8, 2010


I'm wondering if Joe's behaviour is linked to some kind of substance abuse/dependancy..?
posted by i_cola at 10:09 AM on February 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


I don't know why his friends who live three states away are suddenly going to have the impact that friends nearby have not.

If you want to have this talk, don't let this be a factor in preventing you from doing it. Sometimes people like you (live far away, meet infrequently) are the MOST effective.

Why? Because sometimes it is the kicker in realizing that if even YOU can see the problem - despite distance, irregular contact, and minimal investment in the whole social dynamic - the situation must really be serious.

(FWIW I agree with yawper's compartmentalization of the two issues.)
posted by whatzit at 11:07 AM on February 8, 2010


It sounds like you've realized that the wedding is not the hill you want to die on, but keep in mind that approaching someone about their partner is very, very likely to end the relationship. Maybe temporarily, maybe not. You sound like you're okay with that, but your fiance maybe isn't, and that may not be a tenable position.

But you also think you know a lot of things that you don't actually know. When you describe Joe, I hear a description of social anxiety disorder. I understand that you didn't like his reaction, I don't like screamy people either and prefer to weep until I cannot breathe when I have been "trapped" all day by people I don't really know and aren't comfortable with and I don't have any control over my environment, and I try to do my sobbing in private, but I'm sure someone who saw me melt down could assume that I was putting on a big "look at me!" show and abusing my husband with my evil weepy manipulation. It sounds like Bob's got resources if he decides he needs help, so you'd be safe butting out and making a single decision: be his friend or don't. Because for the indefinite future, they are a package deal.
posted by Lyn Never at 11:07 AM on February 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


I recognize that the situation is nuanced, but I do believe that one's wedding should go as much as possible the way the couple wants it to go, and a couple is entitled to take whatever actions they want toward that end. I'm not saying you go wrong by inviting Joe, but if neither of you want him there ... put it this way: There are a lot of possible outcomes. One of them is that you invite the guy and he does what you fear, and then within some number of months or years, Bob stops being your friend anyway. Just my opinion, obviously.
posted by troywestfield at 11:40 AM on February 8, 2010


I agree with orthogonality (and your last comment), and also want to second MuffinMan's comment that weddings will have at least one asshole, often several. Some friends recently decided to go ahead and invite a family member who had been jaw-droppingly selfish and immature about the recent death of the bride's father (i.e. the brother of the man in question). Huge, venomous disputes about the will, the funeral planning, you name it. But he came, clapped, appears in a couple photos, and nobody remembers it as the Day That Was Sullied By His Presence--or the Day They Implicitly Condoned All His Awful Behaviour.
posted by Beardman at 11:42 AM on February 8, 2010


You might also want to ask yourself if you're mad at Bob for bringing this bad boyfriend into your circle. I had to have a conversation with a friend about "it's fine if you want to hang around with a person who acts a certain way, but I don't to be subject to their arbitrary anger, so I'm going to do A to protect myself, and I'd also ask that you help keep me one step removed from them by B."
posted by salvia at 1:51 PM on February 8, 2010


Before I ever met joe, I had heard horror stories about his behavior.

But you also say every time you saw him but once, "he basically just hung in the background and didn't make my life difficult in any way."

From your description it looks like you caught a bad moment. But if most of the times you've seen him there hasn't been a problem, then I agree with orthogonality; it's not clear why you need to put Bob in such a tough position when he's doing you a favor.

It's also possible Joe has a mental illness that he, his therapist and Bob have been trying to find the right meds for. That doesn't excuse the behavior, but it might be enough reason to give him another chance to hang in the background and not make your life difficult.
posted by mediareport at 2:02 PM on February 8, 2010


I'd be worried that if Joe and Bob fight at my wedding it will fuck up my wedding pictures.



Hire a real photographer.

Talk to Bob about Joe.

This way, your wedding pictures are taken care of and you'll have reached out to a friend in need.
posted by jbenben at 2:32 PM on February 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


I have so much advice to offer on this one!

I got married last summer and had a friend as photographer; she uploaded a few photos to her blog she thought were funny or interesting, and then accidentally deleted the rest! Don't have Bob as your photog. Hire a pro in addition to or as substitute to.

Also, don't think that you get to choose who comes to your wedding to this extent. You invite the people your people have chosen (especially if they've chosen them for 4 years).

Your job is this:

Encourage them to call the authorities if they mention being abused. Offer to move them out if they want when they complain. Listen attentively. Don't offer value judgements about their S.O. - haven't you heard that the usual result of this is for your friend to break comm. with you, rather thank breaking up with their SO?

A friend of mine and her abusive fiance came to my wedding and were fantastic guests. Do I still hate the guy? Yes. Did I make a scene? No - because I value having my friend in my life, know a lot of her friends have ditched her over this/been forcibly ditched by her, and want her to call me next time shit is bad so I can call the police, go over there, etc.
posted by Acer_saccharum at 3:34 PM on February 8, 2010


I'm with micawber.

(a) It's pretty much socially unacceptable not to invite someone's regular SO to a wedding along with the friend. The fact that he's working the wedding for free and lives states away? Um, yeah. Unless Joe's been known to slug it out with total strangers in public (about the only way you can say to Bob's face that this is the reason why he can't come, as seen in an above example), there's no socially acceptable way to invite one without the other.

(b) You're not condoning an abusive relationship.

(c) Dealing with people who have abusive SO's is tricky. You can't come 100% out against the partner while they are still together because then it means that the partner declares you The Enemy and cuts you off. And then it's harder for Bob to eventually get out. It's a tightrope. Bob is going to have to realize for himself that Joe is bad news, and only THEN can you help him out.

Specifically not inviting Joe is only going to start a fight and make things uglier. And a wedding is not the place/occasion that you want to combine an intervention with.

(d) I would just say it's easier not to invite Bob at all/pay for your own pics at this point.
posted by jenfullmoon at 4:16 PM on February 8, 2010


Two things:

--Hire a real photographer no matter what. We had a "friend" do our wedding pictures and he got drunk and belligerent even before the ceremony and they were all blurry and terrible and ugh, thank goodness our other friend (a talented amateur photographer with a really expensive camera) snapped enough good ones to make a small album. Get a real photographer. It's worth it.

--Call Bob and tell him what you've told us. If possible, have this conversation in person. He's your friend, right? You should be able to tell your friend that you're worried he's being abused, and that his SO's behavior is so bad that you don't want him at your wedding.

Yes, Bob will probably get mad and defensive. He might even cut you out of his life. But he will have made that decision as a grown man. And abuse victims (if he is being abused), like addicts, sometimes need to hit rock bottom before they realize just how bad things have gotten and how much the relationship has turned their life to shit. If Bob's own friends don't want Joe at their wedding, what does that say about Joe? You say no one's ever stood up to Joe before. Well, here's your chance to be brave.
posted by balls at 10:00 AM on February 9, 2010


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