Post # 1
I’m still in a bit of shock from this so I’ll try to explain it as clearly as possible.
Background: I have a family friend who has basically been like a father to me. I’ve known him for 20+ years (way longer than my birth father was in my life), and he was a great support system especially during my teenage/college years. He is however a difficult personality–everything is his way or the highway and he deals with some pretty significant mental health issues. This means that he gets really irrationally upset over minor things. For example, heaven forbid if you forget his birthday, it’s the end of the world (yet he never calls or sends a card for anyone else’s birthday). Normally we kind of just go “Oh, that’s Bob. You take the good with the bad” and deal with it beause we always believed he was a good person. I called him and his wife when we got engaged, called him when we decided on a date (we’ve been engaged for 2+ years), and called him when we sent out the STD with fell right in line with his birthday. He seemed happy about the engagement, but not overly interested and nothing seemed amiss.
Flashforward to this week: We’re missing a bunch of RSVP–about 20 of them so my mom and I decided to divide up the list. She would handle family and I would handle friends. She also agreed to call Bob since she hadn’t talked to him in a few months. And that was when the poop hit the fan. He got very combative–said he wasn’t coming to the wedding and that I had enough father figures in my life and that tough shit I’d just have to deal with him not being there.
Obviously we’re both kind of floored by this reaction. He’s never been so openly nasty to her. It also seems pretty obvious now that they didn’t mail back the RSVP on purpose just so he could have that phone call with one of us. I’m so incredibly hurt that he’s not going to be there. It never crossed my mind that he would purposely not come, let alone be cruel about it. I don’t know what I could have done to warrant such a reaction. Although he’s always been sort of crotchety, we’ve never known him to be this mean.
Is it worth trying to talk to him about it? Any advice on how to do so?
Post # 2
BagsnBooks: I wouldn’t be approaching him. In fact, I would bet that he’s waiting for just that to happen. I wouldn’t be kissing someone’s ass who could be so nasty towards me. If that’s how he feels, let him sit out and regret it later. Because he will. How mean of him. It’s one thing to not attend, but to say the things he did isn’t just a decline, it’s a decline and a big fuck you. Terrible! so sorry OP.
Post # 3
Honestly? It’s nice he was there for you in the past, but perhaps the friendship has run it’s course. If Bob responded that way to my wedding invite .. It’d be bye bye Bob for me.
Post # 4
Bob doesn’t sound like a very good friend or father figure. I would let it be.
Post # 5
Can you talk to his wife to see what’s bothering him? Is there something that upset him, or he’s just “Being Bob,” like you said?
I’m not sue how much he’s been there for you but seems like he dosn’t really give a crap about you anymore. Sorry. I’d just write bob off from my life. Sucks, but that’s what happens a lot with relationships of anykind.
Post # 6
I agree with stardust. He’s probably waiting for you to reach out and beg him to tell you what’s wrong. I’d cut contact until he did some major (and I do mean major) apologizing. His loss if he loses you.
Post # 7
BagsnBooks: I’ve known people like that before and been burned myself. You see them acting “weird” or mean or whatever to others, but not necessarily to you. And then, it’s your turn. I’d move on from him. He’s a pretty loose cannon and who knows if he’d show up or how he’d behave.
Post # 8
Whaat!!?! Forget Bob. His loss, what a jerk. Ignore him unless he apologizes (and means it), have a glass of wine, and go back to planning and enjoying your engagement and wedding.
Post # 9
Mental illness can really affect someone :(. I wouldn’t get too bothered by his poor response. If he wants to come, that’s great. If he doesn’t, I would just let it go. He does have a history of some non-cooperative behavior.
Post # 10
Are you sure the attitude wasn’t meant for your mother, and not you? What was the nature of their relationship?
Post # 11
BagsnBooks: Bob is a baby. Sounds like your relationship is one sided. If Bob cared he’d be there or at least would’ve sent back the RSVP. Dont waste your time on Bob since he doesn’t deserve a minute of it.
Post # 12
His mental illness may be poorly controlled right now. Don’t take his behavior personally and have a lovely wedding.
Post # 13
I’m very sorry. It sounds like he is not mentally right, and I would not pursue the issue further.
Post # 14
weird. maybe as a pp said, the attitude was meant for your mother. were you there when she made the phone call? bob sounds like hes not really in the picture these days – maybe his wife is over him being a father figure too?
Post # 15
What are the chances his mental illness is out of control and he is getting worse?