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AIBU to find my friends refusal to ever compromise incredibly selfish

(62 Posts)
PaulDacresButtPlug Tue 21-Jun-16 20:27:33

I have a very old friend I went to primary school with and we have kept in touch, on and off, all our lives. He is lovely in lots of ways but has an incredibly stubborn streak.

One thing I am starting to notice (he has two kids, and is married to someone who is great - one is 6 and one is nearly 9) is that he has to call the shots, and cannot possibly compromise in any way.

Eg His wife got given theatre tickets for a well known children's show in the West End but my friend, a former theatre director, refused for them to go because the wife of someone he used to work with (and fell out with) was in it. So, nobody went. There has also been various things that he has said they are not doing (the 'glamping' weekend, that was very child focussed that he said they weren't going to because some people he wasn't keen on, 4 out of a group of 40, were going, lots of other examples but hopefully you get the idea.)

I have been offered (it's connected to my job, I don't want to be too identifying) the potential of a stay in a Disney Resort hotel (one of the apartments so there's room for us all) and tickets for nothing (we would have to buy flights) and can go any time between now and 2017 (it's a PR trip, Im a writer.) We have been discussing how nice it would be to go away somewhere recently (admittedly when pissed) so I called and asked him if they fancied it and he said no. Not because of the money (he and his wife are very comfortable) or time off work or anything else, but because 'I don't like Disney.' So, they are all missing out. Again. I could have texted his wife and him at the same time to ask them, and now wish that I had, but this hasn't worked before - it seems as if he just cannot possibly entertain the idea of doing something that is not his cup of tea, regardless of anyone else and what they might like. (This also meant that he is refusing to come to Florida and join us for other things after (we could go for a fortnight, for example, and just spend a few days at Disney - it's free after all!) and I get the impression his wife won't go without him as she will want to have a family holiday with the four of them.)

He's starting to really wind me up with this and it is influencing my opinion of him. I know it's not really my concern but I can't help but find his behaviour incredibly selfish. (He never used to be like this, and in all other ways he is my same old friend.)

I have no idea what his wife thinks as I don't want to get into a rant about it, which is why I am venting on here instead...

Arfarfanarf Tue 21-Jun-16 20:36:20

he sounds horrible, not just selfish. Really horrible.

If he is an old friend can't you say to him that he's being a selfish arse? Do you have that sort of friendship?

PaulDacresButtPlug Tue 21-Jun-16 20:38:46

This is the thing, Arf, he doesn't seem to get it any more. I have hinted at it but not blurted it out - he seems to be getting more and more narrow minded (he is 45) and grumpy - and I don't want it to escalate to something worth falling out over as, generally, otherwise he is great. But I am finding this aspect of his personality very wearing and colouring what I think (and bear in mind I have known him over 30 years) of him

PaulDacresButtPlug Tue 21-Jun-16 20:39:38

also, i guess it's not really my business if his wife goes along with it (she's no wallflower but it does make me wonder if she likes to take the easy option with him sometimes)

Baconyum Tue 21-Jun-16 20:47:32

Their marriage/family isn't your business.

Your decision to stay friends or not is yours.

Personally I'd be telling him what a miserable git he is, selfishly preventing his family from doing things they may enjoy and that he shouldn't be surprised if his wife eventually has enough and leaves. Not to have a go but because good friends tell each other the truth and hopefully prevent them from being hurt or hurting others they care about.

PaulDacresButtPlug Tue 21-Jun-16 20:50:10

This is why I have only hinted or mildly taken the piss about it Baconyum.

Also, I am not sure that it bothers his wife, or at least it doesn't seem to.

SaucyJack Tue 21-Jun-16 20:50:18

Is it the children and his wife you're concerned about?

I compromise a lot less as I get older. I haven't missed out on anything other than a few mediocre outings.

Muddlingthroughtoo Tue 21-Jun-16 20:50:30

Wow, this is like the other side to another thread. Personally if my husband was that grumpy if leave him behind, the kids come first.

reup Tue 21-Jun-16 20:51:48

Did she waste money on the theatre tickets? Why didn't she go on her own with the kids. That's what my sil does as my bil is so opinionated about everything she gets fed up and does her own thing with her daughters.

Arfarfanarf Tue 21-Jun-16 20:52:31

He's great apart from being a selfish, controlling, miserable, grumpy person?

erm.... grin

Do you think his wife is unhappy and feels restricted or controlled or do you think she and the children are happy with him making their social decisions for them?

RaeSkywalker Tue 21-Jun-16 20:55:45

You can choose to end the friendship.

My oldest and dearest friends DH is like this, it is devastating to watch her life be limited by his ridiculous opinions (and he has a strong opinion on everything). He also hates Disney! To be honest, I don't like it either, but I would go for my children and enjoy myself!

bibbitybobbityyhat Tue 21-Jun-16 20:58:06

Ha! What IS it with the Disney threads atm?

Are you sure you're a writer op? (don't you think you use rather too many brackets?) I find your post quite difficult to read.

I will join your friend on the grumpy bench as I don't think he's been unreasonable, apart from maybe re. the theatre tickets.

PaulDacresButtPlug Tue 21-Jun-16 20:58:28

reup the tickets were a gift, she is a teacher at a posh school and it was an end of year thing.

arf he can be very funny, the life and soul and an excellent host and usually is those things above being the uncompromising arse. I don't know if she is happy with it or not, I don't want to ask too much and make it obvious what I think as maybe she doesn't think it's that big a deal (but I know I'd get pissed off)

PaulDacresButtPlug Tue 21-Jun-16 21:00:06

Bibbity Ha! I see what you mean about the brackets!

NotCitrus Tue 21-Jun-16 21:00:52

Why doesn't wife and kids go then? Do they not really want to but prefer to use him as an excuse, or do they fear his grump after?

I leave MrNC at home and take the kids camping etc with my friends - everyone is reasonably happy that way.

PaulDacresButtPlug Tue 21-Jun-16 21:03:15

NotCitrus I would too! I don't think he would be grumpy if they did stuff without him in the least, but I think his wife wouldn't want to go and do or experience things without him. She would rather do it as a family. It's their choice I realise but I think he's being selfish by putting them in that position in the first place

Sillysausage2 Tue 21-Jun-16 21:04:02

This would be my brother only he's not a theatre director!
He's just so stubborn and goes so far against stuff he can't go back on it. I do tell him he's an ass (in a lighthearted way) but then again I'm not married to him so it doesn't bother me so much

PaulDacresButtPlug Tue 21-Jun-16 21:05:35

SillySausage exactly that! And for whose benefit other than themselves?

trafalgargal Tue 21-Jun-16 21:15:07

Well clearly she's OK with it (or manages him very subtly for the stuff that REALLY matters to her).

As you say they are comfortable so if Disney was a priority - they'd do it. Not everyone wants to go to Disney -he has said no thanks so that's the end of it.

You basically have a friend who is selfish, either you want to overlook his bad points as he also has good ones too ......or you don't. It's nothing to do with his marriage however. That's their business.

PaulDacresButtPlug Tue 21-Jun-16 21:21:35

TrafalGal you are completely right, although the thing that irked me about the Disney aspect is that HE decided the second I texted that they weren't up for it.

Shakey15000 Tue 21-Jun-16 21:26:04

Why is his DW allowing him to put the brakes on something she and the kids would like to do? Why can't she do it anyway confused

DW- DH, I fancy going glamping/Disney with the kids, you up for it?
DH- Nope, not my kind of thing, I don't want to.
DW- Fine, still going. What will you have planned while I'm doing xyz, anything nice?

Ref the friendship- up to you. I have a friend who is rubbish at answering phone or responding to texts etc. He does eventually. But I did go through a spell of being incredibly frustrated. However, we have an absolute ball when we get together so, on balance, I decided to just accept he was crap in some areas.

tropicalfish Tue 21-Jun-16 21:28:36

surely its a case of taking annual leave. I wouldnt be too keen on disney but theres nothing to stop his wife and kids going if they want to. His loss if he doesnt want to go. In terms of falling out with him, you've known him a long time, why would you fall out now over something so trivial. If you like him just carry on being friends with him. Some people dont like going away with other people. Especially when you have kids, going away with other people and their kids might just end up being not a break at all. I really wouldnt break up a friendship over this.

Eva50 Tue 21-Jun-16 21:31:18

I can't think of anything more awful than going to Disney. Ds3 (9) sees the "we're going to Disney" adverts and thinks he would love it. I know ds3 and he would hate it. He doesn't like crowds, noise or waiting more than two minutes for anything. Any more than 15 minutes travel time in the car and he's moaning and we can't open the car windows on a main road because he can't stand the noise. I wouldn't go if you paid me.

Perhaps he knows it wouldn't suit his family and his wife may be in agreement with him but let's him discuss it with you as he is your friend. It's not really your concern.

PaulDacresButtPlug Tue 21-Jun-16 21:33:47

tropical i wouldn't break up the friendship, I just find it annoying. Its not just the options of going away, it's other stuff and I guess I can't understand why it's always his decision.

Toddlerteaplease Tue 21-Jun-16 21:36:15

A friend of mine has an allocation of tickets for the queens garden parties and was going to give a mutual friend one so I could go as his guest. I would have loved to have gone but friend refused point blank as he doesn't like London or crowds. I've never forgiven him for that!

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