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So annoyed with dinner guest

So I've had the same best friend for 25 years. Unfortunately her husband of 6 years drives me nuts. He's insanely rude at times and he doesn't even realize it. He's one of those people who feels the need to share his opinion on EVERYTHING even when it's not asked.

I've made meals for them multiple times and EVERY SINGLE TIME he has to chime in on the food. The first time was when I was making a picnic basket for us to take to the Hollywood Bowl. He's vegetarian so I told him not to worry as I was bringing hummus, avocado and tomato sandwiches. His response? "Oh...I hope not too many tomatoes. I'm not always crazy about them." I brought them dinner after he & my BF had their daughter. I walked in with a tray of lasagna. His response? "Oh" (sad face) "I was hoping you'd bring potato tacos."

It's her birthday so my husband and I are having them over for dinner tonight. I mentioned in passing to her via text that I was making cheese enchiladas. She was grateful (as always) and said she was looking forward to it. He proceeded to send me a long text msg saying how he just had to be honest but he's not a big fan of enchiladas and would I be making rice and beans on the side? He ended it by saying maybe I could just make a quesadilla for him as well (I had told his wife I'd make a quesadilla for their daughter in case the enchiladas were too spicy for her) I'm so annoyed. I haven't responded. I don't want to hurt my friends feelings but frankly I'm sick to death of her hubby's behavior. It makes me not want to ever cook for them again (which sucks because I love cooking for people, particularly my friend who's never anything but gracious)

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  1. I should also add that any restaurant my husband and I have ever suggested, BF's hubby always let's it be known that he finds the food mediocre. Whatever happened to little white lies to protect feelings???

    1. It's not fun trying to please people who will never, ever appreciate your efforts. Because you care about about the wife and kids and you know that he is relatively unappeasable go with what pleases-the people you care about. This is someone that you can't control. Don't cook anything that might make the control freak comfortable or made a focus of your efforts. Let the guy fend for himself. If he's hungry after your party what, honestly, do you care

      1. Don't cook for them anymore and when you dine out, let him pick the restsurant. There are too many other, bigger problems in life that need your attention. This situation is not worth your aggravation over it. Not sure how old you are, but I have learned this lesson with age, the hard way.

        6 Replies
        1. re: ttoommyy

          6 years of his nonsense? ttoommyy took the words right out of my mouth.

          Don't reply to his text - make him the darn kiddy quesadilla tonight(or not) and be done with it.

          1. re: ttoommyy

            I bet ya $10 if given the choice of restaurant he'll defer to everyone else and then gripe anyway. some people are just like that.

            1. re: hill food

              There is a solution to that scenario. If he doesn't make a decision, do NOT succumb to the temptation to fill the vacuum. He either makes the decision (or his wife does) or nothing happens. Period. It is essential social medicine.

              1. re: Karl S

                Right.
                This guy has been enabled, and his manipulation has been working for him.

                Call the bluff and be prepared to stay the course.

                1. re: Karl S

                  I like that. He needs to experience some natural consequences. Sounds as if he's been enabled his whole life.

              2. re: ttoommyy

                For the win.

              3. I wouldn't make anything different than what you already planned. Don't acknowledge the text. Make 1 quesadilla for the kid.

                3 Replies
                1. re: Njchicaa

                  From my own experience, being passive-agressive really never solves much and in this case may lead to an uncomfortable evening for the OP.

                  1. re: ttoommyy

                    agreed.

                    1. re: ttoommyy

                      Quesadillas are easy, fast and cheap.
                      This one is a no-brainer, but I'd turn the spigot to a very slow trickle when it comes to ever hosting them again.

                  2. I am so sorry this is happening to you! I can understand how you feel - in fact I know people just like him, unfortunately. I think people who always complain about the food others fix or the restaurants others chose fall into two camps:
                    1, People who use food as a way to be in control. They usually have special diets or allergies of are just ridiculously picky, and they preface every meal with "I hope it's not..." or "I don't eat that," etc.
                    2. People who are immature. They act like a spoiled 5 year old, and cannot reason that this is not their last meal so it doesn't have to be their favorite food, and have not been taught it's rude to criticize a meal someone has specially prepared.
                    One of my best friends falls into both categories, and eating with her is hell on earth. She makes faces when food is served, says things like, "That looks like an autopsy" when someone orders rare meat, picks things apart on her plate looking for offending ingredients, will say, "This is disgusting" when tasting something a friend has cooked, etc. One of our other friends gets furious when this friend pulls her shenanigans, but I just shrug and ignore it. It's her issue, not mine, and I am not going to let it ruin my good time and good meal!

                    1. I read something a while ago that helped me to deal with people like that. Basically it comes down to, I cannot change that person but I can change how I react to them.
                      I would make your dinner as planned. If you have the fixings to make him a quesadilla, make one for him too, otherwise stick with your plan. A person like that will probably find something else to comment on even if you do make the quesadilla especially for him.

                      13 Replies
                      1. re: NE_Elaine

                        Yup. "Oh, you used Colby Jack? I was hoping for Queso Blanco."

                        And that's when I shot him, your honor.

                        1. re: mcsheridan

                          "We the jury, find the defendant not guilty, as this is an irrefutable case of justifiable homicide"

                          I'd serve the guy what I serve the rest of the adults, and at the first smartass comment, would simply reply, "did you not have parents who taught you even the most basic manners?"

                          And I would have a long heart-to-heart about how her dickhead of a husband is really starting to impact your friendship -- you love her, but you really don't want to put up with his shit. Granted they are both adults, but as a couple, she eventually has to deal with him.

                          And I speak from experience. One of my dearest, oldest friends is married to a woman who has never had a kind word for me from the moment she first set eyes on me. I have lunch with him and chat on the phone and via Facebook on a regular basis without her, because she makes it simply impossible to be in same room with her. Love him, refuse to put up with her.

                          1. re: sunshine842

                            Ooh, be careful what you say. What if she gets offended and feels she must defend her husband? You could lose a friend. Obviously, she loves him because she married him and had a child. Personally, I would not place my best friend in a position where she had to make a choice between her husband or her friend. Who wants to listen to your friend complain about your husband?

                            I would just spend time together when he's not around.

                            1. re: Jerseygirl111

                              who said anything about making a choice? Wasn't me.

                              You start by having a long heart-to-heart with her and tell her flat-out that her husband is woefully short of manners and consideration for others, along with lots of reinforcement about how much you enjoy HER company, and how much this pains you to have to have this conversation. (I swear I've said this before)

                              If she continues to let this feckless clod run roughshod over her best friend at every turn, then maybe the friendship isn't as strong as it should be.

                              1. re: sunshine842

                                What kind of friend would tell you that your husband is an dickhead? There was no mention of abuse, cheating etc, just that the friend thought he was annoying.

                                Either the wife knows it already and chooses to ignore it because she loves him and afaik, is not planning on divorce, OR may open her eyes to what type of friend she has.

                                By having "the talk" you are espousing, sunshine, she would be placing the wife in an awkward position. Why do that to a friend?

                                1. re: Jerseygirl111

                                  why is having a heart-to-heart any worse than the BFF inflicting her husband's behaviour on her best friend?

                                  Of course you wouldn't open the conversation by calling him a dickhead, even if that's your honest opinion.

                                  1. re: sunshine842

                                    Because maybe the wIfe doesn't think her husband is a boor. So she is unknowingly "inflicting" her husband's behavior on her best friend. By informing the wife her husband is a dickhead is intentionally insulting, at the very least, the wife's choice in spouses.

                                    "Of course you wouldn't open the conversation by calling him a dickhead, even if that's your honest opinion."

                                    Well, we could at least be thankful for small favors.

                                    1. re: Jerseygirl111

                                      "I just wrote him back. I was nice but direct. I said I wasn't certain if he was aware but every time I cook for them, he complains. I said I know he has a good heart & appreciates honesty"

                                      This is nothing like calling this dickhead a dickhead.
                                      The OP expressed how he hurt her and her feelings, and I think she was tactful.

                                      At some point, most folks are going to go all Howard Beale!

                                      1. re: monavano

                                        "I want each of you to go to your windows and yell..."
                                        classic.

                                        1. re: hill food

                                          You bet!

                                          You have to release the valve every once in a while.

                              2. re: Jerseygirl111

                                A person stealing away your 25 year friendship? I vote ,"yes". He may not like you much at all, you make it clear you do not like him. Such is life and friends getting married without permission.
                                Watch your step, you may lose a friend long before the friend loses a spouse.

                              3. re: sunshine842

                                SO true. Thanks for this reply!

                              4. re: mcsheridan

                                "but I was aiming for the offending quesadilla"

                            2. My rule of thumb is if you don't like what I'm serving then don't eat it. I have vegan and gluten free friends and I always include items that they will enjoy.

                              1. What was that definition of insanity ? Doing the same thing over and over again, expecting different results...Stop way before you get 'sick to death'. just a thought

                                1. Aside from his issues (and they are HIS issues, don't let them become yours) with food and proper behavior, how well do you get along with him? And how much are you willing to tolerate to be able to spend time with your friend? I think ttoommyy'ss response is dead on, and you may find yourself moving toward a relationship only with your friend, i.e. only having 'girls' night out' (I hate that term, but you know what I mean) or just having her over for afternoon coffee and chat.

                                  For tonight (assuming the event hasn't happened yet), you could text him back saying, "I just have to be honest, I'm making the enchiladas for your WIFE'S birthday, so you should put on your Big Boy pants and go along with the program for HER. Or you can make your own fucking quesadilla. Your call, Tex."

                                  1. She married the right man for her and the wrong man for you. Tragic.

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: beevod

                                      You nailed it.

                                    2. So, he obviously does not have good manners - or maybe he is extrapolating from your good friendship with his wife that you guys are close enough not to have to be polite? Either way, he is obviously the problem not you.

                                      However, it is no fun to cook for people and have them not enjoy your food. Have you ever asked him and his wife about their food preferences? I ask because I noticed that all the foods he complained about (in these anecdotes, at least) contained tomatoes or tomato sauce. If you asked and he said, "I really don't like cilantro and eggplant, and often don't like tomatoes," wouldn't it be easier to just not cook those things when dining with them? I'm not saying that it is your duty or responsibility, but it might be worth it for the sake of your friendship with your bestie and for dinner party harmony.

                                      Another strategy might be to email them with your planned menu once you know it (day before?) and if he complains, say "Well, I've already been grocery shopping and the menu is set. If you don't like __________, why don't you bring along another dish for us all to share?" My bet is that once he realizes that you won't short-order cook for him, he will (likely) shut up and make do with the food available or (unlikely) bring something he likes to eat and everyone will be happy.

                                      1. The funny thing is he thinks we're incredibly close. (Honestly, he doesn't have a ton of friends and since his wife and I are more like sisters, he has stated in the past that he thinks of me as family too) I think that's a huge part of the reason he thinks it's okay to act this way. I know his mom too and let's just say she's not exactly a walking Emily Post book so I see where he gets it from. I guess for me the thing that really bothers is literally no matter what I picked for tonight's menu, he would have found something to complain about. I just wrote him back. I was nice but direct. I said I wasn't certain if he was aware but every time I cook for them, he complains. I said I know he has a good heart & appreciates honesty (which is part of the problem...he's so honest, he doesn't quite understand that it's not necessary to share your feelings on everything. He doesn't have that politeness gene most adults have where you just suck up being uncomfortable & dish out a few little white lies if it means not offending your host) so I let him know that I was taking this opportunity to be honest as well and tell him that such behavior and comments truly hurt my feelings. Let's see what he says. As for what I'm going to do about tonight, yes, I'll make the damn quesadilla for him because it would just be awkward otherwise but after that, I'm done. If he doesn't get that I'm trying to nip this behavior in the bud, then man alive, he's more clueless than I thought.

                                        11 Replies
                                        1. re: thedanza2000

                                          I think you are being a good friend. I hope things go well.

                                          1. re: viperlush

                                            Me, too!

                                          2. re: thedanza2000

                                            Do you think of him as family, too? And does he realize that he has a huge blind spot when it comes to social niceties? If so, then you can speak directly with him and teach him the value of honesty tempered with consideration for others' feelings.

                                            I wouldn't expect one night's experience to result in a change in his behavior, considering he's been a boor all his life...and that you've put up with his boorishness for the last six years. Still, a heart-to-heart, direct, open, and honest discussion might pave the way to a better relationship.

                                            1. re: thedanza2000

                                              How did he respond? Do tell!!

                                              I'm of the mind that future meals should be " girls' night only" for you and your friend. Let the husband babysit at home.

                                              1. re: thedanza2000

                                                <he's more clueless than I thought>
                                                Is he really that clueless? "He's insanely rude and doesn't even know it"? "He doesn't have a ton of friends"?
                                                Sounds to me like he's provoking you. He's openly taking advantage of your kindness and your overly generous nature. Nobody really knows, even though she's your very good friend, what their marriage is like or how he treats your friend when you're not around.
                                                I'm a little curious why you'd decide to make a quesadilla (tonight?)…because it's 'awkward'? He's seriously not too concerned about you and your generosity…I'd make your dinner with absolutely no deviation. If he doesn't like it? Oh well. Remember….your 'good' friend is allowing her husband to take advantage of you….her 'good' friend.

                                                1. re: thedanza2000

                                                  I would suggest hosting future meals together pot luck style. If he can't bring a dish that he likes then its his own damned fault.

                                                  Otherwise future meal time socializing should be done at their house (where he can make a pb sandwich and shut it) or alone with your friend and less stress about petty childish behavior.

                                                  1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                    Definitely involve him in planning and cooking something he likes for the next gathering. Then you can find out once and for all if he's got a particular food he doesn't like, or if he's just being rude, or if it's a bit of both. If he plans what he's eating at the next meal and still has snarky comments, then it's him, not the food (or you).

                                                    1. re: 16crab

                                                      not a bad idea, and an olive branch (so to speak)

                                                  2. re: thedanza2000

                                                    'he doesn't have a ton of friends'

                                                    There's a shocker…I sure that your aren't the only person that he has acted this towards. When his cluelessness grew tiresome people most likely stopped reaching out and/or returning his calls.

                                                    As he is married to your close friend you don't have the easy option of dropping him.

                                                    1. re: thedanza2000

                                                      He doesn't have that politeness gene most adults have... that's it in a nutshell. The guy has no social filter. Think of him as your Sheldon Cooper. Nothing you do or say will change him but could well damage the relationship with your friend. For her sake, tolerate him in silence but continue to treat him as you would any other guest.

                                                      1. re: elegraph

                                                        Nope. Not worth it.

                                                    2. I think a bigger issue for many of us is that we love eating with friends and when that becomes difficult because of spouses, children, new dietary restrictions, etc. It's disappointing and sad. My wife and I have made an effort to seek out foodie friends that are not necessarily our closest friends but who deeply love eating and cooking and trying new things. If I know we have a group outing to Flushing to try a type of Chinese food that none of us has tried on the weekend, I have a much easier time telling my close (but picky) friend, 'let's play tennis or catch a movie that night instead of doing dinner on Wednesday.' For holidays and big gatherings, I say cook up a storm and ignore any rude behavior, other times, it might be worth seeing them in situations where food isn't the focus. Good luck and your food sounds delicious. :)
                                                      JeremyEG
                                                      HomeCookLocavore.com

                                                      1. I'm surrounded by socially...erm...challenged...people (scientists and engineers). All wonderful people, just had to learn to accept their social awkwardness..

                                                        For the birthday dinner, grin and bear it. Sounds like your friend will want her spouse to be there. Consider it part of your "gift" to her!

                                                        When it is not a special occasion, you may want to find ways to have "girlfriend time". Just the two of you; shopping, gallery hopping, going out to lunch etc. No spouses allowed!

                                                        1. Suggest that he bring along the rice and beans to accompany the rest of the meal. Swing it back to him.

                                                          1. Fortunately, quesadillas are crazy easy and fast.
                                                            Throw one together for the misfit, and enjoy your time with BFF.

                                                            1. Do not not ever bother to put yourself in charge of his food again.

                                                              1. You were direct about tonight, and that's great.
                                                                I'd not bother to try to express your feeling, or hash it out anymore.
                                                                No more.
                                                                Period.
                                                                Here's why- you are enabling him, plain and simple.

                                                                He complains that he'd rather have X when you're making Y?
                                                                "Oh, that's too bad"

                                                                He complains about the mediocre restaurant you've chosen?
                                                                "Oh, I'm sorry your disappointed"

                                                                He requests something that's not in your dinner plan?
                                                                "Oh, I'm sorry, that's simply not possible"

                                                                See what I'm doing?
                                                                Acknowledge his feelings/rants (tantrums) and move on.

                                                                Never engage, just sympathize and put on your best Stepford Wive's smile.
                                                                If he pushes further, add a quizzical look to that special smile and just hold it until he looks away or moves on.

                                                                Try it tonight and report back!

                                                                ps... good luck, and you're a mensch!

                                                                5 Replies
                                                                1. re: monavano

                                                                  this response! Manavano nails it.

                                                                  cause this isn't actually about your (or anybody's) food. Food is a vehicle for other stuff. He's got you worrying/thinking trying to find some way to mollify his complaints. It works because most good folks like you and the rest here on CH figure that somehow we will actually hit on something/some food this guy (and those like him) will actually enjoy eating. _and_ he will also notice and express appreciation for your efforts.

                                                                  Its not going to happen. Not. its ok for you to stop hunting for the elusive unicorn. for this guy it doesn't exist. and he _will_ keep you hunting if he can (his stuff is mostly unconscious but it works so he keeps repeating).

                                                                  my solution was to fix nice food, include stuff that a reasonable person would like and then smile and say exactly what Manovano has described. or...

                                                                  (after his complaint or demand) : "oh, you have such special tastes - you're the best person to know what you like and how to fix it, so I'll leave that to you"

                                                                  never engage - just sympathize. hold that special smile and then change the subject.

                                                                  good luck - its not easy but it can work.

                                                                  1. re: kariin

                                                                    Yup.

                                                                    An elderly "socialite"-type once told me that, when in doubt, hold your smile, say, "thank you", and keep moving. Even if they've just insulted your grandmother.

                                                                    Shuts 'em right down.

                                                                    1. re: kariin

                                                                      you've read a paragraph or two and know with certainty what is and is not going to happen? you know how this person works? you've done a complete psych evaluation from a few sentences?

                                                                      1. re: Bellachefa

                                                                        no, no certainty about anything involving hooman behavior - just been there in my own experience. . danza200 shared this , sounded familiar. . and i had some good outcome -maybe could help someone else and no nastiness to the other person. yymv.

                                                                        1. re: kariin

                                                                          (please don't feed the straw man:-))

                                                                  2. Just tell him that it's not your job in life to pave his way to comfort. That you enjoy him coming over to receive the gifts of your kitchen work and friendship is really nice, but if he doesn't like what gets put in front of him. Tough.

                                                                    Then let him know that he has every right to be a big diaper baby about it - but you aren't going to rewrite a single moment in a day unless it suits you - not him.

                                                                    I'm sure he'll curl up into a victim ball. But you either set him straight or he will own you.

                                                                    1. This thread is really pushing the limits of Chow Duality.

                                                                      Whilst this one -->
                                                                      don't cook what he wants! He's a boor!!
                                                                      is racking up comments, there are others that are spouting the exact opposite-->
                                                                      You are the host, you have to service the food needs of your guests!!

                                                                      At least it's entertaining.

                                                                      1. Ask him to bring what he'd like. Alternatively put a couple take out menus in front of him and gently tell him to go ahead and order something.

                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                        1. re: smartie

                                                                          Don't forget that she's not treating him!

                                                                          1. re: monavano

                                                                            absolutely! He can buy his own take out. Or tell him to pick up a Dominos pizza on route.

                                                                        2. Next grocery shopping: find the cheapest can of beans (not cooked in anything that makes the taste good) and a small box of instant rice.

                                                                          Next meal problem: solved in advance so you won't have to 'warn' him about the menu.

                                                                          (Your friend needs you, maybe more than you will ever know.)

                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                          1. re: shallots

                                                                            Reminds me of the Prince if Tides, when the mother served a fancy meal for dinner and her miserable husband tossed it to the side and told her to make a real dinner.
                                                                            She quickly rustled up dog food over rice and he was like a pig in slop.

                                                                          2. Answer the text.....

                                                                            Sorry, but I've finished shopping and the menu is set...

                                                                            If you want to add some zip, include....

                                                                            btw, I'm not a restaurant taking orders for dinner, but you are welcome to bring over whatever you wish if the menu doesn't suit you.

                                                                            1. Just a general statement: the snarky answers suggested by some are not really going to help the situation. Also, at some point the OP should adress this situation face to face and not in a text message.

                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                              1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                Amen.
                                                                                chances are, this guy is not teachable and its not her place to do so.
                                                                                A simple "sorry, that's not possible", repeated, if needed, is all one needs to offer
                                                                                Trying to reason with or head shrink this clod is like banging your head against the wall and complaining of a headache.

                                                                                1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                  Funny thing is that he is not writing Chow to complain about her lack of civility.

                                                                                2. Trying to change him will be a waste of energy. He is married to your BFF, which makes the situation tricky. I'd make the quesadilla and vent to us.

                                                                                  I go to dinner with a bunch of girlfriends every month or so and there is one woman who always complains about the food, the service, something and if she doesn't choose the place, it's even worse. We ignore her and vent to each other about her.

                                                                                  8 Replies
                                                                                  1. re: Janet from Richmond

                                                                                    " there is one woman who always complains about the food, the service, something and if she doesn't choose the place, it's even worse. We ignore her and vent to each other about her."

                                                                                    Exactly. Life is too short and full of important things that need our attention and energy. Dealing with a person like this is futile.

                                                                                    1. re: Janet from Richmond

                                                                                      <We ignore her and vent to each other about her>

                                                                                      Really?
                                                                                      How do you know one of you, who'd be willing to be honest with her (calmly), wouldn't affect her behavior?
                                                                                      Have any of you tried it? Or does the fun of the gossip out way the possibility of change?

                                                                                      1. re: latindancer

                                                                                        Venting to one another is not gossiping; it is a way of dealing with the situation. We have someone in our group like this. Many of us have spoken to her but it all falls on deaf ears. So what to do? Vent to one another when she is not around and go on with life. There are too many other good qualities in this person to give up on the friendship.

                                                                                        1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                          Everyone vents, and if that keeps this friend in your circle, and from being isolated (and the sequelae that can happen as a result), then a little blowing off of steam is just fine.
                                                                                          We're all human, after all.

                                                                                        2. re: latindancer

                                                                                          Because I have known her since we were both 5 years old (45 years).

                                                                                          1. re: Janet from Richmond

                                                                                            As long as it's not Mooch and Hooch, it's all good, Janet. ;-)

                                                                                            1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                              No, it is not...bahaha. This one is a pain, but neither a cheapskate nor a lush :-)

                                                                                              1. re: Janet from Richmond

                                                                                                I have to say, you earned your place in the Chowhound Hall of Fame with that thread. :D

                                                                                      2. Sorry. I got sidetracked yesterday getting ready for the dinner. He wrote me back write away yesterday. It was a long text and the gist of it was, he was genuinely sorry & upset that he hurt my feelings. I also don't think he understood at all WHY his behavior was inappropriate. Before he apologized for "creating this crappy situation and acting like a jerk" he explained that it's just he likes to cater to his guests' dietary needs and doesn't find it offensive if they tell him what they don't like. Here's the thing. I did cater to his dietary preferences. He's made a choice to be vegetarian which is great. The problem is, I choose vegetarian meals EVERY SINGLE TIME and EVERY SINGLE TIME it's STILL met with complaints. And what point does the guest say, You know they're already trying to meet my needs, I should really stop nitpicking. I wrote back and told him I accepted his apology and thanked him for it but I basically left it at that. I don't think this will be the end of it. I think he'll write back in a few days time asking for details about past incidents (he seemed genuinely stunned and shocked that had said things in the past...I know he believed me but I know he's racking his brain trying to think what he could have possibly said.) So they came over last night and outside of an awkward first few minutes, you would have NEVER known there was an issue. He was totally normal. I will say, their daughter started complaining that she didn't like the quesadilla I made and her mom got INCREDIBLY upset with her and tried to shut her up. It was more than just a mom being embarrassed. It was my friend being embarrassed by the entire situation. I will say though that while everyone was eating dinner, I got the requisite, "Oh everything's so good!" Silence from him. During dessert, I got the requisite, "Oh this is so yummy." Silence from him. Nice. Like I said, just NO manners.

                                                                                        13 Replies
                                                                                        1. re: thedanza2000

                                                                                          Starting a text altercation before the get together is all on you. You chose to make the evening awkward by prefacing it with a conversation that should have taken place one on one, and not immediately before the event. The daughter quite possibly was acting out from overhearing them talk on the way over about how uncomfortable they felt. Reverse positions and think about how you would have felt had you received your text and then had to sit politely across the table.

                                                                                          1. re: Bellachefa

                                                                                            Yes ^^
                                                                                            Children. Their honesty is impressive and inspiring.
                                                                                            Children learn to become passive aggressive.
                                                                                            The child is completely mirroring what their parents are unwilling to do…be honest.
                                                                                            Poor kid.
                                                                                            Sounds like your friend is directing her anger at the wrong person.

                                                                                            1. re: latindancer

                                                                                              Bella, latin - very true, I'd parrot back crap my parents said in 'private' in a not-so-private context and in later years when I knew better and realized what a little jerk I had been, wanted to crawl up and die a little. I didn't believe that stuff, but felt I was supposed to.

                                                                                          2. re: thedanza2000

                                                                                            Your dinner sounds awkward.

                                                                                            1. re: thedanza2000

                                                                                              at least he kept his yap shut.

                                                                                              1. re: hill food

                                                                                                That's progress.

                                                                                              2. re: thedanza2000

                                                                                                forget all the psych counseling here....you nailed it on your own terms. You spoke up and it's done.

                                                                                                1. re: fourunder

                                                                                                  Agreed. He pushed you past your personal tolerance and you chose to deal with it in a timely manner and that's fine. Whether other people on the internet find that awkward is really besides the point. Thanks for updating honestly.

                                                                                                2. re: thedanza2000

                                                                                                  Thanks for updating! Sound like he was trying to make a statement with his silence, as per the old saying "if you can't say anything good, don't say anything at all. " At least you have called him out, so he knows he can't get away with any more crap.

                                                                                                  1. re: Kat

                                                                                                    heh! no news is good news?

                                                                                                    1. re: Kat

                                                                                                      Sounds like it's going to take a while for the clod to process the OP giving him a hip check.

                                                                                                    2. re: thedanza2000

                                                                                                      sounds to me you will be seeing less of your friend in the long term.

                                                                                                      1. re: thedanza2000

                                                                                                        the text was a calculated risk and it sounds like it caused some friction but sometimes you just need to get things in the air - the DH sounds like he is a compulsive complainer - he probably does not quite know he is doing it or think about its impact - there is definitely a disconnect with this guy from social graces - pretty early on one should understand that you do not complain about food people make for you. You cant really change people though - sometimes you just need to roll with the punches - since he seems to do this universally and not just to you - I would accept that it is just his way and try not to let it annoy you too much - and also not to cater to and indulge it. Hopefully your mentioning the situation will ring a bell in his head next time he is complaining for the sake of complaining.

                                                                                                      2. Sounds like you need a little "time off" from your spending time with them, or at least your long time friend's hubby.

                                                                                                        I have a lot of co-workers. Some I am friends with, some are closer friends and a few are "dear long time" friends. Same with other friends.

                                                                                                        Spending time with your friend alone without the spouse is not "cheating" on anyone, it's just the fact what others deem a good partner can to others, be less than stellar in your eyes or your personal interaction.

                                                                                                        BTDT x 1000.

                                                                                                        To me it would not be worth my time to cater to that obsessively picky unhappy nature, or enable someone that is not happy with any choice made and that includes food. And I see it occur often even if the enabled are given a choice in choosing the food/restaurant or not.

                                                                                                        Just not worth the time nor loosing a long time friendship over.

                                                                                                        Lots of ways to stay connected with people, these days lst I heard, LOLZ.
                                                                                                        If a corporate function, family function or other friends hosting a food based GTG, I;m happy to be a butterfly and move around and can always find something to eat. I oberserve others that cannot deal, no matter the venue, and if hosting food at my own home for a small personal GTG with the possiblity of being "steamrolled" by a friend of any sort. NO.
                                                                                                        They would not get invited. I do my best. If that's not good enough, even with the eaters help, I'm done. I can't read minds last time I checked. :)

                                                                                                        You can please all of the people some of the time, but you can't please all of the people all of the time.

                                                                                                        And as a follow up, my GF and I are good friends with a couple where she designs restaurants and he is the worlds pickiest eater in the world. How that works for them I;ll never know.

                                                                                                        Dining out for food is painful and dining at home requires a children's style menu for him. Wheter they are cooking or I. And they are both in thier 30's. He won't eat leftovers and loves canned greeen beans. The wife will eat almost anything.

                                                                                                        I believe there is some Freudian dissection that needs to be done here Re: upbringing, but difficult people are difficult people whether about food, personal space, hygiene, smells, music, etc.-the list goes on.

                                                                                                        Ya don't click with everyone, BFF's husband or not.
                                                                                                        Take some time off and let things settle down.

                                                                                                        That's my 2 pennies. :-)

                                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                                        1. re: jjjrfoodie

                                                                                                          yeah? what would you say for a nickel?

                                                                                                          heh - we can love our significant others deeply and eternally, but it doesn't mean the friends are a package deal. my words would echo jjjr's, in that every now and then: you go have fun with yours and he goes have fun with his. marriage or deep commitment don't equal a yoke around the neck (and if you have a good foundation a little distance can even make it stronger).

                                                                                                          so spare yourself the stress and over time start to leave Senor Grumpus at home for a night of just the two of you.

                                                                                                          1. re: hill food

                                                                                                            Bravo.
                                                                                                            One of many secrets to a long, successful marriage or partnership.

                                                                                                        2. OR:
                                                                                                          So my wife has had the same best friend for 25 years. Unfortunately, I’m her husband of only 6 years and BFF just told me by text that I drive her nuts. She and my wife share opinions about Everything, but it seems that I cannot even comment.
                                                                                                          She has made meals for us multiple times and EVERY SINGLE TIME I have tried to make it easier for her. The first time she was making a picnic basket for us to take to the Hollywood Bowl. I’m vegetarian but she told me not to worry—she was bringing hummus, avocado and tomato sandwiches. I responded with "Oh...I hope not too many tomatoes. I'm not always crazy about them." She brought us dinner after the birth of our daughter. She walked in with a tray of lasagna… I was saddened because I had hoped she would bring her potato tacos (and not something tomato-based).
                                                                                                          For the birthday of my wife, BFF insists on having us over for dinner tonight. She texted my wife that she was making cheese enchiladas. Wife is grateful (as always) and said she was looking forward to it. I proceeded to send BFF a long text msg saying how I just had to be honest but I’m not a big fan of enchiladas (red sauce) and would she be making rice and beans on the side? I ended it by saying maybe she could just make a quesadilla for me as well since she told Wife that she’d make a quesadilla for our daughter in case the enchiladas were too spicy for her. She hasn't responded. I don't want to hurt my wife’s feelings but frankly I'm sick to death of BFF’s behavior. It makes me not want to hang out with for them again… which sucks because I love my wife, who's never anything but gracious, and she is her BFF.

                                                                                                          21 Replies
                                                                                                          1. re: Kris in Beijing

                                                                                                            Then Mr. Husband, you're a d-bag.

                                                                                                            You could have offered to bring some sandwich of your choosing for the picnic.

                                                                                                            You could have mentioned at some point that you particularly love the potato tacos, and not waited until she walked in the door bearing dinner so you and your wife didn't have to cook in the chaos of a new baby. A simple 'thank you' was pretty much your only appropriate response in this situation.

                                                                                                            You could have mentioned at some point that you don't care for tomatoes, raw OR cooked, and that you didn't want to make her feel bad, but you just really don't like them.

                                                                                                            And you could have offered to bring the fucking rice and beans yourself, instead of whining like a two year old and requesting the food offered for your child.

                                                                                                            You're an asshat, because you've never tried to speak up for yourself (at least as far as what the OP has posted) in anything OTHER than a pissy, bitchy way, and you've made this bed for yourself.

                                                                                                            Stop being such an asshole, and turn your criticism into something positive...or at the very least NOT negative and bitchy.

                                                                                                            1. re: sunshine842

                                                                                                              please don't eat my sunshine away

                                                                                                              1. re: sunshine842

                                                                                                                Note-- in 6 years BFF hasn't said anything either.

                                                                                                                There are ALWAYS more than 2 sides...

                                                                                                                1. re: Kris in Beijing

                                                                                                                  thus my comment somewhere upthread that if husband has been pulling this shit for 6 years without a single comment from BFF telling him to behave like an adult, then maybe the friendship isn't quite what it's cracked up to be.

                                                                                                                  1. re: Kris in Beijing

                                                                                                                    I thought there were only going to be 2 sides...rice and beans, right?

                                                                                                                    ;)

                                                                                                                  2. re: sunshine842

                                                                                                                    re the sandwiches with tomatoes - "oh right, since I broke your fingers just now by repeatedly slamming your hands in the car door, I guess just picking them out w/o comment really IS too much to expect. heh next time!"

                                                                                                                    1. re: sunshine842

                                                                                                                      I want to party with you.

                                                                                                                      1. re: sunshine842

                                                                                                                        +1 on the tomatoes.

                                                                                                                        OP, if you were to have an honest discussion about this guys food loves & hates, would you be able to remember his top 3 of each when you are cooking for them? Of course that might not make any difference, but tomatoes seem to be a common hated food, so maybe the guy just really hates tomatoes, or can't take spicy food, and thinks he is being nicer by not being more direct, or doesn't want to seem pickier than vegetarian already is.

                                                                                                                        1. re: babette feasts

                                                                                                                          Though I don't doubt that this guy doesn't have any tact, there's something to this. He should just speak up and say he doesn't like the darn tomatoes (or whatever it is) but sometimes people need to be asked directly - aside from having the politeness gene, some people lack the 'just say what you want/mean' gene. If you could get him to pinpoint what it is he doesn't like, then you could end this once and for all.

                                                                                                                          I get that folks should be polite and gracious to their hosts, but it does suck to go to events where you just plain don't like the food. It's actually anxiety-inducing if you are on the guest side of that - faced with eating something that you truly don't like (sometimes to the point of worrying that it will make you gag), or faced with not eating and being hungry AND offending the host that you didn't eat. This is easily remedied by those with food preferences saying what they are (which it seems he isn't going to) but also for hosts to ask if there are any dietary needs/aversions/preferences they should know about when they are menu planning.

                                                                                                                          1. re: 16crab

                                                                                                                            He did speak up and say he doesn't like tomatoes..

                                                                                                                      2. re: Kris in Beijing

                                                                                                                        Dear Mr. Husband…

                                                                                                                        How about coming to the realization the world doesn't revolve around your likes/dislikes/wants/needs/anxieity/food fetishes.
                                                                                                                        Show your child it's a lovely, giving gesture to allow her mother to have some time with her friend and you'll just sit back and eat the GD enchiladas whether you like them or not. Grin and bear it and pretend you love them. It's for your wife's sake you complete narcissistic, self centered moron. Smile, thank your wife's friend…enjoy your child's company while you're sitting at the table….let your wife enjoy the dinner. Keep your mouth shut other than to thank your hostess and ask if she needs help with the cleanup. Be a mensch. Leave your ego at the door.

                                                                                                                        1. re: Kris in Beijing

                                                                                                                          Just to keep this food centric a proper red sauce for enchiladas does not have tomatoes. Just a puree of dried red chiles.

                                                                                                                          1. re: pamf

                                                                                                                            But this is the Not About Food board, so we can bitch about... umm... err... discuss any topic. :)

                                                                                                                            1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                                                              The NAF board is like a box of chocolates, ya never know...

                                                                                                                            2. re: pamf

                                                                                                                              I know... but in "My example," maybe he doesn't -- he doesn't like tomatoes, so he hasn't tried the red sauce?

                                                                                                                              At any rate, I find it hilarious that nearly this whole discussion is about how turrible turrible this guy is [to the point of expletives when I suggested otherwise], whereas CH seems to usually favour those with "special eating situations" over the desires of the cook-- especially when the cook is the hostess.

                                                                                                                              1. re: Kris in Beijing

                                                                                                                                Graciously attending to a special need isn't close to analogy with a fussy, self centered chronic fault finder with no such needs.

                                                                                                                                1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                                  maybe he isn't the fussy, self centered chronic fault finder in this story at all.

                                                                                                                                  I think it quite possible had he not mentioned his dislike of tomatoes, cheftell would have been just as miffed watching him deconstruct her carefully constructed sandwich.

                                                                                                                                  Turn it around. She says he is extremely rude and doesn't even know it. I say pull out that pocket mirror and take a long look.

                                                                                                                                  This poor s.o.b can't cut a break. She doesn't like him. She's never liked him. She really seems to have no desire to accept him as the socially inept clod she finds him to be, simply because he lacks the social graces she requires. She's dissappointed that her bff fell in love with the wrong guy. So now playing the victim card works for her. However, it will likely destroy her friendship.

                                                                                                                                  There's no rule that you need to like your friends chosen partner, and there's no rule they have to like you. I would never text or call a friends partner, whom I don't like to discuss menus. I'd ignore him, be gracious and humor him in my presence, and thank the lord I didn't have to wake up next to him.

                                                                                                                                  I would never be offended if serving blt's, my sister reminded me she loathes tomatoes, and could I make on without for her. Or my niece who only likes tomato sauce reminds me to please not put chunky tomato on her pizza, or if I am making a sauce that includes diced tomato, could she just have buttered pasta. Or if I was making enchiladas, quite possibly with beans, cheese and rice, would it be alright if I kept small portion of a few ingredients aside for someone who doesn't enjoy a likely tomato based sauce and would be happy with a bowl of beans and rice.

                                                                                                                                  I'm a pretty damned good home cook. But I certainly would never want every guest at the table to sing my praises on every single dish I prepared. That's just crazy.

                                                                                                                                  IMHO

                                                                                                                                  1. re: Bellachefa

                                                                                                                                    The facts as given to us indicate that he is a self absorbed fault finder.

                                                                                                                                    If it's not true, we have no way of knowing that.

                                                                                                                              2. re: pamf

                                                                                                                                lots and lots of enchilada sauce recipes include tomato sauce or tomato paste

                                                                                                                                1. re: pamf

                                                                                                                                  Not true that a "proper" red sauce for enchiladas does not contain tomatoes. If you live in New Mexico, that is true, but "red sauce" is a vague term, and there are sauces in Tex Mex and Mexican cooking, such as a classic ranchera sauce, that do contain tomatoes and are used on enchiladas. They may not fit the strictest definition of the "enchilada" (as a chile-covered tortilla), but the fact is, they are used, just as tomatillo sauces are used that also do not fit that strict definition.

                                                                                                                                2. re: Kris in Beijing

                                                                                                                                  Interesting concept.

                                                                                                                                  Let me just read it through one more time to make sure.

                                                                                                                                  Yep - the husband is still a Class A jerk.

                                                                                                                                3. You are under no obligation to prepare anything for anybody who consistently will not like it. Do not enable.

                                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                                  1. re: mtlcowgirl

                                                                                                                                    GIves a new meaning the to the rule: Do not feed the (picky food) trolls.

                                                                                                                                  2. My problem with this most fascinating discussion is, as pointed out elsewhere, where is the BFF in all this?? Have you, thedanza, ever sat down with her for a heart to heart on hubby's behavior? You're a bit overdue on that one. Does BFF recognize his loutish behavior? He is clearly narcissistic so he will be very hard to reach. Impossible to change. If you hold back your feelings on this eventually it will damage your relationship with BFF.

                                                                                                                                    4 Replies
                                                                                                                                    1. re: Enigma3

                                                                                                                                      yeah but don't expect BFF to be able to change anything, only to accept it's mostly girl's afternoon/evening out, without, from now on.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: Enigma3

                                                                                                                                        right! lets try and drive a wedge between the BBF and the husband. may be its grounds for divorce.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: genoO

                                                                                                                                          I'm with you Geno. The husband may be immature and loutish, but it's her BFF's husband! Suck it up or see her when he's not around, but when you start complaining about someone's spouse to them, nothing good can come of it. All you are doing is creating hard feelings, some things are better left unsaid.

                                                                                                                                          Edited to add: now the husband knows the OP has a problem with him. What if he starts haranguing his wife about the OP? Now the poor wife is left with a mess.

                                                                                                                                        2. re: Enigma3

                                                                                                                                          I don't even think a heart-to-heart is needed. It's as simple as "It seems that when I cook, hubby does not enjoy the meal. Did he mention that he hates x/y/z and I've just not remembered it?" She'll probably offer up, yeah, he's trying to be polite but he really hates tomatoes, or yeah, he can just be a bit of a jerk and I would pay him no mind.

                                                                                                                                          Ironically, the husband probably thinks he IS being polite, by not coming right out and saying "I don't like that, could you plan another meal?" Some people think sideways, passive aggressive comments are a way of being polite, rather than just telling the truth.

                                                                                                                                        3. Is there any chance that he is somewhere on the autism scale? The combination of his cluelessness, his contrite and presumably sincere apology to your message, and then the lack of recognition from previous "offenses" sounds like behavior I've experienced with high functioning Asperger's folks.

                                                                                                                                          Some of the adults I've met with Asperger's might not be capable of garnishing enough empathy to keep from saying rude things, but are genuinely sorry when their words hurt others.

                                                                                                                                          I like the idea of having a heart-to-heart with your BFF, now that her husband has presumably brought up the subject with her.

                                                                                                                                          I feel for you. Tough situation.

                                                                                                                                          8 Replies
                                                                                                                                          1. re: Dave Feldman

                                                                                                                                            Dave, I didn't want to say it but Asperger's was my first thought as it fits my dad to a 't' "oh thanks, but I don't use things like that" (I gave up giving gifts years ago - no point) and it has only been with careful self-editing I learned how to express a simple "thanks!"

                                                                                                                                            1. re: Dave Feldman

                                                                                                                                              As someone who was a psychologist in a former life (over 15 years in the field) the first thing that came to mind for me was high functioning Asperger's as well.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: JMF

                                                                                                                                                It's telling that the offender was gobsmacked to find out his behavior has been offensive.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: monavano

                                                                                                                                                  "It's telling that the offender was gobsmacked to find out his behavior has been offensive."

                                                                                                                                                  But isn't that true of most of us? I know I have been taken by surprise when told by more than one person of my behavior in certain situations. Those turn out to be among the best lessons learned in my opinion.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                                                                                    Perhaps when I was younger, but my self awareness/filter has improved a great deal, such that I'm not prone to dissent among company, least of all, hosts.

                                                                                                                                              2. re: Dave Feldman

                                                                                                                                                My first thoughts too. .
                                                                                                                                                If not, he's an idiotic prick.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: Dave Feldman

                                                                                                                                                  Another vote for an undiagnosed Aspy. Maybe the wife loves him, maybe she doesn't; not enough info to assess. But you can't fix it.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: lemons

                                                                                                                                                    i wonder how many bitter divorcees have posted this thread. Or wives that dislike their spouses to the edge, or more, of hate.
                                                                                                                                                    far too many would be my guess.
                                                                                                                                                    Too bad the guy wasn't gluten free, then we would be bashing the OP for being insensitive and uncool.

                                                                                                                                                2. Tell your best friend her husband is now in the process of receiving a free psychological evaluation courtesy of an internet discussion board.

                                                                                                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                  1. re: miss_belle

                                                                                                                                                    Free? I charge $375 an hour...

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: JMF

                                                                                                                                                      Our time is up....

                                                                                                                                                  2. This may not help but giving him benefit of the doubt try ro speak to him privately. Say how you feel. Just in case he is dumbly unaware of how he makes you feel. Perhaps he thinks he is being honest and not realizing he is being rude

                                                                                                                                                    1. I think the best way forward, with least hurt feelings, is next time you call your friend with an invite is to say "Please ask hubby what he would like". When she questions why you are asking you can say that you "wouldn't want to serve something that doesn't suit him er (short pause), again", at which point she will realise that there have been issues and that she needs to tell him to behave himself.

                                                                                                                                                      7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Robin Joy

                                                                                                                                                        This is still passive/agressive game playing. The OP needs to be up front with both her friend and the husband. While feelings may be hurt at first, at least the truth is out there and the rest of the time spent can be getting on with the situation.

                                                                                                                                                        This is a general statement, not directed at you Robin Joy: Why can't people just speak to one another and be honest? It's the shortest, most efficient way to get things done. A while back, a group of friends were trying to plan a birthday dinner out for one of the group. The birthday's person's 2 sisters were the ones who initiated this planning since their brother was going to be 50 and they wanted all of us to get together. A flurry of e-mails were sent and the question among just my immediate group of friends arose as to how this was all being paid for. Since it was the 2 sisters' idea to begin with, were they paying? Was it every man for himself? I suggested to my one friend who knew the sisters better than I to just ask them. No. At that point I was not going to show up at the restaurant not knowing the deal. I got one of the sister's e-mail addresses and very nicely point blank came out and asked who was paying. She answered back that it was every man for himself. No feelings were hurt, we all went out and had a great time with no pressure or wondering about the check. No snarky, cryptic texts or e-mails needed. No passive/agressive game playing. Jusy good old. simple communication.

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                                                                                          I don't think life long friends should initiate a conversation by one saying....I think your husband is an asshole.

                                                                                                                                                          :)

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: fourunder

                                                                                                                                                            Agreed. It didn't go over well for me.

                                                                                                                                                          2. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                                                                                            Short and efficient != easiest and best. There are loads of times that being upfront and honest are terrible ways to approach a situation.

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                                                                                              Short and efficient != easy and best.

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                                                                                                Just a kindness to nudge the wife into action. That's all.

                                                                                                                                                                I think your example about who pays is totally the correct approach, but maybe not for the OP's problem.

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Robin Joy

                                                                                                                                                                  "just a kindness to nudge the wife into action" ??
                                                                                                                                                                  be careful what you ask for, it may not be what you want.

                                                                                                                                                            2. Insert your name for 'Bob' and 'your friend's husband's name' for 'your brother'

                                                                                                                                                              http://www.hark.com/clips/mzrwzcwrkw-...

                                                                                                                                                              1. I think there are two issues here. One is that people should be honest (although politely so) about their food preferences, especially since, as in this case, you're specifically choosing dishes to suit his vegetarian diet. If eating food your prepared was a one-time thing, I'd say he should suck it up, but it would be silly for you to make dishes year after year that he doesn't like, and how can you know that unless he says something?

                                                                                                                                                                So let's break this down:

                                                                                                                                                                The comment about the tomatoes: acceptable, although it could have been phrased better. You made sandwiches specifically with him in mind. He didn't say he wouldn't eat them, he said that he's not that crazy about tomatoes. Now you know.

                                                                                                                                                                The comment about "I hoped you'd bring" -- not acceptable. Food gifts should be received with a smile and no less than a polite thank you. At least now you know he likes your potato tacos.

                                                                                                                                                                The comment about the enchiladas -- borderline. Again, he's letting you know that something you planned with him in mind is not to his taste. Now you know. Since you offered to make one quesadilla, I don't see the big deal about making another one.

                                                                                                                                                                You say you like to cook for people, but you don't seem to care whether they give you honest feedback about their likes and dislikes. Why would you want to go to the trouble of cooking food for people that they don't like?

                                                                                                                                                                I suspect that you just don't like this guy, and thus everything he does annoys you. Which is fine -- I know people like that (one is actually banned from my house) -- but not really about the food at all.

                                                                                                                                                                5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Ruth Lafler

                                                                                                                                                                  there's definitely something in what you say Ruth, I'm letting it digest (so to speak) as it's a nuanced perspective that you carry.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Ruth Lafler

                                                                                                                                                                    "You say you like to cook for people, but you don't seem to care whether they give you honest feedback about their likes and dislikes. Why would you want to go to the trouble of cooking food for people that they don't like?"

                                                                                                                                                                    So often people like to cook (or insert something similar) for others so they will be praised for their skill and liked. It's human nature. Then when things don't go our way, we get frustrated and complain. These boards are full of similar posts by people needing to vent because their good deed did not merit the expected outcome.

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: ttoommyy

                                                                                                                                                                      ;-) Yes, it was a semi-rhetorical question in that I know many people behave that way, but I wasn't going to specifically accuse the original poster of being that way.

                                                                                                                                                                      BTW, I should have been clearer about my "I know people like that" comment. That is, I have a friend whose partner I can't stand, but whom I put up with for her sake until he bullied another guest in my house, which I simply won't tolerate.

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Ruth Lafler

                                                                                                                                                                        I figured it was rhetorical, but I had to throw in my 2 cents. I only "accuse" the OP of this behavior because I speak from experience. :)

                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: Ruth Lafler

                                                                                                                                                                      I think the bottom line is that this person seems to be more "demanding" than most. I use the quotation marks because he appears to me more passive-aggressive in his demands rather than coming right out and saying up front, "these are the things I like, and these are things I don't like". It's a also a red flag when someone has so many caveats to participating in a meal you are providing that you need to keep a list. And it sounds like you are upset because every time you think you are doing something good, he finds something wrong.

                                                                                                                                                                      I think I would have a chat with him, not your friend, but with him. Let him know you want to make him feel welcome, but that it makes you feel bad that every time you try, he finds something wrong with your efforts. Is there a way the two of you could come up with a list of his likes/dislikes together. That way, the next time you make a meal & he says "oh, I really don't like avocados", you can whip out the "list" and say, "hey Buddy, avocados weren't on the list! Do you want me to add them?"

                                                                                                                                                                    3. Imagine how SHE feels....I think he has Asperger's. It will never change. He will always say inappropriate things and will always say things without any concern to anybody else. It sucks, but I would just try to support your friend. You could try to socialize just the two of you and have nights out together. Then you can enjoy your friend without his annoying presence.

                                                                                                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: uman

                                                                                                                                                                        My experience is that folks with Asperger's do have concern and often make very inappropriate comments out of genuine concern without realizing they're out of line.

                                                                                                                                                                        It doesn't suck once you know that's what you're dealing with; it makes it easier to be understanding instead of offended. Context matters. Compassion is a virtue.

                                                                                                                                                                      2. I'm am amazed by the assumptions people make about other people based on some anonymous postings with partial facts that are always going to get skewed by the one sided nature of how posts are written.

                                                                                                                                                                        Based on the tiny amount that the OP has written, you could come to the conclusion that the BF's husband is an asshat, rude, inconsiderate, socially inept or has Asperger's.

                                                                                                                                                                        On the other hand, one could come to an alternate conclusion that the OP doesn't like the BF's husband and never has. He came between her and her best friend of 25 years and nothing he will do will ever make up for that.

                                                                                                                                                                        When posts like this come up, I am mindful of the fact that people will be looking for affirmation of some sort. Its irresponsible for us to give advice on how to deal with these interpersonal relationships with the miniscule amount of information we have. Everyone is bringing their own baggage.

                                                                                                                                                                        The only thing I will say is that the OP's friendship with her BF will be challenging to keep up.

                                                                                                                                                                        To bring everything back to the food, can you provide the potato taco recipe? That's got to be a winner.

                                                                                                                                                                        4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Bkeats

                                                                                                                                                                          This. Like the people making clinical, armchair diagnoses when they almost certainly do not have training to do so. Internets. lolwut

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Bkeats

                                                                                                                                                                            I only want the recipe if it doesn't have tomatoes.

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: 16crab

                                                                                                                                                                              and it can be prepared with unbroken fingers.

                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: Bkeats

                                                                                                                                                                              Agree 100%. Diagnosing Asperger;s on a forum is just plain nuts. Let alone everything else said about a person who no one knows.

                                                                                                                                                                            3. "He's vegetarian so I TOLD HIM not to worry as I was bringing hummus, avocado and tomato sandwiches."

                                                                                                                                                                              " I WALKED IN WITH a tray of lasagna."

                                                                                                                                                                              "I mentioned IN PASSING to her via text that I was making cheese enchiladas."

                                                                                                                                                                              It sounds like you decide on the menu based on what you want to make and not on what your guests might actually like. You might get a better result if you have a conversation with them BEFORE menu planning.

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                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: weezieduzzit

                                                                                                                                                                                deleted

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: weezieduzzit

                                                                                                                                                                                  pass.

                                                                                                                                                                                2. 1. No to passive-aggressiveness as suggested by many folks here. Don't hope that he'll get the hint from snarky comments. Passive-aggressiveness only leads to confusion, drama, and more hurt feelings over the way things are conveyed instead of just a momentary hurt over the original message and moving on. There are ways to bring things up that don't involve having to berate your friend's husband or his behavior. When you approach discussions (in person, ugh to conducting these things over text), it should be about what "I feel...", "I think...", "I prefer..." instead about how abhorrent you find him to be.

                                                                                                                                                                                  2. Why are people treating honesty and politeness as if they are mutually exclusive? There are ways to be both. He may lack tact, but for me personally, if the definition of politeness is telling lies (sorry, I don't care if you cutesy it up with a color, a lie is a lie), then I'm with best friend's husband on this one. If you can't be honest with your friends and closest family, what's the point? Again, not saying his approach was necessarily the best way to go, but not everyone is comfortable with lying. And as a hostess, I would rather people be honest with me. Otherwise, what's the alternative? My serving a food they don't much care for over and over while they lie to me and tell me how much they love it and building my friendship on lies? But if that's the way you roll, then it needs to be stated as "When people make comments about my cooking, I feel..." or "I prefer to receive feedback about what I make in this format..." rather than "You're rude for making comments..." or "You need to change this..."

                                                                                                                                                                                  I made brussels sprouts for Thanksgiving four years in a row. I love them. I had three separate family members tell me what a wonderful meal I made and how lovely everything was. One year, I couldn't find fresh brussels sprouts and I refuse to use frozen, so I did green beans instead. When I mentioned how I couldn't make my traditional brussels sprouts that year, my poor grandmother finally broke down and told me "It's okay dear, really, you're the only one who likes them. We aren't really big fans of brussels sprouts." I wasn't mad that she had the nerve to tell me she didn't like brussels sprouts. I was upset that for four years, people let me serve them to them and they ate them and pretended to like them when after the first year I could have been making something else that hopefully they would all enjoy. I would have retired the brussels sprouts recipe a lot sooner had someone told me (actually, I just started making a small amount enough for myself because I still love them and don't consider it Thanksgiving without them).

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. What's missing in this discussion is tone and inflection - some comments seem to read the DH as just a straight shooter sharing information and some an incessant whiner and complainer -

                                                                                                                                                                                    the communication between OP and DH was also clouded by txt communication which can leave unclear weather she was being frank and friendly or just exasperated and bitchy

                                                                                                                                                                                    To my read the DH is a whiner and complainer with nothing nice to say, ever. The eternal critic. It is an easy rut to fall into and people are not always aware how their negativity impacts those around them. With a different read of inflection and intent suddenly the obnoxious requests become simple asks or off the cuff comments.

                                                                                                                                                                                    The same request - a quesadilla in place of enchiladas could be taken very differently depending on the tone

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. Why is it that questions like this get such a high number of responses? I hope it's because good manners are more important than, say, how to roast a chicken!

                                                                                                                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Robin Joy

                                                                                                                                                                                        Because people feel compelled to tell you how you should think and act.....just like them.

                                                                                                                                                                                      2. I would just write him off as a rude person, not take if personally, and continue to do what you've been doing.

                                                                                                                                                                                        I guess it would be hard excluding him since he's your friend's husband, so there isn't much else you can do. I do wonder what your friend thinks of his behavior, though. My apologies if it's already been discussed here, but I wouldn't tolerate any husband of mine being that blatantly rude to a good friend of mine.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: SaraAshley

                                                                                                                                                                                          or make a joke out of it: "so, Bobalicious, just tell me what you DO eat! cause I know you're not a breatharian! and we have enough hot air swirling around what with North American summer on its way."

                                                                                                                                                                                        2. I'd give him the kids' meal with a damn quesadilla and a juice box, then stuff those enchiladas full of pork.

                                                                                                                                                                                          Aside from that, I think I'd have to make a game of it to maintain my sanity. Let's put the over/under on snide comments at 5...for every one that's over, we do a shot (or take a sip....if he really gets on a roll you could be in trouble).

                                                                                                                                                                                          Good luck!

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. Once again I feel threads like this really have nothing to do with what the guests will or won't eat. It's just a manifestation of the overall dislike of the person. No where does the OP say how wonderful/pleasant/kind/enjoyable/etc this person is in other ways. They are just using the food thing to justify not liking them. If this wasn't a food board in am sure the OP would be complaining about something else. But since this was their first and last post to date it is unlikely we will ever know.

                                                                                                                                                                                            I know I have posted it before but I have BFF who can't cook and has major dislikes and food idiosyncrasies. But I get over it because my life would so much less without her in it. I find threads like this are just cries for "yes that person is an asshat! DTMFA."

                                                                                                                                                                                            3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: foodieX2

                                                                                                                                                                                              Of course it is for validation. No one here really believes a poster doesn't how to handle a friend or family member who acts like a pantload, or doesn't know what to eat because they had their wisdom teeth out, or what dish would make them feel better because they just got dumped, or whether canned tomatoes have more salt than fresh ones because they just got diagnosed with kidney disease. People make posts like those here because they will want commiseration and there is always someone who will join in. Neither good or bad, just is.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Samalicious

                                                                                                                                                                                                probably very true. It's the people who posted that worry me, lots of hate and anger towards a guy they don't know.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: genoO

                                                                                                                                                                                                  I highly doubt that posters feel actual hate for this schmuck.
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Who gets that invested someone they don't even know, posted by a person on the internet that they don't even know?
                                                                                                                                                                                                  I think anonymous posting breeds brutal truth, on the other hand...

                                                                                                                                                                                            2. Unfortunately, I kind of used to be this guy. For a long time I had insufficient filtering between the brain and the mouth, along with strong opinions about food. Then there was one night that some friends had invited my wife and me over to dinner and served a home-made pizza. Pizza was never a favorite of mine, and ever since having suffered a head injury in a robbery while making a pizza delivery in college, I REALLY have to be in a mood for pizza if I'm going to eat one.

                                                                                                                                                                                              Being a meat lover, I bristled at being served an all-vegetable pizza, and regarding one particular topping, I blurted out, "God, I HATE black olives!"

                                                                                                                                                                                              The look on my friend's face was one that put a chill in my heart. [This was more than 30 years ago, and I still remember the feeling!] It occured to me that I had pretty much always been this way, and I didnt want to be that guy any more. So I stoppped. It took a lot of concerted effort to learn to be gracious, and while I have probably said things since that someone would consider to be rude, I dont feel like I'm that guy anymore. I was lucky that my reality check came from within rather than in the form of a punch in the mouth.

                                                                                                                                                                                              I wish your friend's husband had had the sense to say "I really love your potato tacos!" instead of what he did say.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Fydeaux

                                                                                                                                                                                                I've said things that would make unknown to me-people here fling poo my way.
                                                                                                                                                                                                When I was younger, I said some stupid shit, but, I learned from it and think I'm more aware of myself.

                                                                                                                                                                                                It's great that you had that revelation.

                                                                                                                                                                                                I get how pizza could be a trigger for you!

                                                                                                                                                                                              2. look,
                                                                                                                                                                                                she married a boor.
                                                                                                                                                                                                no way around it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                i'm now at the stage of life that i value my relationships with my girlfriends enough to find ways to tolerate the boorish men with which they sometimes connect.

                                                                                                                                                                                                my view of it is that it took decades to build the kind of friendships i have with the girlfriends and these guys are just not going to be given enough power to cause me to lose these friendships.

                                                                                                                                                                                                sometimes the marriages don't last all that long. . . .

                                                                                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: westsidegal

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Ahhh, the truth will set you free! Check out my posts on this topic.Ha!

                                                                                                                                                                                                2. I hope you ignored him completely and made an extra batch of cheese enchiladas.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. Oh for crying out loud. Just keep this thread up. It's not like the OP is coming back anyway. Too funny.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: miss_belle

                                                                                                                                                                                                      You are familiar with CH, aren't you?
                                                                                                                                                                                                      ;-)