DEAR ABBY: My fiance has a friend who is, for lack of a better word, a train wreck. When I started dating my fiance, I heard about this guy, "Al," from my fiance's other friends even before I met him.
The group of friends has an on-again, off-again relationship with Al, and he has made a scene at each of their weddings. He has gotten obnoxiously drunk, gotten into huge arguments with his girlfriend (now wife), or done something rude like bring his own fast food to the head table at the reception. I tried to keep an open mind when I met him, but he has made us uncomfortable at every get-together.
We recently attended Al's wedding, and he became aggressive with my fiance after drinking too much. We have now decided we don't want him or his new wife at our wedding next year. We hoped to just drift away from them. Unfortunately, Al has realized that he hasn't received a Save the Date and repeatedly texts my fiance that he wants to "go out" with him to talk.
We know he's going to ask about his invite, and he'll probably expect one because he invited us to his wedding. Are we justified in excluding him? How would you handle this? -- TOUGH SPOT IN ILLINOIS
DEAR TOUGH SPOT: Your fiance should handle it by giving Al a straight answer. He doesn't have to see him. A phone call will do. Your fiance should state clearly that Al isn't being invited to the wedding because he can't hold his liquor and has made a scene at each wedding he has attended. He should also be told that until he gets help for his alcohol problem, the two of you no longer wish to maintain the friendship. It's the truth, and the truth will set you free.