Dear Amy: My fiancé, “Albert,” talks nonstop. He will talk about any and every subject, regardless of the situation or the audience.
He doesn't care if anyone is interested in what he is saying.
He will tell endless stories — it is just one story after another.
The subject doesn’t matter. It doesn't matter if he has told the same story more than once to the same person. He gets started and doesn't stop until people finally walk away.
He can't seem to read the social cues that indicate people want him to stop talking.
He has been reprimanded more than once by his employers about talking to workers on his job sites and wasting their time while on the clock.
If I invite friends over, it doesn't matter that we are having a conversation; he will interrupt and try to steer the conversation to a subject that he enjoys.
I've stopped inviting my friends over because his behavior is annoying and embarrassing.
He complains that he has no real friends to do things with but holy smokes, I might know why!
I can’t watch TV or listen to the radio because he is talking about something over the sound.
Albert is a really nice guy, but I have started to dread going to gatherings with him and this makes me feel terrible.
I worry that this is a mental illness.
Am I just being ridiculous and petty, or could he have a problem that a doctor or therapist could help with?
Dear Worried: If “Albert’s” behavior is as extreme as you describe, you should take a very serious look at your own capacities and willingness to cope with such a noisy and intellectually unfulfilling partnership over the long term.
Being with him is already causing you to self-isolate. His compulsive behavior has an impact on his professional prospects, as well as your relationships.
Yes, his nonstop talking could be the result of a treatable issue: extreme anxiety, bipolar disorder, Aspergers, or ADHD.
Talking nonstop can also be a way for a person to hold their deeper feelings at bay, covering old wounds or trauma.
Your fiancé should be evaluated by a mental health professional. One way to confront this issue would be for you to set up an appointment with a therapist for some premarital counseling for you both.
Dear Amy: My fiancé and I are getting married this September! We’ve already sent out “save the dates.”
We decided not to invite my friend, “Mark,” and I feel terrible about it.
Mark has battled alcoholism for the past two years.
I feel like I’ve done everything I can do to help him on his journey. He’s had multiple hospital stays and went to in-patient rehab.
Prior to this, we’d talked about being the best man at each other’s wedding, but our relationship has changed.
I recently found out through his family member that he moved down the street from me a month ago. I’ve tried reaching out to him, but he isn’t the best at returning text messages and phone calls.
My fiancé, who is wise beyond her years, has said that some friends are for a season, a reason, and for a lifetime.
However, I just can’t seem to shake the guilt I feel for not inviting him to our wedding. Your advice?
– Future Groom
Dear Groom: Your girlfriend’s take on friendship is wise. Your guilt is also sending you a strong message. You should pay attention.
It is understandable that you might not want to saddle “Mark” with the pressure and stress of being your best man, but why not invite him to your wedding?
His disease has a very high impact on all of his relationships, but the loop of alienating others and self-isolating makes everything worse.
Your relationship has been strained. You cannot cure his alcoholism. You likely can’t even help him, but it might be good for both of you if you hung in there.
Whether he could handle attending the event should be up to him.
Dear Amy: “Grossed Out Girlfriend” objected to the pornographic décor her boyfriend’s roommates had in their apartment.
If she doesn’t like it, she can stay away! Your suggestion for her to suggest they post a nude photo of Burt Reynolds was asinine!
Dear Disgusted: The late Burt Reynolds participated in a fairly legendary nude photo shoot for Cosmopolitan magazine in 1972. Given that the roommates’ pornography was cheesy, I thought this might be a fun suggestion.
©2021 Amy Dickinson. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.