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Boyfriend’s bizarre stupor comes with a torrent of abuse

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Dear Abby,

I’m a divorced single mom who finally met someone. His name is “Greg” and we’ve been dating for two months. Greg is also divorced and financially stable. The only thing I really like is that he gets along well with my teenage son.

The problem is that every two or three weeks, Greg falls into a deep sleep that lasts three days. He will get up to drink a glass of water or to run to the store, but will fall back asleep immediately. This causes him to miss work and he often becomes verbally abusive during these episodes.

Over Christmas, I saw it consistent for just 10 minutes all weekend. When he wasn’t half asleep, he would insult me, belittle my self-esteem, and tell me that no one but him would ever love me, so I better “stay”. On Christmas Eve, I was left alone and crying in a dark living room.

When these episodes do not occur, he is attentive and charming. His daughter told me he had been like this for years. I resent everything he put me through in such a short time, but I’m afraid I’ll never find someone else after being single and lonely for so long. Can I have your opinion on how to view his situation?

— Incredulous in Oklahoma

Greg’s behavior is not normal. Talk to him when he is conscious. Ask him if he remembers what happens to his personality during these extended periods when he is “asleep”. Tell him that his rants are hurtful and verbally abusive. Ask him what he thinks causes these episodes. Could he be having an adverse reaction to a drug or other substance he is taking? Because the person you’re meeting isn’t the Greg you love.

Greg may need to undergo a physical and neurological exam to make sure he doesn’t have a medical condition. However, if he refuses, draw the line NOW and end the relationship, as it will not improve without intervention. As lonely as you may be, PLEASE consider how lonely your future will be if you stay with him, and how detrimental it will be to your impressionable son.

Tired of being abused by a colleague

Dear Abby,

How do you handle a difficult colleague? I am kind, polite, and courteous to this person, and their responses are short, rude, and condescending. They’re the kind of person who wouldn’t care if I approached them and told them my feelings were hurt, and would probably laugh at me behind my back. How do you handle this person? It makes me want to quit my job.

— Peeved in Pennsylvania

Does this colleague treat everyone the way he treats you? If the answer is yes, then as a group, document these incidents and let your supervisor or employer know that the person is creating a hostile work environment. If you’re the only employee taking the brunt of your co-worker’s hostility, you’ll need to tell your employer yourself. And if nothing can be done to remedy the situation, you may have to seek employment elsewhere.

dear Abby

Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at or PO Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.

This article originally appeared on The Providence Journal: Dear Abby: Her boyfriend’s bizarre stupor comes with a torrent of abuse

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