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Girlfriend's annoying laugh not funny

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 21/8/2017 (1079 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: My girlfriend laughs nervously, like a hyena. I hate it when she gets nervous out in public and starts laughing repeatedly like that. At first, I didn’t care when we were alone at one of our apartments. Now, it’s becoming a dealbreaker, but how can you ask someone to change their laugh? I thought of recording it for her to hear, but then she might never laugh again and would hate me for it. I can see her hyena laughing bugs other people, too, and my family and friends find it odd and raise their eyebrows when it gets nerve-racking.

Some people may think I’m being petty, but it’s gotten to the point where I really can’t stand it. I think she’s a great girl, but I can’t take a lifetime of that horrible laugh. When I break up with her, and it may be soon, should I tell her the truth, or not tell her?

— Wincing When She Laughs, St. Vital

Dear Wincing When She Laughs: Maybe you don’t have to break up with her. Perhaps you can tell her this hard truth, which will definitely be hurtful to her, and she’ll dump you. It would be difficult to try to curb this laughing and develop a new laugh with a critical person (you) watching and listening. That’s not your place — to police her laugh — but she might do something about it, after getting rid of you.

What could you say to her? Here are some honest words: "I need to tell you your nervous laugh makes me uneasy and uncomfortable. I think you need to see a vocal coach or use a tape recorder and work on it." She’ll probably cry and then ask questions. You owe it to her to answer them. Don’t tell her that her laugh bugs everyone around her. Just speak for yourself.

Our voices are within our control, but sometimes we need help. Actor Morgan Freeman got vocal coaching as a young man as he had a high, squeaky voice. Now, he’s known for having the low, authoritative voice of God. A speech therapist would not have many cases of this, but helping a person find a better laugh might be part of their skill set. If any readers know of someone who can teach this skill, please email me at



Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I met a gorgeous man at a party on a Friday night and he invited me to spend the rest of the weekend with him at his cabin. I have nothing going on in my love life right now, so I threw caution to the wind and said yes. Luckily, I took my own car and met him there. I expected we would have sex and I was excited and prepared for it. What I wasn’t prepared for was that he wanted it every hour, the next day. At 3 p.m. I dived into the lake and stayed there. By suppertime I picked up my bag, walked out the back and loaded my trunk. He came out and asked where I was going. He looked disappointed and said he thought we were having fun and I told him it was too much sex too soon.

Since we both got back to town he has phoned to apologize, also emailed and texted. It feels like I took on a leech at the lake, certainly not a lover. I am a nice person and have never had to block anyone on Facebook before. Should I warn him or just do it?

— Get Him Off Me! St. Boniface

Dear Get Him Off Me: When it gets to the time for blocking — where you don’t want any further contact of any kind or for that person to see what you’re doing on Facebook — just block them and be done with it. If he harrasses you by phone, call your phone company and they will explain how to block phone calls from that number.


Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I gave my brother some money and he spent it and never paid me back. It was a lot of money — $10,000. I need the money to help with a down payment on a house. How do I get it back? He has a decent job now, but has forgotten about me.

— Need That Money, Winnipeg

Dear Need That Money: Maybe he can’t give you all of it back in one whack, but he can give you payments. Phone him and ask him for repayment — in a lump sum he borrows from a bank — or to give you a series of significant post-dated cheques. It may be the only way you can get the money back from him, but it’s better than nothing. Stress that now you need that money as you don’t have enough.



Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I had a big revelation out at my family’s farm this weekend. I love my husband, but I don’t like the harried city person I’ve become. I’m not meant to live in a city; I’m anxious here. In the country, I’m relaxed and happy. I was like that even when I worked in the town near my family’s farm, and only visited the city for shopping and concerts and weddings. That’s how I met my husband — at a wedding for an old friend in the city.

Now I realize this, I really want to move out of the city! But my husband is a city boy and he likes the hustle and bustle. I don’t see how this is going to work. I love him, but I want the old me back, very badly.

— Country Girl in the City, St. James

Dear Country Girl in the City: There’s no reason a city mouse and country mouse can’t live together these days. Why would you dump the man you love when you can live outside the city and commute? Perhaps you can work in a small town near the house. People who commute — depending on their route — say it’s easier to drive through the country to work than to drive from one end of the city to the other with all the traffic and stop lights.

It would be a serious mistake to trade your husband in for a life in the country alone. Single women say it’s very hard to find a new mate in a country town or living on a farm. So do the work of looking for a place outside of the city that’s an easy commute to your husband’s workplace. You don’t have to go far to find a road that’s rural and a house with mature trees and gardens — and privacy — with room for a pool, a deck and skinny-dipping.

Please send your questions and comments to or Miss Lonelyhearts c/o the Winnipeg Free Press, 1355 Mountain Ave., Winnipeg, MB, R2X 3B6.


Miss Lonelyhearts

Miss Lonelyhearts
Advice Columnist

Each year, the Free Press publishes more than 1,000 letters to Miss Lonelyhearts and her responses to the life and relationship questions that come her way.

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