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Ask Nutty B

By Nutty B


Nutty B is currently a graduate student at MIT. Please e-mail him with whatever question you would like someone to listen to, and help him have an excuse to procrastinate at 3 a.m. Please send all questions to

Dear Nutty B,

I am usually not a jealous or paranoid person, but the recent behavior of my girlfriend of two years makes me clueless as how I should respond. Every time I call her, there is always partying noise with guys calling out her name in the background, and this type of scenario replays itself at least three times a week! When I confronted her she just told me I was being silly. Am I really silly?

-- T.J.

Dear T.J.,

Partying at least three times a week? Wow, does she go to Harvard? And did you happen to catch what else those guys said in the background when they called your girlfriend’s name? You know, “Come back to bed!” versus “Come back to the Trivial Pursuit game!” will affect the type of advice I should administer!

It goes without saying, but every relationship is built upon trust. If your girlfriend has only recently begun to party half of the week, perhaps it’s because she just finished a major project in class or simply is under some stress and she needs to relieve it somehow. As the significant other, it’s up to you to find out or know what’s going on in her life.

As for guys calling her name in the background of the phone conversation, there may not be anything at all. However, if she comes home drunk each time with different fraternity stamps on her breasts saying, “Come back anytime” or “You are our favorite,” then you should really worry.

See what the next weekend holds. If she is still not returning to her old self, then perhaps you should really sit down with her and tell her how you feel and try to communicate and figure out how to resolve this issue. Good communication is the key!

Dear Nutty B,

I seriously need help! I can’t explain why, but I am just depressed. I can’t focus on anything I do, and I am tired all the time. I don’t want to talk to anyone and everyone talking to me bothers me. What should I do? Should I see a therapist?

-- Depressed at MIT

Dear Depressed at MIT,

Has this feeling of downness occurred only recently? If so, there is really not much to worry about. Everyone has ups and downs in his or her life, and perhaps when you wake up tomorrow everything will be alright again.

It may also be that the dwindling amount of daylight hours (especially if you are originally from a more tropical latitude than Boston) has some sort of impact on you. I wouldn’t worry though, as I am sure it will pass.

However, if this has been going on for quite a while, perhaps you should see a therapist. MIT Medical provides free consultation. Maybe you should go and book an appointment.

Of course, you are more than welcome to send me more specific questions once you figure out what they are and let me try to help you. Or maybe you would like to share what’s really bothering you with your friends, especially those you can really confide in and figure out what the root of the problem is.

Just remember that a chronic problem may be best addressed by a professional therapist.

At any rate, try to be optimistic and learn to look at the bright side of everything, and I am sure you will feel better. As Anne Shirley of Anne of the Green Gables once said, “Tomorrow is always fresh without mistake.”