Click to Print
. . . . . . .
Monday, June 3,2013

Ask Dr. Happy

By Dr. Bob Nozik, MD  

Dear Dr. Happy

Bernie and I are both in our mid 30’s and have been living together for nearly ten years. Neither of us feels the need to get married; we don’t want children and we are both career oriented. I love Bernie and our life together. So, if everything is so perfect, why am I writing? Bernie chews his fingers—not his nails—, the dry skin around the nails. It makes me absolutely crazy! I’ve asked him to stop. He claims he’s tried everything including putting bad tasting stuff there, but nothing works. I know it’s crazy, but Dr. H, I don’t know how much more of it I can take.


Dear Help!,

Your complaint may sound trivial to many couples dealing with “serious” problems like infidelity and physical or emotional abuse. But death by a million tiny cuts is still death, and a relationship that is slowly deteriorating because of what sounds like a minor annoyance can eventually destroy it. I suspect, like most couples, you both have habits that could be annoying. If Bernie has tried without success to stop feasting on his peri-fingernail skin then perhaps, you need to accept it. Remind yourself of his good points and focus on those and your love for him. Accept that he’s tried but can’t change right now. I wouldn’t be surprised if, soon after you’ve stopped making it an issue, he finds a way for stopping.

Ask Dr. Happy by Dr. Bob Nozik, MD

“Dr. Happy” has been speaking and writing on happiness ever since developing his own deep, inner happiness 20 years ago. Bob is Professor Emeritus from UC. San Francisco and is the author of Happy 4 Life: Here’s How to Do It. Dear Readers, please send your happiness questions to “Ask Dr. Happy” at


  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Also in Dr. Happy Formula:

Also from Dr. Bob Nozik, MD: