Dear MISSter Simms,
I have detected a problem with my boyfriend’s hygiene. I have talked to him about it before, and I don’t know how to bring it up to him again. The scent is getting worse. It’s his mouth. It has a bad odor. I have noticed some horrendous plaque build up around his bottom teeth gum area, and it smells strong and yucky. I see the build up and I am sure anyone he is talking to at close proximity can, too. I would be embarrassed. He’s such a sweet guy and a good boyfriend, and I don’t know why he hasn’t done anything about it. I must be getting older because I am not known to stick around when something like this surfaces. At the present time he is not working; living off of unemployment. What the heck do I do because it has come to a point that I don’t want to kiss him, and when he talks I turn my head so that my nose is spared from the force of the odor somewhat. Sometimes when he’s talking, his breath is so overwhelming I feel like the entire room is going to smell like his breath. Something needs to be said, because this is not something I am going to overlook much longer if he doesn’t find a way to cure it. Do you honestly think he cannot smell his own breath? I am dead serious when I ask what do you suggest I do?
You know, I ran into a similar situation with my girlfriend this evening. It went a little something like this…
Me: Hi, girlfriend!
Girlfriend: Ew. What’s the smell?
Me: …your upper lip…
Girlfriend: No. I’m pretty sure it’s your butt. It stinks.
Me: Noooooo waaaaay!
I had just come off a 16 hour flight. When I got home and stripped off my clothes, sure enough, I realized my butt did stink.
While my girlfriend telling me that my butt stank wasn’t the first thing I wanted to hear upon arriving back home, I’d rather hear it from her than say…a stranger on the bus. Or a waiter at a restaurant. Or my boss. Or one of those annoying children at the mall that don’t know when to shut their mouths. It shows that she cares about both my own well being (her telling me saves me the embarrassment of having to hear it from someone else) and that of her fellow human beings (they won’t be subjected to my stench). And that is what you must do! You must repeatedly tell your boo, for the benefit of himself and the rest of mankind, that his breath is horrible and that he needs to handle it ASAP. You don’t need to “be nice” or beat around the bushes. Just tell him straight to his face. You could be like, “Hey, boyfriend. I love you and all, but your breath offends me and you have crazy plaque build up that you need to addressed right now.” Good and sweet people can handle the truth, and it’s better he hears it from you than from someone else who would probably hurt his feelings. While you’re at it, go out there and buy him some quality tooth paste and one of those fancy electric tooth brushes. You say he’s living off unemployment, so maybe he just can’t afford to keep his breath smelling fresh.
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