DEAR ABBY: My girlfriend and I call each other horrible, disparaging names as a form of "love." Recently, I asked her to stop calling me names like that because it was fun at first, but now not so much. For me, it was just too negative.
I love her, and I want to show it by my actions. I want us to be a positive couple. I now call her "Bebe." Well, she got mad and accused me of not letting her be herself. Am I wrong for asking her not to call me ugly, gender-based names? I know she loves me, and I just want her to tone down the name-calling. Is that too much to ask? -- NO DUMB-A-- IN CALIFORNIA
DEAR NO D-A: No, it is not too much to ask. Jokes can get old and stale, and the name-calling stopped being cute or fun for you a while ago. People who love each other are sensitive to the other person's feelings and don't do what your girlfriend is doing. If she persists, it may be time to step back and reevaluate this relationship because her "just being herself" will become a turnoff.