There is nothing more annoying than going to another country and it being different from where you live.
In case you can't tell, I'm being sarcastic.
Dear Abby was more concerned about someone being insulted for not understanding a different language. Her response can be found here.
This is mine. (P.S. Would you like to see more of an "audio-commentary" style response to Dear Abby's letters? That's were I would print her responses, and interject my own comments in red. Let me know!)
My wife and I speak English as our native language. I also speak other languages fluently, although my wife does not. When we travel to a country where I speak the language, she insists I speak only English. She says everybody in the world now speaks English and accuses me of showing off when I converse with a local in his or her language. She says it makes her uncomfortable.
I realize many people in other countries speak some -- or even a lot of -- English, but many do not. What do you think? -- SPEECHLESS IN ATLANTA
Your wife is the cliche American. I imagine she also complains when there isn't a McDonalds around? These are the type of people who, when they hear the expression "When in Rome..." have NO idea what you are talking about.
More people in the world speak Mandarin, with English as a distant second. So the next time your wife opens her craw to complain, tell her you don't understand her, and would she please speak Mandarin.*
If she can't be bothered to try to follow along, or learn a language herself, then she's going to be ignored. That's her problem, and forcing others to change to suit her is more rude than you speaking someones language. You decide your own level of involvement. A person can't say they were left out if they didn't play.
(Double negatives. That's tricky in any language.)
* While English is wider spread than other languages it's still an asshole dick move to expect other countries to speak your language. Have some respect.
Judas' Advice Column
This is where I take a Dear Abby column, and add my own brand of advice. I started by calling it Dear Crabby, but that's taken and JERKASS seems more fun.