Q: My boyfriend wants to explain everything constantly. I have learned how to say “ah hum” and look interested while he is talking. He doesn’t hear what I say and seems to be a black-hole for attention. What’s this all about? Giving him the attention he wants is too exhausting.
A: Of course it is!
Just tell him directly and repeatedly, “You are talking too much, and I don’t need you to explain that to me.” Then maybe add: “Is there some other way you’d like my attention?”
If I understand the problem well enough, the key word in my last sentence is probably “repeatedly.” It might take a while for him to understand what you don’t want, and to break his habitual way of interacting with you. But it will be well worth it for both of you. (For him, he is pushing you away – and he probably does this with everyone, and that means he is probably pushing everyone away. If he learns about this from you he won’t be lonely in the future.)