How are you doing? I am in love with a lady that hardly calls me. But recently she asked if I remember certain things from our past, good old memories. Could these mean she has something for me or not? Kindly advise me.
Thanks, loyal reader, for writing and asking this question. It’s clear from your letter that there’s a lot you just don’t know about the situation. For a start, you did not know that we’d just been talking about setting up an advice column on this website—like, literally the day before you sent this—and we were all set to start making up questions and answering them to jump start the enterprise. So thank you for taking on that role and making it easier on us.
We're actually going to give you two takes on this situation. One from Dave (a legit professional writer) and the other from me, Amy (I'm no Hemingway but just go with it). Neither of us is qualified to coach you in your life, but it’ll still be better than what Dr. Phil would say. We want to be as objective as possible, but there's really not much objectivity in opinions. Going against cultural norms and putting Dave first. You trust us, right? Take it away Dave.
I must tell you there’s no good answer to the question you’ve posed. Could her recent outreach mean she has something for you? Sure, it could mean that. It could also mean about a dozen other things we simply can’t know. You have good memories, which suggests a shared past that was at the least friendly in nature. That’s a good start. But depending on those memories, her inquiry could mean literally anything. Is she asking you about the time you two shared a romantic evening paddling in a tandem kayak while watching the sunset and whispering sweet nothings into each other’s ears? Or is she asking if you remember those years you spent working in the kitchen at IHOP, giggling every time a customer ordered the Rooty Tooty Fresh n’ Fruity? These are both good times, but the stakes are very different. (Side note: never order a steak at IHOP. They are, to be polite about it, very different).
The point is, without knowing the details of these memories and the level of intimacy around them, it would be irresponsible of me to give you a straight Yes or No answer. And I’m actually glad that you haven’t provided much in the way of details, because that would have just distracted me from what the best response for you is: it doesn’t matter how she feels about you right now. The real issue is that you have something for her, and this “something for her” has not yielded anything for you. Trying to dance around the issue and read into her words will do nothing to get you closer to your goal of being with her. You can’t worry about her feelings, at least not until you’ve sufficiently expressed yours.
Maybe she does have something for you. But you can’t put her on the spot and make her say it. Maybe she doesn’t have anything for you. You can’t put her on the spot by asking her the meaning behind her remembrance of the good times. Don’t make your feelings her responsibility.
Just say how you feel and hope she reciprocates. If she does? Yay! Go on a date, get smoochy with each other, grow closer, run away to Canada, celebrate the fact that you’re crazy aboot each other, eh? But also be prepared that she may not have anything for you beyond a couple of warm memories and the desire to remind you that she has them. You should still tell her how you feel, because you owe it to yourself to find out if there’s a chance. Just remember that your feelings are your own, and you’re not entitled to have them returned. If she’s not into you in the same way, then cherish the memories you have and live with the heartache. It’ll be temporary—an awful, soul-crushing, Are-You-There-God-It’s-Me-Margaret kind of temporary, I’m not gonna lie. But the pain will pass, and with much less physical discomfort than if you’d eaten an IHOP steak.
Since I write from my own glorious experiences, I'll share what it would mean if I were the one reaching out long after the initial splitsville. I personally (in my oh-so-healthy-relationship-habits) wouldn't reach out to an ex just to get all warm and fuzzy about pastimes. That's a behavior usually saved for old friends, not lovers. I think the 'circle back' is usually with the intent to do just that. To clarify, I would never, ever reach out to an ex just to shoot the sh*t and talk about our good times. We broke up for a reason and it was probably a really good one. Sooooo, if I did want to circle back, it means I'm interested in a rekindle. Full disclosure, time and space make you forget about why you broke up in the first damn place. Then when you start something over, it's just a matter of time until you're hit with the rude awakening reality of why it ended in the first place. Well, great. Now you have to break up again. Don't reopen than can, k?
I would dare to venture that she could be in the aftermath of a nasty breakup. You know that really dark and f***ed up place you go when it all goes south? When you drop 10. lbs in a like a day and a half and stay in bed for a week? Or is that just me? She *might* be feeling like she just needs some attention and she most likely - absolutely - already knows how you feel about her. My guess is that you still give her attention. That girl is lonesome and missing the comfort that your old relationship provided. Put on your adult pants and tell her how you feel about her and see what happens. It's way better than the unknown. You will undoubtably get a more clear answer than asking me.
If you feel the need to get some brutally honest advice from Dave and Amy, just send your deepest darkest problems over right here. We like to talk about exes, currents, in-laws, besties and anyone else in your life.
On a diff note, but still on the same note mostly - Happy Couples Do These Things and If You Think Things Change Just Because You're Married, You're Wrong.