Best to retrieve heartfelt, unopened letters to ex
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DEAR MISS LONELYHEARTS: When my old college boyfriend died recently, his sisters got in touch asking if they should return his brown trunk of love letters from me, sent mostly in one certain month. But here’s the weird part: They said many of my letters were still sealed in the envelopes — never opened. His sister asked me if I knew why, and I said I didn’t have a clue.
The only thing I could guess later, is that would have been about the time we’d broken up — and it was over some lying jerk telling him I’d cheated. I had not, but my guy believed the lies, at first. I wrote him letters every day for two weeks begging him to listen to me. Finally he did. But the mystery remains — why didn’t he open most of those letters? Should I pick them up?
— Puzzled, St. Vital
Dear Puzzled: Even if you don’t want those letters, somebody else might think it’d be interesting to open them and read your passionate words of love and regret, and have a chuckle. So, get them back in your possession, and then you can do what you think best.
Also, you might be able to figure out why your old boyfriend didn’t open most of the letters. The dates on the envelopes could help. If he read the first couple, and left the rest unopened, maybe he believed you were innocent after two rounds of explaining and declaring your love. But why he didn’t then reach out to you remains a mystery.
Another explanation, if only the first few missives were opened, could be that some of the things you said in those letters hurt his feelings, so he didn’t want to keep reading subsequent letters.
Whatever the case, you’ll probably feel better in the long run if you have those very personal letters in your possession.
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I’m depressed by the never-ending snow and cold, and really want to go travelling, but I just can’t afford it this year.
However, married friends with two active kids have just offered me a “working holiday” on their Caribbean island getaway. All I’d have to do for the free trip is “some light cleaning, and babysit the kids in the beautiful sunshine.” They said they want to be “free to go out boating and partying with friends.” Your opinion? Would I end up feeling like Cinderella?
— Broke as a Joke, Fort Rouge
Dear Broke: People usually go on winter holidays to escape working — and to bask in the sun and relax. It would be very difficult not to resent your friends when they’re pulling away in the boat, for the third day in a row, to go partying. Meanwhile, you’re staying back to babysit their children. Cinderella might come to mind, alright.
How about staying home, taking a few days off and having a stay-cation with a friend or two here in the province (even for just a night) at a hotel with a nice spa and pool? You could also dine out with them and enjoy a few nice cocktails. It’s not exactly the Caribbean, but at least you’re having some fun for a couple days — not babysitting and cleaning — and feeling left behind.
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I read the letter from “Love the Thought, Don’t Need the Gifts,” about the woman’s poor relations who insisted on giving expensive gifts they can’t afford. (My advice was to stop trying to manage them and their finances. —Miss L.) My immediate thought was that this aunt and uncle might not be trying to show their love, as much as they’re maybe trying to “buy” love. If they have no other family, maybe this is their way of trying to belong. Perhaps they don’t have much love and support around them, so this might be their way of trying to feel some.
— Just H, Manitoba
Dear H: Good point. They might have been trying to make up for the hard feelings caused by those unpaid loans in the past, as mentioned in the initial letter. Clearly they’re feeling the need to do something to show they care, and they really want to be included in family events.
Please send your questions and comments to email@example.com or Miss Lonelyhearts c/o the Winnipeg Free Press, 1355 Mountain Ave., Winnipeg, MB, R2X 3B6.
Maureen Scurfield writes the Miss Lonelyhearts advice column.
Updated on Thursday, January 26, 2023 8:18 AM CST: Fixes byline, adds link