Opening conversation could help unlock emotion
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DEAR MISS LONELYHEARTS: My boyfriend just moved in with me so there are boxes everywhere. On the top of one was a little wooden treasure chest. It was hooked, but not locked. I stayed away from touching it for three hours, but finally I broke down.
Inside I found an old love letter, from the time before my guy came out of the closet. She was young and had drawn flowers on the envelope. She describes their relationship in glowing terms and refers to his pet nicknames for her, and his romantic gifts of flowers.
I get nothing like that. I had no idea he would be such an expressive lover with anyone. If I want flowers, I’m going to have to grow them myself!
Don’t get me wrong; he treats me very well — but the kind of romance this woman talks about with him is nothing like our relationship. I’m jealous, and it hurts! I want to be treasured and treated like gold, the way she says he treated her.
How do I dig for the details about his breakup with that girl? I need to know what happened. The fact my guy is bisexual and I’m not, has started to become a problem to me, since I read those letters. Please help.
— Suddenly Insecure, East Kildonan
Dear Insecure: Begin a conversation with your partner by warning him he’d better start hiding his old letters, or at least start locking them up. Tell him there was one in the unlocked chest calling to you, and being human, you broke down and read it.
Why is he not so romantic anymore? Like lots of young guys, he may have started out being romantic and open, and then got squashed and vowed he’d never be that vulnerable again. You can tell him he’s safe to relax with you, because you care so much.
Also tell him you’re not laughing at him for being a young romantic guy, and you hope he’ll be able trust you and love you enough to let down his guard, and feel free to be that way again. It may be the start of a new chapter for your relationship.
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I’m 19 and a single mom in a pretty good situation, living with my mom, auntie and an older brother. Everyone is good to my baby, and I’m a very good mother. We have enough money because we all have jobs, full- or part-time from home, like mine.
The problem is I have no social life at all — nothing. My single girlfriends all have their own love lives, and like to go to the bar. I’m breastfeeding and not drinking at all. I guess a new mother with a new baby does not make a fun going-out companion. My baby’s father left town when he found out I was pregnant. I don’t miss him, but I do want a social life of some kind. What can I do?
— Mom With Baby, West End
Dear Mom With Baby: Mommy Connections Winnipeg provides a number of mom and baby focused programs where you could meet new friends who understand. The group’s online presence says their programs “offer new moms a unique opportunity to learn from local experts, try new activities and socialize with others at the same stage — in a fun, low-pressure, inclusive environment.” Check them out online at mommyconnections.ca/winnipeg/mom-baby.
Also talk to your mom about being ready to have some girlfriends and relatives over for lunches or casual dinners, with games and cards to make it more fun. It’s a safe, fun way to expand your circle. It’s also good for little one to meet a friendly circle of people.
Also, reach out to old friends to say, “I’d like to see you again!” People may mistakenly think you’re too preoccupied with your baby to socialize, so you need to tell them you’re definitely ready for some social time now.
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.