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Oh great... I need some advice

Cardinal

Cyburbian
Messages
10,080
Points
34
My alumni newsletter included a blurb about me in its last edition. Always beware of things like that.

An old girlfriend (pretty serious - the closest I came to getting married) tracked me down, and this morning I had an e-mail from her waiting in my box. So now what? Do I respond? I have had no contact with her for nine years. What would I say?
 

Tranplanner

maudit anglais
Messages
7,922
Points
37
Well, that really depends what she said in her email doesn't it? :)

Was it a hate-mail, or I "I still think about you all the time" email?
 

mendelman

Unfrozen Caveman Planner
Staff member
Moderator
Messages
14,166
Points
58
Don't reply. What would be the point? Are you going to strike up a relationship with her again?
 

Richmond Jake

You can't fight in here. This is the War Room!
Messages
18,313
Points
44
Hell, yes. Respond and see where it goes. That reminds me, there's this old girlfriend of mine..... :d:
 

Seabishop

Cyburbian
Messages
3,838
Points
25
In pure psychologist fashion I will answer - "Only you know the answer to this question, Mr. Cardinal." Really, I guess it depends on whether you think the relationship's problems can be overcome with 9 years of hindsight, or if this means you will now be stalked everyday.
 

Cardinal

Cyburbian
Messages
10,080
Points
34
Tranplanner said:
Well, that really depends what she said in her email doesn't it? :)

Was it a hate-mail, or I "I still think about you all the time" email?

It was more of a "catching up" e-mail. Job, husband, kid.

Mendelman, I don't see re-establishing any relationship there, so I do have to wonder about the point....
 

Wannaplan?

Bounty Hunter
Messages
3,225
Points
29
Cardinal said:
So now what? Do I respond? I have had no contact with her for nine years.

She is so sad. After nine years, a husband, and child... wow, that is so lame. What would establishing contact with her accomplish? Heartache? Regret? Boredom? Nothing happy or productive can come of it. You both have moved on. Respect the nine years of tradition and keep her at arms length. She is only doing this for selfish, self-absorbed reasons. She's not doing it for you.
 

biscuit

Cyburbian
Messages
3,904
Points
25
Perhaps I’m being incredibly naive when it comes to old relationships here, but it could be that she saw your blurb in the alumni newsletter and wanted to contact you out of simple polite curiosity just to see what you’ve been up to over the past nine years. Just because you respond to her e-mail once doen't mean you'll have to do it again... so what's the harm in some friendly catching up.

Although, most women I know don't try to get in contact with old boyfriends (unless perhaps they ended as good friends) if they're presently in happy relationships. So it could be that she is a bored housewife looking to reignite some excitement in her otherwise drab and unsatisfying life.

Dilemmas, dilemmas...
 

michaelskis

Cyburbian
Messages
20,233
Points
52
People can interact without there having to be a “Relationship” and still strike up a friendship. A person can never have too many friends. I say e-mail her back, and strike up something. Who knows, if the situation this could be a good thing. The past is the past, we can learn from it, remember it, but we should forgive, and move on.

I say E-mail her back. Answer the questions, sound surprised (because you are) and ask questions similar to what she asked you.
 

Repo Man

Cyburbian
Messages
2,549
Points
25
E-Mail her back. She probably saw the article and thought "I wonder what he is up to." She likely just wanted to say "hi" and catch up. I have had people e-mail me from out of the blue when they saw my name on Classmates.com, including an ex. She was married with a kid on the way and just wanted to see what I had been doing over the past 5 years or so. We e-mailed a few times, and that was about it. I have also e-mailed ex-girlfirends if I saw something with their name, just to see whats up.

...or I could be completely wrong and she is looking for a little extramarital bliss :-0 .
 

nerudite

Cyburbian
Messages
6,544
Points
30
I'm terrible at correspondence... I'll go through months where I e-mail all the time and then months where I just don't feel like it. Doesn't matter who e-mails, I just can't get into that chatty how-ya-been-doin' mode. So if you aren't in that mode and you don't feel like responding, don't. Terrible confession: sometimes if I actually write one of those big catch up e-mails I'll save it and use parts again in the next big catch up that I'm not all that geared up for.
 

Greenescapist

Cyburbian
Messages
1,169
Points
24
I would write back to her. I think it's nice to keep in a little contact with ex's of the past (at least the ones that didn't end miserably!). You never know when you'll bump into her or if she could help you out with something (eg job contacts) in the future. Just a thought.
 

otterpop

Cyburbian
Messages
6,655
Points
28
Respond. Why not? Probably, like Biscuit wrote, she just wants to catch up. I sometimes wonder whatever happened to old friends and girlfriends. I would welcome an e-mail from anyone of them. If she wants something more, just say you are flattered but no thanks.
 

kms

Cyburbian
Messages
6,482
Points
40
There's no etiquette requirement that says you must respond to an unsolicited email. If you want to respond, you could reply with "it sounds like you have a good life; I'm glad you're happy, blah, blah" and hope that she doesn't respond with "no, I'm not, that's why I emailed you."

If you truly are curious about her, go ahead and email her. You'll know what to say. Think about how you'd feel if you deleted the message without responding.
 

jordanb

Cyburbian
Messages
3,232
Points
25
There are a lot of people I've known in years past who I'd like to catch up with for no other reason than for curiosity's sake. I think you're reading way too much evil intent into the email. Are you at all curious about how she's been doing?
 
Messages
3,690
Points
27
I agree that the email could be fueled by simple curiosity. So if you want to respond in that vein, I say go for it. However, I also agree that you shouldn't feel obligated to do so if you don't feel like it. But I wouldn't read much into it.
 

Chet

Cyburbian Emeritus
Messages
10,623
Points
34
I have an ex girlfriend from college that keeps in touch with me, but i rarely respond. Usually her messages are glurgy and filled with baby pictures. We have little in common except the past. I find my responses to be short acts of courtesy on the line of "glad to hear all is well".

If you think you'll have little in common except the past, I'd let it go with a similar short reponse. Also, shoe on the other foot, how would you feel if you found out your wife was emailing a man from her past love life?
 

Maister

Chairman of the bored
Staff member
Moderator
Messages
28,953
Points
71
You're likely two different beings than you were a decade ago. I don't see the point in reestablishing a connection. Besides you might have the misfortune of exeriencing a "rebound". Beware.
 

michaelskis

Cyburbian
Messages
20,233
Points
52
Maister said:
You're likely two different beings than you were a decade ago. I don't see the point in reestablishing a connection. Besides you might have the misfortune of exeriencing a "rebound". Beware.


It would be like meeting someone new then… what is wrong with that? I don’t understand what the hesitation should be. I have an ex that does not want to be friends now because we did not know each other as friends before we dated… I JUST DON’T understand… YES you may have a past, but why should the past prevent you from having a future as friends.

Do you not meet new people because you don’t know them? NO, if you seen a friend that you have not seen in 10 years, do you not say hi, and maybe reestablish a friendship? PEOPLE ARE PEOPLE, why not try to be friends with as many as you can? Life is too short to look back and say I wonder if… there for seize the moment and run with it. You never know if you can be friends if you don’t try.
 

Cardinal

Cyburbian
Messages
10,080
Points
34
No, nothing would happen. I don't think that is what she intended, and I would not want to go back even if it were. We parted on friendly terms but later had a dispute over something she did, and I broke off contact. I think her letter was just sent out of curiousity. Frankly, I'm not that curious. I guess I'm leaning toward what Chet suggested; a short "that's nice" and not much more.
 

NHPlanner

A shadow of my former self
Staff member
Moderator
Messages
9,964
Points
41
I had an old girlfriend e-mail me out of the blue after seeing some HS reunion stuff....replied, we traded e-mails for a week or so, and that was it. Just caught up on where we were in life....nothing more.
 

H

Cyburbian
Messages
2,850
Points
24
Contact, it could be interesting....you know you want to or you wouldnt have asked. :d:
 

BiteMeElmo

Cyburbian
Messages
324
Points
11
I'm inclined to agree with biscuit and otterpop. There's no harm in replying, even if it's just a short "that's nice...I'm well"

Whether she's curious or has some other agenda, you'll likely find out in her response to your response (if there is one). Email is so low-pressure in situations like this. You could stop communicating any time you choose. The thing is, when do you choose, now or after you've broken your silence. Simple call, but not always easy to make.
 

JNL

Cyburbian
Messages
2,449
Points
25
Go with your instinct. But remember, once you reply, you are confirming your email address is correct, and that you received and read her message... sometimes it's easier to not respond and if you need to, later, plead ignorance of the message.
 

Cardinal

Cyburbian
Messages
10,080
Points
34
I did send out an e-mail this afternoon... and shortly after recieved another from her, asking more questions. Well, I don't really feel like going there. It has been nearly a decade and I really don't feel like going back and remeniscing. Life is ahead, not behind. Now I have to decide whether to simply ignore it or send back a message saying "nice to have heard from you, but...."

Thaks, all, for your advice :-}
 
Messages
7,649
Points
29
Cardinal said:
I did send out an e-mail this afternoon... and shortly after recieved another from her, asking more questions. Well, I don't really feel like going there. It has been nearly a decade and I really don't feel like going back and remeniscing. Life is ahead, not behind. Now I have to decide whether to simply ignore it or send back a message saying "nice to have heard from you, but...."

Thaks, all, for your advice :-}
Sorry to be "too late", but I have been thinking about what you said -- that she did something that you did not approve of (or whatever -- no, I am not going to look up your exact words :-D ). I would be concerned that she wants "redemption" without "earnng" it -- that she wants your forgiveness/acceptance but is unlikely to be willing to make amends. I would let her know, er, that you are living with some GUY (last I heard, lol) and let her think you are implying you are gay or something. (Is that awful? lol.) Or whatever excuse you can come up with for "I have no time/place in my life. Sorry." What little you said leads me to believe that it was a one sided relationship, you are more ethical than she is, and people often look to a "nice guy" to continue to be "nice" to them no matter what jerks they act like. I have been on the recieving end of crap like that and it doesn't sit well with me. I do not happen to believe that "nice" and "Doormat: Please wipe your boots here, thanks" are actually synonyms, contrary to "popular opinion". 8-!
 

michaelskis

Cyburbian
Messages
20,233
Points
52
sisterceleste said:
What the hell...e-mail her back...its not the movie Scrooge!!!!!


I am thinking that sistercelest and I are going to get along well... I can not agree more!!!


Don't ask what if... just go! The only way to get anywhere is to grow a set of balls and take at least a step forward!

(sorry to all those who do not have and can not grow balls)
 

Mastiff

Gunfighter
Messages
7,181
Points
30
Cardinal said:
I did send out an e-mail this afternoon... and shortly after recieved another from her, asking more questions. Well, I don't really feel like going there. It has been nearly a decade and I really don't feel like going back and remeniscing. Life is ahead, not behind. Now I have to decide whether to simply ignore it or send back a message saying "nice to have heard from you, but...."

Thaks, all, for your advice :-}

Send a nice pic from the Kama Sutra and say, "Think we're too old to do this one anymore?" You KNOW it'd be fun...
 
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