My ex is after me – Chicago Tribune Story-level
Dear Amy, Many years ago, when I was in my early 20s, I dated a guy and fell in love. He broke up with me very abruptly and I was extremely devastated.
Because of the abruptness of the breakup, how happy she was when she was with him, and some hints she made afterward about regretting her actions, for years I felt like we had unfinished business. I never understood what happened.
However, the rational part of my brain told me that actions speak louder than words: he broke up with me and never made any real attempt to initiate a reconciliation. It wasn’t meant to be. We moved to different cities, I eventually met and fell in love with my now husband, and for over a decade my ex hasn’t been in my life at all. I don’t text, I don’t have a social media following, I don’t have mutual friends. .. nothing.
My problem? Every six months or so, he appears in my dreams.
There are usually powerful feelings of love and longing in these dreams, and I wake up feeling sad and melancholic. I love my husband and I have a pretty good life, so I don’t understand why this person is after me.
Does this happen to other people? Surely at this point, the dreams and feelings aren’t really about this guy, are they? How can I get rid of it forever?
stop chasing my dreams
Dear Stop Haunting, The rational side of your brain understands these events from long ago.
But now your subconscious is trying to tell you something, and it will continue until you turn the dream on its head and decode its meaning.
I suggest that you look for patterns that occur at those times when you have this dream. Is there something in your waking life that triggers this dream? Are stressful times in your marriage (or other relationships) causing this? Write a detailed account of the waking period preceding sleep.
Also write a detailed description and script of the dream itself (writing is important because the act of writing helps open the mind, triggering thoughts and memories).
My theory is that this dream is about the unrealized possibilities of youth. Your first love can represent many other relationships or opportunities that remain unfinished or unfulfilled in your mind. Due to the abruptness of this break up, you may have left yourself blaming yourself. Let yourself out of trouble. Recognizing, facing and accepting unfulfilled goals or unfinished relationships and forgiving yourself for your own actions or reactions should help you write a new ending for this dream.
Dear Amy, My dear grandmother recently passed away quite traumatically. This has been devastating to our family (by the way, I’m an adult).
One of my best friends attended the entire funeral, which meant a lot to me. Another best friend didn’t come at all and expressed sympathy for her over text.
My sister thinks it is unnecessary for a friend to attend a service if they did not know the relative who died.
am i old fashioned?
Dear N: You are not old-fashioned; you are grieving
Unfortunately, experiencing a loss like yours is often the main way any of us learn how important it really is to “show up” at a funeral.
People are weird with funerals. They either don’t know, don’t understand, or are extremely reluctant to attend a funeral, possibly due to their own negative experiences.
Your reaction is not unusual.
After a traumatic loss, survivors can sometimes notice those who don’t show up, don’t go through the receiving line, don’t express their condolences in the expected way…or at all.
The opinion of his sister knew that only those who personally the deceased need to attend a funeral. Now that you’ve been through this, you understand that funerals are to honor the deceased but for the survivors.
Dear Amy, “Scammed” reported being scammed by someone claiming to be a representative of PayPal.
Anyone who answers an email or phone call with someone who trains you to buy gift cards: This is a SCAM!
No legitimate business will ask you to buy gift cards!
These scammers can capture credit card information and sell it to other people who make purchases deducted from their accounts.
Store employees who sell gift cards should be educated about these scams and ask carefully about the gift card recipient.
– Once ripped off, twice watchful
Dear Twice Vigilant, I really like the idea of training store clerks about this increasingly common scam.
(You can email Amy Dickinson at email@example.com or send a letter to Ask Amy, PO Box 194, Freeville, NY 13068. You can also follow her on Twitter @asking either Facebook.)