QMy friend just texted for the first time in three years. We used to be very close. When COVID-19 hit, we were living in different cities. I reached out to make sure she and her family were healthy and safe. She didn’t respond.
I reached out once a month for a few months, then every other month. By December 2020, I gave up. I asked around and learned she and her family were surviving the pandemic.
Two years later and she’s acting as though no time has passed. I find it disingenuous and don’t know how to respond. Your advice would be helpful.
Long Lost Friend
AThe question you have to ask yourself is, do you want the friendship back? Do you miss this person and want them to be part of your life again? If the answer is no, then you can ignore the texts; or you can text back but without a lot of interest; or you can confront.
If your answer was yes, then respond to the text enthusiastically. Take baby steps, know that this person may pull away again, but enjoy the friendship while it’s there. If you feel so inclined and the timing feels right, broach the topic one day.
FEEDBACKRegarding the woman concerned about Halloween this year as she and her husband are newly separated (Nov. 8):
“I 100 per cent agree with your reply, Lisi, except for this, ‘If he doesn’t offer himself, perhaps ask him if the kids could go trick-or-treating on your street so you could join them for a bit.’
“I’m a father, separated from my spouse over two years ago, and I see myself in this picture. We disagreed on parenting and that was the main reason for our breakdown. I was a frustrated parent and I’m sure that my ex saw me as some sort of Grinch. The lack of communication and Grinch-y surface behaviour is the result of years of suppression, frustration, manipulation and being consistently undermined.
“Now that we’re separated, I have a much better relationship with my kids. They see me as a human being. We talk. There is much laughter. And we do things together.
“This father could be the jerk his spouse paints him to be. If so, he’ll ruin everything for the kids. They will figure it out and next year they’ll say, ‘We’d rather do Halloween with mom.’
“If he’s not a jerk, let him spread his wings as a parent and do Halloween the way he’s always wanted.
“I agree with you about Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. I don’t agree regarding birthdays. Too bad if the calendar doesn’t line up with someone’s custody schedule.”
Lisi:To each his own. I care about birthdays and would want to spend mine with my children.
FEEDBACK Regarding the couple who can’t agree on how to sleep (Nov. 5):
Reader No. 1: “If the window is open, the furnace should be turned to at least 65 degrees Fahrenheit (18C) or lower. With the door shut, it’s unlikely that the cool air in the bedroom would trigger the thermostat. And a cool room with lots of blankets is excellent for sleep.
“If they have a smart thermostat, they could program it to heat the house an hour before they normally get up. I’ve never found earplugs helpful for drowning out noise. I just run a small fan, which provides white noise that blocks out all but the loudest noises.”
Reader No. 2: “I’ve suffered all my life with needing to have that open window, even if it’s freezing outside. I found that installing a fan to blow air on me was the fix.”
Reader No. 3: “Same sleeping issues with my partner were solved with the use of a (quiet) ceiling fan. It’s not fresh air, but it works for me.”
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