Today: May 29, 2024

The Love Doctor: Conflicted Cleaner

Dear Dr. Strangelove, 

Yesterday while I was doing my annual “Spring Cleaning” ritual (sifting through months worth of bar receipts and deciding which clothes I’ll donate and which I’ll keep teling myself that I’ll wear someday) when I found an old jewelry box. As soon as I saw it, I knew exactly what was inside– love letters and pictures of me and my ex. Maybe it was the stress from digging through my mess of a room but against my better judgment I read through the letters and looked at every picture. Sure it was nice to reminisce about the past at first but after reality set back in I realized we’re not together anymore. The breakup was mutual but I still thuink of him and it took me a while to move on and get to the point where I wish him the best. It’s nice to think about the “good times” we had but I don’t know if it’s good for me to have them around. Should I still keep all the old love memorabillia or throw them away and let the past be the past? 

– Conflicted Cleaner

Conflicted Cleaner,

I’ve been there. You want to get rid of the letter to prove to yourself that you’ve moved on or because seeing him, no matter how “over” it you are hurts because you’re not together anymore. If I were you, I would keep the love letters. 

From what I can tell you were in a relationship that you still value even if it is over. Think of it as a positive reassurance. If you’re in a relationship now, then you can strive to make it even better than the one you reminisce about when you see those old pictures and love letters.

If you’re single, remembering how happy you were might help you realize that maybe you are read to put yourself out there and start dating again. Now I’m not saying you should go all “Fatal Attraction” and obsessibely open your Pandora’s box of past relationships but allowing yourself to experience the pain from a past realationship allows us to appreciate the joy that comes with being in love.

-Dr. Strangelove

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