Tis the Season For... Rekindling Old Romance?

Why do the holidays stir up old emotions?

Love is caring. If you feel "cared for"... it's love.
Love is caring. If you feel "cared for"... it's love.

Reach out and touch some old flames?

What is it about the holiday season that makes some of us reach out and touch someone, namely, an old flame that fizzed out somehow?

I could just be imagining this phenomenon (not unusual for a woman who lets fantasy invade her mind when romance is involved), but I've had three guys contact me just the last few weeks. And yes, the holidays are drawing near fast-- not that I'm in any way preparing for it.

The first guy was a [bad] experience of online dating shortly after my divorce became "pending." Needless to say, I wasn't "ready" for dating, and that would probably explain the narcissistic jerk who I got together with. He broke up with me unexpectedly years ago in a text. Months later, he tried to ask me out again claiming he was insecure and had "issues." After I had accepted a date (and later the same day), he mentioned that I would have to pick him up because his license was revoked from a(nother) DUI. I passed on the date.

Just a few weeks ago, this guy calls me but my girls pick up the phone. They hand it to me saying, "it's Sam (not his real name)." So I respond, "do I know him?" When I pick up the phone, the first thing I hear is, "thanks, you don't even remember me?" So I respond, "yes, I remember you, but I have nothing to say to you." Rather than feel bad for telling him straight, I have a rush of good feelings for standing my ground.

As a follow-up, within minutes "Sam" sends me an email that says, "that was mean." This coming from a guy who broke up in an email saying plainly, "Things were moving too fast, and you live too far away, and I'm a needy guy. Maybe we should take a brake." - yes misspelled like car brakes as in moving too fast.

The second guy who sent me a message is married with children. Sorry for the eighties sitcom reference. He and I spent countless hours years back chatting on Facebook, catching up with old times, remembering crushes, refreshing the latest news. Until he blocked me, along with his wife. It was a sad lesson, but one I took seriously: no more messaging guys in relationships.

Follow-up: he sent another message asking how I was. I answered briefly, then ignored any other messages. I still feel bad for guys in committed relationships who message other women in private... or their primary woman, I should say.

The latest guy to message me (privately) has quite a history with me. From all my experiences with men (and that includes my 15-year marriage to someone else), this is the ONLY guy I ever felt remotely CARED about me. And I know it's because I have a broken picker-- always chasing after the type of men I know can't love me back or will end up breaking my heart.

To recap: he and I had a brief (but intense) romance in the summer of 2010. But, since he was on the rebound with his ex, he had a change of heart and decided to reconcile. It's been two years of Hell trying to get over the deep connection I felt with him, but I must say I was "cured" of the emotional havoc he wreaked on my brain.

Until yesterday.

He messaged me twice. And it's not the kind of stuff you show proudly to your significant other, either. I don't know if I should feel ashamed, relieved, proud, sad or confused to have responded. I know I kept my emotions out of it and wished him well, but I think the emotions are slow in showing up. I now feel the kind of sad torment I read between the lines of his message, and those "what if" thoughts can really hold you back from moving forward. I promised myself I'd never go down this path again.

Follow-up: I can hear a rubberband snap in my head. Have to clear out the cobwebs once and for all.

So which is it? Are people just curious how others are doing, or are they actively seeking old feelings, wondering if any still exists? Are they "not over you," or are they just bored? Do they genuinely care about you, or are the dark shadows of their relationships getting the best of them?

Or is it just a case of too much eggnog?



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Comments 15 comments

ZRMoore profile image

ZRMoore 3 years ago

Love the article. I have had the same thing happen to me, and I was not happy about my ex trying to contact me. It's over for a reason. I think that their is some regret and remorse that things are over. Why else would they be thinking about you, but I think what bothers them the most is you're not trying to make contact. I just ignore any effort for contact. It's over, and there'll be no reconciliation.


wonderful1 profile image

wonderful1 3 years ago from Southern California Author

I totally agree! I find it strange that I'm the single one, and yet I'm okay with letting things slide... then here's this guy who left me for his ex, they're still together, and he's professing his "love" after all these years? Am I going crazy? I know I wouldn't do that if I was seeing someone seriously. What the heck?


lovedoctor926 3 years ago

Hi wonderful, you come across as confident and you're a woman who knows what she wants. I would ignore them all. It works. Recently, this guy emails me after 10 years. He even invited me out on a date and I told him that I had other plans. Well, he still calls me. I told him from the beginning I only liked him as a friend. I do the exact opposite of what most women do and it does attract quality guys. Lol.


lovedoctor926 3 years ago

No, you're not going crazy! I think you and me think alike. Some women change their plans and make the guy the center of their world. Unfortunately, this doesn't work. Once you focus on yourself and your goals, your hobbies, your family, friends etc. you send out a different vibe. Why do you think those guys that we're not interested in keep coming around? have a good night:)


dashingscorpio profile image

dashingscorpio 3 years ago

Most of the men I know including myself have at times bought into the "Once I've been there I can always get back in" mentality. This is especially true if there was no "major drama".

We hear a lot of talk about oxytocin and women naturally bonding with men through sex. Maybe there is always a trace within that never dies.

The mistake a lot of women make is trying to "figure out" what the (guy) wants. Truth is the woman needs to determine what it is (she) wants! What does she hope to gain by "rekindling"? Is she really expecting some Hollywood (happy ever after) ending? The "break up" and "make up" love stories always play well in movies and novels but seldom works in real life.

Generally speaking an ex is an ex for a reason and it's usually a (good) reason! Unless a woman is looking for a "booty call" or a "friends with benefits" arrangement with someone familar it make no sense to look backwards. Your future lies ahead of you and not behind you. One man's opinion! :-)


wonderful1 profile image

wonderful1 3 years ago from Southern California Author

Very interesting angle, dashingscorpio. Perhaps in my case, these men removed themselves for their own personal issues (or to give their ex another chance), and now the ghosts of the past and "what ifs" of them staying around are haunting them? I don't know about oxytocin, but there definitely is some strange wacky connection for me with at least one of these guys-- and that's unsettling. You think you get over someone after years have passed, and yet you break a sweat when you see a message with their name on it.

Lovedoctor: totally! I've been minding my own business for some time now and was happy on my own, doing my writing and dealing with life's issues one step at a time. This last message sort of discombobulated my train of thought-- but if he wanted to inject himself into my head, it worked.


enlargedp profile image

enlargedp 3 years ago from Michigan

Ok ok...lets bring out the truth. If we're gonna speak on men then I must say there is always an urge to test the waters. This means that many men would reach out to you just to see if they can still win you over. And surely men will go as far as you allow them to. Men would do exactly what the last guy did that you mentioned in your hub. When this happens it even goes as far as convincing ourselves that we really miss you or want you back. Let me be blunt, it's the ego approach in a hidden form. From the details you mentioned above; these guys are clearly not ready for you. When its the right guy, he'll have his act together and you won't have to rehearse these things. I hope you don't waste your time :)


wonderful1 profile image

wonderful1 3 years ago from Southern California Author

Thanks, wise words indeed, enlargedp.


wonderful1 profile image

wonderful1 3 years ago from Southern California Author

Oh, and no more wasting time for me: I got a wake up call last night to avoid drama kings. Truth is that if a person can see your worth and treasure it, they won't let you slip away in the first place.


Ruffles 3 years ago

Great article, and so true! An ex just tried to contact me through the one place that I had not thought to block him- Linked In. I thought it might be an accident, as sometimes those sites send out invites to your whole email list. Nope, it was on purpose. I told him not to contact me until he was in a 12 step program for alchoholism and intimacy avoidance. Which are my usual fatal attractions. :-) Merry Christmas! And here's to loving ourselves first!


wonderful1 profile image

wonderful1 3 years ago from Southern California Author

I just read a blog on Shine Yahoo with the same topic: it's official: I'm not insane!!! Other people struggling with poor decisions are also messaging unsuspecting exes. Shame on them. S**t or get off the pot. Don't dump your drama on others!


lovedoctor926 3 years ago

Lol. you're so funny! Don't worry, you're normal. It's just that there are so many losers out there it's not even funny! Good thing that you passed on the date with that guy who got his license revoked. hahhaha.. maybe we should take a brake... what a loser! There are also guys who claim to like us but disappear during the holidays or start an argument for no reason so that way they don't have to spend any money on gifts.. And then they reappear in January saying that they were so busy.


wonderful1 profile image

wonderful1 3 years ago from Southern California Author

Oh Gawd-- if a guy pulled that trick on me, he'd hear my opinion verbally! The article was about guys I haven't talked to in over a year, but I didn't even think of them til they wrote or called.

Ironically, the third guy (the one who I have latent feelings for, yet can't seem to knock it off), found out I wrote this and wrote me a scathing comment about how messed up that was. I realized there and then he's deep, deep, deep into drama and I'm better off avoiding him like the plague-- even if I care about him. Stupid co-dependent nature of mine to try to "save" guys when I see they're troubled. It's even worse if they present themselves as caring men who have feelings for me. *sigh* Be strong, lovedoctor, and you (we) should get through all the crap that comes with the holidays (and life).


lovedoctor926 3 years ago

Good for you.. Drama kings are trouble!


lovedoctor926 3 years ago

Thanks. I have a pretty strong personality as it is. Lol.

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