Romantic Reconnection 45 Years Later

By Amy Dickinson | September 16th, 2022

Can teenage infatuation be rekindled?

an older couple holding hands. by Rawpixelimages Dreamstime. 45 years after a teen infatuation and both are single again. Can a romantic reconnection work for them? See what “Ask Amy” advises. Image

It’s 45 years after the teen infatuation and both people are single again. They’ve reconnected online and are considering a romantic reconnection in person. See what advice columnist Amy Dickinson advises in “Ask Amy.”

Dear Amy:

I have a “second time around” query.

In our late teens some 45 years ago, “Bret” and I shared quite an infatuation. But it cooled when different college choices put 1,500 miles between us.

We lost touch (no texting or Facebook back then).

We each married but are now single again, due to my divorce 15 years ago and Bret losing his wife to COVID in 2020.

Neither of us had children.

Now we’re both 63, and we recently connected online. We’re feeling a little revived spark of our long-ago romance. Bret thinks we can recapture what we once had.

I’m not as sure about that, more just intrigued at the possibility of a romantic reconnection. I think how in many ways we’re very different people today. We’re still 900 miles apart but talking about making visits.

If we were to explore a reunion, how do we keep a fond nostalgia of yesteryear from clouding or competing with our vision today?

Also, do you think Bret’s greater eagerness could be a rebound from losing his wife fairly recently?

He has said he was very close to her, they’d been married for 34 years, and her death hit him hard.

Seems like this too could affect how clear-eyed we (or at least he) will be. I’ve never had to deal with anything like that, myself, so I’m tossing it over to you.


Dear Intrigued:

You are presenting rational and considerate issues. Any (or all) of these could derail a romantic reconnection – or any ongoing relationship – between the two of you.

Men who find themselves single in later life do tend to partner up quickly. People who have been in long and happy marriages naturally want to replicate the experience (and might know how to).

Long-lost reunions do not need to be “clear eyed.” Fond nostalgia for yesteryear is as good a fantasy as any.

The way to handle this is to … handle it. Whether you take a mad leap or choose to tiptoe in, you two need to get to know one another as seasoned adults with a lifetime of experiences behind you. You should always trust your own core instincts. Your instincts are the best tools you have to determine if a relationship is right for you.

Want to get even more life tips from Amy? Read more of her advice columns here!

In the tradition of the great personal advice columnists, Chicago Tribune’s Amy Dickinson is a plainspoken straight shooter who relates to readers of all ages. She answers personal questions by addressing issues from both her head and her heart – ranging from a romantic reconnection to DNA surprises. A solid reporter, Dickinson researches her topics to provide readers with informed opinions and answers. Ask Amy, P.O. Box 194, Freeville, NY 13068

© 2022 by Amy Dickinson

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