You’re yearn­ing for hugs

Cape Breton Post - - ADVICE / GAMES - El­lie Tesher Email el­lie@thes­tar.ca. Copyright 2017: El­lie Tesher Dis­trib­uted by: Torstar Syn­di­ca­tion Ser­vices

Q: I’m 19. Back in 7th grade, I re­ally liked a boy and knew he liked me too.

But nei­ther of us did any­thing about it. Four years later, he chose a med­i­cal field and I chose com­merce.

To­day, I’m liv­ing else­where pur­su­ing my stud­ies. I hadn’t thought of him for years.

Now I feel like telling him how much I liked him. But I don’t know his con­tact in­for­ma­tion or whether he’s on so­cial me­dia sites.

I feel like I can’t marry any guy but him. I’m hop­ing to reach him through his friends.

I know I should move on but I don’t know how.

I don’t want to re­gret for the rest of my life that I couldn’t tell him that he’s the one I al­ways wanted.

I just want to lighten my heart and hug some­one.

– Suf­fer­ing Dis­tress

A: Your last sen­tence says it all — you’re lonely, yearn­ing for warmth and hugs.

This is nat­u­ral, when liv­ing far from home and fam­ily, while meet­ing the de­mands of higher ed­u­ca­tion.

The boy you knew when you were both age 12 is a fond mem­ory — but what he’s like now, his in­ter­ests, even his looks, are un­known to you.

That doesn’t mean it’s not worth­while to try and reach out, see how he’s do­ing. It may start a friend­ship.

Note that I didn’t say ‘restart,’ or sug­gest a sure ro­mance. What you each felt at 12 was, at most, a crush.

To place all your hopes and dreams for your fu­ture as an adult wo­man on that slim con­nec­tion would be un­re­al­is­tic and un­wise. Even if you con­tact him, there’s lit­tle pos­si­ble for now beyond so­cial me­dia ex­changes.

So do ask his friends about him, but don’t build a fan­tasy around what may hap­pen. In­stead, ex­pand the life you’re liv­ing now. Join a school or­ga­ni­za­tion, be open to mak­ing new friends, form a study group in your field.

You need con­nec­tions with oth­ers — now, and where it’s pos­si­ble.

TIP OF THE DAY: A fan­tasy of fu­ture love doesn’t solve present lone­li­ness.

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