October 10, 2018 at 4:55 am #230131
I have a bit of a random problem that no one in my real life seems to understand and thinks I should just get over. When I was in grade school, I was very shy, but I had a teacher who really encouraged me to come out of my shell. He suggested to my parents that I take piano lessons, and he was the first to cast me singing on stage. He also is a big part of the reason that I went to an elite high school, and is basically the reason I’ve done so well in life (I’m a lawyer and an opera singer on the side now, at 30 years old). For many years, I’ve kept in touch with this teacher, always stopping by to visit around Christmastime and other points throughout the year. About 3.5 years ago, this teacher suddenly stopped responding to my emails. My emails were always very pleasant, and I never showed that I was hurt by a lack of response. I just gave him a happy little update, asked how he was doing, and said that I would love to treat him to lunch so we can catch up – things like that. He still teaches at the same elementary school, but lives alone, never married or had children, so I can’t see how he is just too busy to respond. We never had a falling out or disagreement, and for the life of me, I don’t understand why he won’t respond. The only thing I can possibly think of is that I didn’t invite him to my wedding 4 years ago (it was a small wedding, my parents were paying).
Is there anything that I can do about this?? Send a holiday card? Tell him it hurts not to hear from him? This hurts me more than any kind of ghosting has hurt me in the past. I have frequently dreams in which I’m trying to get his attention, but he won’t talk to me, and I wonder how much I can trust anyone again when the person who I thought was basically family and who made me who I am stopped responding out of the blue.
Any suggestions are much appreciated.
October 10, 2018 at 6:25 am #230141
- This topic was modified 8 months, 1 week ago by Charlie.
Well, since you thought of this teacher as family, and Thanksgiving is around the corner, (and he lives alone, never married), why don’t you invite him for Thanksgiving with your family?
anitaOctober 10, 2018 at 10:46 am #230187
Thanks, Anita!! You’ve helped me think through so much in the past – I can’t believe you remember me 🙂
And yes, I was thinking that too but wasn’t sure if that would come across as too needy or desperate since I haven’t been getting responses from him? But now that you’ve said what I was thinking, maybe it WOULD be a nice gesture, and he knows my whole family. Do you think an email asking this is fine, or should I ask via some other medium?October 10, 2018 at 11:11 am #230197
You are welcome! If there is a more personal medium to invite him, better more personal. An invitation in the mail(a card maybe) and a follow up in person visit would be best, to make sure he got the card (that it didn’t get lost in the mail) and to let him know this way that you really are interested in him spending the holiday with you.
anitaOctober 10, 2018 at 11:20 am #230199
It’s possible he had been having trouble with his old email and has a new one now!
InkyOctober 10, 2018 at 12:28 pm #230213
Hi Inky, thanks for your response! I wondered that too, but I’ve been emailing him on his work email. Granted, he is an older man and likely isn’t the most tech savy. Even if it’s the right email, I support some older people take email with a grain of salt.
I’m going to try that card and in-person visit idea, Anita. Thank you again for your stellar advice, as always!October 10, 2018 at 12:38 pm #230219
You are welcome, Charlie. I hope to read from you about how this turns out.
anitaOctober 19, 2018 at 9:15 am #231855
Why not just ask him what’s going on? I agree with Anita that since he hasn’t been emailing that a nice notecard would be good. Again, tell him you guys seem to be missing each other lately and you were wondering if anything was wrong or if he wanted to discontinue your correspondence for some reason. I am all for being open and forthcoming and ASKING for the truth. Because we can all sit here and speculate until the cows come home about why he stopped responding but the ultimate truth is you have no control over what he does and if he doesn’t respond to your earnest attempts to reconnect then you must realize it’s about him and not you. And let go. I think we all could use a little less overthinking lol.