Should I reach out to someone I met in 2020?

Annoyed with your partner? Having trouble on apps? Dealing with a crush? A breakup? What's on your mind? Send a letter to [email protected] or fill out this form.

Hi Meredith,

I'm having some difficulty making a decision about reaching out to someone.

I dated someone for a short period in 2020, but it ended because this person was living with others who couldn't be exposed to COVID. We were getting along well, but we never had a direct conversation about what the other was looking for, partly because they kind of just disappeared. Their communication about their ability to date at the time wasn't the greatest. When I called them out about my issue with this, I didn't really hear back.

Fast forward to today. I'm living in a different city, and through internet stalking I found out they now live in my home city – which I visit frequently. A really strange coincidence in my life recently brought this person to mind, and now I'm thinking about them a lot. I haven't dated a ton of people, and this was someone I felt I could have pursued a relationship with, under better circumstances.

I can't help but wonder if this strange coincidence means I should just move on and let it go (which I have - I've dated a few people since), or if I should reach out. I had a problem with the way this person communicated, and I'm wondering if I focus on that and let this pass, or contact them because I don't think I have anything to lose, aside from maybe hurt feelings if they're now in a relationship.

– Coincidence?

I believe that when we see signs (and coincidences), it's because we want to see them. That doesn't mean they're not important, of course. I just want you to know that I don't think the universe is telling you anything through this coincidence, whatever it is. It's more likely that this person has long been on your mind, and this happenstance has given you a reason to admit your feelings and write them in this letter.

What should you do? Well, your letter suggests that even if this person responded to a message, they might not be able to give you enough of what you want to make a relationship. But to be fair, I can't say that for sure. Who knows how much 2020 affected ... well, everything? A lot has changed since then.

If this is really bugging you, sure, reach out. Find out if they're excited to hear from you and have anything to say. Tell them about the coincidence, maybe. Then pay very close attention to whether they're any better at connecting, and if they seem to want more than a quick back and forth (if that happens at all). Don't let this turn into a mostly one-sided conversation where you're pining, wanting more. I'm less concerned about them being clear that they're in a new relationship than I am about them being single and only mildly interested.

That's the key here. Reach out if you can be honest with yourself about what you're getting in return. Don't make this person too important. You think you could have pursued something with them under better circumstances, but you don't know for sure.

– Meredith

Readers? Reach out? What do you think of signs and coincidences?