Ask Amy: Two friends share an awkward movie moment
Dear Amy: I am a recent college grad, home (for now) looking for full-time work. I’m looking to move somewhere new, make new friends, and live my young adult life to its fullest.
While home and job hunting, I have spent the summer reconnecting with an old friend/flame, “Toby.” Toby and I have been talking casually on and off for a little over a year.
When we didn’t see eye to eye in what we were looking for in a romantic partner, we decided to remain friends instead, something I am proud of.
Toby is leaving the U.S. to attend grad school overseas and I am sad to see him go. While there is still some chemistry between us, I also hate to see someone I care about move so far away.
Leading up to his departure, we’ve been getting together for fun, casual activities.
Recently, I was invited over to his house, where we sat and talked all night about our friendship, relationship, and individual goals for the future.
In a moment of silence seemingly out of a movie, we locked eyes, and Toby very calmly said, “I love you.”
I was at a loss for words like I’ve never been before. This was not my goal for the evening, and he says it wasn’t his either; he felt it in the moment and decided he should let me know.
I am flattered, but feeling a lot of things: adored, caught off guard, and somewhat betrayed by our pact at friendship.
Any advice for this sticky situation?
– Really Confused!
Dear Confused!: “Toby” is leaving the country for the next many months. If there were ever a moment to express your sincere love for someone – this would be it!
And – referring to your cinematic moment: Isn’t this how Harry finally really “met” Sally – by confessing a love for her that went beyond their friendship?
Is Toby expressing romantic love, friendship love, kinship love? It might be all three. Maybe it’s the somewhat grasping utterance of a guy whose ship is about to sail.
Or maybe it’s the moment-of-truth statement from a person who is seeing his own life with some clarity – and wants to be honest with you, before you both start new phases of your lives.
You have the next few months to communicate with Toby about this. He has been honest, and you should be, too.
Dear Amy: Recently, I stayed at an RV park in a suburban area.
The occupants of the house behind my RV have what I believe to be a daycare business.
One day I heard quite a bit of yelling and, "Sit on the porch until I tell you to come in!,” followed by the door slamming.
Then for the next four hours I heard a small boy crying, whimpering and yowling.
It was awful and painful to witness. I truly was at a loss for what to do.
At the fourth hour, I called the Department of Childrens Services in the state.
Shortly after that, the child was screamed at some more and then brought inside.
I heard nothing else the rest of the day.
I left early the next morning, feeling like I let this poor child down, I have been wracked with guilt ever since. Should I have called the police?
Should I have gone over and said something?
Dear Guilt-Ridden: Recently I was walking through the parking lot at the local mall and saw a dog whimpering and crying in a parked car.
I went straight into mall security and reported it. Several other people were standing there, having reported the same thing. The mutual concern for this defenseless animal was impressive.
My point is that we all need to exercise the same level of alarm and concern for children.
You did the right thing, but you could have placed the call much sooner. I assume that once you explained the situation, the operator at DCS would have advised you whether to call the police.
Dear Amy: Thank you for correcting the terminology of “Not Meant to be a Mother,” when she referred to an adopted baby as “any old baby.”
We adoptive parents understand that what you said is true: Our adopted children are “real” and unique, and very much ours.
– Happy Parent
Dear Parent: This woman was grieving her own loss; I hope that her recovery brings insight into the possibilities of adoption. But she is simply not ready.
©2021 Amy Dickinson. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.