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So my wife and I were clearing out an area of the house and came across an old box of mine. It was something I had thrown a lot of old high school and college stuff in indiscriminately. It had my year book, varsity letters, letters from my parents but also love letters from a couple girlfriends at the time.

My wife asked me why I kept the old love letters. My honest answer was because I didn't focus on throwing them out. What I mean is when i was moving out of my parents house many years ago, I just threw stuff in a box labeled mementos and then the box just got moved from house to house without really looking at it. I haven't even opened the box in over 10 years. I'm torn about throwing them out. I don't think my wife cares, but I didn't ask her either. Part of me doesn't see a point in keeping them, but also there's part of me that likes the memories.

Does anyone else keep things or not. Is there a difference between the letter from your parents your first week in college versus the "pointless" I love you letter from your girlfriend/boyfriend (pointless as in, one of many that you received over time)?

Curious about other peoples thoughts.

PS I think my wife would "like" me to throw some of it out (the ex thing) but I also think that if it was actually important to me, she'd completely accept it because she knows I'm not hung up on any previous relationships, it's just old mementos. She's not nostalgic and I can be a little bit.
 

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d&h,i still got a crap load of pics,letters etc of ex's and i..i've been married 28 yrs, she's never once asked me to throw them out and neither would i..like you i'm a bit nostalgic.
 

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Is there a difference between the letter from your parents your first week in college versus the "pointless" I love you letter from your girlfriend/boyfriend (pointless as in, one of many that you received over time)?
I would hope that there is a huge difference in a letter from your parents vs. a "pointless" I love you letter from old flames. If they are indeed "pointless", why hold on to them? If they still mean something to you, for whatever reason, keep them.....only if your wife is on board with it and does not feel threatened by your past.
 

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Ex found pics of my first wife and one of the girlfriends I had between marriages. To be perfectly honest, I kept them because they were sentimental and I told her that.

Did I want to go start a new relationship with them? NO. I am kind of sentimental at times and like to stop and look at things. This might not be so good for me. This may be just the opposite of what my ex would do. I don't know. When I asked, she just said, "I don't think you should have them if they don't mean anything to you."

Come on now. If I was married to someone and had children with her. Doesn't she mean, something? She doesn't mean the world! My second wife meant the world! However, these others did mean something.

In the search for the right mate for me, I came pretty close one time. I saved her pic. Did she mean something to me? Yes. Did she mean the world to me? NO!

That is why I married YOU and NOT HER! YOU meant THE WORLD to me! Did I save them for the opportunity to hurt her? NO, NO, NO!
Why would I set myself up that way before we got married???

Wow, sometimes I get the same way. Convinced that anything can be true. I can't step back and realize someone is projecting. Sometimes my own failings get in the way. It's too bad.

Peace to you.
 

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Me & mine doesn't have any ex's that mattered at all but I have penpal letters from a boy overseas, and some notes from boys before him - I kept all of this stuff, old pictures, he doesn't care.... and I know I wouldn't be bothered by it either.... I wish he had some stuff to show me ! He never had 1 picture with his 1st 2 gf's and I am bummed! I've told him to look them up on FB just so I could see what they look like....but he doesn't know their last names now, or what became of them...so my curiosity continues.

I look at it as ... just memories of another time. If a husband & wife both sits well with it...why throw it out. Agree with 2ntnuf, some of us are sentimental and hold such memories with joy in our hearts ... but it was another time & place. It is past now... the lid closed on the memento box.
 

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My exhusband is a serious pack rat.he kept nearly everything.When we remodeled our basement I found a huge trunk with what looked to be every picture,love letter,yearbook,valentine card,birthday card,etc from the time he was in high school all the way through to his first marriage.
We went through it together.We laughed at the fluffy writing of the high school girls,made sarcastic comments at the hollow writing of his first wife,and admired all the different fashion tastes and hairstyles of the girls/women in the photos.
I felt a pang of jealousy but it was fun for the most part digging into his past like that.I saw him get that far away longing for the good old days look in his eyes which hurt a bit but then i realized I'd probably look the same if I had a trunk of old memories.

Ultimately he made the choice to get rid of it all except the yearbooks.

It may have bothered me if he kept the letters and pictures from his first wife but the other things were just silly little tokens of a life well lived.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I would hope that there is a huge difference in a letter from your parents vs. a "pointless" I love you letter from old flames. If they are indeed "pointless", why hold on to them? If they still mean something to you, for whatever reason, keep them.....only if your wife is on board with it and does not feel threatened by your past.
My wife hasn't said that she's threatened at all. This is all coming from within me. If I thought for one moment that it bothered her, it'd go out in the garbage. I'm going to ask her specifically because I want to know. I'm 99% sure I know what answer I'll get (why would it bother me?) but her feelings are too important to not consider that 1% possibility. My present and future is 1000000000X more important than my past. I think I still have the stuff as much for laziness as anything else. I just haven't bothered to go through the box. Maybe I'll do that and throw out the previous relationship stuff. That's the kind of stuff I'm not nostalgic about actually. All of my relationships ended and I've always tried to keep a realistic view of them, not get all sappy dramatic about "my first love" etc. Most people hold someone in their heart simply because they are their first love, but dismiss WHAT actually went into that specific relationship. I don't do that. I look at my first love as a period of my own stupidity and cluelessness about relationships etc.
 

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Whenever my bfs mother calls to tell him about his ex he's always "I don't care. Don't care. I have Tiff, I don't care." and that makes me smile, but one time I came across a photo album with a bunch of pictures of them together. Asked him to throw it out and he refused. Made a bunch of excuses. I was upset at the time and I dwelled on it a bit. Now, I just can't bring myself to care.

He loves me. He chose me.

Oh, but if there were love letters, I'd want him to throw those out for sure. Why? Old flames burn brightest. I WOULD care about that!
 

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Just to be safe, throw them out.
Mention it to her when it's done.

If she says I didn't bother her say, no problem... No problem at all.

Discussing with her whether or not she wants you to throw them out is a major mistake on many levels.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Just to be safe, throw them out.
Mention it to her when it's done.

If she says I didn't bother her say, no problem... No problem at all.

Discussing with her whether or not she wants you to throw them out is a major mistake on many levels.
Good plan. Thanks Hicks.
 

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Just to be safe, throw them out.
Mention it to her when it's done.

If she says I didn't bother her say, no problem... No problem at all.

Discussing with her whether or not she wants you to throw them out is a major mistake on many levels.
Or just keep your momentos and forget about it. If it's not bothering the wife, it shouldn't be bothering you.

I have things from my past that I'll never let go. It's just part of who we are, where we've been in our lives. Like old photo albums.....why take all those pics of your life, get them organized....just to toss them out? :confused:
 

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When I got married, I brought none of that stuff with me. Especially photos of your exes. Why bother? If I found pictures of my wife and old boyfriends, I'd be fuming. So I wouldn't do the same to her out of respect.

A big trash bag full of videos, pictures, cards and letters all went up in a bonfire before I moved.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Or just keep your momentos and forget about it. If it's not bothering the wife, it shouldn't be bothering you.

I have things from my past that I'll never let go. It's just part of who we are, where we've been in our lives. Like old photo albums.....why take all those pics of your life, get them organized....just to toss them out? :confused:
This is definitely one of those issues I think will have two very distinct opinions and they're both as valid as the other.

I really couldn't care less because the items themselves actually have no meaning to me. Most of my nostalgia comes from my own memories, not items. When I moved out of my childhood home, I just dumped stuff I wasn't ready to throw out AT THAT point into a box. Partly because I thought that I was SUPPOSED to hold onto stuff from what other people say. In reality, if they meant something to me, I would've actually looked at them at least ONCE since I put them in that box (aside from when I moved, looking in the box to check what was in it). I haven't. So out they'll go.

It's more of a declaration to her, whether it actually helps her or she's not even phased won't matter. It's more for me. I like doing things like that for my wife (general idea of showing her where and how she stands with me)
 

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Demanding that I throw out pictures of people I care about is an absolute deal breaker. If you can't accept the people who have influenced my life, then this relationship has no chance of working.

It would be a little different if the pictures were on display everywhere in the house. That just seems weird.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
In my case, my wife has said NOTHING of it being an issue. This is me being introspective FOR her LOL.

Other's miles may vary.
 

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In my case, my wife has said NOTHING of it being an issue. This is me being introspective FOR her LOL.

Other's miles may vary.
Women usually want to take the high road & often won't tell you directly if something makes them uncomfortable. Maybe it doesn't matter to her, but maybe it does, even if just a little bit.

If I were you, since it's not so important to you, I would get rid of them as a gesture of your commitment to your wife. You don't have to say anything. I will bet that if it ever comes up & you tell her that you threw them out, it will be a very positive zing to her heart.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Women usually want to take the high road & often won't tell you directly if something makes them uncomfortable. Maybe it doesn't matter to her, but maybe it does, even if just a little bit.

If I were you, since it's not so important to you, I would get rid of them as a gesture of your commitment to your wife. You don't have to say anything. I will bet that if it ever comes up & you tell her that you threw them out, it will be a very positive zing to her heart.
That's exactly it. I have zero need to look at old love letters from previous GF's. I chucked them last night. My wife saw me come up with a garbage bag and asked what I was doing. I told her, just throwing some meaningless stuff out from that old box we found. She turned around and continued doing the dishes, but I saw a little smile. Nothing more was said. Definitely made me feel really good to know that she was more content inside.
 

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The only thing I've kept from ex's are photos of my ex husband. I keep them for my children, incase something ever happens to their dad, they will have them to look back on. When they grow up and move out, they can divide up those pictures as they see fit. I don't generally keep mementos of past relationships.
 

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That's exactly it. I have zero need to look at old love letters from previous GF's. I chucked them last night. My wife saw me come up with a garbage bag and asked what I was doing. I told her, just throwing some meaningless stuff out from that old box we found. She turned around and continued doing the dishes, but I saw a little smile. Nothing more was said. Definitely made me feel really good to know that she was more content inside.
Very nice. You're a nice husband.
 

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I don't have a problem with keeping those things. I have a box of them. I think that is where they belong though. With Facebook and other social media, those things come to life and THAT is where the problem lies IMO.
 
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