Ask Amy

Tuesday, April 6, 2010; 12:00 AM

DEAR AMY: "Steve" and I dated for a year when we were in high school -- 33 years ago. It was an intense romantic relationship, but I eventually ended it because Steve's reckless and impulsive behavior scared me.

I moved away after high school and have not been back since. Recently, Steve and other high school friends contacted me on Facebook.

They hang out together frequently in my hometown, and it has been nice catching up with them.

I'd like to go back for a visit, but I have a dilemma: I'm happily married, and Steve is married too, apparently not so happily.

I have no desire to meet as anything but old friends, but it's clear from the tone of his communications with me that he'd like more than that.

I haven't responded as anything other than a friend, and I've asked him several times to cut it out.

I've thought of meeting with my other friends and excluding him, but I know they'd tell him and he would be hurt.

I've also considered making it clear that I won't meet with him except as part of a group (I hope with his wife and daughter included), but knowing him, he'd pop up unexpectedly and alone at some point.

I don't want to ask my husband to go, just to "protect" me.

Any suggestions other than just not going? -- So Over Him

DEAR OVER: You may be overthinking this. You have attempted to direct "Steve's" Facebook contact, and he either hasn't read your cues correctly or doesn't care. Ignore him. Don't respond.

Go to your hometown. Bring your family with you -- not for protection but because it might be rewarding to bring these two parts of your life together.

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