DEAR MISS MANNERS: My ex-boyfriend from 10 years ago made me nine large paintings for a Christmas gift that year. They have no emotional meaning to me anymore, and I am wanting to “clean house” and get rid of them.
However, since they are original pieces of art, made for me as a gift, what is the proper etiquette when getting rid of them? Do I contact my ex-boyfriend and let him know that I am “downsizing,” and ask if he would like them back?
GENTLE READER: The risk of renewing a 10-year-old parting and rehashing old wounds, it seems to Miss Manners, will likely do more harm than good. Not knowing the gentleman or the nature of the relationship, however, Miss Manners recommends that you have a serious conversation about it -- with yourself -- and consider whether it will be worth it. Or if perhaps keeping a box of them in the basement for the rest of eternity will end up being the easier option.