|I can’t believe I’m about to wax poetic about the days of yore, but as a single gal out there dating, I’ve come across a phenomenon that is just not normal, people. Not one bit.I thought I was the only one that felt this, but thankfully after interviewing several women and men, I’ve found that what I thought was a lone pet peeve is actually a universal one.
What is this maddening, irritating tick, you ask? Okay, hold on to your boot straps folks, cause I’m about to upset techies everywhere.
There I said it, and my load feels lighter for just typing it out. Text-iquette is something that is begging to be addressed as it is becoming more and more common in today’s dating world.
I get it – we are an A.D.D. society, used to getting information faster than a speeding bullet. Can’t remember who starred in that last Clooney film? Quick! To the SmartPhone and Google it. Need to look up the address for that amazing restaurant from last Saturday night? No need to dial 411 when you can search it out online from the privacy of your car, then text the address to your friend!
All in less than a minute…
There are times when texting can be a lifesaver. I understand that when you need to send or receive a quick burst of info without a long conversation, using the power of text is quite beneficial. Friends with someone forever? You can text one another, going back and forth with quick one-word answers because you know each other and can hear the tone of his or her voice. Family member that could get you tied up in a long convo on the phone? Text ‘em!
But, when should you not text someone?
When you’ve started to date someone, especially in the very beginning! We need to set some ground rules here, folks. Cause this is getting a little out of hand.
Recently a friend of mine – let’s call her Chloe – went on a date or two with someone who was coming across well in person. They had a few dates that were fun and lively. There were some reservations, but she wanted to get to know him a little more, because that’s what dating is about. It’s an information exchange while searching out your chemistry, and hopefully a little making out, too.
Anyway, all was well for those first few dates, then the texting began. Now initially Chloe said that she didn’t mind the texts after date one, because they were still in the “getting to know you” phase. Did she want to talk on the phone? Communicate verbally? Of course.
Did the guy do this? Of course…Not.
(Most of the folks I polled DO want to speak on the phone. It’s just better since the beginning stages are when you’re both sussing out the others ticks and habits. You don’t know someone’s inflection over a text, but six months down the road you might. )
Men and women alike are growing irritated with the trend of non-committal texting. The impression you give in the beginning is the one that makes or breaks you, my dear. Seriously.
Chloe, being more forgiving than most of her gender, decided she’d go out with Mr. X another night, and would bring up the lack of conversation when they saw each other next to test the waters.
Oddly enough, the next date was entirely arranged via text message. The evening of said date, Chloe waited for her date to “text” her his ETA for their date. She never heard from him. Confused and wondering if she should call or text, Chloe decided to go to bed and give it a day to see what tomorrow brought.
Well the next morning brought an apology…over text. It seems that Mr. X had indeed texted Chloe that he needed to postpone their plans. Unfortunately, the message was never delivered. It had shown up on his end as a “delivery fail” and he had not seen it until the next morning – insert sad face emoticon here.
Yes, folks, it truly was a delivery fail.
Realizing that this man could have picked up the phone to call her and rearrange plans, yet he chose not to made it much easier for Chloe to see her own personal communication red flag at this juncture.
Following his lead, Chloe sent a “nice to meet you” text, and promptly deleted his information.
I know, it isn’t easy out in the dating world, folks, but the one thing I’ve learned in all of my years as me is that communication is key.
So the next time you get the urge to text someone – be it a first date, your girlfriend of five years or even your best friend – surprise them and yourself and communicate like the olden days:
PICK UP THE PHONE!
Anne Kemp writes a regular column for fredericknewspost.com.