Love and Sex
Six ways texting is ruining dating (in GIFs)
As my friend passed me her phone, instructing me to examine a text message on the screen, she asked the question that many of us have pondered at some point in our dating careers, “What does this mean?”
We’ve reached a point where phone calls have become “quaint” and we spend just as much time deciphering digital interactions as we do using the technology. When it comes to relationships, what was designed to make us feel connected is actually making us more anxiety ridden, paranoid and confused than ever before. Don’t believe me? Here are six ways that texting is ruining modern romance:
1. The Mysterious Ellipsis
When it comes to inciting paranoia, the ellipsis bubble which allows us to see when the other person is typing on the other end is one of the worst offenders. Instead of waiting for the person to call you back, like in the good old days, you’re faced with a blinking icon that makes you wonder, “Why have they been typing for 10 minutes when I just asked them where they would like to go for brunch?”
2. Punctuation paranoia
Without facial or voice cues to steer us, make the wrong choice in punctuation and your message has the potential to come off as passive aggressive or downright scary. When I read “See you soon!” it says “I’m excited to see you and might bring flowers!” which is completely different than “See you soon….” which makes me think if you do actually show up, I might catch you peering into my windows before you ring the doorbell.
3. Emoticon Overload
When it comes to emoticons, the line between “cute” and “bizarre and creepy” is a fine one. A smile or a wink here and there can take a regular conversation to sweetly flirty new heights. However, adding a wink or a smile to every sentence (“How was your day at work? <wink> Mine was great! <wink, wink>) makes me feel like you’re possibly up to something and I’m just completely missing the innuendo.
4. The Libido Killing LOL
Nothing chills my loins like the overuse of the LOL. Sure, a LOL here and there is fine when something is legitimately laugh out loud funny, however I find that some people use it like a nervous tick. “Hey, it’s me lol. Would you like to go for brunch lol lol?” Is brunch really hilarious to you? Are you actually laughing out loud this whole time, your hands clasped like a maniacal villain? The worst was when I broke up with someone and they texted me, “You have a really nice bod LOL,” which spun me into a tailspin of confusion. Was the person on the other end was giggling like a 12-year-old boy or legitimately trying to insult me? Thanks to LOL, I’ll never know.
5. The Call to Text Dodge
When the confusion finally gets the best of me and I call them to clarify what they really mean and they don’t pick up, instead responding with another text, this makes me want to pull my hair out. They just mentioned they were at home eating pizza and watching House of Cards! Did they lose their phone over the course of 10 seconds? I just want to find out about brunch plans!
6. The Text Pick Up
Knocking on your front door has been replaced with the “Here” text, which feels like a widespread and socially acceptable version of that guy you dated in high school who’d honk his horn when he came to pick you up. Goodbye romance, it was nice knowing you.