If someone were to ask what the point of texting was, the answer would probably be to communicate. It’s a form of digital communication.
If someone were to ask what the point of communication was, the answer would probably be to build or foster a connection. Communication is the way in which we connect to each other.
Despite this logic, a lot of the discussion around texting these days caters to the exact opposite. It’s a sort of zero-sum game where the winner is the one sought-after and the loser is the one doing the seeking. This is a game measured by empty arrows, read receipts, time stamps and so on, which, make no mistake, the creators of these messaging apps are well aware of.
I don’t think it’s fair to say our true intent is to be deceptive and manipulative when it comes to our time, our relationships, and how much time we invest into our relationships. However, that is where things have headed due to this overarching belief that aloofness equals desirability and desirability equals winning. When trying to communicate with others, whether it be romantically or not, becomes an implicit game to win, anyone playing is ultimately losing. It is not fostering a connection, and it comes to a point where you are using the other person to battle your own insecurities.
So, if you are facing an internal conflict of whether or not you should text him (which is a fair assumption, since you’re reading this), it’s important to look at two things: why you want to text him and why you feel like you can’t.
Why do you want to text him?
Do you want to text him because you actually want to talk to him? You saw something that reminded you of him? You miss him? You want to see how he’s doing?
Or are you texting him because you’re questioning how you feel and you want him to somehow reaffirm something? Are you texting him just to see if he’ll respond? Are you texting him not just because you miss him but because you want to see if he misses you too?
If you don’t know the true answers to this question, go with how your gut feels. If there is an underlying feeling of desperation and urgency, chances are you are texting as a means of putting a band aid over something else. There are better ways to go about self-assurance than texting a boy (who, by the way, also battles moments of uncertainty). It’s unfair to put that on another person, no matter how big or small the scale is.
Why do you feel like you can’t?
Say you actually do want to talk to him just to talk, but you are holding back because you feel like it makes you needy or clingy. You feel like you always start the conversation or you don’t want to “double text” or any other number of reasons that you feel will make you lose your ground and forfeit the illusion of an upper hand. To that I say, it’s either in your head or the way you feel talking to this guy isn’t particularly worth your energy.
Of course, if it’s an extreme where you’re texting him all day every day nonstop and there clearly isn’t a reciprocation, maybe find something else to focus on for a while. But if it’s a matter of second guessing every time you want to reach out to someone and wondering what the implications are if you do, you are still failing to truly connect with that person. You are acting from a place of insecurity and desperation rather than one of friendship and emotional intimacy. Vulnerability is scary, but it really makes everything else worth it.
Really, he should just be happy to be talking to you. Whoever reached out first only has as much significance as you are willing to give it.