1. These days, people seem to assess the strength of your feelings for them by the speed at which you respond to their texts or like their posts on social, which is totally unfair to those of us who sometimes wish to hibernate at length from every single form of communication.
2. If you don’t respond in a timely fashion, people will actually start to think something’s wrong and reach out to you AGAIN, adding to the intimidating backlog of messages lingering in the never-ending digital hellhole that is your smartphone.
3. It’s virtually impossible to turn your phone off for more than an hour without alarming everyone close to you and thus inviting a slew of “u ok?!!!” texts.
4. Once you do muster the strength to ring a friend or family member, most of them think it’s totally reasonable to request FaceTiming or Skyping instead of just chatting, as if you need to inject more face-to-face human contact into your already face-heavy day.
5. Group emails and group texts make the process of choosing a restaurant and/or activity and/or time to meet up sooooooo much more tedious than it needs to be.
6. It’s as if most people just don’t understand that endless back-and-forth—even the remote kind that doesn’t require speaking—is absolutely soul-crushing, not to mention physically draining.
7. But if you choose to spare yourself from participating in a thread (because you’d so much rather delete every message that pops up until a final decision is made regarding location, time, and place), you’ll be branded a jerk or a reclusive slut or something.
8. There’s no way to unsubscribe from a group message or avoid providing at least one nugget of input without looking like an asshole and/or alienating all your friends.
9. Every humming vibration in your back pocket or handbag is a blaring reminder that you’re one unanswered phone call or text away from distancing yourself from yet another person who cares enough to touch base regularly.
10. You’ll never comprehend why people are always adding others to the mix, as if getting accustomed to the idea of a meal with three friends instead of one doesn’t require rewiring your brain for a few hours in advance of meeting up irl.
11. The mind-boggling phenomenon that is tagging others in social media posts against their will, which feels like a remote invasion of space.
12. The accidental CC (instead of BCC) and the reply all havoc it wreaks.
13. The fact that anyone is even able to hit a “reply all” button.
14. The stress induced by receiving a double or triple text that somehow radiates unsettling urgency, even if it’s just a friend asking “what’s up?”…”you out?”…”wanna hang?”
15. Is there such a thing as a non-traumatizing notification sound or ringtone??? Nope!
16. Sure, you can turn off the volume, but your phone still sits there accruing bold-faced, unread messages you eventually have to reply to—unless of course you’re ready to remove yourself from society altogether.
17. The angsty hesitation that precedes setting your phone on “do not disturb” mode, which basically advertises—via tiny faded half-moon—that you’re an introvert who would rather not be talking to anyone ever.
18. Read receipts.
19. That ellipsis that outs you for being present, and probably typing, deleting, and retyping every single message before finally hitting send.