Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Texting and how it serves relationships

Would anyone please shed some light for me on a modern day issue. Is it normal if you go away for a month due to some emergency and once you’re back the guy you’d had an intimate relationship before the trip doesn’t call you? He texts.. He texts for several weeks before you actually meet, if you ever do.. I understand we all live in a very advanced digital world these days where most plans are made over texting. Text has become an accepted norm of communication to make plans, to express your feelings, to have a fight, to even break up. And it’s understandable why that is. It is easy, fast and minimum drama. But isn’t it also a bermuda triangle of unspoken thoughts and feelings? When you hear the voice it’s the tone rather than the words that often tell you more about the person and how he or she feels. And when you actually face the person it’s the mimic and body language that speak louder than anything. So texting is failing us in two ways: first, the concise nature of texting limits what one can really say; secondly, it doesn’t really tell you how the other side feels. Smily face is still just a smily face while an actual smile could have so many expressions. I only see one benefit in sorting out a relationship thru texting. You can take whatever the other side texted and interpret it the way that serves you.  
I’ve had misunderstandings due to texting before but the last experience made me really think whether I want it to be a way to communicate with a partner. Jeff was a first partner since Emre and I parted. I met Jeff over a year ago right after I met Emre in October of 2009, and although he tried to pursue me I already set my heart on Emre and had to say No to Jeff in as much polite way as possible over a text. Eight months passed by since that and when Emre and I broke up for the first time, Jeff and I arranged a date over a text. We had lunch nothing else, but the following week Emre and I got back together and I sent a polite text to Jeff again. We didn’t reconnect with Jeff till after the next 8 months passed by when it was a final split for Emre and I. I texted something along the line that it was snowing outside and it reminded me of our meeting back in 2009. He texted back and we made a plan to meet. We would text during the week, then get together on weekends, and like that for a couple of months. You see texting has always been the way we communicated outside of weekends when we would be together. I think there were a couple of phone calls, once when I was freaking out whether I was ready to be dating. First we sent a million texts until he finally called me and put my mind to rest. and the second time, when the earlier mentioned emergency happened and I was on the way to JFK. He called to wish Good luck and say Good bye.
The trip went well and a month later I was back in NY. I texted him I was back and we arranged to meet the following day. Like many arrangements in NY, It didn’t happen and we agreed to try next week. It didn’t happen next week either, and we agreed to try next week. The week came by and the day we were supposed to meet arrived. I texted him I was with friends out drinking wine. He texted back asking me to text him once I was free to meet him. I guess it was that time that I just lost it. I blew the issue out of hands, I put on a drama queen and I was great at it. It was a text a war. I was attacking he was defending for the next 12 hours. and not even one phone call. Then I realized the reason was is that he never called me since I got back and even when I was reacting and picking up a fight he just didn’t dial my number and deep inside I expected it. He was prompt with his text responses but why didn’t he call me? I asked him and he said that he thought it was the way I preferred it and he was just following the walked road. I was lost. Was it all right and basically I just overreacted or has this texting relationship run it’s course? Needless to say, I apologized over a text the next day and he texted back that it was ok. But was it really? Still not a single phone call? One smart person once said: If you don’t know what to do, do nothing. And I try to follow this philosophy as much as I can. So I just deleted all Jeff’s texts from 2009 to this day. And then I didn’t do anything. I assume the partner and love I am looking for would be able to pick up the phone and dial me for no other reason than just to hear my voice. Especially when he hasn’t seen me in awhile. So that was the answer.

I’m not giving up on texting, by no means. But I am giving up on using it as an essential  communication tool with my next partner. In the end it’s not old fashioned to call. It’s the way to show that you missed the person’s voice and want to hear it. And that will never go out of style.

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