So, you’ve been trying (probably unsuccessfully) not to check your cell phone every time it pings. You’re driving yourself mad. You texted him a couple of days ago. He normally texts you back. What’s gone wrong?
We know how hard it is. You’re going through all the possible reasons why he hasn’t texted you back. Has he lost his phone? Has he broken his phone? Did you annoy him in some way? Does he want to pull the plug on your relationship? Maybe he thinks he’s letting you down gently. It’s a 21 st-century version of when Bridget Jones dialed 1471 every time she came home.
Then, after x amount of time, he texts you back. What now? The question is how to respond when he finally texts you back.
- He’s Really Busy
- He Doesn’t Like Texting You When His Friends Are Around
- He Needs Some Space
- He’s Playing Mind Games
- He’s Less Interested Than You
- He Wants To Break Up With You Or He’s Cheating On You
- How Do I Respond?
- Should I Text After Being Ignored?
So before deciding how to respond when he finally texts you back, let’s have a look at the possible reasons why he has ignored your text. Why does a guy take days to text back?
I’m going to start by saying if he had a good reason for ignoring your text you would already know about it if his phone was lost or broken, he would have messaged you on Facebook instead or asked someone else to pass a message onto you.
If his dog or some other family member has died, again one of his mates or his sister would have told you. Even if they hadn’t, in today’s social media-dominated world, if there had been a genuine emergency, you would have heard about it.
He’s Really Busy
Depending on how long it is since you last texted him, it could of course be that he’s genuinely really hectic with work or similar. How believable this depends on his situation. If he’s a doctor or a shift worker, he could be genuine. If his family life is very busy or if he has lots of hobbies that take up a lot of time, again he might be telling the truth.
Alternatively, if you know that he’s got something going on that is taking up a lot of his time and headspace, cutting him some slack might be the right thing to do.
He Doesn’t Like Texting You When His Friends Are Around
Strange as it sounds, it could be that he doesn’t like texting you when there are other people around. If you are both young and if he spends a lot of time with his mates, this is more likely to be the case. Of course, he’ll tell you that he wants to give you his undivided attention, but the reality is that he doesn’t want his mates to think that he’s under his thumb.
Whilst this isn’t an excuse and he needs to get over it, it is arguably a genuine reason. He does need to get past it though.
He Needs Some Space
Along similar lines, it could be that he is somebody who likes his space. It’s important to remember that some of us are more independent than others. There are times when we all need personal space. Some couples might be happy exchanging several texts a day in between seeing each other.
Other people might find that a bit suffocating and want a bit more distance. It’s a fine balance between giving someone the space they crave and having your personal needs met. This is something that everyone needs to work out.
Of course, there could be more sinister reasons why he’s been ignoring your texts, but you already know this.
He’s Playing Mind Games
Whilst this is childish and manipulative, it’s a genuine possibility. Have you recently argued? If so, he could be ignoring you as an attempt to punish you in some way or even to seek revenge. This isn’t good. It doesn’t set a good precedent going forward.
Furthermore, even if there hasn’t been any falling out, he could be playing games to try to keep you on your toes. Unfortunately, the treat “em mean and keep ’em keen” myth isn’t dead. However, it really shouldn’t ring true.
He’s Less Interested Than You
Unfortunately, it could be that he just isn’t that into you. Yes we know that’s hard to swallow and your pride hurts like hell. It’s horrible and humiliating, especially if other people suspect that he’s not that interested in you.
However, you need to remember that it isn’t you. Some people are just not right for each other and it’s no one’s fault. The important thing is to keep your dignity intact.
He Wants To Break Up With You Or He’s Cheating On You
If either of these scenarios is the case, this is the cowards’ way out if he chooses to break up with you by ghosting you. He’s a pathetic excuse for a man and you’re well rid of him. Moreover, if he’s seeing someone else, you should feel sorry for that person. The likelihood is that they will soon see him in his true colors. We know it won’t feel like that at the time though. Be kind to yourself.
How Do I Respond?
This depends on the different situations discussed above. Let’s firstly imagine that he’s texted you back and made no reference to taking a long time to reply. What should you do?
If There’s No Obvious Reason
If his behavior towards you remains unchanged, you might be tempted to just carry on where you left off and pretend that nothing has happened. We understand that. There’s probably a genuine reason why he took so long to reply and you don’t want to rock the boat and seem like a drama ilama. However, this would be a big mistake.
If you pretend that it’s ok for him to ignore your texts, you are setting a precedent. You are giving him the message that it’s ok to disrespect you and treat you like a doormat. You are also inadvertently telling him that you don’t respect yourself. This isn’t ok. He will think that it’s alright to text you just when it suits him and that you’ll always be there waiting for him. As time goes by, the way he treats you is likely to deteriorate further.
So what do you do? You need to tell him in no uncertain terms that it’s not acceptable to ignore your texts. Tell him calmly and firmly that you expect and deserve to be treated properly. After all, it’s basic manners to respond to your texts. If he continues to disrespect you in this way, it might be time to seriously consider ending the relationship.
You Suspect He Doesn’t Want To Lose Face In Front Of His Mates
This is a bit more complicated. Nobody wants to spend time with their friends and feel as if they’re not getting their attention cause they keep texting their boyfriend or girlfriend every two minutes. Maybe it’s therefore not unreasonable to not expect him to text you back immediately.
Perhaps it’s better to avoid sending multiple texts if you know he’s out with his mates. However, if he has form for ignoring your texts completely when he’s with his mates, he needs to grow up. There’s nothing wrong with him texting you back when he’s with his mates, they need to get over it and he needs to man up.
You Think He’s Playing Games
This one’s a red flag. If you suspect that he’s not responding to your texts either out of spite or to someone keeping you under control, it’s time to take the bull by the horns and end the relationship. This type of controlling behavior will almost certainly get worse and he will likely start to behave in a similar way when you are together.
Over time, this will erode your self-esteem and make you doubt yourself. You will get to the point where you are treading on eggshells around him and that’s no way to live.
If you texted him quite a while ago and he’s been particularly slow to text you back, there could be other reasons for this. The same applies if he’s texted you but seems offhand and disinterested
You Get The Feeling He’s Not That Into You
The chances are that you’ve already had an idea that this could be the case, even if you haven’t wanted to admit it. It’s not a nice feeling, but it isn’t your fault. You have lots of positive qualities and must not lose sight of them. Whatever you do, don’t let it knock your confidence.
What should you do? In short, you need to be strong. If you think that’s that he’s no longer interested in you, don’t respond to his text. In effect play him at his own game. A more mature and sensible approach might be to text him and tell him it’s over, in other words, beat him to it.
That way, there won’t be any more awkwardness or waiting for your phone to ping. You will also keep your pride and in the longer term your sanity.
You Think He’s Cheating On You
If this is the case, there have probably been other signs. Alternatively, you might have a gut instinct. In this situation, you have two options. Firstly, you could confront him. He will either confirm your worst suspicions or deny them and try and make out that you’re being paranoid.
Either way, it’s not going to be pleasant but it’s better to know the truth. If he tries to accuse you of imagining it this is known as gaslighting and you must not believe him. You need to trust your intuition. Again trying to transfer the blame to you is the coward’s way out.
It’s going to be difficult and it will take a lot of doing, but you need to hold your head up and walk away. You are better than him. He is a coward and will get his comeuppance. Wait for karma to do its job. In the meantime, get on with your life.
You Suspect He Wants To Break Up With You
Keep your dignity together. Again you could beat him to it and send him a text telling him it’s over. Alternatively, you should just cut contact and not respond, this way you will again keep your pride. You could of course text him and ask him directly, he might give you the answer that you don’t want to hear, but at least you’ll know.
If you think you’re being fobbed off, you will probably be able to tell. Whatever you do, be very wary of appearing to be needy. If he thinks you’re needy, he’ll lose respect for you and you’ll inadvertently give him the impression that he’s worth more than he is. Be aware though that this will be excruciatingly hard and will take a lot of self-control. However, if you can manage it, will be worth it.
Should I Text After Being Ignored?
As discussed this depends on the situation. As a general rule of thumb, the answer is no. Let him do the running. However, if you believe that you need a straight answer, texting him and asking him can be the best thing to do.
However, you need to bear in mind that he might ignore that text too. If he does that, it will tell you everything that you need to know and you definitely shouldn’t continue to text him. We know that it will take a lot of willpower, but it’s the right thing to do and you will feel better for it in the long run.
In summary, there are several ways of responding when he finally texts you back. However, this does depend very much on each scenario. If you believe that there is a sinister reason for him not texting, you deserve answers.
In this case, the thing to do is to text him once and take it from there. Whatever you decide to do, focus on keeping your self-respect. Be nice to yourself.