Texting is an awesome tool. It allows us to quickly get our message across with a limited amount of characters. Texting allows us to cut straight to the point and not waste any time. It’s a great way to let people know that you are on your way or confirm an address, for example. But it’s a terrible way to tell a joke, make decisions, talk about disagreements or even get to know someone. Texting is an important part of relationships but it’s all about how we text and what we text.
When we are talking to someone, whether it is in person or on the phone, their tonality has a lot to do with what we are understanding. I’ve had text conversations before where I could see myself becoming easily offended (sarcasm definitely does not cross over well into text).
When we are building a relationship these deep talks need to happen on the phone or face to face. Texting should be just left for basic need-to-know kinds of information. If you treat it texting as such you don’t have to worry about texting etiquette or worrying about how they interpreted it.
Researchers at Brigham Young University recently discovered that both men and women found heavy texting to be a huge source of relationship dissatisfaction. The BYU researchers took 276 adults (38% in a serious relationship, 46% engaged and 16% married). They had them fill out an extensive questionnaire to study the role of technology in their love lives.
The researchers found that when couples apologized, settled disagreements or tried to make decisions through text messaging with their partner, women rated their relationship quality lower than those who preferred to talk in person. And men found that over-texting made them feel that their relationship was of lower quality. But there was one major benefit to texting, which is showing affection. Couples who expressed affection via text found it to actually benefit their relationship. So go ahead and text sweet nothings but leave the heavy stuff for real life.
Texting gives a sense of power that otherwise might not exist in person or on the phone. People who want to text their feelings or frustrations might be intimidated to say their piece in person. Honestly conveying your feelings, regardless of how fearful you are, may be as important to getting closer in relationships. If someone doesn’t have the guts to say something to your face but prefers to text, then they might be lacking in maturity. They may not be in a place where they are even being honest with themselves.
Set boundaries from the beginning when it comes to texting. If someone starts texting long multi-page texts, don’t respond and instead give them a call when you have an opportunity. By setting boundaries from the beginning you are making your expectations of them clear. That way texting never becomes a form of “normal” and regular communication for your relationship. Talking on the phone and even talking in person can, at first, seem awkward. By forcing ourselves to do things that potentially make us uncomfortable, we are creating deeper bonds and possibly a healthy, longer-lasting relationship.
Please comment and let me know what you think. I’d love your feedback. <3