Texting and Dating: Handling Texting Misunderstandings

(Last Updated On: 08/04/2014)

texting dating misunderstandingWe have all been there. We engage in some kind of discussion or banter with someone we met through texting, and before we know it, an innocent comment or a joke that we texed or received appears to be misinterpreted by the other side and they take offense to it. our attempts to explain what we meant often don’t prove to be useful in diffusing this texting tension, and somehow it appears that any kind of friction that is born from texting only escalates further with every text.

I remember inviting one of my female friends to go out dancing by text. She texted me back asking me what she should wear. I responded by texting: “Use your discretion, but just so you know  – no matter what you wear, you are not trashy enough to match the girls who go to that club.” I was trying to entertain her, and make her laugh while making fun of the club we were going to. Instead, she texted back something along the lines of: “I can’t believe you called me trashy. Is that what you really think of me?”  – this is just one typical example of a disconnect where maybe I assumed too much or didn’t express myself correctly, while she took offense to something that wasn’t intended to offend her but in fact was meant to be a compliment.

There is only one, simple, effective and obvious way to handle a texting misunderstanding – it’s to pick up the phone, call the other person and either explain what you mean or apologize if you hurt their feelings or both. When you do this – when you break the texting limbo by calling, it says all the right things about you, whether you are a guy or a woman. You are confident, straightforward and you know how to handle these kinds of issues. You are not passive aggressive and you don’t let little misunderstanding or leaps of logic turn into an argument or a fight for no reason. These qualities are critical to having a successful dating life or maintaining a quality long-term relationship, and if the texting issue arises between you and someone you just recently met, you are showing these good qualities very early by calling them and diffusing the tension with your voice rather than key strokes.

Not many people handle texting issues that way, especially with someone they just met and don’t know very well. This is good news for you, as this is yet another opportunity for you to stand out as someone who is different and who knows better.

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About practicalh

Practical, effective dating tips and relationship advice.

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  • Jackson X

    alright, say “I think we had a misunderstanding. Can I call you and explain?”

  • Pit

    I am not sure if this works. Good theory but in practice they would reject your call and text “don’t call me”.

  • student and teacher

    very good point.

    the problem with texting is that because there is no tone of voice, it's harder to translate humor and sarcasm.

    the good thing about a phone call is that you can address it right then and there. because of the longer amount of time in between texts, it allows people to overthink things and have more time to develop anger.

    texting is also more cold and detached than a warm personal phone call, we act differently when we look at a screen than when we are actually in a live conversation with a person.