Miss Information: What to do when no one texts you back

She texts back, “Yes, it was fun!” We agree to do it again. Then, when I suggest we do something again…nothing. 

by Cait Robinson

Have a question for Miss Information? Send it to missinfo@nerve.com. Submissions may be edited.

Dear Miss Information,

I’m a guy in my mid-30s, recently divorced. Not sure that matters. I’ve been going on a lot of first dates lately. Some are more successful than others, but I’m shocked at the rudeness a lot of these women exhibit. It seems to be acceptable to turn someone down by ignoring them, which gets my goat.

This has happened to me several times. I had a great time and text her to tell her so. She texts back, “Yes, it was fun!” We agree to do it again. Then, when I suggest we do something again…nothing. Whether I text, call, or email, I get no response. It sucks. If you didn’t want to see me again, why don’t you just tell me?

This isn’t a matter of my self-esteem getting hurt. It’s a matter of politeness. Am I overreacting by expecting people to be honest? How is this disappearing act so widespread?

--Radio Silence

Dear Radio Silence:

If you go around using phrases like “gets my goat,” I’m hoping that you also wear high-waisted khakis, use coupons at the grocery store, and sit on park benches feeding the pigeons. Your slang is the tops.

You aren’t being hypersensitive: getting brushed off sucks. It is fairly callous to ignore someone, especially because they like you, because you’re so charming and your laughter is so infectious. However, most people opt for the “fade into the sunset” approach because it requires courage and tact to shoot someone down, and it seems most people have those things in short supply.

It’s disappointing but probably unsurprising that many people would rather avoid confrontation, even at the expense of their date’s sanity. And, like you described, it’s all the worse when the rejection rides in on the coattails of a lot of positive signals, future plans—even after multiple dates. We should all grow up enough to take responsibility for not wanting to kiss someone (and, when the tables are turned, to handle not being kissable gracefully).

So, Radio Silence, I agree with you: it’s poor form to ignore a date and hope they go away. In my mind, it’s a pretty cut-and-dried case of etiquette breakdown at best, and selfishness + coldness at worst. Rather than shake my walking stick at the poor upbringings of kids today, though, I want to turn this over to the commenters. Like Radio Silence said, weaseling away from dates is pretty widespread. Statistically, I’m guessing it’s happened to all of us and at least a few of us have done it ourselves. So, does anyone have a defense of disappearance?

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