You spend hours crafting the perfect text message, adding an extra exclamation point, contemplating whether to use a smiley face or a winky face, and rereading it ten times before hitting send. You’ve waited the appropriate amount of time so you don’t sound too desperate or uninterested and your best friends gave you the okay. Now all you have to do is wait for his response. You stare at your phone until it lights up, but the only new message you see is from Mom. So what went wrong? Her Campus talked to the guys to learn about the texts they dread receiving from girls. Listen to our texting advice and start being a smarter texter.
1. Don’t send this:“Heyyyyyy”
Extra letters are annoying and unnecessary; guys don’t like it when you’re constantly saying “hiii,” “What’s uppp?” or “Goodnightttt.” Tyler*, a recent grad of Oakland University, says, “stuff like heyyyyyyyyy is fine every once in a while with me, but when every text has extra letters that’s kind of annoying.”
Instead, send this:“How’s it going?”
Guys don’t need extra letters to feel special (that’s a girl thing). You don’t want to sound whiny or overeager or like a middle school girl when texting him, so stick to spelling words with the normal amount of letters at least the majority of the time. If you’re afraid “hey” will make him feel like he does when he receives any other one-word response, put together a short and sweet line that expresses what you want to say like “Want to get drinks?” or “Let’s study together today.” Reserve the extra letters for times when you really need to emphasize something, or if you’re ready to paaaaartyyyy.
2. Don’t send this: “Where are you?” “Do you want to see me?”
We’ve all been in that awkward situation when we text a guy and don’t get a reply and then text him again and still hear nothing. Usually, we send the forbidden double text when we’re drinking and then wake up and regret it in the morning. This is probably the worst texting crime you can commit. No matter how hard it is, resist the urge to double text if you haven’t heard from him right away. I’ve had some girls who are too annoying,” says Jordan*, a Macomb Community College senior, “and if you don’t answer them they blow you up with 3-4 texts in a row without me answering and it’s weird.”
Instead, send this: Nothing
Texting is a back-and-forth form of communication. If you sent the last text, wait until he responds before sending another. Guys like the chase, so sit back, relax and make him text you. It can be tempting to send a double text when the last thing said didn’t really require a response on his end. If he’s interested, he will start a new topic and will want to text you even more if he hasn’t heard from you in a while.
3. Don’t send this: “LOL” or “LMAO”
Elijah*, a University of Michigan junior, hates when girls send little “LOL” or “LMAO” texts in the middle of a conversation because he doesn’t know what to text next. Just as much as you don’t like the awkward pauses in a flirtatious text exchange, he doesn’t either. You could actually think what he said was funny or you could just be using it as a filler, kind of like “um and like” when you’re talking.
Instead, send this: “You’re too funny ;)”
You want to keep the conversation going so say something that shows more interest than a random “LOL or “LMAO”. When replying to a guy’s text, imagine how you would reply in person. I doubt you would stand there and laugh out loud without saying something. Guys would rather have a straightforward direct response that keeps the conversation flowing back and forth than a filler abbreviation that he doesn’t know how to read. A flirty response that expresses that you’re into him (and think he’s funny) will boost his confidence.
4. Don’t send this:“K.”
Adam*, a University of Michigan junior says, “K is the worst because it just comes across as mean.” Hazim, a Michigan State University senior, agrees that one-word answers like “k” or “whatever” are the worst. “You don’t know whether the girl is happy or mad,” he says. Although you might be sincere, your one-word answer doesn’t show any enthusiasm about the conversation. A simple “k” can come off as rude and uninterested.
Instead, send this: “Cool, that sounds good to me!”
Show him you are actually interested in what he has to say by replying with a sentence. If you can type 140 characters on Twitter, you can do it in a text message too. Your response is likely to set the tone for the rest of the conversation, so if you want him to keep texting you, you need to put in more effort than “k.”
5. Don’t send this:“I guess…”
It’s hard to show emotion in text messages (unless you use a million different emoticons, which the guys aren’t a fan of either). So when you say things like “I guess” or “Sure” you might not give off the right vibe. “I hate it when a girl is unclear. When she says, ‘I guess,’ I usually take it to mean she’s not really into me,” says Ryan*, a Florida State University senior.
Instead, send this: “Yes” or “No”
Do you want to have drinks with him? Then be forward and just send “Yes” or “Yeah,” whichever is more your style. Guys are simple creatures, especially when it comes to texting. He’ll be thrilled you want to hang out with him and as soon as he sees your “yes” text, he knows he’s on your good side. If you would rather not see him again, just say “No thanks.” In order to lighten the blow, you can say something like, “Sorry, but right now is really not a good time. I’m super busy with job applications.” This is way better than saying, “I guess” when you have no intent of ever seeing him again.
6. Don’t send this: “Why haven’t you responded???”
This is a terrible form of the double text and a pet peeve to guys. You’ve probably gone through a hundred reasons why he hasn’t responded, but still want to hear it straight from him. “The most desperate or clingy texts are when she asks why you haven't responded. I could be busy and not have had time to respond and that text just annoys me,” says Conor*, a University of Michigan senior. Tyler says he can’t stand it when he gets a “???” text if he hasn’t responded within an hour. Imagine if you got a text with multiple question marks. How would you respond?
Instead, send this: Nothing
Just because he doesn’t respond doesn’t mean the world is going to end. He was probably having tea with his grandmother, pumping iron at the gym, or singing in the church choir. Don’t always think if it’s been over 30 minutes it means he doesn’t like you. Although it is possible he really doesn’t want to talk to you, don’t make things worse by asking him why he hasn’t responded. If he hasn’t texted you back with a few days, you can send him another text. But if this time you still don’t hear from him, save yourself the misery and just delete his number.
7. Don’t send this:“Can’t wait to see you! ;) :) :*)”
You want to show him how you’re feeling, but when you send too many emoticons it can come across as cheesy and fake. Unless it’s with a close friend and you’re in the middle of an emoticon war, do not send winky and smiley faces after everything you say. “I do not like smiley/winky face overloads. Every once in a while is fine but all the time is annoying,” Tyler says.
Instead, send this:“Looking forward to it :)”
You have to take emoticons on a case-by-case basis. Usually, if the guy sends smiley faces, then you can too. Try it out and see how he responds. If he sends an emoticon in return, then he probably liked it. But if not, he might think you’re being too cutesy or are just a tad bit too into him. If you’ve been texting a guy for a while and know he likes smiley or winky faces, feel free to send away, just use them sparingly.
8. Don’t send this: Nothing
Neil*, a University of Michigan senior, says the worst texts from girls are “the ones that they don’t send.” When you wait too long to respond or don’t respond at all, guys feel exactly how you feel before you make the mistake of double texting. He doesn’t like it when you wait hours or days to respond so don’t play hard to get via text. Not answering his text is like a slap in the face. Jay*, a University of Michigan junior, says, “I really don’t like when girls start conversations seeming really into it with explanations and emoticons and then after I respond in a similarly interested fashion, they wait a couple of hours to respond with one word or they don’t respond at all.”
Instead, send this: Something to keep the conversation going
Guys like consistency, so if you’re usually a talkative texter and then suddenly go silent, they will think something is wrong. If you start out engaged in the conversation by asking questions and opening up to him, you should keep texting this way. Think of it as giving off a really great first impression and then sticking to that persona.
Avoid these 8 texting crimes and start being a more confident and savvy texter. When you’re a little more subtle about feelings, you’ll be surprised to see that your texting conversations will move beyond the simple, “Hey, what’s up” “Nothing. You?” Think about each text and consult our guide before hitting send.
*Last names have not been included to protect identities.