In my head I am screaming at Neo (click the link to find out who Neo is), “you suck at returning texts.” But what good would it do to say that to him?
It would do NO good. It is an accusation and will put him on the defensive. Ultimately, it will not convey to him how I feel when he goes silent. It will not bring understanding or intimacy between us. It may make him run for the hills.
I do need to talk to him about it though, because it is disconcerting to receive silence. I know WHY he goes silent and I’m OK with that. I also understand that this issue may go away or be diminished once he gets a medical problem taken care of later this month. But for now, the silence is killing me. I want to let him know how I feel about it and request that he not go completely silent.
So instead of flinging “you suck at returning texts” at him (which my amygdala wants me to do); I will instead use my pre-frontal cortex to tell him:
- When I don’t receive a return text until Tuesday morning for the four texts I send on Monday, I feel like there is a lack of interest.
- I feel like maybe you are playing cat and mouse with me.
- I feel like I’m being tricked.
- I feel like I’m failing at a mind game where the winner sends the fewest texts, but just enough to make the other person want to keep texting.
- I feel like I should just wait until I receive a response from my last text before I send another, but that feels like playing a mind game. And that is NOT my style.
Neo, instead of going completely silent on me, could you send me a quick text to let me know you are not feeling good and can’t text or talk just now? I will respect that and not be upset. Getting a brief text or call like that will alleviate my fears and help me to look forward to communicating with you when you ARE feeling better.