Why Do So Many Guys We Meet Online Want To Text ???

January 1st, 2014

NEW!, Online Dating, Sexting, Texting

Name: Niaiphone-woman-texting
Comment: Hi

I’m an avid reader of this blog and find that your advice is on the money. I have done some revising of my “dating myths” and decided to put an add on a dating site recently. I did my best to show what I was bringing to the table, be feminine and upbeat, and include a few specific things so guys would have a topic to connect with me on.

I included 2 face shots, one half profile and one straight on, and a full body shot. (Fully body shot was not the best face pic, but as I’m both tall- 5’10”- and a size 14 I wanted to be real about what guys would be getting)

Well, an overwhelming response! I got about 100 responses in 24 hours. After weeding out the obvious “no’s” I followed a process where I asked for a photo nicely, (if he didn’t include one) then did one getting to know you email (if the  guy’s response was very short or vague) and then moved to a coffee/wine/ beer- after- work date suggestion if he seemed at all reasonable.

So far, so good. 6 dates are on the books and I am very happy with the results.

One thing I wanted to ask about here is something I noticed.

Almost every guy that made it to the “set up a coffee date” stage agreed to a coffee date (in theory!) and then asked “Would you like to give me your number so we can text?” or “Here’s my number, you can text me.”

Honestly, I am not 100% “no” on texting, it just seems like a boondoggle. When you don’t know someone, how do you get to know them over SMS? What do you have to “text” about?

Is this their way of moving it to the fade? Is this a possible way to get the number so they can then do the dreaded 11 PM “hey girl, ‘sup?” text and circumvent the whole coffee or wine date thing? Have they been trained by other women that they have to pass a phone and texting “sh*t test” of some kind? So many questions.

I did politely and briefly explain “sure, I’m open to it, but I find it tends to take the wind out of our sails before meeting. Let’s save our conversation for a glass of wine.” Most guys were okay with it. Some just faded after that.

One guy told me he wouldn’t text, then he did anyway and said “I know I said I wouldn’t text but I was thinking of you and couldn’t resist.” ORLY? Well, color me skybluepink! That’s never happened in any of my relationships. Methinks I smell a rat.

From my perspective, texting is not conducive to actual dating. Am I missing the male perspective here? What are they after? Why the “do you wanna text?”
Age: 34
City: Denver
State: Colorado


I don’t think that asking for a phone number is necessarily a preclude to The Fade. It sounds like you’ve devised a smart litmus test to help you sniff out who the texting addicts might be. It’s possible that a lot of men assume that women require that phone step. Some others simply want to get off the site and take things to a different medium in order to communicate. And, yes, some people just like to play text hockey and trade dirty photos.

You were quite the smarty pants when your sensors went off when that guy sent you a text after telling you he sent a text. I assume you laid down a boundary when trading numbers and said you’d prefer not to text, but he did it anyway. Yep., That’s a red flag. If you tell someone that you don’t do A, B , or C and they ignore that, you’re right to run in the other direction.

As I’ve said before, it’s better to hold off giving your number until a date is set up. If the person you’re meeting suggests you trade numbers, you can say that there’s no need to do that but that you’ll send your number to him the day before the date. Some people just like to show that they’re being transparent by offering their number. If they offer you theirs, you are not obliged to respond in kind. You can just say, “Thanks! Looking forward to meeting you next Tuesday!”

It’s not a bad idea to say in your profile that you don’t exchange numbers with anybody until a date is set up. Lay down the expectations up front so people know what is reasonable to request or expect.

I’ll leave the rest for the men of our commentariat. They can probably offer more conclusive explanations.

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67 Responses to “Why Do So Many Guys We Meet Online Want To Text ???”

  1. Ashley Says:

    I have gotten that a lot too and I think men see it as a more direct way to contact someone, rather than having to login to the site every time to correspond with them, even though many men are bad texters.

  2. John Says:

    Maybe its a suburb/big city differential, but every woman I went on a date with, we texted and talked prior to meeting. Both of us agreed to that right from the get go and it seemed like a natural progression to go from online to offline. Never met a woman who balked at either suggestion of text or a call. If the OP doesn’t like to text or phone prior to a date, she would be in the vast minority of women that I have encountered here on Long Island.

    I agree with Moxie that if the OP doesn’t prefer to go that route prior to meeting, then she should mention it in her profile.

  3. GI_JANE Says:

    So you’d walk away from your dream man because he TEXT you?

    1. You’re getting 100 e-mails and have become deluded and picky.
    2. The year is 2014 and people chat online, text, maybe phone, then meet.
    3. You have old fashion values which is cool, but for the men your talking to they see you not wanting to text/talk as a RED FLAG.

    And men ask for your number as Ashley said, as a more direct way to contact you.

  4. Brian Says:

    My standard is 2-3 messages sent by me online followed with me asking for their number to set up a time/place for a date which I text to them. I never chit chat over text before the first date, except for when I first started online dating and it was expected.

  5. LostSailor Says:

    When you don’t know someone, how do you get to know them over SMS?

    I don’t speak for all men, but texting isn’t meant as a way to “get to know” someone, but a more convenient way of quick communication prior to a date. Thinking is somehow a set-up for a fade seems to be reading way too much into the situation. Texting can be a way to sustain interest between dates, but that can only work after you’ve met and gotten to know someone at least a little. These aren’t conversations, just little quips, and they work best if they’re kept witty and light.

    I’ve kind of established a standard operating procedure over the years. If things seem reasonable after a couple of online message exchanges, I suggest a drink after work, and if that’s accepted, I’ll confirm 24 hours before and offer both an off-site email address (one I use only for dating) and my phone number just in case she needs to get in touch closer to date time. I never ask for her phone, but most women will offer it in response. I’ve only once gotten a request for a pre-date phone conversation and consider that a potential red flag. If a prospective date doesn’t offer a phone number in return, it’s not necessarily a red flag–I understand the reluctance to give the number to someone she’s never met–but I’ve found that those dates rarely lead to anything.

    The guy who said he wouldn’t text and then did may or may not be a red flag. I think he’s probably overeager and a little clueless, but I’ll leave that to others to decide if that’s a red flag.

    So, Nia is new to online dating (but, hey, congrats on 6 dates right out of the gate–good luck!) and will probably mellow on the texting thing as time goes on, but right now, I think she’s over-analyzing the whole texting thing. That said, if a guy wants to text a lot prior to a first meeting, he’s probably just over-anxious. Yeah, it may not be a good sign, but it’s not a deal killer in my book.

    • PGHGal Says:

      I actually agree with what Nia is doing. I’ve been online dating for awhile and find that men who want to text prior to meeting are generally time wasters. They either like the attention of someone to text or they want to send dick pics. Most of the guys I’ve ended up on dates with from online dating basically wanted to exchange numbers after the date was set to sync up timing or arrival. No “Good morning, beautiful” or idle chatter. I totally agree that you have nothing to text about until after you meet.

      Btw, all the posrs from that Avery guy lower in the feed were infuriating. What an entitled attention seeker!

  6. Nicole Says:

    I initially assumed that guys who wanted to text were just after dirty pics/sexting, but I’ve been proven wrong… I don’t get any more requests like that over text than I do over off -site email. I think some people are just used to that method of communication and prefer it to email or talking on the phone.

    My only concern with texting is the timing issue. It’s not always a convenient time for me to chat over text – I’m working or driving or out for a run (or out on a first date with someone else!). Some guys just send a “hope you’re having a good day” message. And I’ll text them back when I get a chance. Sometimes we end up playing a text version of phone-tag, and might as well just be emailing, but if that’s what a guy prefers, I’m ok with it. But I’ve had a couple of guys text “hi how are you?” and then send a snarky follow up text when I don’t reply within 20 minutes :(

    I think the OPs strategy of giving out her number but setting some boundaries is fine. When I give out my number now, I say something like “I’d love to hear from you, but I don’t usually have my phone near me at work or when I’m at the gym, so I can’t always answer right away.” I worry this makes me sound all special-snowfakey, but I haven’t come up with any better solutions. I really can only check my phone once every couple of hours at my job, and I don’t want dudes wondering why I’m taking so long to respond.

    Nia, I think Moxie gave you great advice… Also, if a guy fades just because you would rather meet in person than text, he’s probably not looking for something real anyway!

    • C Says:

      Ive come across a number of aggressive texters and only one wanted to sext while none asked for pictures. I would wait until someone actually says something you dont like before assuming thats what they are after.

      As for getting to know someone over text, i had a 28 year old guy who wanted to text me his life story for hours a day and learn everything about each other over text. We had agreed to meet but i was out of town. After a couple of days, it just became exhausting and I gave up but he never faded or said anything sex oriented.

      I have run across 2 guys who wanted to text or email constantly but said they ‘werent ready to meet yet’. They were probably already in a relationship but who knows?!

      My favorite though was the super hot older guy I went out with a handful of times. It went nowhere and we stopped seeing each other back in the spring but he continues to text me once or twice a month for the last 7 months later. He never asks me out or asks me for sex; its never sexual or revelatory in nature. Its actually always silly non-content stuff like a picture of a float in the thanksgiving day parade or to ask me if I’m enjoying a trip. I dont know what either one of us gets out of it other than maybe a little attention and a chuckle out of the fact that we are still at it. lol.

      OP – I get that u dont want to waste your time but really none of it means anything until it means something and everyone is different.

    • Eliza Says:

      Nicole–I agree. One thing I don’t care for – is marathon texting…and the “good morning”, texts–BEFORE even meeting. I like to keep any conversation very minimum UNTIL we meet or after we meet, should mutual interest be there. If someone can’t talk on the phone and only text, that does make me wonder. I am also someone that doesn’t have the cell attached to my ear all day…so a text may go unnoticed for hours. Texting is still very time-consuming to me, so if someone wants to get to know me prior to a simple coffee date–a phone call would be less painful.

  7. imadime Says:

    i guess i’ve just never gotten what the big deal is about giving someone your phone number. if you meet someone “in real life” you do it all the time. why is this something that sparks fear in the hearts of so many women dating online?? i’m a woman who’s dated online and never had a problem as a result of giving someone my phone number, even if i only went out with them once…or even if we decided not to go out at all.

    • C Says:

      When i online dated i never flinched at giving out my number either to a guy i met online or in person. That said, i’ve had weird encounters with both an online freak and a weirdo i met at the gym. I’ve had guys I’ve never spoken to drunk booty call or text me in the middle of the night. When i politely declined a date with them after the booty call, i’ve had several either try to pressure me into a date or call me every name in the book.

      Dating is a contact sport. Ive had both a guys i met online and offline get drunk and try to follow me home. Ive had guys who were the perfect date suddenly wig out and act like total creeps including one i had to ask no fewer then 5 times to leave my house after letting him in to “use the bathroom”. Scary, weird, uncomfortable stuff will happen. Some women are more nervous about the off chance weird experiences then others.

  8. avery_t Says:

    A persona can’t get more attractive people online that s/he can in real life. if you go online because you can’t get dates in real life, and you are suddenly flooded with interest, it’s because men contact EVERYBODY thinner than Melissa McCarthy online. But they won’t actually meet these women. They’ll just keep them around.

    Sometimes (only sometimes) online dating can get you better looking people than you can get in real life. But this is almost exclusively true of men trying to meet women. This happens in two ways:

    1) the man has a high income that is not apparent in real life but that IS apparent when he lists it.

    2) a guy writes very, very well (like Michael Chabon well) and seduces a woman with his writing. But usually that woman is highly educated.

    My overall point is that many posts on this blog seem to be about men fading or delaying the arrangement of a date. My sense is that this is always a case of a man contacting a woman he’s not really very attracted to, but whom he thinks might be readily available to him.

    Guys online who are 6′ 1″ and taller probably flirt with EVERY women on the site and actually meet about five.

    • GI_JANE Says:

      About a comment you made a while ago:

      “I have clicked on a woman’s profile multiple times sort of by accident. Her main photo is cute. I click. Then I see that her body is not my type. So, I move on. Then a day or two later, her profile comes up again in my field of vision. I think, “she looks familiar. Cute photo.” I click again. I see her body. I’m not into it. I move on. For a man, body > face. many, many, many women have cute face photos. Also, men view so many women they often forget whom they have already viewed.”

      How common is this? Because I literally have the same guys view my profile almost every time I log in. How common is it that you are either mistakingly or unmistakingly clicking the same profile over and over?

      • avery_t Says:

        I wrote that post.

        I’d say this happened to me at least once a day when doing online dating (but with a different woman each time).

        My sense of online dating is that it attracts women with very pretty faces but bodies overweight enough to make men not attracted to them. They may think “I just need a forum in which I can showcase my face but conceal my body.” The result is that online dating sites seem to have a lot of overweight women with pretty faces. Women like Christina Hendricks. Most men would NOT got out with Christina Hendricks, because she is heavy (not back when she was on Firefly). But she has a gorgeous face. So, every girl will click on her face.

        Most men look at fifty profiles a day. A couple of hundred a week. Maybe more. It’s hard to keep track of which ones you have already looked at.

        Sometimes men are awaiting for a woman to post body photos. Some women do this after a month or two on a site. At first, they are reluctant to do so. But so many men ask about their physical condition, they begrudgingly post some. Guys may be checking in to see if you have done so. Many guys won’t move without liking your body. Sly guys, however, just add a woman to their favorite list, because they will get a notification saying, “Sally posted new photos.”

        • avery_t Says:

          every GUY will click on her face. Sorry. 4 hours of sleep.

        • Nicole Says:

          Avery, I obviously don’t know you, so maybe I’m way off base here, but…

          If this attitude toward overweight women comes through in your online profile or on dates, it’s doing way more to hurt your chances with women than any real or imagined height discrimination. And I say this as one of those 30+ mile a week runners with a flat stomach you referred to in another post.

          The idea that you would might ask me out because I’m a pretty size 4 doesn’t make me feel special or desired. It makes me wonder if you’ll drop me as soon as a size 2 Mila Kunis lookalike walks by. It’s like dating a woman who’s made it clear she’s only interested in wealthy men – you may meet her standards, for now, but you know she’ll trade up at the first opportunity. Also, it just makes you seem shallow and uninterested in women as, you know, actual people with brains and feelings.

          It’s fine to prefer thin women and not date those who are overweight. We all have our preferences. But I really hope you’re not making these kind of comments in real life… They will bother all women, including the pretty, skinny ones you’re hoping to date.

          • avery_t Says:

            Very few people actually have brains. I have a Ph.D. in literature. My dad has Ph.D. My brother has a Ph.D. My uncle has a Ph.D. Anyon online who lists hard books (Proust, Dostoevsky, Milton, Joyce, Henry James, Borges, etc..) gets my respect immediately. People who don’t read do not get my respect immediately. I tend to judge people on what they read. Anyhow…

            If women listed their weight online, I would never mention it online. I did online dating back in 2002. Back then, dating sites asked for weight. They didn’t ask for body type. They asked for weight in actual numbers of pounds. I met women who posted only face photos. I even met women who didn’t post ANY photo. Why? They listed their height and weight. So, I could get a sense of whether or not they were my type. Of course, some women mislisted their weight, but that was only 35% of the time.

            With regard to online dating, I started to mention my preference in size and waist size and body type ONLY once websites stopped asking for weight in numbers. Also, now “average” seems to mean a body type that is 10 pounds heavier than ten years ago and “slender” means “not fat.”

            Back in 2002, I did NOT request body photos of any sort, because women simply listed their weight (like men simply list their height and income).

            Imagine that men could list their height online as “very tall,” “tall,” “average,” “short,” “very short.” Would women still demand height in actual numbers? I’m Jewish. So, 5′ 7″ is average height for a Jew over 35. I’m Scottish too. Scottish people tend to be short. My point is I could list myself as “average.”

            My feeling is that if websites stopped requesting height and income in numbers, women would flip out.

            Why can women say “i want tall, drak, and handsome” and men can’t say ‘I like slender”? Why are women praised for having requirements while men are condemned for having them? Can’tw omen be seen as superficial too?

          • ATWYSingle Says:

            I find this line of commentary rather repetitive. Obviously, Avery, you have a chip on your shoulder about being passed over because of your height. We’ve heard you. You’ve made your point countless times. Please stop making every post your personal soapbox about how shallow and superficial women are because they don’t want to date someone 5’7″.

          • avery_t Says:

            This reply to ATWYsingle’s comment

            I find this line of commentary rather repetitive. Obviously, Avery, you have a chip on your shoulder about being passed over because of your height. We’ve heard you. You’ve made your point countless times. Please stop making every post your personal soapbox about how shallow and superficial women are because they don’t want to date someone 5’7″.

            You’re missing the point. I thought you’d be keener. Women online develop very unrealistic beliefs about their worth on the dating market. This causes them to pass over men ONLINE whom they would NOT pass over in real life at a party. If a size 14 attended a party in Manhattan, she would get almost ZERO attention from men. She would not get 100 email worth of attention. Therefore, if a man who’s 5′ 5″ approached her, she might respond to him. But ONLINE men who claim to be 6′ 2″ contact her. So, she snubs shorter men. But these guys who are 6′ 2″ will never actually meet her. So, she spend 2 years online not having any actual real life meet ups. Just getting txts from men who NEVER arrange a date.

            Men always know their worth on the dating market. Women go online and have their sense of worth totally blown out of proportion. I saw one woman write “Gosh. Online I get treated like a model or movie star, which I am definitely not. I don’t get 1/4 this much attention on the street.”

            All of my posts on this blog are about one phenomenon and its ramifications: Women online developing much, much higher expectations than they have in real life. This causes men online to lie more and more about their height and income which causes women to have higher and higher requirements, which demoralizes most men more and more. So, men won’t even approach women in real life anymore, because they spend their days reading the profiles or women who are a 6 or 7 saying “be 6′ 3″, Ivy educated, and make 200k.”

            It’s about women developing unrealistic expectations.

            A man who txt’s but does not arrange a date is as good as a flat out rejection, but women will spin it into something hopeful. Men do not reject women the way women reject men. Men keep women around. If women knew and accepted the fact that faders and delayers will never come through, they would recalibrate and that might result in actual dates and relationships.

            Basically, all my posts say two things

            1)Fading/delaying = rejection.
            2)virtual interest is not the same as real interest

            Online dating fails in large part because women have much higher expectations online than they do in real day to day life. This leads to years of solitude and unhappiness. Why do women have these elevated expectations? Because they get email from fifty faders a month. If women say fading as flat out rejection, they would have much more productive time online, and this would be better for men.

          • ATWYSingle Says:

            This is all insightful stuff, but it seems that the only people who complain about this stuff are people who don’t know how or can’t work the system to their advantage.

            You’re not saying anything everybody here doesn’t already know. You make great points, but you’re not covering ground we haven’t covered.

          • avery_t Says:


            This is all insightful stuff, but it seems that the only people who complain about this stuff are people who don’t know how or can’t work the system to their advantage.

            I have a Wall Street income. When I post it, my response rate surges to 75%.

            Also, I once tried posting porn (and NOT listing my income). I got a TON of replies. Half were interest and the other half were hate mail. Some women thought I was Patrick Bateman. Other women, apparently, want to sleep with Patrick Bateman.

            One thing I learned from online dating: Patrick Bateman is a very central archetype in the female imagination. he is a major imago in the sexual imagination of American women. I had almost forgotten him until I tried online dating.

            Any guy who’s 6′ 3″ or claims to be 6′ 3″ can work the system to his advantage. It’s pretty simple. Guys over six feet or with an income over 100k do well. It’s not a great mystery. Dwayne Wade is 6′ 4″ and makes millions and he’s free to knock up women who are not his wife.

            • Stella Says:

              If you were dating size 4 women back in 2002, chances are that about 50% of those women are now a size 12. Sorry, but why do men think they can date equal or even up as they get older but have a fit when women have standards? Your responses here are very black and white and very general. You speak as if your opinions are facts. The comments about men breaking up with women differently? Never heard that one. And most dating sites in THIS day and age ask the woman for her income as well.

          • ATWYSingle Says:

            I have a Wall Street income. When I post it, my response rate surges to 75%.

            Also, I once tried posting porn (and NOT listing my income). I got a TON of replies. Half were interest and the other half were hate mail. Some women thought I was Patrick Bateman. Other women, apparently, want to sleep with Patrick Bateman.

            One thing I learned from online dating: Patrick Bateman is a very central archetype in the female imagination. he is a major imago in the sexual imagination of American women. I had almost forgotten him until I tried online dating.

            I guess I’m trying to find a nice way to say that you sound way too invested in the whole process. You over-think it and are one of those guys we all see on the OKC homepage who is constantly updating/changing/reworking his profile. It’s hard to really take you or what you say at face value. I mean, good on ya, you figured out that people on dating sites are shallow and there’s some gaming involved. And? What is your point?

          • avery_t Says:

            What do you mean “at face value”? Is that the phrase you want? My comments are true. When I post my income, women send me their phone numbers. But that feels icky.

            Over two years online, I have seen about nine women with active profiles I want to meet. Only nine. Two years. I do, however, see many women with non-active profiles (over a year inactive sort of thing) I’d like to meet.

            I’m over forty. I don’t know anybody in my city. I go out to nice restaurants. I see attractive women. They are with men on dates. I go to Equinox. I see attractive women. They are working out with their boyfriend/husband. He is on the stair master next to them (etc..). I go to the market. I see women I find attractive. They are shopping with their husband. Or they are pushing a stroller with their husband.

            I go home. I succumb to online dating. I do it for 24 hours. I then hide my profile. Three days later. I succumb to online dating again.

            Most of the time I’m bothered by a height requirement it’s posted by a woman I don’t find attractive. That’s the funny part. I’m not even attracted to teh woman. I just don’t like the categorical rejection based on something beyond my control. I’m built a lot like Nelly (ggogle him). If I were rejected for a lack of fitness, I would totally accept it. That, I can control.

            My New Year’s resolution was stop all online interaction of any and every sort by the end of today. Cheers. No internet for 2014.

          • Nicole Says:

            Avery, you said “It’s about women developing unrealistic expectations.”

            Yes, this definitely happens. But do you think maybe some guys have unrealistic expectations too? And wonder why the internet isn’t sending them lots of young, slender, athletic, conventionally beautiful women who read Proust and Joyce?

            Maybe you’re right and women online are judging you because of your height. Or maybe there’s something else going on. But if you have better success with women after they meet you off-line, then that’s probably a better way to meet people. If you feel like going online gives you a leg up on the competition because you can post your income… a lot of guys accomplish this in real life with expensive cars and hand-tailored suits ;)

            Enjoy your internet free year!

          • C Says:

            Avery – most of us are stuck with factors we cannot control. And when we are rejected based on factors we cannot control, we tend to blow them out of proportion or assume every subsequent rejection is the result of that feature.

            Trust me. We all have features we all get our own personal albotrose in the dating market to mess with our heads.

            As for women you dont find attractive rejecting you for features outside of your control, welcome to life! I cant tell you how many ugly guys are looking for women younger then me. Or that time I had what I considered a spoiled rich kid chat me up online. I decided to go ahead and give him the benefit of the doubt. After seeing all of my pictures, he asked me how much I weighed. I thought nothing of telling him I weighed 133 pounds as I had been working with a personal trainer for about 2 years at the time and measured in somewhere between 15-18% body fat (which is actually very lean). The clown then proceeded to tell me he only dates women who are between 100-125 pounds and that I was too fat for him.

            Nicole put it very well when she said, “And wonder why the internet isn’t sending them lots of young, slender, athletic, conventionally beautiful women who read Proust and Joyce?” Perhaps you dont want to date the women who are attracted to you?

        • C Says:

          Whoa. A little image obsessed arent we?!

          So, online dating doesnt “attract” pretty faced fat girls any more then it attracts “old guys”. Online attracts all types of girls and the population in general just happens to be fat.

          As for women getting an unrealistic expectations out their attractiveness because men online chat them up with nothing more then the intention of keeping them on the back burner, we get the same unrealistic expectations (or not) in real life when hot guys on the street or at work flirt with us but dont ask us out. I promise I’ve been flirted with by many more men then have asked me out and in my younger days spent some time trying to figure out how I can “get” a flirty guy to ask me out since he *must* be interested in me.

          Online is different from the ral world. We are overwhelmed with quantity. Attention spans are shorter. Its a gigantic pool of singles and its much easier to get a lot of dates (that ultimately go nowhere), but as for online dating blowing up a womans ego and making her think she can get Ryan Gossling, I’m not sure I agree.

          Some folks present better online then in person and some people present better in person then online. Are you sure that the problem is the world at large and not your presentation?

      • Nicole Says:

        I accidentally do this with guys’ profiles sometimes … Especially now that OKC gives you nothing but a profile pic, username, age, and city. I like a guy’s photo, I click on it, but something in his profile turns me off. A couple of days later, I forget why I didn’t message him (or he changed his main photo and I don’t recognize it as the same person) so I click on the profile again. And I’ve had men view my profile multiple times but never write. I think it happens to everyone.

      • avery_t Says:

        I should also add this:

        I am 5′ 7″ and steadfastly refuse to contact anyone with a height requirement or who says “be tall,” “I like tall guys,” or “bonus points for being tall.” Even if these women are 5′ 2″, I won’t. Especially (!), if those women are 5′ 2″ I won’t. I may want to. I may even think I could win them.

        Sometimes, a woman who posts a height requirement will remove it, in the fullness of time. Either she has received too much angry mail or she has changed her mind about height. If I am very attracted to a woman with a height requirement, I may check in from time to time to see if she has dropped it. About 25% of the time, a woman will remove her height requirement.

        • Tinker Says:

          Avery, you are basically saying that you don’t contact women whose requirements you don’t meet. That’s reasonable and makes sense. I think everyone would do well to do the same.

          • avery_t Says:

            Yes. Sure. But some of these women would date me in real life. Back in 2002, when I did online dating, I had to beg four women to meet me. One woman I begged every day for ten days to meet me. She finally agreed. We met. Had sex. And we were together for five years.

            Of the four women I had to beg to meet me, I slept with three.

            Women say they care about height, but they don’t really care that much (as long as the guy is taller).

            Most men do not post requirements. If you read twenty profiles posted by men, one might have a requirement. As a rule, men don’t post physical requirements. Therefore, women almost never have to worry about contacting a man whose requirements they do not meet (except for age, which I guess can be a major issue for women vis a vis men). Only men have to worry about that.

        • Eliza Says:

          Avery: “Win them”? You claim to be educated…but come across rather ignorant – as exemplified in your writing and thought process. ALL people have “requirements” – dating is initially and vastly based on visual/aesthetics – especially in the beginning. And believe it or not, that pressure (physical beauty), body weight, etc. is more ingrained with the women in our society. By the way–Avery–you went on and on about “weight issues”–you yourself have such requirements/preferences. Welcome to the world of dating…grow a thicker skin, and learn to come across more accepting of others, women included. By the way, if you have to “Beg” any woman to date you–you actually need to get therapy, and work on your self-esteem, and stop with the “short man complex”. Don’t fault women for wanting taller men – even petite women! We like what we like. I know plenty of obese men that prefer thin/fitness oriented women! Men like what they like. By the way – if you comes across this negatively in real life about the opposite gender, 2014 is not going to get any better. Change your attitude, and then you may see a change in your dating.

          • noquay Says:

            Well put. As a 5’7″ woman in bare feet who loves to dance, that means the minimum height for a male partner is 5’10”, more if I wear heels. Otherwise I get my glasses knocked off during the twirls. An expensive oops plus a real harrowing drive home as I am blinder than a bat. Yep, we all have preferences, those of us who have been around a while know what works for us, what does not. It seems that most of us do best with an equal in terms of lifestyle, income, activity, and education levels.

    • noquay Says:

      #3. You get better folks on line than IRL if you live in a rural region unless your are really into gun lovers and Harleys. Dudes of all heights (or stated heights) hit up women on line regardless of her height or preferred height range.

  9. Howard Says:

    Dating is one big interview after another. We may not be sitting there with sweaty palms and dressed in our killer suits, but don’t be fooled, the other person is trying to get a sense what we are about. And each one of us is doing the same.

    We have rules of engagement, but there is a lot of artificiality to those rules. When I read these rules people lay out, I am always bemused. Some of these rules can be very helpful in weeding out bad choices, but let us never forget that these are rules.

    I am obviously not going to get into all these rules here, save the one about the topic in question, texting. I hate endless back and forth too. I consider it a backwards use of technology. Why waste time with three, four texts each way, when it could have been said in a short pleasant conversation? However texting has it’s place, if it’s a text to update or for emergency use when meeting someone.

    Of course, everyone is trying to game the system, to get a better leg up in this interviewing social interaction called dating. And it’s easy for a simple salutation text to turn into a back and forth. It may thus be taking it a bit far to decide the viability of a date or potential date, based entirely on his or her supposed texting habits, decided on through one set of interactions.

    I believe in openess and flexibility. I believe in giving people chances, in spite of there being hundreds of other possibilities online. I am not going to relegate anyone to the bad pile, based entirely upon her relationship with her phone, when most of us in our society have a dysfunctional relationship with our phones, anyway. And I am definitely included in that. Yes, we do allow these devices too much reign over our actions.

    • noquay Says:

      I agree. Not all of us are tied to our phones, the building in which I work has zero cell reception. Youd have to stand outside to text/phone which is great fun in winter while wearing a skirt. In the initial email, I warn guys about this. Texting must be more common in younger ages as most older dudes email. A few emails, one “weed out” phone call before meeting, then we meet.

  10. BostonRobin Says:

    There’s no reason to text before you’ve even met a person, unless it’s to say you’re running late or you’re at the bar, etc. I find it incredibly annoying and fake even if I’m just starting to date someone. Like they think it “proves” they are interested and you have to play the game to “prove” you’re interested too. I’ve found myself in these ridiculous text/Gchat loops with people I barely knew, people who often were making no real effort to get to know me.

    I used to go along with it because I thought that it was what you were “supposed” to do in “modern dating.” I didn’t like how fake I felt when I participated in this game–which I did “just in case” I might turn out to like this person? Yuck. No, I put an end to it, period!

    • fuzzilla Says:

      **I’ve found myself in these ridiculous text/Gchat loops with people I barely knew, people who often were making no real effort to get to know me.**

      I feel the same way – like, how much time and energy does it take to say, “Let’s meet at Joe Schmoe’s Bar at 7″? I don’t want to sacrifice my afternoon texting a stranger about something that should take two minutes. I always politely tell them I’d rather just talk on the dating website.

      I’m flexible, though, and I’ll give my number if we’ve been messaging quite a bit and it feels natural to progress offline. I feel like it’s usually it’s the people with really generic conversation who don’t seem to care much about getting to know me that are really pushy about getting my number. If a guy would rather argue with me over which communication method is better than use his messages to actually get to know me, he gets the fade before we’ve even met. If you’re pushy and a shitty listener at that stage, I’m really not motivated to want to get to know you further.

    • Eliza Says:

      I agree with Boston…texting is rather silly–unless it’s to say, change of venue, or running late, or confirming we are on. If you need to communicate – just pick up the damn phone and call. That simple.

    • Nikki Says:

      I totally agree with Boston and Eliza. I had a guy tell me that the “younger women” hes been dealing with prefer to text and send send pics via text.

      I can find out more about a man in a 5 minute call then I can in an hour of texting.

  11. Gaby Says:

    I get a lot of that. At first I was reluctant to pass on my number but then I realized that it’s another good way to weed out further the unsuitable ones.

    This is what you do… GET A GOOGLE NUMBER and route it to your phone. Or get some other bridging system or app. If they insist on getting your number, then no problem. They’ll call which shows more interest in my opinion. Or they’ll text. At which point you can see where the conversation is going. If they text, you save that number and text them back. They never have to know your real number until you decide to give that out. If they start acting creepy, you just block them on google voice and never hear back from them. It’s really simple.

    I don’t like serial texters. Majority of men I’ve met online who want to text are just looking for some sexting. In addition, it’s a way for them to keep their many options sorted out (you’d be saved in there as “Match Nia”). The fact that they ask for the number is not a bad sign. But if they’re only texting you, you’re not that much of an interest for them. Move on. As always, you can continue on the path you’ve taken and tell them that you want to save it for the meeting. That’s a sure way to weed out the ones who can’t be bothered to stick around long enough to meet.

    That has been my personal experience.

  12. D. Says:

    A few thoughts on texting in the early stages of online dating.

    1. It really depends on which age cohort you are in and which age cohort you’re trying to date. I think there’s definitely a demographic disconnect when it comes to texting etiquette. For people who have never known a time without texting, let alone without mobile phones, I think texting is often a natural form of communication. They don’t see it as any different from emailing, and view it as more convenient and less intrusive than the phone. There are whole concepts of etiquette that are forming around texting. Like, some people actually believe that ending a text with a period is intended to be read as the person being curt or dismissive or ending the conversation as a whole.

    When you get outside the age group that has grown up with texting, etiquette is a lot more haphazard, I find, and attitudes towards texting are all over the map. Some people view it as more polite because you aren’t intruding the way a phone call can. Others view it as impolite because it’s “less personal.”

    2. It may not be the guy’s natural default position. I preferred to call on the phone, myself. Usually to have one phone conversation where we chat a bit and usually ending with planning a date at the end of the conversation. This was usually something like a 20-30 minute conversation. I found that people were less likely to flake out and bail on you if you were an actual live human being on the other end of the phone, instead of just words on a screen.

    That said, I found that a lot of people preferred to text — because it was hands-off and less demanding of immediate attention (or at least could be). It could therefore be that the guys in question deal with a range of different women who have different attitudes toward texting, and default to text because it’s the more commonly preferred by others, even if they’d prefer to call.

    3. Asking for a number so you can text is not laying the groundwork for the fade. It’s FAR easier to fade on someone if you ONLY communicate with them through the dating site. “Oh, I’m really sorry. I haven’t really been reading messages lately, just logging on for a few minutes, or leaving my computer window open or blah blah blah.” Texting means you’re more (not much more, but still more) accountable to the other person because they can contact you instantly and directly, rather than going through an intermediary (the site). I’d be more worried about someone who DOESN’T want your phone number than someone who does, even if they say they’ll text.

    4. If you’ve set up the date via email, texting is a good way to confirm time and place the day of. This avoids being stood up. It also allows for easier rescheduling than relying on communications through the site itself. Again, it’s easy to say you didn’t notice the OKC/Match/Eharmony/whatever icon on your phone (or to claim you don’t have “push notifications” enabled, so you don’t see them) than it is to say you didn’t get a text.

    That said, I agree that texting ad nauseum prior to meeting is a mistake. But then, so is having multiple phone chats prior to meeting. The issue is less with the method of communication, and more wit engaging in prolonged pre-date communication in the first place. Go on a date. Make it real. Don’t screw around online or on the phone or on text or whathaveyou beforehand. You’re doing this to meet someone. In person.

    5. The men or women who email back and forth, ask for numbers, and only text or call or never do either, are simply not that interested. In you, in dating, in dating you right this second, whatever. Doesn’t matter. The bottom line is if someone is interested…you’ll know they’re interested because they’ll be in touch with you AND trying to date you for real.

    One of the most important things you can do in online dating is learn how to spot people who are just stringing you along. This may be because they just want attention, are supremely ambivalent about dating, or are juggling multiple people and you’re low on the totem pole. But in the last analysis, it really doesn’t matter why they’re doing it. You need to be able to spot the behavior rather than analyze its cause. When you do see it, you gotta disengage and move on, or at least prioritize them lower. Otherwise, you risk burnout or — worse — may actually get to date this person, and end up getting dropped relatively soon because…they were never that into you to begin with.

  13. Yvonne Says:

    I like having a phone chat before meeting. I find out a lot about the guy from the way he speaks, and have weeded out a few if the conversation went poorly. I recently had a man ask if he could text me before setting up a date, and I said that I didn’t really text and preferred to talk. We did talk, had a very nice conversation that would never have happened if we’d only texted, and went out on an enjoyable date. I had a much better sense of him and it made me feel more comfortable when we met in person. I’m not sure if we’ll go out again, but I’m happy with the way things progressed. Texting really reveals nothing about a person, but then again, that may be the point for some people. For some, it’s low investment, low risk.

    • C Says:

      I recall a guy friend saying that texting was a low investment way for players to keep you ‘in spin’. The guy uses texting as a very low investment method of staying on the minds of multiple women he is lukewarm on so he can keep them all in play.

      • Yvonne Says:

        A certain dating adviser admits that he used to do exactly this with women during his post-divorce, single days.

      • Nikki Says:

        My male coworkers have done this and laugh about it.
        Some men/women like to share the texts and messages with coworkers and say “Hey – look at all these men/women who are interested in me”

  14. D'Alias Says:

    OP, I don’t think you should read too much into Pre date texting. It makes sense to exchange phone numbers before the day of so that you can get in touch in case of last minute plan alterations (running late, etc.)

    If a man is going to fade, he’ll fade. You can’t control that. In fact, I think you should expect for some of that to happen in online dating.

  15. Nia Says:

    Hi, I just wanted to thank everyone for their very thoughtful replies. I will have to mull over their advice carefully and see what happens.
    I just wanted to quickly clarify a few points that seemed to come up. I’m not against giving out a phone number for safety reasons, or texting in general.

    Also, even though I’m an Amazon at 5’10” I have dated many a shorter man. About 75% of my relationships were with guys under 5’7″. Hey, all cats are grey in the dark! Just throwing that out there. :)

    I’m okay with texting a guy who is dating you, or texting after some kind of connection *in person* has been established. What I don’t really like is extensive texting before we’ve met in person.

    It usually goes along the lines of “Hi.” “hey.” “How’s your day going?” “Fine. U?” “Mine’s okay. Might eat at Bob’s later.”….not riveting stuff.

    Texting for arranging meetings, staying in touch, and finding someone when they went to the wrong Starbucks is mint. Texting back and forth about where you went to school and “do you really like me?” (both texts I got from online suitors *prior* to meeting them! and sadly, these guys were in their 30’s!) seems like it’s a weird choice.

    I find it takes up a lot of time and effort with little payoff. I don’t know them any better, I don’t feel closer, I don’t trust them to a greater degree, and we’re not on a date. So, 0% mission accomplished except this guy might be thinking he’s invested just enough to keep me hoping while he checks out other girls higher on his list.

    I mean, fair enough, but check them out and *then* meet me and start the text marathon!

    Thanks again to everyone who took the time to write in. Your comments will be considered.

  16. Lady H Says:


    I am a 33 YO woman living in the NYC area and I will only date guys who I build a texting rapport with. I find texting to be the most natural form of communication outside of meeting in person and I prefer it over talking on the phone. I text my family, friends, and coworkers all day long as well. Therefore, there has got to be other men that feel the same way as myself. It is 2014 and communication has changed greatly over the past few years. Just something to think about. I actually get annoyed when people call me to set up a date. I am a really busy person and the last thing I feel like doing is listening to a Voicemail some stranger left me.

    • Nikki Says:

      If you are too busy for a 5 min phone call or to listen to vm – how do you have time for a date?

      • Lady H Says:

        Good question… I end up going on 1-3 dates a week. At the same time I’m texting with at least 5 other potential dates throughout the week. A phone call has never lasted only 5 minutes for me, they usually last a half hour. I don’t have time to talk to 5 guys a week, a half hour each. It doesn’t mean I won’t talk on the phone, it’s just I prefer texting since it’s faster. Everyone is different though, that’s just been my experience.

        • BostonRobin Says:

          This is exactly the sort of thing that the phone call weeds out, since it requires too much effort. Those five guys could each be texting five (or more) people too! Pretty easy to fake interest, especially with something as nondescript as “hey, babe, thinking of you :)” that could be blasted to an entire list.

          If texting works for you, great. But this is why I don’t like it. Could be generational too.

  17. Girlie Girl Says:

    As a 41 year old woman dating men around and above my age, I find that half of them text and half still are old fashioned and call. The ones that do text are either:
    1. Under the illusion I want then to, until I set them straight.
    2. Just trying to get laid.
    3. Very insecure, too afraid to have a healthy exchange with me.

    Now as far as younger men, well I think a lot of it is just the sign of the times.

    I can’t stand texting.

    So when I get the “hey” text, I respond with “Thanks for the text! I prefer the phone, so when you are ready to talk to me, give me a call! :)”

    This is a very light way to let them know what you expect. I keep a template text so all I have to do is copy/paste on my smart phone. This method weeds then out quickly in a nice way.

  18. Don Says:

    Ok, time to give my two cents. I actually find it to be a HUGE red flag if, after a month or so of consistent regular chatting, a woman still refuses to give her number. ESPECIALLY after plans have been made to meet in person. I say this for a few reasons: 1) it gives us a chance to feel each other out in live conversation, 2) it offers a measure of proof that the other person is not a catfish, 3) we can contact each other in case something happens like running late for the date, and 4) I just honestly like to know who I am really dealing with prior to actually meeting in person.

    In my experience with online dating, every girl I’ve talked to who was really who they said and didn’t have something to hide had no problem moving the conversation to phone or facebook. This goes for platonic, out-of-state ladies as well. The way I see it, moving the convo outside the dating site to something more verifiable like phone or Facebook should actually be reassuring to a woman rather than scary. After all, she can always block his number if she doesn’t want to receive any more calls or texts.

    I also think that distance is a factor here too. If the person you are chatting with lives in a different city or something, then a phone call (or video chat session) is an absolute MUST. I know some of you may be thinking I’m a cyber-stalker. Not necessarily, but not entirely untrue. I think that if you’re going to invest emotionally in someone you haven’t met in person and/or risk meeting them, then you have every right to do a little due diligence, ie google their name, talk on the phone, check out their facebook, or video chat, or at the very least have them send a unique proof pic. This little bit of vetting should be done by both parties, IMO. I get how women would want to be cautious and careful with their info early on, but there comes a point where enough rapport has been built where swapping numbers or some other kind of verification is appropriate. i mean, does it really sound logical to be willing to meet someone with nothing more than a chat history and some profile pics BEFORE speaking to them live on the phone? Oh, and it has been my experience that when someone starts avoiding any sort of proof or verification of identity (and/or redirect the convo when such a thing is brought up), then that person 9 times out of 10 is a catfish. Especially if you’ve been chatting with them for more than a couple weeks, and/or have talked about meeting, and ESPECIALLY if they follow up with some crazy SOB story that specifically inhibits you from ever getting any kind of identifying info from them (i.e. real name, phone, etc).

    But yes on the other hand, I know just how thick-headed guys can be, and how they sometimes react when told no. I get that. I have seen it first hand with ladyfriends who have given guys their number. But that also is not the majority of guys. And it also is indicative of insufficient vetting before the number is given out. But in my book, a number and phone call should always precede an in-person meeting.

    • Don Says:

      Ok, honestly who disliked my above statement?? I didn’t think it was unreasonable. But then again, having been catfished before I guess I’m a bit more gung-ho with the verification thing. But honestly, think about what some women are saying: the world is a dangerous place, I have to be vigilant in protecting myself and therefore will not give out my cell number or real name to a guy from online dating, but on the other hand I am perfectly fine with meeting said guy in person without so much as a phone call or skype session first. Try and tell me that sounds logical. Just saying. Haven’t any of you ever watched Catfish??

      • ATWYSingle Says:

        Please don’t whine about down votes. Not everybody found your comment valuable. Learn to deal.

        • Don Says:

          Fair enough. All I’m saying is that being cautious is one thing, but like with anything else there’s such a thing as overkill. If someone, man or woman, is too guarded or secretive then it makes them look like they are hiding something. I agree with the Google number idea. Or better yet FaceTime or Google video chat since theyre both supported by all smart phones and can be set up under anonymous gmail accounts. But nonetheless, a live conversation of some sort is in my book a necessary prerequisite to an in person meeting if there is any kind of distance between two people.

  19. Kyra Says:

    When men toss their number at me in the first or second message and say “Text me. It’s easier!” I ignore it and just continue the email/message conversation. Once we’ve exchanged at minimum 4 good messages I offer them my number. I say “I’m don’t text, but please feel free to call any evening after 6pm. I’d love hearing your voice and getting to know each other better.” They’ll respond, “Sounds great. Will do.”

    100% of them still DO NOT call. They STILL text a “Hey, how’s it going?” Even more odd is, even though I have given them a perfect time to call me, they TEXT at the more random hours of the morning: 4am, 6am, 8am which is prime commute/prepping for work time.

    If I do not respond to the text, they’ll return to the email/messages and say, “I texted you, but didn’t get a response. Did you get it?” Or, they’ll call and, if I’m at work and unable to answer, hang up before leaving a message. They’ll then message/email, “I called you, but didn’t leave a message.” If either of these happens, I immediately ignore him for good.

    Other times I will respond to their “Hey, how are ya?” or “Good morning!” texts with a quick template that says, “Hello there. I leave my phone off during work hours, but give me a call this evening at 6pm. I’d love to speak with you! Have a great day!”

    Ten times out of then they never call and we never make it to a date. Men are cripplingly over-reliant on text messages nowadays. I simply can’t be subjected to:

    1. Non-requested dick pics
    2. Text offers to “come over and hang out at your place?” (before even having met)
    3. 2am texts that are sexual in nature (again, before even having met)
    4. Hundreds of numbers in my phone from men who texted one evening out of boredom/arousal and then never contacted again.

    It’s tough, but I’m being very strict about not texting men I’ve never met. Doesn’t lead to much dating, but I have to have my standards and know what sort of treatment and/or relationship I’d like to have and that isn’t with someone with an avoidant personality who uses text messaging to keep emotional distance.

    • PassGo Says:

      what do you think is up with them NOT wanting to hear our voice & go to the next step. It eliminates a lot of “drama” they say they don’t want. They seem to be the “drama queens” themselves. And, if they are scared, what are they scared of…finally making a connection & if that is the case why are they bothering? I thought this was just me but I guess it’s across the table for all women, rite? How do they expect to meet someone? What is their criteria for the “ACTUAL MEET”?

  20. Lisa Says:

    I am a female in her late 30s and 99% of the guys want my number almost immediately to text. If we set up a date I am okay with it so we can tell each other of we are running late but that’s it. Most of the guys that just start texting have no intention of meeting because they are scared, are lying about who they are, are narcissists just collecting women, are married or in relationships, are looking to sext or send dirty pics or are looking to have a back up to text at 200 am if they are in the mood. But the really annoying ones are those that insist on talking on the phone prior to meeting I guess to make sure you are a real girl as if you could not fake that if you wanted to. I get a lot of emails and matches and I’m very busy. If you are going to be that one guy that must talk on the phone before we meet we will never meet. And I always post full body shots several and recent I think that’s only fair.

  21. LilaMarieDFW Says:

    I agree with Lisa (above), almost all guys want a phone number immediately. I never give it out prior to meeting. Since I give all guys a fair chance (at least three dates, I believe I’ve always given out my phone number). Most guys said they didn’t think I was ‘real’ or wasn’t going to show up because I didn’t give out my digits. Even after we meet up, I don’t like to text too much because I want to gaze into that guy’s eyes while he answers my questions. Ever cheated? Text answer: No. In Person Answer: Uhhh…well…

  22. Sherry Says:

    I have only been doing online dating for a month. I am very frustrated with the texters. I am interested in one man who insists on texting by phone yet when I suggested we talk on the phone he gave me some spill about having a very hybrid country accent and wants to present the full package of himself. I assume when and if we meet. He even got mad when I asked why he was hiding behind texting and wouldn’t talk on the phone. It seems suspicious to me. It has only been 4 days but I would rather meet and find out if we have a mutual attraction than continue to text. Any advice?

    • SS Says:

      I don’t think it’s a concern that he wants to text instead of have a call – unfortunately 9 out of 10 men are the same.

      I DO think it’s a concern if he wants to text and not arrange a meeting. If it’s been over a week and he’s not trying to arrange a date, he’s a timewaster.

      • PassGo Says:

        It seems to me that this is always the outcome. It feels as though they are sending out 20 txts & the first one that hints of sexual gratification the hounds are on the hunt or something like that. They don’t make themselves clear as to why they want to text, email, facetime…forget that, step up to the plate & meet. What do they think is going to happen if they meet for “JUST COFFEE”? maybe no chemistry but had a great time meeting someone “just nice”! what a “waste of their time”, rite?

  23. Dee Says:

    Yes. Most guys send one message, ask for your number, then disappear as fast as they asked for it. There’s nothing to be said thru text that can’t be said within the dating app or site. Most of the guys I gave my number to would make small talk or send good morning texts. They didn’t need to text for that. Most want to text immediately out of boredom and never intend to meet. I’m not interested in being ghosted then added to a holiday chain letter text down the line so I stopped giving out my number until a date was planned.

  24. PassGo Says:

    I find that it’s more of a screening technique with men. They want to “interview” you & if they don’t like the answers then there is no meet. How do you really feel a person when you are doing this same thing with 5, 10, 20, etc people at the same time. I don’t like fooling around with a bunch of questions, interrogations…like ur on the old dating game. I feel it’s best just to meet for coffee (so you’re not stuck for a fool lunchtime/dinnertime length) to see if there is chemistry. Every time I have done that it is a for sure thing. I don’t want to waste weeks going back & forth then meeting & find that your chemistry isn’t there. It’s too gamey for me. I’m not so sure this is an effective use of my time.

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