When is it okay to say something about how long it takes for a guy to respond to a text or email? I’ve been out with the guy in question twice. He sometimes takes a whole day (as in 24 hrs) to reply to emails. – Georgia, 38, NYC
I’d need a little more to go on here. In general, I find a long lapse in response to an email to be a not so good sign. There’s just no excuse for someone to not be able to reply to a message within a few hours at least. I can’t stand when people say that they’re “so busy!” and that’s why they haven’t sent a response. Orly? That busy? Wow. You’re so important! I’ll just sit here eagerly awaiting your response while you carve out the 38 seconds it would take to write a reply.
There’s usually an underlying message to the lack of a message. They’re trying to tell you something without telling you while probably trying to maintain their image as a “good person.” They’re hoping you get the hint and go away quietly.
Passive aggression. I hate it. I hate it more than I hate Facebook status updates about what someone had for lunch.
The most frustrating part of being on the receiving end of that behavior is that if you speak up and say anything, it just gets worse. You become the “crazy” one. You’re not sympathetic to their situation. You’re selfish.
The lapse in response time and disappearing during a conversation is done to create a sense of urgency and incite confusion and insecurity. It’s often a power play, and it’s really, really destructive to someone’s self-esteem. It’s especially unhealthy if, like me, you’re confrontational. I only had to be involved with one passive aggressive guy to learn very quickly that a relationship with someone like that will not end well for me. It just becomes this ongoing pissing contest.
The true sign of passive aggression is that when a person is called on it they will respond with something particularly hurtful. The goal in such cases is to subdue you. You’re on to them, they know it, and now they feel trapped. Ignore whatever it is that they say. Remember, it’s said with the intention of slicing your psychological Achilles heel. They’ll identify your weakness and exploit it to your advantage. Especially if you’ve constructed a well informed argument. That’s why I hate to see you or anybody else put yourself in a vulnerable position so early in the game. Some things men and women just have to suck up for a bit until there’s a genuine comfort level.
My honest advice to you is to stop contacting this guy all together. By not replying in a timely fashion, he’s telling you where you fall on the priority list. That’s not to imply that you should be high a top the list after two dates. That’s an unreasonable expectation. However, if he was genuinely interested in keeping you around in some way he’d at least do I what I refer to as “investing.” Investing can take many forms. It can be the weekly text from someone you met online, sent “just to say hi”, but never leads to setting up an actual date. It can be a few word response to an email you sent. Investing involves making the bare minimum of effort just to maintain a line of communication and contact.
At best, I would think this guy is moderately interested. I’d suggest sitting back and waiting to see if he follows up with you at some point. In the interim, hop online or go out and meet other people.