I Started Ignoring His Late Night Texts & It Changed Everything

I hate it when guys text really late at night or in the early hours of the morning. I’m trying to sleep, damnit! One guy I was into for a while used to do this all the time and it really got on my nerves so I stopped answering him.

It was like he didn’t exist from 10 p.m. onwards. I made a rule that I wouldn’t answer his texts from 10 o’clock onwards. If he texted me earlier in the day, that was fine, but after 10 p.m. I was like Cinderella leaving behind her phone at the ball. This rule was a non-negotiable one. To help me stick to it, I’d turn my phone off until morning so that I wouldn’t be tempted to check for messages.

It was tough at first. I did worry at first. What if he tried to get hold of me because he needed me? What if he thought I was being rude? But come on—I’m sure that in an emergency situation, he’d have others he could contact. As for him thinking I was rude, well, a woman has the right to sleep and switch her phone off, right?

I was so used to being super available to guys. And that was the problem. In the past, whenever guys sent me texts, even if it was in the early hours of a workday morning, I’d answer them even if I was dead tired. It was like I was open 24 hours a day. It was too much and I was sick of it.

I paid the price for my overavailability. Being “on” all the time is exhausting. I’d end up losing major beauty sleep and feel like a zombie at work the next day after having late-night texting sessions with guys. Conveniently, those guys usually had the day off or a late start to work the next day so they didn’t lose out on anything. Of course. It wasn’t worth sacrificing my rest and health for a little chat.

The guy didn’t catch the hint at first. After setting my “no texts after 10 p.m.” rule with this new guy, I wondered if he’d continue trying to talk to me late at night. At first he did. He’d send messages like “Are you still up?” Ugh, I so hate those because once I’m awake and interested in chatting, the guys end up leaving the conversation halfway though. So irritating and such a waste of my time.

I don’t want to feel like someone’s backup woman. One of the reasons I hate chatting to guys so late at night is that I never feel like their priority for the evening. I feel like the one they turn to when they’re bored, the party’s over, and they’re lying in bed wanting to exchange nude selfies. I thought by not being available for those late-night chats, I’d be sending this guy a clear message that I wasn’t fling material.

I worried he wasn’t looking for anything serious. I was also worried that he was sending me late night texts instead of talking to me during the day because he wasn’t looking for anything serious. I wasn’t going to make him think that he could make minimal effort to talk to me. I want someone who shows me he’s into me!

What next without text? By the third night of my texting ban, the guy stopped texting me. I woke up to find zero messages from him. At first I worried that he was getting bored or that he thought I wasn’t interested because I’d been ignoring him late at night, but then I reminded myself that if he was going to lose interest so quickly, that said more about him than me. I was interested to see what he’d do next—and a surprise was in store.

He stepped up his efforts. Instead of disappearing on me, the guy started texting me at more convenient hours during the day. It was fantastic! He didn’t care that I wasn’t available so late at night, and he saw quickly that I was interested in chatting to him earlier in the day, so I knew that he knew that I liked him.

I wasn’t playing games. The thing about my late-night texting ban isn’t that I was trying to control the guy. I just wanted to make sure he knew that I was serious and looking for something real. And it worked! Guess it’s true what they say: you show people how to treat you—or in this case, how to date you!

He made me realize that he was serious. While I was showing him that I was serious, his behavior showed me that he was looking for the same thing. We were getting our texts in sync with each other, meeting each other halfway so that we could have a good shot at something special. And that’s exactly what we got.

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