Is He Really A Bad Texter Or Is He Just Not Into You?

A guy’s texting behavior can reveal a lot about him and how he feels about you, but it’s also possible to overthink it. So how are you supposed to know if he’s just a bad texter or if he’s actually just not that into you? Consider these things.

  1. Some people really don’t like to text. It may seem impossible to find someone who isn’t addicted to texting, but they do exist. Maybe he’d rather call you or just talk to you in person. It may take a little adjusting but try not to jump to conclusions if his texting habits are a little different than what you’re used to. However, if he’s not texting you or not reaching out in person or via a phone call, you should probably take a hint.
  2. You may be a demanding texter. Just because he doesn’t text with the frequency and accuracy you’re accustomed to doesn’t mean he’s in the wrong. Everyone has different habits and despite what you might think, not everyone is attached to their phone 24/7. Cut him some slack. If he’s responding do you regularly, even if it’s not in lengthy paragraph form, try and take a deep breath.
  3. What is he like in person? We all know it’s easy to take things the wrong way over text. Context and tone can be completely lost in translation, so judging him entirely based on what his texts sound like is just asking for trouble. Instead, focus on how he communicates with you in person. If he’s great at it, you can learn to deal with his crappy texting habits and find a better way to stay in touch.
  4. People are busy. Not everyone can text when they’re at work. Not everyone is okay with taking their phone out in certain social situations either. He might only have short windows of time to return texts and you might not be his top priority every time, which would make him bad at texting (at least in your eyes). This doesn’t mean he’s a bad texter or he’s not into you; it just means he has other things going on.
  5. Pay attention to when he texts you. Just as important as what he’s saying is when he’s saying it. Maybe he’s not a frequent texter, but if he asks you out in advance, responds quickly enough when you ask a question and most importantly, has never sent a Friday night ‘u up?’ text, you should probably look past the fact that you sometimes don’t hear from him for a couple of days.
  6. Guys need a purpose for texting. While definitely not universal, lots of guys only text when they have something productive to say. For example, he’ll text you to confirm plans or to tell you he just ate at the restaurant you recommended, but he’s not going to text you all day every day for no good reason. This is actually a good thing, so try not to worry about it too much.
  7. Quality is more important than quantity. If he texts back quickly but it’s just a bunch of disinterested one-word answers, would you think he’s into you? Fewer texts that he actually puts a little effort into mean a lot more than how many texts he sends in a day.
  8. What are his texting habits like with his friends? Have you spent significant lengths of time with him where he doesn’t put his phone down for a second and he’s texting people back within minutes, but suddenly when you text him, he’ll take hours to respond? You know he read it and he’s probably just choosing to ignore it. Not a good sign.
  9. Does he always wait for you to initiate a conversation? If you’re always the one starting conversations, it’s pretty safe to say there’s something missing. He isn’t thinking about you enough to make the effort to send you a what’s up text, but he’s willing to play along if you’re the one doing the majority of the work.
  10. What are his texts about? Does he ask you how your day was? Does he want to know what you’re doing this weekend? Does he mention an inside joke you shared during your last date? He’s into you. But if he just talks about himself, tries to make plans to meet up late Saturday night, or basically just speaks in one-word answers, he’s probably just bored and you’re nothing more than a convenient backup plan.

Why a guy might be a bad texter

  1. He just doesn’t like it. Don’t ask me why, but this seems to be true with most guys (at least the ones I’ve met). They’re just not nuts about texting. They’ll do it only if they have to and they prefer to keep their participation in it to a minimum. It’s not that they don’t like you or want to speak to you, they just really don’t like texting.
  2. Communication isn’t guys’ strong suit in general. It’s a stereotype, sure, but it exists for a reason: it’s kind of true. Many guys aren’t big on words and aren’t necessarily skilled conversationalists, so expecting them to be all gung-ho about texting rather than bad at it, just as they are with real-life communication, is a little unfair.
  3. He’s afraid of saying the wrong thing. The thing about texting is that it’s impossible to read tone. Looking at words on a screen doesn’t tell you the person’s intent behind them. Are they joking? Are they being playful? Are they annoyed? The fact that guys can’t tell and they know you can’t tell either makes them not even want to put themselves in a potentially awkward position.
  4. They haven’t decided how they feel about you yet.  Maybe he’s not necessarily bad at texting, he’s just bad at knowing where his head is at with any amount of urgency. If a guy isn’t really sure if he’s into you or not just yet, he’ll probably go AWOL a lot, take forever to reply to your messages, and keep things pretty light until he figures out how he feels. It’s annoying, but it’s an explanation.
  5. They don’t think texting is as important as you do. Simply put, women tend to be much more into texting and put much more weight on it than men do. They view it as a means to an end — a way to make plans or get the answer to a quick question, not create a deep and meaningful relationship. If people got on the same page about this, there’d be a lot less drama, don’t you think?
By day, Courtney is a digital marketing copywriter living in Toronto, Canada. By night, she's a freelance lifestyle writer who, in addition to, contributes regularly to, IN Magazine, and SheBlogs Canada. Want to chat about relationships, Stephen King or your favorite true crime podcast/documentary/book? She's on Twitter @courtooo.