The staring at your phone, checking to see if said phone works, wondering if your love interest is on holiday somewhere remote or fallen down a man hole - waiting for a reply is one of those things we can't control. We place a lot of importance on texts , but should we be reading into this? Giving some insight into this matter is relationship psychologist Dr Max Blumberg, who has spoken to MirrorOnline about what it means when someone takes too long to reply - or replies very quickly.
According to Dr Blumberg, there is indeed a correlation between the time it takes someone to text you, and their strength of feeling.
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If someone fancies you, the chances are they will get back to you quickly". The rapidity with which people do reply is more of a modern phenomenon however, as Dr Blumberg explains. We're always 'on' and no longer live in age of delayed gratification. Unfortunately, the same applies if they do not feel the same way.
The term 'dating value' may seem a little calculating, but it's behaviour intrinsic to us, as Dr Blumberg explains. Then you compare that score to the score you've given yourself. So if you score someone highly, and subconsciously feel you're both a good match, score-wise, this will dictate your response time. The same applies if they subconsciously believe their score is higher than yours. A person may have low self-esteem, or overly-inflated self-esteem, meaning there'll be a disparity between their score and the score others would give them.
On this matter Dr Blumberg is clear. People don't tend to sit on the fence about game-playing. But if that's why someone is withholding on the texting front, it's not necessarily a sign of weakness on their part, or that they don't like you. In fact, in terms of heterosexual relationships, game-playing on a woman's part is down to evolutionary psychology.
Evolutionary psychology tells women 'we're carrying the babies, so this man needs to prove his worth. So you'll think 'I can't believe X got back to me so quickly' - but it's because you're score is akin to theirs, you just don't see it that way. It might actually be personal Image: Getty Get daily news updates directly to your inbox Subscribe See our privacy notice More newsletters.
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Subscribe to our Daily news newsletter Enter email Subscribe. Don't sweat it, there are more of them out there. You're overthinking the problem. She'll reply sometime later if she wants to, and she already responded to you once so clearly she's not completely uninterested. Perhaps she saw the new message notification, went to read it, and is planning to reply later? That's pretty common I would imagine. Treat it like you would any other type of communication. Replying 30 seconds later looks desperate, but anywhere in the later that day to the few days later range is just fine until you know each better.
I get email notice that I have new okc messages and will sometimes use the mobile site to read a new message. OKC shows that I've logged on, but I never write responses from my phone - that happens on the weekend when I can log into my home computer. But I want to check the inbox in case a date cancelled, etc. Please don't write a response to a message you haven't seen yet. Otherwise, everything you're saying sounds good. Hopefully you feel better now you've got a load of near-instant askme responses. But I wouldn't worry about this one message.
Because, you know, it's You happened to be by the computer, so you responded promptly. It would be silly to hold this against you.
It IS you - why the longer it takes someone to reply to a text, the less they like you
If I had to make up a rule, I'd say: As a disclaimer, this is just my speculation based on my experience as a straight man who uses OKCupid. Not being a woman, I obviously could be wrong about how women perceive these things. Straight women generally have more luxury than straight men to filter people out based on trivial factors, so, as you know, one can't assume that straight-male thinking is the same as straight-female thinking when it comes to online dating. But really, I just respond when I get a chance. I assume people realize that there are random fluctuations with this kind of thing.
As long as I respond within 24 hours, I don't worry about it. If I find myself taking days to respond to someone's message, I take it as a sign that I'm not actually that interested. C As long as you feel like it.
Look, you don't want to send off a bad email because you wrote it quickly and sent it without thinking. But waiting extra time just to not seem too eager or available or whatever is absurd. No one who's interested in you is going to stop and say "crap, morganw is interested in me and wrote back too soon, fuck that guy," and certainly no one you want to date is going to have that reaction.
I really don't think that appropriate response time is tied to gender so much as it's tied to personality. So framing this as "will women think this" or "men think that" is misleading. Some people like to reply to things right away, as soon as they see them.
They are not the type to overthink and ponder perfect messages. They're likely to be the type to agree to meeting up as soon as possible, perhaps even that same day. There's likely a variable of interest that factors in too--if they like your profile, they'll be more likely to respond quickly. This is the kind of dater I am when I'm on OkCupid. Some people don't like to appear too eager and prefer to take time to compose a thoughtful message that digs deeper in to someone's psyche. These are the people who are likely to have more extensive contact before meeting someone and will plan things out far in advance.
If someone appeals to them, they may spend even more time planning out their response. Obviously, there are types in between these two ends of the spectrum. And when people match in their styles, communication is easy and trying to mindread the other person is minimized. When there's a mismatch, there can be a lot of confusion and angst on both ends. In the end, do what you're comfortable doing.
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If the other person responds well to it, great! If not, then who knows, it might be an indicator that there were fundamental differences in communication there to begin with, and you just saved yourself the time and trouble of finding that out some other way. If you did this 4 times in a row, I might think it was a little eager. I just figured you happened to be online when you get the message. Don't over think it.
I know we all do it, but I constantly forget to respond for several days or just can't think of anything clever to say or am too tired to write any kind of vaguely interesting reply.