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Guy I met online only wants to text. No call yet, should I call or wait until he texts again???
January 7, 2010 9:49 PM   Subscribe

Texting guy from online site. He don't want to talk on the phone, only text and FB messages.

Sorry if I seem lame. Guy messaged me on dating site, and we are talking with messages. When I suggest not messaging each other, he wants to text. I said maybe I was not comfortable to give him my number but he said ok when I'm ready. I thought strange, but I agree and we start texting. It went well, but he didn't wanted to talk on phone. He also add me to Facebook and sent me one message.

I would like your help. Our first texting was last night. Now should I wait one day without text him, since he text me last night? Or should I text him tonight? Or just forget about the whole thing because texting is seem strange without talking on phone...

Thanx
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (48 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
 
If you think you might like him, ask him if he wants to meet up. If he doesn't - ignore him from now on. Thus far, there have been far too many messages.
posted by moxiedoll at 9:55 PM on January 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


Flake.

Move and forget. Wait - you're texting; you have his phone number. Why not call it and say hi?
posted by porpoise at 9:55 PM on January 7, 2010 [2 favorites]


I don't know how old you are, but I think there is a huge divide on what people like.

I almost never talk to someone on the phone before the first couple of dates.
posted by mattsweaters at 10:00 PM on January 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


Oh and as for your question, just text with him. flirt, feel it out. see if you like him.
posted by mattsweaters at 10:00 PM on January 7, 2010


I second what moxiedoll says about asking him if he wants to meet up and ignoring him if he does not.

Some people don't like phones. (I am one of these people. I have met lots of people online and then in person without speaking on the phone first. That is my strong preference.) He might be one of those people.
posted by needs more cowbell at 10:02 PM on January 7, 2010 [9 favorites]


Maybe he's really nervous about talking on the phone. I hate talking on the phone and I can see how a week of messaging on the internet and over text can help him feel more comfortable in preparation to phone talking.
posted by MaryDellamorte at 10:02 PM on January 7, 2010


I don't think I'd advise meeting ANYONE you haven't even had a phone conversation with. Ask him specifically what's up with not talking on the phone -- does he think talking on the phone steals his voice soul or something? Maybe he just wants to take things really slow, which is understandable, but he should be able to communicate this. If not, write him off as a flake-out freakazoid, flag, and move on.
posted by Juicy Avenger at 10:03 PM on January 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


He's married/partnered, and doesn't want his SO to hear and wonder who he's talking to. EIther that or he has a voice like Gilbert Gottfried.
posted by deadmessenger at 10:03 PM on January 7, 2010 [7 favorites]


It's possible that he's married. Texting and chatting is much easier to conceal from a spouse than a full-on voice call. You may eventually talk to him on the phone, but if he always wants to call you and forbids you to call him, that's pretty much a dead giveaway.
posted by kindall at 10:04 PM on January 7, 2010


He doesn't want to actually talk on the phone?
Sounds to me like he's hiding something- either he isn't a he, or he's much older (or younger!) than he says he is.
posted by dunkadunc at 10:05 PM on January 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


(Also: I notice you don't seem to be a native English speaker- so if this guy is actually a precocious thirteen-year-old boy, it might be harder to pick up on.)
posted by dunkadunc at 10:07 PM on January 7, 2010


Honestly, there are some people who just hate talking on the phone. And getting over that dislike is not as necessary for younger people today as I assume it was for older people. I overwhelmingly prefer talking online or texting over talking on the phone, unless I know the person very, very well. Someone I'd just met on a dating site? I would avoid talking on the phone as long as possible, quite possibly until after meeting them in person and getting a feel for their spoken communication style with the aid of body language.
posted by MadamM at 10:09 PM on January 7, 2010 [1 favorite]


Jesus Christ people. Assuming that the guy is married, psycho, weird, whatever all because he doesn't want to talk on the phone right off the bat? Some people really hate the phone. The phone is a source of extreme anxiety for me, especially if talking to someone I don't know or don't know that well. There is nothing wrong with wanting to take things slow, everyone is different. If this "relationship" had been going on for weeks with him insisting on no phone talking or meeting in person, then I'd start in with the serious red flag warnings. They just started texting last night. Anyway, OP, give it a week and feel things out. Don't put any pressure on the phone talking or it will become "a thing" which could make him feel more nervous about it. Just go with the flow and casually mention it in a week and go from there.
posted by MaryDellamorte at 10:09 PM on January 7, 2010 [27 favorites]


I'm with MaryDellamorte. I hate talking on the phone. I know several other people who hate it too for various reasons. Some people are just like that; don't make assumptions about the guy based on this very small fact.

Also, many people are cautious about how much personal contact information they give to people on a dating site. Maybe he would gladly talk to you on the phone once he knows you better.
posted by k. at 10:18 PM on January 7, 2010


He's married/partnered, and doesn't want his SO to hear and wonder who he's talking to

My money's on this one.
posted by Ironmouth at 10:20 PM on January 7, 2010


I think this is a generational thing. I have done online dating and have never, ever talked to anyone on the phone before meeting them other than, "Hi I'm here, where are you? Ok bye". Someone wanting to talk on the phone before we met would be extremely weird to me. I don't even talk to my best friends on the phone.

The only time I talk to people on the phone is for work when I absolutely have to, otherwise it's all text messaging / email.
posted by bradbane at 10:22 PM on January 7, 2010 [6 favorites]


There's been lots of silly jumping to conclusions in this thread.

"there have been far too many messages"? They texted on one day.

"asking him if he wants to meet up and ignoring him if he does not"? Um, maybe either of these two people would like to have a bit more time to feel things out before going to the trouble to meet in person? This wouldn't be at all uncommon. Again, it's been one day.

Now, if the guy insists that they only ever talk through text messages, that'd be a red flag. But it's not clear from the wording of the question that he took such an extreme position. Maybe he initially suggested just communicating through text messages to keep things light, but soon they'll be emailing or IMing or talking on the phone.

About the phone... As others have said, maybe he just doesn't like the phone.

Or -- maybe he has no problem with talking on the phone in general, but he just doesn't like having long phone conversations before the first meetup.

There is no rule that says everyone who does online dating has to spend a significant amount of time talking on the phone before meeting in person. If some people want to follow that rule, that's fine. But if he doesn't want to follow that rule, that doesn't mean there's anything wrong with him.

I've gone on a lot of dates through dating websites, and I usually haven't gotten into any significant phone conversations before the first date (aside from "I'll meet you there in 15 minutes" type of stuff). I'm not psychotic or married or 13 years old or any of the things people are suggesting. I'm not even bad on the phone! I like phone calls! I talk to people I know on the phone a lot. It's a wonderful form of communication. I just find it to be a really awkward way to get to know someone I've never met in person.

Look, if you want to talk to him on the phone, give it a shot. If you're tired of the texting but you respect his preference not to talk on the phone, switch to email or IM or meeting in person. But don't meet in person before you're comfortable with it just because someone on Metafilter tells you there's a rule that you have to do it.

You seem to want us to give you rules about how to act, what to do. Here's a rule: do what you want. Not what we want you to do. Do what YOU want to do.
posted by Jaltcoh at 10:44 PM on January 7, 2010 [2 favorites]


I absolutely hate talking on the phone, I get nervous and anxious and then I end up getting distracted mid call and putting the phone down and forget that I was even on the phone. I find it much easier to text then to call. I would wait a couple of days and then text him if he hasn't texted you back. Please don't assume that hes married or that hes hiding something because he won't call, some people find it easier to text and email.
posted by lilkeith07 at 10:45 PM on January 7, 2010


If you respond to a message on Facebook, the recipient has one month's access to your Facebook profile. So you may wish to use caution in replying to Facebook messages from strangers.
posted by zippy at 11:08 PM on January 7, 2010 [4 favorites]


Jeez. I'm with all the other people who will bend over backwards to avoid talking on the phone. Basically every day I fall down on my knees and thank god there are all these great technologies so I can avoid talking to a disembodied voice against my ear. I would rather walk, bike, drive, or fly in person to talk than talk on the phone. I would rather videoconference than talk on the phone. I would rather email, IM, text, twitter, facebook wall, comment on blog posts, and respond to ask metafilter than talk on the phone. I would rather send telegrams than talk on the phone. There are many people like me. My little sister (college freshperson) says nobody she knows ever talks on the phone except with their parents.

I hope that by the time my kids are old enough to want to talk on the phone with their friends, they won't want to because nobody talks on the phone. That is my dream for the future.

If it's important to you to be with someone who is all over phone communication, that's fine. But don't assume that anything is wrong or shady about someone who doesn't want to talk on the phone. It's a preference that gets more normal every year, because every year people are coming up with half a dozen alternatives that are vastly better.

Someone else mentioned that you might not be a native speaker of English, too - maybe he is jumping to the same conclusion and concerned that you might have an accent that will be hard for him to understand. This is a huge phone issue for a lot of people, many of whom are mildly dependent on lipreading in face-to-face interaction and horribly embarrassed to have to ask you to repeat yourself.
posted by crinklebat at 12:10 AM on January 8, 2010 [8 favorites]


Texting means he can think about what he's going to say. He's nervous about messing up or saying something wrong if he's on the phone and has to think on the spot.

Keep texting, let him know you'd like to talk at some point.

Relax.
posted by twirlypen at 1:00 AM on January 8, 2010


I understand there are people who don't like talking on the phone, but seriously? Isn't the initial getting to know you phase the point where you try to hide your weaknesses, to a point? Would you really want to date someone who gets too stressed out by a basic communications medium? To the point where they're willing to unnerve dating prospects?

I have a phone with a keyboard now but still, having a 'real' conversation via text message sounds incredibly tedious.
posted by delmoi at 1:02 AM on January 8, 2010


If it's important to you to be with someone who is all over phone communication, that's fine. But don't assume that anything is wrong or shady about someone who doesn't want to talk on the phone.

Well.. If he never talks on the phone, ever, there is probably a problem. That goes for both flat out refusal and avoidance tactics that make it never actually happen. On the other hand, avoiding the phone whenever reasonably possible is pretty normal for some people.
posted by Chuckles at 1:35 AM on January 8, 2010


Do not trust an unknown man who establishes peculiar rules about how you may contact him.

That is all.
posted by IAmBroom at 1:56 AM on January 8, 2010 [5 favorites]


Introverts generally dislike telephones. Not because they can't interact socially, but because they take a few minutes to get into a mode where they can talk comfortably. If they're concentrating deeply on something, and the phone rings, they can't instantly switch to quickfire conversation.

Not liking telephones is not necessarily the sign of a liar or psychopath.
posted by TheophileEscargot at 2:18 AM on January 8, 2010


Also, you shouldn't be having a conversation when texting with someone...its more just small flirty little things that give you insights to their personality, or thats at least how I see it.

The whole not talking on the phone is a personal preference, and it seems to be becoming more and more popular. I save the conversation when were at the coffee place or bar and we can speak face to face.
posted by mattsweaters at 3:00 AM on January 8, 2010


Maybe he's hard of hearing/deaf, has a stutter or other physical/health issues that prevent him from comfortably calling you? I have a deaf friend who is entering in the world of online dating and because of his hearing loss prefers to text/email potential suitors before they meet in order to make sure he gets the dates/locations/other details right without confusion. My friend often doesn't tell his potential suitors of his hearing loss until he meets them in person as it's easier to discuss adaptive methods of communication in person than just through text, not as a way of being deceitful but to try and adapt to each persons communication preference with him.

It's just a thought.
posted by carabiner at 3:32 AM on January 8, 2010


While it's possible that he is married/shady, there are equally likely innocent explanations, as others have said.

Data point: I'm male. When I was doing online dating I interacted with probably 30-40 women, actually met up with maybe 15 of them. I spoke to maybe 2 on the phone, before meeting them. I'm not shady, it's just that neither I nor they wanted to speak on the phone. In my case, I've got (mild) social anxiety and hearing loss. For those reasons I hate talking on the phone - it's not easy to build intimacy with a new person when I'm constantly asking them to repeat themselves.

All that said: anonymous of course has the right to communicate how she (he?) prefers; so if not talking is a deal-breaker, then it's a deal-breaker.
posted by Infinite Jest at 4:04 AM on January 8, 2010


Everyone's answers are focused on the phone thing and not on the Now should I wait one day without text him, since he text me last night? Or should I text him tonight? question. As to that question specifically: there are no actual rules and no "he'll like you more if you do this" guidelines. I'd generally recommend erring on the side of texting less, especially in the beginning, so you can spend your time thinking about things other than the guy. (Texting is more drawn out over time than writing an email or talking on the phone, so it can be really easy to spend a whole evening with one eye on the phone all anxious-like.) Other than that, text whenever you feel like.

As for phone avoidance, who knows. Maybe he really does hate talking on the phone. Maybe he's shy. Maybe he's cautious and doesn't want to give away too much until he thinks you're a sure bet. Maybe he's sketchy. I don't think it's possible to predict why he's reluctant to talk on the phone, especially not with so little information to go on.

Generally, though, when two people connect via an online dating site, the best way to go about things is to exchange enough messages/emails/whatever to establish that yes, you would like to meet in person, and then arrange that. Before then, don't jump to any "I really like him" conclusions, because you may change your mind when you hang out with him.

If the other person is making it difficult for any reason to meet up - if they have excuses or are evasive or just want to continue texting for weeks and weeks, it's likely nothing will ever get off the ground. (Some guys just kind of like to idly flirt over IM or whatever, and don't intend to meet the women they flirt with.) Or, before you meet, if it becomes clear that the other person isn't someone you'd get along with, it's okay to decide not to pursue things further. I think either of these situations might be a possibility with this guy - either it's going to be hard getting in touch with him or you'll decide you're just not into someone who doesn't like phone conversations. Again, we can't really predict this, but keep an eye out for either of these.

Anyway, in the end, it doesn't matter what his deal is; if it's a dealbreaker for you, then move on.
posted by Metroid Baby at 4:47 AM on January 8, 2010


One time I met a girl online and we had a similar situation going. Eventually it came out that she was deaf.

Sometimes there are good reasons for these things.
posted by Menthol at 4:54 AM on January 8, 2010


Wow, a lot of people seem to be preying on your insecurities for some reason. I don't know what's up with that, but don't give them too much credit. There are some people who do not like telephones, do not wish to speak into telephones, or simply do not call people as soon as they meet them. All of those states are perfectly okay.

"should I wait one day without text him...?"

If you want to contact him, do that exactly when you wish to. Do not wait around according to some imaginary rule of propriety.

"Or should I text him tonight?"

If you want to do that, do that. There's no rule preventing you from doing this if you want do.

" Or just forget about the whole thing because texting is seem strange without talking on phone..."

That doesn't even make sense. Some people do not like talking into a telephone. The amount a person does or does not like to talk into the telephone is not related to how much they like to send or receive SMS messages.
posted by majick at 5:35 AM on January 8, 2010


Introverts generally dislike telephones. Not because they can't interact socially, but because they take a few minutes to get into a mode where they can talk comfortably. If they're concentrating deeply on something, and the phone rings, they can't instantly switch to quickfire conversation.

100% correct. Last month I started a relationship with a woman and I HATE HATE HATE talking on the phone, much to her amusement. People like me, with a degree of social anxiety, can greatly dislike ringing phones and the immediacy and pressure that comes with them. And that's just answering the phone. If I were to call her up, I'd be paralyzed by anxiety and the onus to be on my conversational game, with witty bon mots and super cool stories at the ready.

Gmail chat, though? I can do that for hours.
posted by porn in the woods at 6:27 AM on January 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


I also HATE chatting on the phone. Even to immediate family and close friends. I'm a little shy but not really an introvert. I'm much better in person than my phone-persona would lead you to believe - I'm even chatty, once I get going.

FWIW, personally, I would much rather IM than text (it's just easier - I find phone keypads too fiddly, and it's laborious and relatively expensive). But I would certainly rather chat face-to-face once I'd become a bit more comfortable with the other person.
posted by jonesor at 6:57 AM on January 8, 2010


I'm terrible on the phone. I don't even talk to my friends on the phone. It makes me feel bad when I can't think of anything to say to keep the conversation going, so I rarely chat on the phone.
posted by anniecat at 7:21 AM on January 8, 2010


Are you going to have a real life relationship with this person? Then you need meet the person and determine if there's chemistry or the potential to build it. You can waste tons of time texting, but that will have almost no bearing on how you feel in this person's presence. That someone can be witty over text, doesn't mean that they can be witty or fun in a real time conversation. Virtual world attraction doesn't always hold up in bright light of in person interaction.

Someone is going to run into this thread and tell me that they met the SO over email or that their grandparents met as pen pals. Yes, it can happen. However, there are tons more stories of people who spent lots of time building a romance in the virtual world that fell completely flat in person.

Give it a few days or a week. If you are in the same town and he's unwilling to meet or talk on the phone forget him.
posted by 26.2 at 7:51 AM on January 8, 2010


There's nothing I hate like talking on the phone. I'm also pretty outgoing, just not on the phone. If you want to get to know me, I'll tell you my life story over an IM, but good luck getting me to chat on the telephone.

(I mean, I have a 600 minute a month plan and currently am sitting on almost 3000 minutes of rollover available.)
posted by TomMelee at 8:10 AM on January 8, 2010


I am forwarding this thread to my friends and family who are personally offended that I never, ever, ever answer the phone. I love you all.
posted by mykescipark at 10:19 AM on January 8, 2010


If you like to talk on the phone, and this guy hates to talk on the phone, it doesn't seem like the two of you are a good match.
posted by Sidhedevil at 10:41 AM on January 8, 2010


Have fun texting and messaging, but it's a minor friendship until you have an opportunity to know the person better. In any online-only relationship, you should always use caution; the world is full of strange, unkind, dishonest people. There are many lovely people online, but assume NOTHING at this point.
posted by theora55 at 12:02 PM on January 8, 2010


There's nothing more awkward than a "get to know you" phone call from a random stranger. If you text back and forth, then you might actually have something to talk about on the phone.

There are no rules for when to text people.
posted by oneirodynia at 1:52 PM on January 8, 2010


It's entirely possible that any of the innocent answers are true. Me? I smell a cheater.

Don't break it off just for this, but be wary.
posted by ErikaB at 2:40 PM on January 8, 2010


Actually, I probably would just flat-out ask him, "How come I can ONLY text you? Are you cheating on your wife?" Just to get him to tip his hand.

PROTIP: As a rule, a lie attacks the evidence, while an honest answer attacks the charge. In this case, "Why do you think I'm married?" would be the lie. "No, I'm not married!" is the truth.

(I know, right? It's amazing I'm still single!)
posted by ErikaB at 2:46 PM on January 8, 2010 [1 favorite]


It would be hard for anyone to answer the question of whether he's being sketchy because he's married or if he's just taking things slowly without knowing the actual content/ context of the texts, messages, etc.

Have you tried asking him to IM you? That might be a compromise that is comfortable for both of you - it's more 'real-time' for you, and on his part he's not on the phone if he's so opposed to it.


At the end of the day, though, I'd say don't let this guy get under your skin. While you may find him attractive, he's just another guy who for whatever reasons prefers a method of communication you find 'strange'. See where it goes, and if it doesn't work, it doesn't. These things are supposed to be fairly 'easy' at first, and overthinking things from the get-go doesn't bode well. You're not supposed to be posting MeFi threads until much later into the relationship ;)

Good luck with everything. I hope you end up with someone who makes you happy.
posted by Everydayville at 4:17 PM on January 8, 2010


I probably would just flat-out ask him, "How come I can ONLY text you? Are you cheating on your wife?"

This is a terrible, terrible strategy for human communication. Don't do this.
posted by 0xFCAF at 9:21 AM on January 9, 2010


PROTIP: As a rule, a lie attacks the evidence, while an honest answer attacks the charge. In this case, "Why do you think I'm married?" would be the lie. "No, I'm not married!" is the truth.

That's so nuts! If someone thought I was cheating because I don't like talking on the phone, I'd be so confused by their accusation that I can easily imagine responding with a "why would you think that?" instead of just answering "no." Some people don't like phones. Honestly.

Like many others have said, I'm very thankful for all the other technologies since phones are less necessary now, because they suck. They are a weird mix of intimate and removed that is very hard for me to navigate, and I have never felt comfortable using them. Writing something and sending it off (whether by letter, email, text or telegram) is something I do by myself, with you in mind. Talking to you in person is something I do with you. But talking to you on the phone is something I have to do not quite by myself but not quite with you. I can do it for businessy stuff but I have to kind of put on a 'persona'. I can't be real and natural on a phone. I'm either efficient and professional, or boring and awkward.
posted by mdn at 10:48 AM on January 9, 2010


PROTIP: As a rule, a lie attacks the evidence, while an honest answer attacks the charge. In this case, "Why do you think I'm married?" would be the lie. "No, I'm not married!" is the truth.

If someone thought I was cheating because I don't like talking on the phone, I'd be so confused by their accusation that I can easily imagine responding with a "why would you think that?" instead of just answering "no."


Yep. And, conversely, the secretly married person who's using a dating site and gets asked, "Are you married?," would hardly need to be a genius to think of answering: "No!"

It's nice of people to try to give advice to help weed out bad people on dating sites, but some of the advice here just isn't realistic and could actually be counterproductive. In particular, any set of rules about what kinds of communication people are supposed to have (which medium, for how long before meeting, etc.) seems unlikely to be useful in weeding those people out. Having a rigid set of rules like that just means that the devoted person-up-to-no-good (liar/married/rapist/murderer) will make sure to research those rules online and follow them in order to create an attractive facade. Meanwhile, you end up weeding out decent people who happen to not be savvy about dating rules (e.g. the person who, like me and others in this thread, honestly prefers meeting in person before talking on the phone). To be clear, I'm not denying the importance of dating safety rules (meet in a public place, let a friend know where you are, Google the person, etc.), but they can't be just any old arbitrary rules.
posted by Jaltcoh at 12:29 PM on January 9, 2010


If you think texting is weird, tell him so and ask him to reconsider in a polite way that frames it as a request, not a suspicion. I doubt he's cheating if he added you as a friend on facebook, but if you meet in person and he still refuses to talk on the phone at all, I'd think twice about his honesty level. A lot of people hate the phone, but it's not too much to ask someone to do the occasional 5-minute "Hi, how's your day? Want to get together on Tuesday? It was great seeing you."
posted by kathrineg at 8:54 PM on January 10, 2010


Regardless of whether it's NORMAL or not to hate calling people/receiving calls, you should try to meet him in person as soon as possible.
posted by herbaliser at 4:16 PM on January 11, 2010


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