An engaged friend once told me a story that happened a month before her wedding. She was going through the guest list and became anxious about the numbers since the list far exceeded the wedding hall’s capacity. Innocently, she took out her phone and sent her fiancé a short text message:
We are so over.
As you would imagine, her fiancé started panicking and by the time she picked up his call, he was sobbing and feeling totally baffled as to why she was breaking up with him. Fortunately, they were able to resolve the confusion quickly and she explained to him that she had been referring to their guest list when she said they were ‘over’.
While they did patch things up, have a beautiful wedding (where the guests did all fit just fine) and are still happily married today, I always think of this story when it comes to the potential pitfalls of texting in relationships. Texting can certainly make things easier in situations like being stuck in a meeting and sending an “I’m running late” message. But in the larger picture, when looking at the reliance on texting and the effect it has on relationships, there is a danger of totally missing important parts of the communication, as portrayed in the story above.
So, next time you’re about to write a text (of course not while driving), ask yourself if the text is will be understood in context and if there is anything important missing. And while you’re deciding that, perhaps you can opt to do this other thing called…….calling!