Bottomline: Let us normalize not texting back when you have nothing to say. Must a late reply always translate to passive aggression? Must blue ticks indicate snobbery?
If I was a writer of the motivational variety, I suppose I would build up a deliberate image of how you only get stronger with the challenges you are currently facing (and I will, at some point) but in the clash and clamor that is 2020, it is only fitting that we soak in our misery till our skin becomes pruney. Afterwards, we might deliberate on whether we will try to solve it or not. That is why it is only fitting that we poke the fire that is our ever growing pile of problems to see what else can depress us today. So let’s discuss one of the greatest diseases that afflicts millennials; friends.
If you momentarily blink and forget that there is literal a pandemic debilitating us in every aspect of our lives, you might remember, fleetingly, that you once upon a time had a social life. It might happen on a rather chilly Tuesday afternoon, in between your struggling side (or main) hustle. Your sad re-calculations of when you might (if ever) finish school.
Checking your WhatsApp only to see a Sahara dry text from a friend you have not seen in months, with a blaring green dot beside it. That, in addition to the several other messages that you have not opened, flash an obscene number of unread messages at the top of your screen (which, if anything, only triggers your OCD to clear it up) so you proceed to open them all without replying. You then realize what you have become, a blue-ticking, friend-abandoning monster.
Blue-tick wielding snob
Life is hard, so is your heart. The art of blue-ticking is a skill that you have perfected. On the tip of your tongue (or rather, finger) is a melee of excuses once someone calls you out on your depraved manner. Your arsenal of chosen defense materials include ‘sorry, my battery ran out’ and ‘I was just about to text you’. Sleeping immediately after you send a risky text that is bound to trigger a lengthy reply that makes someone lose steam on the issue by morning, is your forte.
You, my good friend, are the chairperson of ‘I’ll only text if they text me’ team. Perhaps you thrive on disappointing the general public in the social activity that is texting, or maybe, just maybe, you have a life outside social media thus cannot be bothered to keep up small talk on WhatsApp.
Note to self; unreliable
On the other end of this texting fiasco is a friend who feels wronged. Just a text back, it should not be that hard, should it? For all intents and purposes, let us assume you actually go on a rant invoking the paralyzing power of cancel culture on the blue ticker, then leave them on the basis of their toxicity.
The tweets plus retweets after this is a fine collection of billionaire quotes that talk about building an empire alone with vaguely self-righteous celebrity quotes about the type of people you should cut off for your mental health. All this with a side of ‘ I bet this is how the Jubilee alliance burned and died,’ your set to build your life around the absence of the blue ticker. It is a shame because the blue ticker probably still thinks you are on good terms.
Blue ticking is a form of self-care, just not as conventional as a spa session. Society is designed to make sure people constantly keep relations to push its controlling agenda, that is why you get all jittery and anxious when you have not replied to a text that feels like the dead end of a conversation. Let us normalize not texting back when you have nothing to say. Must a late reply always translate to passive aggression? Must blue ticks indicate snobbery? The standards have been set high, we barely touch its feet. The dynamics of social media friendship is as complex as rocket science. Keeping up a conversation that does not interest is exhausting, so it is okay to admit that texting can be exhausting at times.