20 tips on how to act when a guy doesn’t text back

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We’ve all been there. Texting a guy for weeks (even months) ‘til the early morn – just for him to not text back.


So what should you do?

Well, here are 20 tips from experts, me, and those who’ve been in the same predicament.

Let’s get started!

1) Fight the urge to text him repeatedly

Think that constantly texting him will make him text back?

In most instances, it won’t. It will only make you appear needy – and guys don’t want that.

“If you’re desperately texting him every day to see where he is and why he isn’t replying, he’s going to get scared off,” reminds my fellow writer Felicity Frankish.

So instead of hitting him up on every other channel – social media, email, and what have you – give him the time and space he needs.

If he likes you, he’ll text you.

As Jenice Vilhauer, Ph.D. explains in her interview with the American Psychological Association:

“If you don’t get a response after two attempts to reach them, I think at that point, you have to take a step back and really realize that this person is making a deliberate choice.”

And, in case he does text you out of nowhere, don’t flat-out ask them why they ghosted you.

According to psychologist Loren Soeiro, Ph.D., “asking people why they’ve ghosted you may even cause them to ghost you again.”

2) Accept that it’s a part of dating

The term ‘Ghosting’ is more or less a modern-day dating phenomenon (in the past it has been known as ‘slow fade.’)

While cell phones, tablets, and computers have greatly improved our dating lives (yay online dating), they have contributed to some relationships’ early demise as well.

Explains Dr. Soeiro:

“Ghosters see the people they meet on the apps as if they’re walking profiles, something they can just swipe away if it’s not quite right.”

Furthermore, “It also takes courage to admit when we’re wrong, or when we’ve knowingly hurt someone.”

There’s also the characteristic most have called cognitive dissonance. According to Dr. Soeiro, it’s all about “convincing oneself that what you’re doing is totally fine.”

Sadly, some “people (also) don’t believe it’s possible for relationships to grow and change, or for attraction to deepen as time goes by; they do not have a growth mindset about romance.”

3) Know that it’s not your fault

He didn’t text you not because you did something wrong. As Dr. Soeiro puts it, it may make “you question yourself, which can be devastating to your self-esteem.”

But, as I (and other people) will constantly remind you:  it’s not you, it’s him.

He might have a lot of things on his plate, which is why you need to give him a week before you make that one last-ditch effort.

And, if he doesn’t text back, it’s clear that he might not just be that interested in you anymore.

Now I know your first impulse might be to text him again, and, as I’ve emphasized in number 2, you shouldn’t.

Remember: it’s not your fault. You are a fine woman, and you deserve a guy who suddenly falls off the face of the universe.

Here’s a good reminder from Dr. Soeiro:

“Someone who ghosts you is declaring that they aren’t ready to treat you like an adult or to be honest about their feelings in anything approaching a delicate situation. It’s a clear sign that they are relying on primitive coping mechanisms — like avoidance and denial — and are not able to have a mature relationship with you at this time.”

4) Don’t conjure up crazy scenarios in your head

Ghosting “deprives you of any chance to work through what went wrong in the relationship. In other words, it’s altogether too easy to draw troubling conclusions when you’ve been ghosted,” explains Dr. Soeiro.

“There’s a profound lack of closure to the relationship, an ambiguity that makes it impossible to interpret what went wrong,” he adds.

Naturally, it has caused some ladies (maybe you included) to conjure up crazy scenarios in our heads.

“He’s found someone new!”

“He’s texting other girls!”

And while these scenarios are possible, focusing too much on them will just bring you down.

Give him the benefit of the doubt.

According to Dr. Villauer:

“If somebody has a lot of contact with you, and anytime there’s a shift in let’s say, the general pattern of how the contact and the relationship is working if somebody always texts you first thing in the morning, and suddenly you don’t hear from them for a day or two, obviously, could be that there’s just something else going on in their life.

“They’re busy. They’ve got other priorities that they’re taking care of, it doesn’t necessarily mean they’re going to ghost you.”

Remember: thinking of these unreal scenarios will just make you feel unworthy – and unloved. In the long run, these feelings could take a toll on your mental health.

Chin up, lady! Don’t let your imagination run wild!

5) Don’t reach out to his friends

He hasn’t texted you for quite a while now, and you’re worried that something might’ve happened to him.

Naturally, one of your first tendencies is to reach out to his friends. They may just shrug it off and tell you that he’s busy.

And since they’re his friends, they may just cover his hijinx up. Even if he’s texting another girl, they could just be telling you that he’s busy.

Then again, they may be honest enough to tell you the bad news: that he’s just not interested in texting you.

So unless you feel the sensation of being knifed a hundred times, I suggest you don’t reach out to his friends.

If any, you should reach out to your own friends (more about this in a while.)

6) Don’t wait for anything, period

Say you gave him the benefit of the doubt – and the opportunity to explain. But alas, he didn’t step up and give you an explanation.

Your last message is still on ‘read,’ like it was a few weeks/months ago.

As you see, the lack of a response is a response. He doesn’t think your text is worth a reply.

So instead of remaining stuck in this situation, I say move on with your life and try to do any (or several) of the things on this list!

Always remember: “If he (is) not really into talking with you, it’s time for you to move on and look for someone who does.”

7) Turn off all other notifications

We girls are great stalkers, especially when it comes to guys we like. We can easily track them through all channels – Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, name it.

Sadly, this ‘talent’ is another one of the reasons why we feel oh-so-down after a ghoster guy.

Keeping tabs on them – after he hasn’t texted back – may just end up slapping you with the heart-crushing truth.

He’s not busy, he’s just not that into you.

See, “If he’s still updating his other social accounts, then it’s a good indication that he has the time to reply to your message — at least if he wanted to,” reminds Felicity.

Furthermore, research has shown that social media stalking can only bring more harm.

According to Tara Marshell of Brunel University, her “Findings suggest that exposure to an ex-partner through Facebook may obstruct the process of healing and moving on from a past relationship.”

And while he might not be your ex-partner, the feelings you have for him are more or less the same deal.

So if you want to save your heart from being broken – twice – I suggest you turn off all notifications that pertain to him.

I’m speaking from experience – what you don’t know won’t hurt you.

8) Block him

If this isn’t the first time he’s ghosted you, I suggest blocking him for good.

See, he keeps on texting you – and disappearing – because you allow him to.

As the old saying goes: “Shame on you if you fool me once, shame on me if you fool me twice.”

The harsh truth is ghosters/d-bags rarely change. Unless you want to experience pain and disappointment once again, I suggest blocking him for good.

Remember: this doesn’t make you bad.

As experts put it: “Blocking is warranted and done for safety, security, and for a healthier state of mind. Blocking people who you know who have negatively impacted you…can also help improve your well-being.”

You need to focus on yourself, which is coincidentally, the next tip on this list.

9) Focus on yourself

More often than not, we girls forget ourselves – simply because we give too much of ourselves to our partners (or flings, in this case.))

So if you’ve let yourself go because you kept on wondering why he didn’t text you back, I say it’s time to focus on yourself once again.

It’s all about self-love and self-compassion.

Prioritize yourself.

Forgive yourself.

Set healthy boundaries (especially when it comes to a guy who doesn’t text back.)

At the end of the day, self-compassion can help “minimize suffering and, just as importantly, avoid creating unnecessary unhappiness and distress for oneself.”

10) Exercise

Exercise will not only give you the ‘revenge bod’ he’ll surely beg for, but it can also help you get over him quickly as well.

According to a Guardian article, “exercise can help you to sleep and raise your mood and self-esteem. The endorphins released during exercise are nature’s own brand of pain relief.”

And, if you’re looking for a workout that can help you feel happy right away, experts recommend high-intensity interval training or HIIT.

“The brain’s “feel-good” chemicals – endorphins and endocannabinoids, are released after a 20 to 30-minute (endorphin) and several hours (endocannabinoid) HIIT workout, respectively,” quotes a US News Report.

In other words, whenever you feel that achy-breaky heart, hitting the gym for that workout will surely help you out!

11) Set your sights on someone else…

So he didn’t text you back and you’re wondering where you went wrong.

One of the reasons why you’re obsessing about this is because you’re only focusing on him.

Girl, you need to set your sights on someone else. I know there’s a 3-month rule of sorts, but you haven’t been official, so…

Re-download that Tinder and Bumble app if you have deleted them (things seemed to go well with him, after all!)

Swipe left. Talk to your matches. Flirt with them – just like what you did to this guy.

I know rebounding has been frowned upon for years, but experts believe that it shouldn’t be the case.

For one, psychologist Claudia Brumbaugh has noted that “People who start new relationships quickly have better romantic life feelings.”

She goes on to add:

“They felt more confident, desirable, and lovable. Possibly because they had proven it to themselves. They had more feelings of personal growth and independence. They were more over their ex (or the guy who ghosted you in this case), and they felt more secure. There were no cases where people who were single were better off.”

12) Or something else, for that matter

You want to take a rest from the online/IRL dating game, and I understand. It could get quite exhausting – I know.

That being said, why not focus your sights on something else?

It could be a hobby, passion project, or sideline you haven’t been able to do because you’re constantly texting.

It could be getting that dog from the pound, too!

Remember: focusing your attention on this thing (or pet) will surely get your mind off that *ahem* d-bag.

13) Try something new

Maybe your usual passions and interests remind you so much of him. (It was you who got him into that new PS5 game, after all.)

Well, if you want to get this guy off your mind, you might as well try something new. Apart from hitting the gym or doing HIIT, you could do other types of exercise – such as running, cycling, or swimming.

Or if you’ve always wanted to go bungee-jumping, now’s the perfect time to do it!

Remember: there are so many new things you could do that’ll tap onto your old interests – without necessarily running into him.

14) Travel

You know what they say: travel is the best cure for heartbreak.

Explains relationship expert Dr. Jessica O’Reilly:

“It breaks your regular routine and ensures that your brain changes in response to novelty.

Additionally, “Whether you’re exploring new terrain, meeting new people or simply trying to master a few words in a new language, travel has the potential to boost cognitive functioning.”

While it’s tempting to book a one-month trip to Asia when you’re reeling from a ghoster of a guy, it’s not always possible for most of us.

There’s work (or school.) And of course, money.

For this, Dr. Ashley Arn suggests creating a mini local experience.

“Taking hikes, connecting with nature, and finding a respite from distractions to simulate the same kinds of benefits traveling can have on heartbreak,” she explains.

15) Let everything be known!

I usually advocate for non-pettiness and being the ‘bigger woman,’ but in this case, I say – let everything be known!

Post your dates, travails, passion projects, whatever to your social media. Now you may have blocked him, but I bet he hasn’t blocked you (yet.)

Show him that you’re doing fine – even if he hasn’t texted back. More often than not, this FOMO will drive this guy to text you again.

Should you reply? Well, that depends on the situation.

16) Spend time with your friends

Most of us girls are guilty of this: spending too much time with a guy that we push our friends to the wayside.

And when we get heartbroken, who are the first ones to console us? These friends!

So if you have inadvertently disregarded your pals, it’s time to call them back to the fold! While you may receive a scolding or two for ‘ghosting’ them – and choosing that guy – they’ll be more than ready to lift your spirits.

Heck, they may even make you realize that he’s not worth it. Friends have eagle eyes when it comes to flings/beaus’ red flags, after all.

As Dr. Villauer reminds many:

“It’s better to really just pull back and again, reach out to people who you know care about you, your friends (or whoever it is) that can give you the comfort and support that you need.”

17) …Or family

Just like your friends, your family can be a great source of comfort when you’re reeling from heartbreak.

See, they can give you the advice you need – especially if you’re talking to your parents/grandparents who’ve been through the same predicament as you.

Likewise, they can lend you a shoulder to cry on (or ears for venting, for the matter.)

And, if you’re lucky, your family may even fund and accompany you on that eat-pray-love experience!

18) Don’t do it unto others

According to Dr. Soeiro, “People who are ghosted become more likely to do the same to someone else.”

But then again, you have the power to stop this ruthless cycle.

Remember the golden rule: “Don’t do unto others what you don’t want others to do unto you.” Sure, it’s tempting to not text this guy back when he texts again. Or any other male texter, for that matter.

But it’s not healthy, you know.

Just think of the sadness you felt when he just fell off the radar – without giving you any explanation why.

You wouldn’t want to wish this to happen to any other person, wouldn’t you? Granted that he deserves it – you need to be the bigger person in this scenario.

19) Know in your heart that you’ll be fine

You survived a good 20/30-plus years without him. And while it hurts now, it won’t last forever!

Just think of it as a minor bump in your journey towards love.

See, it’s in these mistakes that we get to know more about what we need.

Maybe you’re more into party guys, the ones whose second nature is to ghost women. Perhaps, you could take this opportunity to reevaluate your dating habits.

Why not shift your sights towards the opposite type of guy? The one who’s a home buddy, who’d rather spend his time with you rather than party the night away?

Who knows? This hurdle may be the last one you’ll experience – because you’ve used it as a pointer to help refine your dating life.

20) Next time, be more careful!

I’m confident that you’ll get over the ghoster in a few weeks/months – simply by following the tips I’ve listed above.

But as you move on to a new relationship, I implore you to be more careful!

In fact, here’s what Dr. Villauer has to say:

“The best way to protect yourself is to really be careful about who you’re choosing to spend time with, look for those red flags early on in terms of how somebody treats you from the very initial contact.”

Women are known to have a strong intuition – so make sure to use it as you go on and date someone new. If the situation seems fishy, more often than not, it is!

Final thoughts

It’s never easy to deal with a guy who doesn’t text back.

What you can do, however, is to turn the other way around – and not pursue him. Furthermore, following the tips above will surely do wonders for your mental and emotional health.

Remember: it’s not you, it’s him. You deserve better!

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