B is Hilarious: What She’s Doing When She’s Not Texting You Back

Welcome to B is Hilarious, a new column in which Brittani Nichols is hilarious.

I’ve always felt good at texting. I’m a much more successful flirt via the written word than I am in face-to-face interactions, but every now and then I end up involved with someone that doesn’t like texting that much for whatever reason. We won’t get into those right now *cough* a threat to their independence *cough* but you know the type. This is all to say, I have a thing about people texting me back. It makes me feel special and prioritized and when someone doesn’t, I feel the exact opposite to a terrifying extent. They should make up a sixth love language that’s just Texting Back in a Polite Amount of Time.

Now if being one of those people that gets annoyed if someone doesn’t text back isn’t bad enough, I also used to catastrophize. That means if I hadn’t heard from someone in whatever amount of time I’d deemed an absurd period to not have responded, I assumed something terrible had happened. Usually that they were dead. The times terrible things actually were the culprit for someone not responding to my texts, I handled it pretty well because I’d already been thinking that possibly the person was dead! It’s like, look at me being emotionally prepared! Rarely am I emotionally prepared! Things I haven’t been emotionally prepared for recently: McDonald’s only serving fried apple pies. Having my tire pressure light come one. Seeing cute girls in trees. THE LIST GOES ON.

Now I’ve gotten better at chilling out about people not getting back to me in whatever random time window I’ve decided on. I’ve gone from always assuming that it’s a physical disaster to rarely thinking it’s an emotional one. Especially if the person I’m texting is a woman I like.

Truth be told, I hadn’t googled “what does it mean if they don’t text me back?” I’ve gotten better at holding off on an emotional panic as well by coming up with different fun scenarios a crush could be enjoying instead of texting me back. Here’s an example of what this timeline is usually like.

1-3 hours of no response

Eh. This isn’t a big deal. They might be taking a very long shower that’s furthering California’s drought emergency but that’s ok, she deserves it. Don’t judge her, she just wants to be clean for when she eventually texts you back. Or maybe she’s taking a nap? Well, not taking a nap… fell asleep. Because she’s considerate and if she was planning on taking a nap in the middle of this very important conversation about who has the better taco truck by their apartment, she’d have let you know!

3-5 hours of no response

Oh, this is fine. She probably went to see the new Kristen Stewart movie or something. Maybe after there was a surprise cast Q&A with K-Stew! I can’t wait to ask her about it. Oh man, what if they like bumped into each other after it was done and K-Stew likes her! She does sort of look like her type. Oh my God, am I about to get swooped by Kristen Stewart! Is there a way to frame that as a win for me?! No, no. This is silly. She’s probably working or something. I get caught up in work all the time. I mean, sometimes I know I’m going to be W.O.R.K.I.N.G. and I turn off my phone. But if I’m in the middle of talking to someone I tell them that because I’m not an asshole, you know?

5-7 hours of no response

Ok, here’s the thing. I exist in this modern world and I can tell you this much. There’s no way I’m not texting SOMEONE or checking SOMETHING for this long. So that means if for some reason she only has like a couple of minutes to talk because she’s sooooo busy with her “job” and/or her “life,” she’s decided to talk to someone other than me. Guess we know where I stand! That’s fine. You know what I’m gonna do? Message your friend that I have no interest in but that clearly has a crush on me! Bet she doesn’t take six hours to respond to a Very Funny text message.

7-8 hours of no response

I so genuinely don’t care what she’s doing I don’t even like her I mean whatever I have options but if the goddesses have forsaken me and by chance I see that she’s faved a tweet or liked a picture on Instagram, I’m gonna lose my shit.

8+ hours of no response

I mean, what are you even doing? Did you run off to get married to Adam Levine OR WORSE, an ex-boyfriend. Have you deleted me from your phone? Did you run into one of my exes and they didn’t say anything bad about me, they just talked about how I’m a motherfucking delight and now you can’t move forward with me because if me and that ex didn’t work out, you no longer believe in love? WHAT HAPPENED? WHAT ARE YOU DOING? WHERE ARE YOU? I THOUGHT THAT TEXT WAS FUNNY. SHOULD I HAVE PUT A QUESTION MARK? DID YOU NOT REALIZE IT WARRANTED A RESPONSE?!?

Now you may be asking, “Well how does it end? Do people always respond? Do they have excuses? What were they doing?” And I have to tell you this, my friend: I DON’T KNOW. They probably are just unaware that any one person would ever care that much about if they weighed in on a joke about mulitas that, upon further inspection, isn’t THAT good. Usually what happens is people will just start a different conversation as if nothing happened or I’ll break and send some nonsense emoji like a fucking tomato or those two random ass fish on a flag and then everything is fine and they don’t realize that any of this happened because it was all in my head. At this very moment a girl I like hasn’t texted me back in two hours. What’s she doing? I don’t know. Living her life probably. I’m definitely fine though and not worried about it all.

P.S. I have heard straight people talk about how after a date they will not text someone for multiple days even though they like them. Heterosexuals are straight up psychos.

Brittani Nichols is a Los Angeles based comedy person. When she's not tweeting about white people or watching television, she's probably eating pizza. Actually, she's probably doing all three of those things concurrently and when she's not doing THAT, she's sleeping. Brittani also went to Yale and feels weird about mentioning it but wants you to know.

Brittani has written 330 articles for us.


  1. I think it’s totally normal, if you like someone, to want them to text back and to check your phone a lot or wonder what they’re doing. But I also feel really uncomfortable with the idea of checking someone’s social media accounts to see if they’re talking to other people instead of/while talking to you, or messaging their friend cause those seem like they could lead to more controlling/manipulative behaviors. People get distracted by work or chores or video games or spending time with other people and there’s nothing wrong with that. In a healthy relationship, both people respect each other’s privacy and independence. Obviously, if it’s the beginning of the relationship, some of the expectations and boundaries haven’t been established yet, and if you feel they’re playing games with you that’s different and is def a reason to consider moving on from the relationship, but the whole idea that someone should put you before everything else in their life because they like you seems unhealthy to me. I know this is a humor article so exaggeration is the name of the game, and I love B’s tweets–they always make me laugh. But I work in healthy relationship education/abuse intervention so I just felt like this needed to be said.

  2. Reasons why I sometimes take a while to text back:
    1. my phone wasn’t on me and I didn’t bother to pick it up for a few hours
    2. texting is one of the most emotionally stressful forms of communication for me, so if I’m going through a bad bout of anxiety or depression I sometimes can’t bring myself to text
    3. I got up to eat/pee and now can’t find my phone
    4. I though that was an acceptable place to end the conversation, and was wrong
    5. I didn’t notice that you had texted me back and it was my turn to reply
    I do try to remind people that I care about them/think they’re cute/need their help fairly regularly, especially if we don’t communicate much face to face, because I recognize a lot of people don’t deal well with texters like me. And I do usually try a little harder with people I’ve just met, although that may be because I tend to be more sociable then anyways.

  3. “Did you run into one of my exes and they didn’t say anything bad about me, they just talked about how I’m a motherfucking delight and now you can’t move forward with me because if me and that ex didn’t work out, you no longer believe in love?”

    This whole article is golden. I can’t handle Brittani Nichols at all.

  4. So first off, this is HILARIOUS, the title of this column is clearly super accurate.

    That said, I need to speak up on behalf of bad texters everywhere and mention that sometimes, anxiety and/or executive dysfunction keeps me from texting people back. I’m autistic, so I know I’m not your average person-you-might-be-dating. But I struggle a lot with not wanting to text, forcing myself to text someone and then not having energy to do the next thing I need to do, having absolutely no idea what to say (or being terrified of saying the wrong thing) and then suddenly it’s two days later, misinterpreting the other person’s intent and assuming the conversation is over, etc. I have a lot of friends with similar communication issues, though most of them are not autistic, and I find this to be common enough for people with any kind of mental health issues that I feel the need to speak up on our behalf.

    That said, I am also totally on your side of it! When I don’t hear back from someone I am expecting/hoping/waiting to hear back from, I’m typically an anxious wreck. Not intending to be a hypocrite, it’s just the messed up brain chemistry. :)

    In case you think I’m taking this too seriously, I want to reiterate that I completely loved it and laughed quite a lot.

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