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I distinctly remember the morning that I decided it was time for me to turn my read receipts on. It was following a drunken night out, and I had exchanged a few text messages with an ex-girlfriend.
This was in the infancy of read receipts, and it took me a minute or two to figure what exactly I was reading at the bottom of my blue bubbles each time she would read my texts. Simply put, she wanted nothing to do with me and she was using read receipts to just sort of twist the knife in my already mangled heart. The last text between her and I was from me and it read something like this:
“by the way your fucking read receipts are on… I can see that you’re ignoring me. This is really mature”
I was hurt. I won’t lie to you guys. I let out a groan as I re-read my texts to her from the night prior. My head was pounding, it was Valentine’s Day, and I was painfully alone. In that moment, I knew that I had to do one thing to make sure that something like this didn’t happen again. I might have even laughed (probably to keep from crying to be completely honest) as I scrolled over to the Settings tab on my iPhone 4 and switched my read receipts to “on.”
That morning, I knew that I probably had lost my ex-girlfriend for good this time. Too many things had been said to one another in the time since we had broken up. Too many angry text messages and belligerent voicemails exchanged to repair what once was. And looking back on it, I’m thankful for it because it brought me to where I am now: a proud, card-carrying member of Team Read Receipt.
As a boy, I was taught to treat people how I would like to be treated. Like any kid, I was probably a little too mean to certain people but it wasn’t like I wasn’t getting shit from kids either. That’s just how it goes. Kids are mean. You had to deal and move on.
I hate to get on a tangent here but my generation is far different from the one that is currently being brought up. We’re a little tougher. Taught, at least in my house, that if someone hits you, you hit back. And while it may sound a little dramatic the same can be said for read receipts.
The decision to turn on read receipts is not something that should be taken lightly. You need to think about this long and hard because there’s a stigma that goes along with joining the squad. You’ll hear detractors say that it’s “a psycho move” and that you’re sick, demented, and depraved. Don’t listen to them, because once you’re utilizing read receipt you won’t go back. You wield the power in any and all texting conversations.
I got burned that dreary night in February. And to prevent that from ever happening again, I turned mine on. Fight fire with fire.
A lot of people will say that read receipts are a form of cruel and unusual punishment. That mind games and parlor tricks like this are for boys. You wanna know what? I like to think that more than anything it’s a shield.
Believe me when I tell you that there is nothing in this world like leaving a person who wants to talk to you on “read.” I’m not suggesting you use this on your immediate family members or dear loved ones because that’s just evil. But using read receipts with a girl you’re hooking up with or are actively trying to hook up with? It’s all a part of the chase, baby.
Is utilizing read receipts immature and maybe, on some level, sociopathic? I mean, yeah, of course. But people have been playing mind games with each other in the courting stage of romance since Romeo and Juliet.
Anyone who says that dating isn’t a game is a goddamn fool. It’s psychological warfare. Read receipts just give you a card to play in a deck that is already stacked heavily against you..
Image via Unsplash