Should I Text Him First?

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Ahhh, the mind-boggling world of dating. So much to think about, so much to consider. Then crops up the question of, “should I text him first?!” I mean, what are the rules with that?

When should you text first, and when should you wait? What if you KEEP WAITING? What’s the deal there? Well, let’s run through it all, shall we? Let’s help to make it a little clearer and easier.

When Should I Text Him First?

Now I’m going to cut to the chase – there’s no “one size fits all” answer as to whether you should text him first. Why? Because it totally depends on the person and the situation that you’re in.

Should I Text Him First If…

Here, let’s narrow it down a little. Should you text him first if…

He’s your boyfriend? 

Well sure, why not? He’s your man. And if you came here wondering if you should text him first, don’t ask me, have the conversation with him!

Feel like the relationship is one-sided? Feel like all of the effort is coming from you? Either he’s losing interest or not putting the graft in… Or (here’s another consideration) – that’s just the way he is. He’s not a big texter!

Either way, have a think, see if this is the only thing you’re unsure about or if there’s other signs that indicate to anything else. If there’s not, simply say something like…

“So babe, I noticed it’s always me texting you first. Is it too much? Do you want me to cut it down?”

Go in with the angle of you being concerned about him, as opposed to coming across as needy or demanding.

If there is more to it, and there’s other signs starting to add up – don’t call him out on every little thing, especially something as little as who texts who first.

Instead, have a conversation about how he feels and where the two of you are at, as a whole. (Although hopefully it doesn’t come to that!)

He’s Someone You’re Dating or “Seeing”?

So if you’re not quite at the relationship stage yet, it’s more common for you to wonder, “Should I text him first?”

I mean, it’s all a bit of a balancing act, right? How do you show enough interest without coming on too strong? How do you “play it cool“, the right way, to get the balance just about right?

Well, it’s quite easy when you take a bit of an assessment. It’s also less-consuming when you don’t let this one person take over.

(Uh huh, I know, easier said than done at times!) So let’s look at this in more detail…

Should I Text Him First?

How To Know If You Should Text Him First

Let’s create some “rules” for what to do if you’re wondering, “should I text him first?” To make it nice and easy I want you to:

1) Look At The Patterns

Is it always you texting first? Do you text first every time? Does he text you first if you DON’T text him first? 

If you’re feeling unsure, do a quick assessment to understand what the deal is. Look at the facts.

If you notice it’s always you text him first – pull back a bit, don’t text him and see what he does, see if he gets in touch with you. If he does text after a while when you don’t, but there’s still an imbalance and not as much effort as you’d like, ask yourself:

  1. Am I being too demanding here? Does he put effort in in other ways? Is he just not much of a texter? Does he make the effort when we’re together?
  2. Is he just not as interested? Please note: in most cases, this is no reflection on you. He’s probably just not ready for a relationship or isn’t looking for something serious – hence why the effort is minimal. That’s okay, it’s better to know now than to keep trying with someone who isn’t in the same place as you. (Psst, useful read: 10 Signs He’s Playing You. Uh huh you can thank me later!)
  3. Is he not meeting my dating standards? Ultimately if this isn’t what you’re looking for – if you want that spark, that excitement, that back-and-forth in the early stages because you can’t get enough of each other… and this isn’t the case with him, don’t cling on. He’s just one person. Okay?

So by looking at the patterns and establishing not only how he texts but why he may or may not text that way – it can help you better conclude from there. 

2) Establish Some Boundaries

Have you already text him today? Or he hasn’t replied to your last text? In that case, the answer is simple – don’t text him first again. I repeat: don’t, don’t, don’t!

It’s time to stop chasing men, my friends!

I mean, if he hasn’t already replied, it means either he’s busy, he got distracted and has genuinely forgot, you’re just not on his mind enough, or he’s not interested enough. So:

  1. Pushing isn’t going to make him reply any faster, or if it does – he’s replying for the wrong reasons. He’s replying because he feels like he now has to, not because he necessarily wants to. If he wanted to that badly, he would have replied already… Not just replied, but maybe text YOU first once in a while. So have some self-respect girl. There’s plenty of people who will value your time and effort, and if that’s not him, then he’s not for you!
  2. You shouldn’t have to push. If you’re the only one keeping the conversation and relationship alive, every time you text first and KEEP texting first when you’re getting very little back from him – you’re wasting your time. Spot the signs from the start. Know when to accept it and walk away. Remember: reciprocated feelings only, and that comes from reciprocated effort. Agreed? Alright then.
Should I Text Him First?

3) Have Other People On The Scene

Now hold up, hold up, let me clarify. This is only if you’re in the early stages of dating.

If you’re not in a relationship, you’re not exclusive but you ARE actively dating and want to find “the one”, then don’t put all your eggs in one basket. 

It will stop you from scrutinising over the little details with one person like this.

See dating takes effort. Effort from both sides. And initially – everyone should be grafting. When it comes to grafting, there has to be some texting.

Those who text more, are likely to develop more of a connection with you.

Those who text less – you may WANT them to pay more of an interest, it may be frustrating, but someone else will “take the lead” so it feels like less of a deal.

When you’re speaking to multiple people, there’s less pressure on one person, and you simply see how things start to unfold.

The thing is, I do get it – when you catch feelings, you like that one special person, it’s easy for them to take over your life and mind.

This Is Where Things Get Tricky…

When this happens, you think about everything… especially if you notice a change.

“He used to always text me first. Now he’s stopped doing it so much. Should I text him first or does that mean he’s taking a step back and I should do the same too?”

Or…“I really like him. I want to speak to him. But I know he’s not big on texting. Should I text him first, or does that mean I shouldn’t text at all? I don’t want to scare him away!”

You’re wondering if you should text him first because you’re wondering about a lot of things. You want to get it right. You like him. Oh the things we do for “love”. But try to get that balance.

Take a step back if you need. Because overthinking and overanalysing WON’T help.

4) Have Other Things Going On In Your Life

Just like why dating multiple people takes the focus away from this one person who may or may not be texting first all the time, doing your own thing has the same effect too.

So if you notice him pulling back, or he doesn’t text as much as you’re used to / as much as you would – try not to keep checking your phone or going over it. Instead, change your own habits.

Do your own thing. Spend more time on the things you want to do or the things you enjoy.

Also shift your outlook. When you do get a text from him – great! Enjoy it! When you don’t, know that that’s okay too.

Should I Text Him First?

5) Text Him First – It’s Usually Always Okay!

Now this isn’t all about game-playing. If you want to text him first, text him first.

We’re in the twenty first century. Does it really have to be a thing of who texts who first, and supposedly it should be the guy before the girl? REALLY?

It’s not about keeping tabs on who does what, when. It’s just about making it even.

So ask yourself:

  • Does he seem happy when I text?
  • Does he put effort in with his responses?
  • How do I feel? Am I still happy? Feel good in this?

These are the most important questions. How does he respond? How does he make you feel? And does the relationship (or what could progress into one) seem balanced and even?

If so, the simple answer to, “should I text him first?” is yes – absolutely, why not?! You’ve still got to give enough yourself if you want to keep him interested, it can’t all come from him.

That’s All For This One

So there we have it. Should you text him first? I hope you’re now a little clearer.

Good luck! And remember… you’ve totally got this.

Wishing you all the best.


Who Should Message First When Dating?
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Ella Stearn
Ell is a Breakup, Dating & Relationship Specialist & Coach, with over 3 million annual readers, globally. As the Creator of Forgetting Fairytales, her mission is to help you learn to love yourself, find the right person to give your love to, then make it a love that truly lasts.

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