Crossed Paths (RJR)Reflections On Text Confrontations

by Rowena J Ronson

Have you ever been involved in a text confrontation? It seems to me that more and more people use this way of communicating to express what they really feel to their friends and family, work colleagues and more, and this can often lead into a back and forth, ping pong argument. But unlike face-to-face communication, the compassion between two human beings disappears in the space in between, when we are simply only tapping letters on a screen. And as we know, our words are only a very small way of how we communicate to others. Our non-verbal communication and our tone are lost in translation.

So texts are open to interpretation. You can read a text a couple of times and see it differently depending on where our mood takes us. Show it to a friend, and they might see it in another way all together. That is because our words only convey a very small proportion of our actual message, perhaps 8%. And without the person we are writing to, physically standing in front of us, it seems all too easy to say what we wouldn’t do normally directly to their face. But all the while, our intentional meaning will become distorted by text, this overused and impersonal way of communicating.

How many relationships have ended at the drop of a text? How simple it is to bring to a painful stop, an unresolvable dynamic by just pressing ‘send’. And further still, an even more aggressive ‘block’, so no further messages can get through. But had we taken the time and communicated in person or at least on the phone, we would have be on the receiving end of the person and their feelings and maybe we would have found a way for the dynamic to resolve itself and the breakdown of communication not to occur.

Nigel and my next dialogue is a more in depth look at this subject and we welcome your experiences here. Join the discussion……

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  1. desperatelyseekingasolution on April 8, 2014 at 1:29 pm

    What happens when you have to resolve the problems via text because the other person doesn’t want to speak on the phone? Is texting better than nothing?

  2. doubleekat on April 8, 2014 at 1:39 pm

    Thanks for your question ‘desperatelyseekingasolution’ and I am guessing you are asking because you have had or currently have an experience like this? Are you in the process of responding by text and if so, are you both finding you are managing to work the problem through? You are most welcome to submit the problem to our problem page too for a Double Take with my co-writer Nigel Summerley. We are happy to help.

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