Ask A Guy: What It Really Means If A Guy Ignores Your Texts

Hey Joel,

What’s your opinion on leaving a girl on read (reading her message but not answering back) when clarity/confirmation is needed? 
I ask this because I have a friend who has a (now former) guy friend who had plans with her last weekend to chill but the plans fell through when she messaged him on Instagram. He read the first message, asking him if he remembered her address because it had been two months since they hung out but three hours later, he didn’t read nor respond to her second message asking if the plans fell through. It’s been really bothering her and she thinks the guy stopped talking to her because he got back with his girlfriend. She was left upset and scared that the former guy friend didn’t want to be her friend anymore and now i’m all she has, she feels abandoned and closed out because this isn’t the first time she was left on read and left an effect on her. Shouldn’t he have said something instead of nothing?


There are two main issues going on here: the problems with social media, and the thin line between friends and more-than-friends. Both of them are complicated in their own right, and when they mix together, it can be very difficult to see the solution.

Let’s address that thin line first, as it has more bearing on the situation. If your friend and this guy got even a bit physical with one another, he could be feeling totally awkward as he’s got a girlfriend. He could have mixed feelings and is trying to be totally loyal to his girlfriend, so has resorted to sort of ignoring your friend.

I mean, if he’s got some feelings for your friend, it’s understandable he’s distanced himself because he has a girlfriend. If you were the girlfriend, I think you’d see the situation very differently and be happy with his choice. While his tactic of silence isn’t good at all, the intention behind it might be noble.

Now, social media. From wondering why a guy doesn’t “like” your posts to questioning why he follows certain people to the “he read it but hasn’t responded,” I honestly believe social media causes far more damage to relationships than it’s worth. Sometimes people don’t respond because they’re busy, or because they need some time to decide what to say – or because they just don’t want to. Sure, it sucks being on the other end of that, but the more you focus on it, it’s only going to bother you more.

So yes, he should have said something as opposed to nothing, because his silence is being a very bad friend if nothing less. I also get that the situation leaves you as the sole support for your friend, which also sucks. But it really sounds like both of you just need to move on and forget this guy. He’s clearly caught up in things with his girlfriend, and if somewhere down the line he wants to rekindle the friendship, your friend can get her answer on his silence if it still matters.

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