Dear Wanda and Wayne,
I agree with the letter you published some time back, about how you both have grown and improved the column since it started. I look forward to the friendly banter between you two, and your interesting viewpoints.
I'm curious why neither of you mentioned something I know you must have picked up on regarding the recent letter from "Can We Talk." His new girl might be cool and cute, but, this young man should exercise caution. He goes on a first date -- as in ONE date -- and she texts all the time. And she gets annoyed when he doesn't respond immediately. Even if he's at work, accountable to a supervisor, she doesn't care. If this is how she behaves now, what happens when he's gone even further with her?
This seems like a warning flag. Maybe he didn't ask for this type of advice, but it couldn't hurt to mention. He's just out of a relationship. Getting into one with someone as needy, insecure and possibly immature as this young woman sounds might not be the best course of action for him at this time in his life. Just a thought.
-- Noting the Needy
Interesting point. When responding to that letter, I was focused on whether the letter writer could live with a super-texter, and I didn't read too much into her constant need to write or think too deeply about what her steady shout-outs might say about her qualities as a girlfriend.
While the phenomenon of text messaging is newer to the land of love, neediness certainly is not. And for some people that's OK. You know the couple: They move in together immediately, speak in "we" language and don't even like to go grocery shopping apart. Then there are others who navigate successful long-distance relationships, have separate friends and are quite happy going on solo vacations.
I theorize that most of us are somewhere in the middle of those two extremes. We share many friends, especially as time passes, but also have a few pals to call our own. We enjoy the company of someone we care about while also needing a degree of space and occasional alone time.
Alone time is important, and it's harder to get in today's electronic era -- seems every few moments we're hit by an incoming email, text or call. After getting out of a long relationship, our texting-averse letter-writer might need to take some more time for himself. I saw her frequent text messaging as a sign of insecurity but it might just be indicative of the level of intense attention this girl needs.
One person's red flag is another person's perfect match. I'm not saying these two are a great fit -- in fact, I think I remember saying they were a terrible fit and the best case scenario for them was trying to meet halfway on the communication train. But after we've all piled on this text-happy honey for the last few weeks, I suddenly feel the need to get this young woman's back.
Constant communication is a reality of modern life and that certainly applies to dating, where emailing, instant messaging and texting are just part of the getting-to-know-you process. Heck, it isn't unusual for dating prospects to email and text before they even meet in person for the first time.
And let's be honest -- once a relationship starts blooming, it's easy to get caught up in the buzz and get a little ahead of yourself. Back in the day, that meant sending a letter and some flowers in an attempt to woo your love interest. Today it means making corny mixtapes or tapping out hundreds of daily texts complete with emoticons.
Sure, maybe this girl is a little (or a lot) needy. Or maybe she's just excited and like most people these days -- wired, logged in and ready to share how she feels with the world. Which I guess makes us the weird ones, the folks who can't stand, or can't maintain, constant communication. I suddenly feel old.
• Wanda is a wise person who has loved, lost and believes in retail therapy. Wayne is a wise guy who has no use for therapy. Send them your questions and thoughts at firstname.lastname@example.org.