Dry Texting: Is She a Bad Texter or Just Not Interested?


We’ve all been there- whether it be with a friendship you’re trying to take to the next level or a Tinder match you want to actually see in person, we all encounter dry texting. That fatal “k” reply or the deafening blow of a simple thumbs up to your message can snuff out any spark you thought you had gone.

Odds are you let the conversation wither and die, and any possibility of a future relationship dies along with it.

Don’t let dry texting deter you from making connections and keeping relationships alive. While it is easy to be discouraged by long response times, short messages, and general unenthusiastic tones through text, keep in mind that everyone texts differently, and it might not actually be her way of telling you she’s not interested.

woman laying in bed dry texting late at night

What is Dry Texting?

Dry texting is what we call texts you receive or send that make it hard to carry a conversation- something as basic as “hi” and “how are you” is pleasantries that are just too dry for texting. Short responses like “okay”, “nice”, and “haha” are also considered dry texts. Anything minimal effort, like one-word responses, just won’t encourage a natural conversation to continue.

Another example, thanks to the new-ish iPhone feature, are the reactions you can send to a text, so you don’t even have to reply. A thumbs-up, thumbs down, haha, or exclamation point are sure-fire ways to end a text conversation. It’s one thing if you do it once in a while if you don’t have free time to text back, but consistently using reactions with no follow-up is no good.

If you’re sending a girl multiple texts, and she only replies with one, that’s dry. It’s even worse if her reply only acknowledges one thing you mentioned out of a handful of messages.

If her response time is growing longer and longer each time you text, that is some desert-dry texting. Being left on reading or opened is even worse- she’s not afraid to let you know whatever you sent didn’t warrant a response.

Why is She Dry Texting Me?

Don’t panic- there are plenty of explanations as to why someone might be dry texting. From busy work and social lives, stress and mental health, or even being behind on text etiquette, there are different reasons she might come across as a dry texter. Let’s break them down.

She’s busy

Everybody has a life, and some people are much busier than others. You have to take into account if someone is at work- maybe they physically cannot be texting on their phone while they’re handling chemicals in a lab or carrying four cups of coffee for their coworkers.

A lot of people don’t even check their phones for hours at a time at work for fear of being reprimanded. Many workplaces frown upon texting and using the phone for personal, non-emergency reasons anyway. It’s in the middle of a workday and she just doesn’t want to get in trouble, dude. 

Another strong possibility is she could be spending time with her family or friends. Everyone hates being around someone glued to their phone, especially if it is for romantic, gushy reasons. She could have put her phone down to focus on the people around her (which we should all be doing anyway).

We all struggle to juggle our social lives at some point, with work, school, friends, and more on our minds. You might have caught her in a hectic week, so give it some time.

She’s Stressed or Depressed

It’s still hard to talk about mental health, but it needs to be said. No one is immune from stress, and many people struggle with anxiety and depression in their everyday lives. The smallest tasks, such as replying to a text message, suddenly seem impossible.

The motivation to socialize, let alone flirt, flies out the window. It has nothing to do with you personally, and in her mind even replying at all was probably a huge feat. 

Try opening up about your own struggles and anxieties, and you’ll be surprised by what you might get in response. A shared understanding of mental health can create a strong and healthy relationship along the way.

She’s Not Tech Savvy

This one is more common than you think. While we live in a technologically advanced world, not everyone started out strong with a smartphone in middle school. Internet slang and other ways of conveying tone through text have to be taught, and a surprising amount of people did not sit down for this lesson.

It’s like texting with a boomer who uses periods at the end of every sentence- you know they’re not mad at you, they just like being grammatically correct and don’t know the implication. 

A more old-fashioned girl might not like texting or even using her phone enough to learn about these traits of online communication. You might already be used to family and friends being odd texters who don’t know their “lol” is a weak response to the hilarious video you just sent them, so give a girl the benefit of the doubt.

She’s Just Not That into You

Sometimes what we fear the most might be true. She’s either actively trying to get you to take the hint, or her subconscious is letting her disinterest show through her dry texting.

If she has never been the one to text you first, and you’re always reaching out, try easing up to see if she’s interested enough to send you a message on her own. Does she ask you questions to keep the conversation flowing, or does she let you do all the talking? 

The most obvious way to tell if she’s not into you is if you see that she’s not busy, struggling, or an inept texter based on her social media or her appearance if you’re seeing her in person. Posting pictures of fun nights out with friends accompanied by enthusiastic captions probably means her dry texts are intentional.

woman sitting on the edge of a bed holding her phone

How to Respond to a Dry Text

There are a few different ways you can respond to a dry text to revive the dying conversation, and you should choose a method that you think will fit your person of interest best.

Get Her to Engage

As discussed before, a simple “how are you” isn’t going to cut it. Think of something unique and interesting to ask about. You could casually go about this, like mentioning you’re looking for a movie to watch or a book to read, and you want to know their absolute favorite- people love to talk about the things they love, and will usually ask for yours in return.

Alternatively, you can be blunt and funny. “Let’s get this out of the way. Do you believe in ghosts? If you don’t, just know I’m about to change your mind.”

There are hundreds of lists of uncommon questions to ask online, and even a few card games based on the concept. Try some out and see how it goes.

Clear the Air

If the initial conversation didn’t start out so dry and it suddenly became that way, don’t be afraid to clear the air and ask if something is wrong. Maybe she took that Jeff Bezos meme you sent the wrong way and is holding it against you. Maybe you accidentally hit a nerve when you were joking around about one of her profile pictures.

Whatever it may be, it’s better to solve the problem head-on rather than avoid it until it gets so bad you guys no longer want to speak to each other. Try asking if she’s okay and lightly mention how you’ve noticed her change in attitude.

Switch it Up

If you think she’s too busy to sit down and text, or too old-fashioned to understand the nuances of modern texting, try suggesting another way of communicating. Some people really do prefer casual FaceTime calls, talking on the phone, or even through Snapchat.

A new trend has been rising which involves sending voice memos through iMessage or Instagram because the sheer act of typing out a text is getting to be too much for some people. Everyone has their own communication preferences, especially through their phones, and once you know the method they’re most comfortable with you will probably get to see a whole new side of the girl you’re talking to.

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