Here are some things that feel almost as bad as being left on "read" by a guy you like: walking in on your grandparents doing it, giving a presentation and forgetting how to speak, tripping on the red carpet, getting denied from a bar in front of a crowd, having that close call with the wet floor when you get out of the shower, tumbling down a hill while skiing, poking yourself in the eye with your mascara wand and taking an item from the sale rack to the register only to find that it was misplaced.
Being left on "read" is as bad if not worse than all these scenarios.
To begin, I'd like to say I've never left a guy on "read" if his advances were appropriate. If you were a stranger or something I definitely have, but if you were a stranger in real life I also wouldn't talk to you, ya know? Unless you are really cute. I always try to nicely end conversations. To be fair, when conversations are the time-wasting hell hole of sending random pictures of your face back and forth with someone you made out with like once, continuing that to either party does not seem like the most fun thing ever.
I want to talk about leaving girls on "read" over texting. The main difference between this and Snapchat is everyone has the "opened" icon on Snapchat. You can't not have it. Everyone will always know when the snap was successfully delivered and the exact amount of minutes since it was opened. With texting "read" receipts you'd have to do the math, until it changes over into saying "Read yesterday," which feels like a b*tchslap if I've ever felt one.
You also had the option to boycott "read" receipts and chose not to, which shows that you take great pleasure in ruining lives.
However, "read" receipts are kind of nice to know that you have more of a chance of winning the lottery than hearing back from a guy. This allows you to cry about it and then move on. Although sometimes I wish I lived in a simpler time, imagine how women used to agonize over letters from their romantic prospects that were "lost in the mail."
"Lost in the mail" walked so "read" receipts could run. We have evolved to the point where we have a concrete indicator of rejection.
I don't understand why people say "I have my 'read' receipts on so people will know I saw it." Here is the best way to have people know you saw something: reply to it. If I ask you to hang out and know you saw it, that doesn't help me out very much. That sends me the message that you don't want to hang out without you having to send me the message of what you're probably thinking which is "Hey, I'd love to hang out but I'm actually talking to five girls right now and you're the bottom of my draft pick so I think I'm gonna Netflix and chill with Melanie tonight instead."
Newsflash, boys: We know what "read" receipts mean and not sending a reply rejecting us and sending the "read" receipt to do it for you doesn't make it hurt any less.
In fact, it lets our imaginations run wild. Maybe you read that text as someone pulled a gun on you in a dark alley and it was the last words you read. You're thinking of a response and don't know how to dazzle me. You're so excited to hear from me that you "read" the text but then had a heart attack because you think I'm the hottest thing walking the planet and you can't believe your good luck. This is where our minds go and your little "read" receipt isn't doing you or us any favors.
A Snapchat "read" is almost worse because instead of a guy ignoring your words, he's ignoring your face.
An even bigger b*tchslap. With Snapchat, I feel like "read" receipts are a slow burn of torture. Since it's the most informal line of communication you never know if it's the last "opened" or not. ~THE LAST "OPENED"~ rated R and coming to a theater near you next October. Seriously, you never know if this is just another Tuesday of Ryan forgetting you have feelings and he will resurface at 2 a.m. on Friday or if this is really it for him. Is it a "see you later" or a "buh-bye, nice knowing you"?
I can't imagine the power rush of leaving a girl on "read." It wouldn't be the same if I left a guy on "read." They wouldn't care.
It's not a level playing field. They wouldn't think I had a heart attack when I opened it or that my phone shattered and that was why I am not answering. Why? Because they probably can't even remember my last name even though it $%^&*#@ says it on Snapchat. Meanwhile, I've gone into the "view friendship" tab and seen how compatible our horoscopes are. This comes in handy for when you leave me on "read" I can say "I knew it! He's a Taurus and is too set in his ways and stubborn to let me into his life!"
I don't know what to say about all this because I also don't think you should string someone along and reply if you're not interested either. I wish we spent more time actually talking in real life than talking by sending pictures of our respective ceilings back and forth.
Mostly I just wanted to take a moment to say if you've been left on "read" whether that be via text, Snapchat, or even Facebook messenger (you weirdo), I feel for you. This is a struggle only our generation knows the pain of.
You're never safe from this harsh reality that at any moment the potential love of your life could ignore you AND blatantly make sure you are aware of them doing so. Ladies, I'm sending you a little love when you see that transparent red arrow or those four little letters, or "seen" with a checkmark (again, you weirdo).
Not only do you deserve to not be left on "read," you deserve to have someone's face light up when they see your name on their phone.
And lastly, if you have a guy who leaves you on "read" sometimes, do it right back. It likely won't come close to hurting him the way he hurts you, but why not at least give it a try in this pathetic and shallow life we live. Then, don't forget one day when you're writing your wedding vows to add in "I promise to never leave you on 'read.'" That's the kind of commitment we can all hope for.
Follow Swoon on Instagram.