My girlfriend and her ‘black hole of never-ending emojis’


I've been seeing a girl for the past six months. We met online and things have been pretty good.  She's a sweet girl – smart, fun, and open to adventure. But I’m starting to see some mismatches in our expectations of one another, namely methods of communication.

I'm 33 and she's 25. My job has me traveling about 30 percent of the time, which to me is just perfect in that I am refreshed every time I get back from a business trip and ready to give all my attention to her. My girlfriend has been pretty cool about all the travel. The issue is what I can only describe as rated T for Teen. She loves to text all day, Snapchat, WeChat, Instagram, Facebook, Tumblr, etc. (you get the point). I love receiving thoughtful good morning texts, and I too initiate those, but once initiated I feel I get sucked into a black hole of never-ending emojis, commentary on the most mundane things, and pictures of her meals – and on and on it goes.

Sometimes I indicate I will be in a meeting, so please no texts. This is met with a flood of emojis and she will switch this up with comments on Instagram so she can keep me in the loop on her day. It has gotten to the point where instead of indicating I have to go, which will result in a deluge of "see ya" texts, I just clam up and don't respond. I mean, I don't mind the attention but I'm starting to see the age difference. I'm not built for constant contact.

She has mentioned very recently that she feels I'm not putting in the same effort, but I don't see it that way. I have been honest about my lack of social media interaction and that I'm just not into it. I don't have a Facebook, I stopped at MySpace years ago, and barely update my Instagram. She is still trying to convince me to give Snapchat a try. I haven't budged and it has been a sticking point in several arguments.

I don't like to feel obligated to be pulled down a rabbit hole of texts, social media contact, and comments in addition to all the things we do together three to four days a week. For what it's worth, the sex is amazing and time spent together is filled with good conversation and spontaneous trips. I think she is wonderful and the relationship could go somewhere, but what I am seeing shows that maybe the age gap could be a deal breaker.

– Stopped at MySpace

Have the talk again. Make your boundaries clear. Tell her that you're only going to text once or twice a day, and that you're never going to sign up for Snapchat. At best, you can promise more phone calls. Talking is great, but social media? It's not going to happen.

I'm all for compromises, but this isn't the time to make promises you don't want to keep. Remind her that you keep the same rules for everyone in your life. It's not as though you're texting friends all day but choosing not to respond to her food photos. This is just who you are.

Offer up more phone calls when you're on the road. See if that works. If not, it might be time to send her the Bitmoji that shows you walking away. Or the one that says "Game Over." I like that one.

Readers? Should the letter writer be trying harder? Is this an age problem or is it just about attention?

– Meredith