‘It took him a week to reply’

Remember: I am looking for updates. If you're a former letter writer, please let us know how it all turned out and whether we helped. Email the update to Meredith.Goldstein@Globe.com with "update" in the subject line.

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Hi Meredith.

I'm writing this on behalf of my friend because I've written to you in the past, and you and your commenters were a help to me.

My friend has been with this guy for about six months, maybe more. They both work at a hospital. She's been head-over-heels for him since they met. I've met him once and I do believe he really cares for her, but he is absolutely horrible at texting back. Not just to her; all of his friends complain about it, too.

He reads a text, puts his phone down, and goes about his business. This didn't affect her too much in the beginning because she lived pretty close by. But now he's gone back to a university 100 miles away, and his texting has gotten even worse. It's driving her mad (which is, in turn, driving me mad).

Recently she texted him about whether he would be free over Christmas and it took him a week to reply. When she asked him why it took that long, he said he'd been having a hard time with his mental health, and she was sympathetic – but then he let slip that he had been partying with his friends almost every night.

After she told him it was selfish to ignore her when all she wanted was a yes or no, he stopped replying again, and she's now giving him the silent treatment. Do you have any advice I can give her? Other than just dump him, because she doesn't want to hear that.

– Silent Treatment


Well, my advice for her is to dump him. They're in different places – geographically and emotionally. He might not even notice that she's giving him the silent treatment, by the way. It seems he has other priorities right now.

But because you're writing this letter … I also have some advice for you. It’s difficult to watch a friend make not-so-great decisions about their romantic (or not-so-romantic) partners, but you can't expect your friend, in particular, to make a decision until she's ready.

You can be helpful by asking questions instead of offering solutions. "What would make you happy?" "What's great about the relationship?" If she's presented with those questions, she might find a more important answer on her own.

Also, if you're sick of talking about all of this (and it seems you are), you can change the subject. New conversations might help her, too.

– Meredith

Readers? Advice for both of them?