63336 celebrity answers – Susan Quilliam
With love in the air for Valentine's Day, this month we've got top relationship psychologist Susan Quilliam to answer a few questions for us.
With ten times more Valentine's texts sent on 14 February than cards, 63336 receives thousands of questions from customers ranging from when they should text, to how many x's you should put at the end. To answer these and many other questions, Susan's come up with a 'textiquette' guide which you can read below.
Susan's the writer of 18 books in 31 countries and 22 languages, including three for Relate and The Samaritans. She also comments and writes regularly for the national and international press and for Relate.
Got a question you want answered? We'll answer your first for free.
Q. I've just met someone should I text for a date straight away?
A. Start innocent. Like face to face chat ups, make your texts neutral at first and only suggest a date (or get sexy) when you know you've got their attention.
Q. How long should you wait before texting someone after the first date?
A. Generally, text the next day and definitely before lunchtime. Women will start worrying after a date if they haven't received anything during the morning.
Q. Should I send long or short messages which work better to attract someone?
A. Keep it short – the whole beauty of text is that you can have a flurry of loving exchanges, anywhere, anyplace, anytime. Over 100 characters and you should be emailing.
Q. How quickly should I reply to a text when I really fancy the person?
A. Don't over text – it can come across as desperate. If you're always the one who texts and replies instantly – and never the one who finishes the exchange – then pull back and little and keep your dignity.
Q. How do I know from texting whether somebody likes me?
A To know if you're getting somewhere, judge by quantity and speed. The more texts you exchange – and the quicker you respond to each other's texts – the better things are going.
Q. I haven't had a reply to my loving text should I worry?
A. Don't wobble if the one you fancy occasionally doesn't reply instantly. Work meetings, parent visits or a flat battery can mean sometimes it genuinely isn't possible to respond. But more than 24 hours between texts without a reason means you should turn your attention elsewhere.
Q. Should I end a text with x's, and if so, how many?
A. Count the kisses. One's courteous, two's friendly, three states an intention. If you're head over heels, send a whole screenful to make it clear!
Q. What's the best way to use text once you're in a relationship?
A. Set up little loving rituals to let each other know you care... as you get up every morning... as you set off home each evening... as you fall asleep at night.
Q. But I never know what to text should I text more?
A. Use text to let your loved one deep into your life; if you're doing something exciting, engaging or moving, tell them about it!
Q. Is it ok to say I love you for the first time to someone using a phone?
A. Never make a seriously emotional text move – such as a declaration of love – if you haven't the time to follow up. If you disappear into radio silence, the other's left frustratingly unable to respond.
Q. We've been together for a year now, and the romance seems to have gone out of our texts. What are we doing wrong?
A. Don't panic if, as you settle into a long term relationship, your texts become shorter and more practical – it's normal, and a sign you trust each other's love. But don't lose the romance. The immediacy of text means you can keep love alive day to day simply by sending those three little words on a regular basis.
Q. When is it better not to text?
A. Some things, actually, are better done face to face. Divorcing should never be done by text (Britney take note). And proposals of marriage should always be done when you can look into someone's eyes and hold their hand.
Q. When is it good to text after a drunken snog?
A. You should text the next day, but not before lunchtime. You need to wait until the hangover disappears before making contact.