Well, I’ve discovered the same thing happens with texting.
DD and I have been dating a year now and the “dotting” is down from around 500 messages a day to only 30, sometimes less.
I miss it.
But it wasn’t sustainable.
Eventually we both had to eat, sleep, work and parent a little more thoroughly.
The withdrawal has been a bit tough, because I’ve fallen madly, deeply in love with texting.
As a fellow mad texter friend said to me once: “It’s so much lower impact than talking in real life.”
I am also inexhaustible and prolific when it comes to the written word. I mean, I write for a living in addition to blogging around 350 times a year.
But I’m particularly frenetic when it comes to instant messaging.
Last October, I thought that predilection was about to bankrupt me.
I’d just met DD, he’d gone overseas and we were texting each other pretty constantly between the hours of 6am and 11pm Eastern Standard Time.
The time difference meant DD could get a bit of work done before I woke up in the mornings, except for the day my eyes sprang open at 4am and I sent him a “yawn” message that’s become part of our lexicon …
About halfway through DD’s work trip it belatedly occurred to me that I might have to pay for those text messages. And I started freaking out, thinking: “I am a single mother, I can’t afford to pay $2000 phone bills.”
And then I thought: “Hang on, when’s the last time I got a phone bill?”
And then I realised: “My ex-husband still pays my phone bill.”
I called my mum and she – being a former Optus sales high-flyer – was like: “Sweetheart, it’s only 25c or something per text.”
And I was like: “Yes, Mum. But I’ve sent 1000. Maybe 2000 of them.”
And she was like: “Oh.”
So I sent my ex a sheepish text confessing my sin. It went like this: “Have done stupid thing. Texted someone overseas maybe 1000 times (not an exaggeration). Am scared about the bill because I think you are still the account holder. Feel sick.”
Moments after I sent the message, DD realised that since we were instant messaging each other on iPhones it was probably free.
He suggested I send a follow-up message saying: “Oh silly me – I thought I was texting Austria – but its Australia … always get those confused.”
I didn’t think that would fly.
So I sent my ex another sheepish text saying: “Might have panicked unnecessarily. Was texting Australian number. Forget I said anything …”
I’m pretty sure he thought I’d lost the plot, which I kinda had for a while … all that dopamine had scrambled my brain.
Now the texts are pretty utilitarian: What time are you finishing work? Where should we go for a drink? That sort of thing.
There are endless articles on how to put the spark back in your marriage. Do you think there are any on how to put the spark back in your texting?
Song of the day: Everything But The Girl “I miss you”
PS The main photograph on the page is by artist and photographer Eric Pickersgill, who decided to create a photo series where he photoshopped mobile phones out of people’s hands.
He got the idea for this project – “Removed” – when he was at a coffee shop one morning and saw a family having breakfast.
“There were two girls and their dad, and they were all on their personal devices and not talking to each other. The mom didn’t have her phone out and was sitting there looking out the window, looking so isolated but within arms’ reach of the most important people in her life,” Pickersgill told Refinery 29. “It was a very striking moment.”
He resolved to be more “present” after that morning, but three nights later he fell asleep with his phone in his hand and was jolted awake when it fell on the floor.
“I looked at my empty palm and it was still in the shape as if I was holding this device.”
Confronting photo series born.