There is no species on earth so invasive, or so insidious, as the group text.
The texts start off slowly, innocuously, symptom-free. At first, you may not even notice their presence perhaps a pleasant ding now and again, a few uninspired memes, an incomprehensible string of emoji. Most resemble nothing more than a standard text with a few extra friends attachedand a simple lowercase “lol” response works just perfectly.
But everyone once in a while, the texts metastasize into something larger, monstrous. A casual message about dinner plans rapidly transforms into a violent orgy of yelp links. Any sense of narrative is soon lost to a flood of Taylor Swift GIFs, emoticon chains and passive-aggressive polemics about Beyonce’s Lemonade.
Planning a bachelorette party? God be with you. In situations like these, your only solution is to ghost, and to ghost judiciously.
Remember: Ghosting is a dick move, and should only be practiced in the most extreme of social situations.
1. Simply silence the conversation.
A classic defense, but consistently reliable. All it takes to end the conversation is to turn it off in your message settings and voila: it’s like you never had friends in the first place.
2. Tell people you’re about to lose cell service and then never return.
You’re being extra considerate by notifying people of your lie in advance.
3. Scan the conversation once every three hours for any times and dates.
Someone’s planning a bachelorette? A birthday party? There’s absolutely no need to get involved in the production process or group text just figure out when it’s happening, and drag your miserable body through the party door.
4. Every 30 minutes or so, respond with a \_()_/ emoji.
Give your friends the illusion that you’re paying attention, while throwing in some middle-school emoji to show off your nascent “humor” skills.
5. Honestly just end the friendship.
Would a true friend send you 90 texts a day about some xoJane article they read?
6. Reach out to a trusted friend in the group and have them translate the conversation for you.
There’s no need to pour through thousands of lines of barely comprehensible English when you can have an equally hateful friend summarize it all for you.
7. Drop a bunch of NYTimes stories into the conversation and peace.
A great way to kill a party is to share a meaningful long-form about factory farming. Nobody can shame you for wanting to contribute something important you’re so woke, you and nobody will read something that long and GIF-free, either.
8. Every few hours, type in “lol” or “AHAHAHAHAHA” if you’re feeling generous.
The world can be so ahahahha sometimes. Let your friends think they’re caps lock funny without ever listening to them, once.
9. Type: “I so want to read this but I’m stepping into meetingplease keep typing!”
Show them you care and then quietly disappear into the nothingness.
10. Don’t forget to throw in a “Yas” once every 100 texts or so.
Yes is dead. “Yas” is yes with extra love thrown in.
11. Tell them your Grandma is calling and then never write back.
You know how grandmas are they talk forever and then they die. Your friends will never step between you and one of the earth’s most vulnerable creatures.
12. Type “brb!” and then GTFOforever.
Hey, at least you let them know you dont really care.
13. Destroy your phone with a swing of a baseball bat, once and for all.
Quick, violent and effective.
14. Write, “Aaaaah, my phone is acting upcan you email?” and then just wait.
It’s too much work to move from SMS to Gmail. A powerful, if unreliable, tool only to be used with the most apathetic of friends.
15. Ignore all texts, and then throw in a “God I love you guys” everyone 1,000 words or so.
People don’t need to know that you’re listening. They just need to know that you love them unconditionally, without question, from now unto eternity. Amen.