Last night, a guy I used to date spontaneously texted me ‘WYD’: text slang for ‘What You Doin’. Although I commend him for his boldness, knowing that I’m a woman that scoffs at such texts, his message highlights an issue among my fellow millennials: courting is taken too loosely. WYD and all other texts that have replaced the classic “I’d like to take you out sometime” or “I’d like to get to know you” must die a quick and painful death.

What happened to courting? What happened to genuinely getting to know someone? What even happened to staying in touch? They’ve all been altered into WYD, WYA (Where You At), Hey Stranger, Let’s Chill, and the classic eyeball emoji. As a person who’s very selective in who I give my number to, I find myself astonished when one of the first texts I receive from a person whom I perceived as educated, intelligent, and respectful says, “What’s your IG?”

In an era where anything and everything we want can be granted with the click of a button or a few selections from a queue line, courting should not be one of them. Courting is not something that should be treated as lightly as a simple text message. Courting is not something as simple as scrolling through an Instagram page. Courting a woman or man requires thoughtfulness and interest far greater than the appeal of a nice body.

Although it may sound like I’m preaching, I’m talking to myself as well as you. I am guilty of accepting these half-assed messages as a sign of interest. I am guilty for mistaking emojis as suitable replacements for emotions. And I am most certainly guilty for using a day’s worth of good text conversation as a sign of genuine chemistry. We’re all guilty of this; thinking highly of efforts that could simply stem from boredom or laziness.
Millennials, we need to do better. We need to stop dissecting vague text messages, as if they’re something deeper than just another booty call. The values that our parents and grandparents drilled into our minds should not be completely forgotten. We must stop tolerating this “WYD culture” as a replacement for chivalry, respect, and common decency. 

In the words of the great Lauryn Hill, “Don’t be a hard rock when you really are a gem.” Demand more for yourself and demand more from others. And the next time you receive WYD text tell them, “Come again.”

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