Beth Cook is a dating coach and wing-woman who throws private dating events for San Francisco’s most awesome and unattached. She also writes and draws about her own dating experiences and would love to hear from you. Want advice? Have advice? Send her an email.

When it comes to dating, I hate texting with a passion. These days people use it to ask each other out, have lengthy conversations, ask each other out again, express their feelings (badly), and break up. How did we get here?! It’s despicable.

We’ve turned into cowards with carpal tunnel syndrome and limited vocabularies. We’re constantly confused about where a given dating scenario stands and are misleading others (intentionally or not). And we’re losing our minds:

Is she in a meeting or uninterested? What does ‘See you around sometime’ mean? Does that emoticon mean he’s frustrated or mischievous? How do I feel about the excessive use of exclamation points or all caps?

Pick up the fucking phone and you’ll know exactly how someone feels about you.

But do you really want to know? I think the reason texting has become so damn popular is because people would rather dance around in disillusion than stand with the truth—acceptance or rejection.

I don’t get it. I’d rather know ASAP if someone is into me or not (and move the hell on if it’s the latter), but hey, I’m a practical, goal-oriented gal.

Let me tell you a little secret: rejection is awesome. Would I ever in a million years want to be with someone who didn’t think I was a total catch? No! Therefore I love when random dudes I’m dating decide that I’m not their girl. Hopefully they appreciate when I come to a likewise conclusion.

You win some; you lose some. And the more you lose, the easier it is to win. When you no longer fear rejection, you can effortlessly flirt with the sexpot in the elevator, chat with the hunk at the bar, scoot up to your public transport crush—and score dates left and right.

Just do me a favor, huh? Only use those tiny phone keys to text if you’re going to write:

“I’m running 5 minutes late. Sorry!”

“I’m at a table in the back.”

“That was so fun. Thanks again!”

“You home safe?”

“Sweet dreams.”

Photo by Elliot Stokes