Self-help books, such as "He's Just Not That Into You," "Manslations" and "Why Men Love Bitches," profess to aid unlucky-in-love men and women with their relationship woes, particularly those concerning communication breakdowns, such as when a young woman accepts a dinner date with a lad. She, thinking the date went swell, goes home happily, expecting a prompt call -- or text, at the least. However, when she has not heard from said lad for nearly three weeks, she goes mad with worry.
"Why didn't he call?" she asks her friends. "Didn't he like me?"
Now, instead of consulting biased loved ones, or having to pile-drive through 300 pages of shaky psychology, also a result of the author's personal biases, helpless romantics can log onto HeTexted.com, a free insta-therapy website, and upload their misunderstood text conversations and receive immediate feedback and critique of their relationships and/or hookups.
For the sake of simplifying things, we'll categorize users of the site into two sections: The Confused, the ones asking for advice, and The Enlightened, the readers who vote and dole out wisdom. It works like this: The Confused upload screenshots of their text conversations with the guy or gal they're interested in. Sometimes girls ask for relationship advice with official boyfriends, while others lament one-night stands and booty calls gone wrong, wondering if the guy's lackluster responses the morning after are a sign he's done.
"Met a really hot French guy a few days ago and even though I was hesitant, we ended up at his place and hooked up. He gave me a bag of Skittles before letting me go to the cab. He's a really busy guy so he doesn't text much but I want to see him again. Do French guys usually give out free candy??" -Lola Losadika
Based on what is displayed, The Enlightened can vote from three choices -- "He's Into You," "He's Not Into You," "Verdict is Still Out" -- thus making a quick diagnosis on the state of The Confused's relationship. Additionally, The Enlightened can post comments below the uploaded text messages, and you can ask the site's Bros -- Mason, Ben, Tim, Chris, Brian -- for advice.
In some cases the text conversations are quite harmless; a girl overthinks her first date's unexpected business conference call and goes berserk, and The Enlightened are right there to quell her fears. Most of the time, unfortunately, the conversations go like this:
In this event, The Enlightened gather around The Confused like a virtual security blanket and offer support and words of wisdom such as, "He's just a douche," or, "He's a weird troll...leave him be."
Though well-intentioned, responses to the uploads are honest and blunt, sometimes to the point of tactlessness, which brings up the question: Is a website such as this helpful or hurtful?
While The Enlightened can get too high up on their horses, becoming sarcastic or even a little snotty, let's not blame the website's weaknesses all on them. It seems a bit one-sided for users of this site, who are mostly women, to be given a domain maintained by one gender, The Bros; apparently the high number of ill-guided females must lead them to think that the fairer sex lacks discernment when dictating their personal affairs. Not true.
And even if members of The Enlightened hand out help with cubes of sugar attached, not everyone will take the advice given to them -- or they will abuse the system, much like those mean guys over at revenge sites, like Cheaterville.com or the recently shut-down IsAnyoneUp.com. Also, some users get a kick out of posting their lovers' pleas for attention: A guy, given a name like Do Not Text or Scott the Nerd, who starts a stream of increasingly pathetic texts, becomes the unsuspecting victim of the uploader's sadism, inviting viewers to join in on the ridicule.
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Despite the few snarky comments that get in the way and those who use the website as their personal online vendettas, not to mention the suppliers of such vitriol-inspiring text convos, HeTexted.com is probably one of the digital age's best bets for extricating from the grips of love and booty call turpitude. This site also holds a mirror to the silly relationship mistakes some of us make or have made in the past. On one hand, it's easy to say: "These girls should learn to love themselves. They shouldn't be fishing for help from anonymous strangers; better yet, they shouldn't be texting anyway."
That advice would be perfect -- in a perfect world. Unfortunately, not every young woman comes imbued with the grit necessary to fend off would-be booty call assassins. (That is, unless you're made of steel, we suppose.) It takes a few tries at love and a few broken hearts to get smart at it.
This directs us to those who make it their mission to warn these women of the dangers ahead.
The Enlightened give clear-headed gems, free from the hypocrisy and of loved ones offering unsolicited "help." (Seriously, who hasn't had a friend hand out relationship advice when their "situation" isn't any better, or worse?). Ultimately, what makes HeTexted.com worthwhile is the advice of The Enlightened: It's straight-to-the-point, no-holds-barred from both girls and guys, something that will hopefully cut down on repeat incidents of heartbreak.