You know when you struggle over exactly what to say, then send the message to your besties for feedback before finally getting the courage to hit send on a text? You get the immediate satisfaction of seeing your message has been “read” and then wait for the “…” indicating the object of your affection is replying. But if nothing happens and their message never comes, you’ve just been R-bombed.
Yes, R-bombing is the cutesy name for when you know someone has seen your message, but hasn’t responded to it. It’s like ghosting, because you’re being ignored, but R-bombing is just about one incident, while ghosting is final.
It happens all the time and getting R-bombed leaves you feeling confused and wondering why someone isn’t responding to you. And it’s easy to jump to conclusions, assuming the worst since you know your message has been read. Being R-bombed can lead you to stalker-like behavior, checking social media obsessively to see if the person’s been online, and it’s just not healthy to torture yourself like that.
So how should we handle being R-bombed? Psychologist Jocelyn Brewer advises giving the person a enough time to respond first. Then she says you could nudge them with a reminder or check in, or just let it slide, depending on what’s at stake. Just don’t jump to conclusions and end something good over a mistake or an oversight. Sometimes people do just get busy, forget, are bad communicators, or some other reasonable explanation. And sometimes, they really are jerks.