What To Do When A Guy Texts You After A Long Time? (33 Things To Handle It)

Last updated on May 12, 2024 by Michelle Devani

Has one of your old flames re-appeared out of nowhere? 

Maybe it’s an ex-boyfriend or “the one that got away”?

Either way, perhaps you’ve been taken by surprise and have no idea what to say. It can be an overwhelming experience, for sure.

Thankfully, this guide is here to make the situation easier. It features dozens of ideas for what to do when a man messages you after a long time. 

But first I want to tell you about this awesome online tool I found that might prove to be very useful in this situation.

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All it requires to get started is one person’s most basic personal details. 

Once it has these, it can produce a detailed report of their recent communications history. 

You’ll find out who they’ve been communicating with, what apps they’re using, what contact details they have registered...and more. 

So, if you’re curious or perhaps suspicious as to why this person has contacted you out of the blue, this tool will often be able to provide some clear hints. 

It’s 100% discreet, so there’s no way that this guy will find out you’re using this tool. So, it’s surely worth a shot if you can’t handle the mystery any more.

With that said, here are some more ideas for what to do when a man returns into your life after a long while.


33 Things To Do When A Guy Texts You After A Long Time

Did you get a surprising text from a guy after a long time of being out of contact? 

There’s a high chance you’re confused about what to say and how to relate with him. If this person is an ex or perhaps a former crush, you’ll need a guide on how to hold a conversation after such a lengthy period. 

Thankfully, I’ve got your back.

I’ve put together a detailed guide on talking to a man after a long period without feeling awkward. If you’re curious to find out, continue reading what to do when a guy texts you after a long time.

1. Know where he stands

When a guy messages you surprisingly, it’s essential to know the current state of your relationship with him. Ask yourself questions like, “Who is he to me now? Just an acquaintance? Or perhaps a friend?” The answers will determine how you will talk to him. 

You won’t cross boundaries that you’ll later regret or unnecessarily open up about events in your life even when you don’t want to. You’ll be able to text him cordially yet responsibly, without being afraid of the outcome.

2. Determine how the future will be

If an ex-boyfriend messages you, and you hope to rekindle an old flame with him, it’s necessary to consider this before starting a conversation with him. This process helps you understand the type of expectations to have, which will influence your behavior around him. 

Likewise, if you’re not considering a romantic relationship, knowing this before starting the conversation will gauge your reactions better. Irrespective of why he messaged you, you’ll be one step ahead in knowing precisely what to do and how to act.

3. Don’t overly predict the future yet

don't overly predict the future

If an ex-boyfriend texts you after a lengthy period, and things ended badly between both of you, it’s easy to imagine things never going back to how they used to be, even before anything starts to play out. 

If he’s the one that got away, you might still imagine things getting back on track and rekindling something you wished never died. While it’s essential to determine how you want to see the future, being overly confident that things will end that way might cause you to make mistakes.

4. Please get to know him

A lot must have happened during the span of no communication. You shouldn’t treat this person in the same manner you used to because a lot might have changed. It would be best to know them afresh before you take things forward. This step will prevent you from encountering unexpected events. 

More so, it will keep you steps ahead throughout the entire period. Realizing that they might not be the same person you used to know is an extra precaution to avoid getting a heartbreak.

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5. Keep personal details private

While it may seem convenient to share details about your personal life as you get to know this person afresh, understand that this isn’t a prudent move. It might seem selfish to want to get information from someone without wanting to share details about yourself, but always remember that they texted you first. 

This indicates that they have a reason for wanting to talk to you. Until you know their motives, it would be best to keep certain matters private.

6. It would be best not to pry

It’s one thing to get to know a man that texted you after a lengthy period while it’s another thing to pry into his personal life. Snooping through his old posts and gathering information from mutual friends will not only cause you to look bad but will also bring unnecessary and probably hurtful information to your ears. 

If he didn’t directly tell you something, it would be best not to ask him inappropriately or try to find it out from somewhere else.

7. Be calm

The last thing you want to do is be anxious about sending a text message or whether he’ll text you back. If you’re agitated, you might end up acting in a way you would later regret. The best you can do is to remain calm throughout the entire situation. 

This process will ensure you type the right message and react to his statements in the best way possible. Don’t overthink things because you will most likely think negatively. You will take control of the situation better than expected if you maintain your composure until you know more about his intentions.

8. Maintain some distance

If you had a close relationship with this man before the separation, it wouldn’t be advisable to get comfortable with him too suddenly if he messages you after a lengthy period. While getting to know about past events, you should also maintain your distance

This will prevent you from quickly being swooned by the presence of someone familiar and possibly losing your guard. To avoid making mistakes and saying things you may later regret, keeping your distance will help you think clearly, and make the right moves.

9. Determine the type of messages you’re receiving

determine the type of messages you're receiving

If a man texted you after a lengthy period, you could quickly know his motives from the way he’s texting you. If he’s acting flirty, it might be that he wants to rekindle something romantic with you. If his text has a casual tone, he might be trying to catch up with an old friend. 

If the text is too formal, then perhaps he wants to ask a favor from you. Please pay attention to every text you’re receiving. This step can reveal so much about the basis of the conversation.

10. Watch your responses

We’ve already talked about the importance of paying attention to the text a man sends after a lengthy period of not communicating. Another prudent move to make would be to watch your responses as well. 

Ensure you’re not suggesting anything outside of your original intentions, or this might ignite something you weren’t expecting. If your messages tell you’re into him, he will feel motivated to make a move or probably keep his distance. Since messages can be interpreted in multiple ways, ensure yours is as straightforward as possible.

11. Outright ask him

A person can give off confusing signals primarily via social media. It’s easy to interpret someone’s messages in a way that completely contradicts the person’s intentions. In that case, it would be best to ask him about his intentions outrightly. 

Try not to brush off the fact that both of you haven’t communicated for the longest time. Seize the opportunity to know why he’s messaging you out of the blue. This step will put things into perspective and help you handle the situation accordingly. It will also ensure you do not have the wrong expectations.

12. Be nice

Even though the man in question hurt you in the past, the only way to show that you’ve grown during the period there was no communication is to act friendly nonetheless. Being polite is the easiest way to handle people, even those you don’t necessarily want to talk to. 

You can accept or decline offers without seeming like a bad person and duly take control of situations. If you text unruly messages to him, you might indirectly be setting yourself up for avoidable drama.

13. Try not to bring up the past

As painful as the past can be, using it against someone who is texting you after a lengthy period wouldn’t be a good idea. It merely shows them that you haven’t moved on from the past. More so, that you’re keeping a grudge with them. 

Ensure you keep things fresh and relate with them according to the present situation. However, acting this way doesn’t mean you should overlook some negative signs. Ensure you put up boundaries if you sense that things aren’t going as they should.

14. Help him if necessary

If things ended rather roughly, it might be tempting to decline a request for help from a man texting you after a lengthy period–but you shouldn’t. If you can support him, then do so to a certain degree you’re comfortable with, but only if you want to. 

People’s actions should not interfere with your desire to be generous when you can. However, try to be cautious and set up boundaries. It would be best if you don’t allow him to talk you into doing things you don't want to do, all because of your previous relationship with him.

15. End things if necessary

Remember that you’re not obligated to keep the conversation going if you’re not comfortable with it. If you don’t understand the dynamics of things, and he’s not forthcoming with telling you why he texted, then you can end things. 

You can outrightly say to him that you really want the conversation to end or preoccupy yourself with other things if you don’t want to entertain his messages. Once he realizes that he can no longer beat around the bush, he will come clean or forget about texting you for good.

16. Try not to be rude

try not to be rude

While trying to end things with a man that texted you after a lengthy period, it’s crucial not to be rude to him. His intentions may be wrong, but calling him names would only cause you to seem like the bad person in the situation. 

You shouldn’t give him reasons to call you out for your bad behavior. On the contrary, let them know you’re not comfortable with things most politely and honestly. This way, if he tries to cross the boundaries you’ve set up, it would be clear that he’s disrespecting you.

17. Control your emotions

This step goes along with keeping your composure throughout the process. If you’re happy, excited, sad, or even angry, the best thing to do is keep all these feelings in check. You don’t want this guy to take advantage of any emotions. Being emotionally open to a man you haven’t talked to in a long period will only cause the situation to be weird. 

Both of you will not know how best to communicate with one another, which will interfere with other things as well. Therefore, it would be best to keep your feelings in check and relate with him cordially until you know more.

18. It would be best not to boast about your accomplishments

If a man texts you after a lengthy period, bragging about what you accomplished during his absence will be a major turn off. It would cause him to feel like you desperately need to impress him, which will be a sour look on you. Even though you want to show him how far you’ve come, let him find out himself, if he doesn’t already know. 

Even though he fills you in on all he has achieved during that period, never feel intimidated to outshine him. Except he asks about specific details, it would be best not to bring them up in conversations like that.

19. Be a little mysterious

Leaving a lot to the unknown when talking to someone from your past will always put you one step ahead. It makes you look less vulnerable and keeps them interested in you. You wouldn’t struggle to set up boundaries because of the distance you’ve created, and it will also make the man act a little cautious around you because he’s unsure of what to expect from you. 

Make sure you only say what is necessary, and keep private matters away from mediums people can easily access.

20. Stay on course

It’s easy to derail the conversation to a subject that best suits you, but this shouldn’t be done if you’re chatting with a man that texted you after a long time. Keep the conversation on the same topic until everything starts to make sense. 

Don’t be carried away by certain things he may bring up or throw at you. If you really want to understand why he’s texting you, then bring it up. Staying on course ensures you still have control, and the conversation only trails if you want it to. 

21. Please don’t leave him on ‘read’

No matter how bad the situation is, leaving someone on read till the next day or days later can be considered an insensitive or mean action. You don’t want to be too open, but you also don’t want to be rude. It would be best to stay honest about wanting to end the conversation, rather than making him feel unwanted for merely texting you. 

The best revenge you can give to anyone is to cut them out of your life, rather than behaving mean or unruly to them. Therefore, no matter how bad things ended with a guy, try not to leave him on read when he texts you.

22. Try not to be passive-aggressive

Being difficult with a guy that texted you after a long time for specific reasons, would only make you seem unruly. It would be best to end the association if necessary, preventing you from acting out on certain occasions. 

Telling him you’re not comfortable with the conversation is much better than being passive-aggressive and hoping he gets tired of talking to you. Being honest will always be more honorable than being mean to get back at them.

23. Be genuine

be genuine

It’s easy to pretend when you’re trying to be polite or pleasant, but this can bring more damage than good. Be honest about how you feel and communicate this when interacting with a guy that texted you after a long time. 

If you’re pretending to like something that you don’t, you might end up passing across the wrong message, which will prolong an uncomfortable situation. On the contrary, acknowledge how you feel at all times and act accordingly. You don’t have to hide your discomfort under a smile.

24. Don’t rush things

You may want something to blossom between you and the guy that texted, but rushing this process might end up hurting you more than you expected. Ensure things move at their average pace, and the friendship develops healthily. 

Irrespective of what may have caused the distance, both of you should get to know one another like it’s the first time and understand how you fit into each other’s lives. Neglecting some critical details like these may lead to heartbreak, especially when overlooked information comes to light.

25. Focus on friendship first

Wanting a relationship badly can make you omit some essential things. If you’re reuniting with a guy after a lengthy time, it would be prudent to focus on friendship before expecting a relationship. This process ensures that both of you can bridge the gap created and be comfortable around each other. 

During this stage, both of you would have opened up about private matters, which better prepares you for a relationship. Jumping this phase only makes you susceptible to heartbreaks.

26. Don’t be the one that makes the first move

During this entire process, you should never forget that he was the one that texted first. While you may be eager to make the first move, acknowledge that he had a reason for texting you first. 

Even if you want to make a move but haven’t still gotten to the bottom of things yet, don’t make one. You need to understand why he messaged you first before you can determine whether it would be worth it to reveal how you feel or not.

27. Don’t boast about him to people

This point is closely related to knowing his motives for talking to you. Remember that it’s been a while since both of you have spoken. Bragging about your conversations with him wouldn’t be advisable to avoid being disappointed. 

If things are still developing, it would be prudent to focus on the relationship rather than ‘looking good’ to other people. The only time you should involve others in such a situation is when things have been openly declared. Otherwise, it would be best to keep things private.

28. Focus on establishing better communication

If the relationship seems to be brewing, you should focus on having healthy contact with him. If you’re talking twice every week, then there’s a problem somewhere. An effort should be made to fill the recently enclosed space and not give room for distance. 

It would help if you were getting to know one another every day rather than relying on the previous knowledge of yourselves. If anything romantic is bound to develop, then healthy communication should be established.

29. Be sure before you hang out with them

When it comes to hanging out with someone you used to know, you should gauge your present relationship with them. Are things between both of you looking good? Are the feelings mutual? Are you comfortable being around him? 

The answers to these questions will determine whether it’s a good idea to hang out or not. It would help if you weren’t pressured to meet up with him because of how things used to be. Focus more on the present situation.

30. Seek advice from mutual friends

seek advice from mutual friends

Sometimes, there’s more to a situation than you can readily understand. If you’re having a hard time knowing how to handle things with someone that messaged you out of the blue, then you can seek advice from people that can genuinely help. They may know certain things that you don’t, which can guide you on the matter.

31. Do what you think is best

Remember that you’re not under any obligation to do as anyone says. See things from other people’s perspectives and determine what action would best suit you. If you feel the need to end things, then you should. 

If you feel the need to stay hopeful for something beautiful to happen, you can also do that. Regardless of anyone’s opinions, it would help if you always made decisions you would be proud of later on.

32. Expect the worst

If a guy that hurt you in the past messages you after some time, it’s only normal to expect something similar to happen again. However, please don’t conclude that it will happen this way; but have it at the back of your mind that it could. 

Doing this will help you remain cautious while conversing with him and getting to know his reasons for contacting you. It will also prevent you from making similar or previous mistakes.

33. Expect the best

If a guy messages you after a lengthy period, it’s also normal to expect the best outcome. Perhaps life has given you another chance to rekindle something that you lost. While it’s not prudent to conclude that things will surely end this way, having it at the back of your mind can keep you hopeful.


What does it mean when a guy texts you back immediately?

When a man texts back right away, it means he’s immersed in the conversation. In other words, he may be interested in you. You can know how he feels since he interprets chatting with you as a good time.

How long is too long for a guy to text back?

A man can take things lightly and choose not to message you when he should. However, it becomes serious when this period extends to hours. If you’re not comfortable with late text-backs, calling him out is what to do when a guy texts you after a long time.

Should I text him after a long time?

While it might be tempting to text a man right away, waiting one night is a more prudent option. This step will help you appear less eager to be in communication with him. If you’re not comfortable waiting a day, you can still reply after a lengthy period.

Why would a guy text me first and then not reply?

There are many reasons why a man would text right away and fail to text you back after you’ve responded. Perhaps he wasn’t expecting a reply and didn’t plan out what to say. It could also be that he got carried away or is busy with something else.

How can I make him miss me badly?

Texting a guy will make him get accustomed to you. If you want him to miss you, you have to distance yourself and create some space.

To Sum Things Up

Did you enjoy this article on what to do when a guy texts you after a long time? Remember to always do what you’re comfortable with when texting a guy after some time. Kindly leave a comment below and share this article with friends if you liked it. 

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Michelle Devani
My name is Michelle Devani, and I've been helping people with their relationships since 2003. In 2017 I decided it was about time I started a blog on the topic, and since then more than 2 million people worldwide have read my relationship advice. Drop me a comment below to let me know what you think.

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