The Curious Case of Sliding Into DMs

It goes down in the DM’s…or at least that is what as one of the dumbest popular songs from this year has taught us.

In the age of social media that we live in, many things have evolved.

We live in a time where it is entirely possible to make friends with strangers on Twitter and depending on your social engagement, develop feelings for such strangers too.

It is an unusual occurrence when you think about it.

Typically with offline crushes, you have


A picture I took of a friend that somehow worked perfectly for this post…

some degree of understanding about someone.  You see them in your day-to-day life, and through that you develop this concept of who they are. You still project a lot of who you think your crush is/who you hope them to be, but there is a greater understanding of who that person is.

Everyone does it, sometimes people don’t see past this even when they are dating the person and this can lead to breakups – but that is a story for a different day.

When dealing with online crushes, you develop these feelings from engaging with someone online, and some of those aforementioned tendencies of projection are amplified.

You have this virtual concept of who someone is, and sometimes that is really accurate while other times it is really the furthest thing from the truth (hello catfishes)…but regardless, those of us well versed in the art of online engagement have had various forms of crushes on people.

It’s the nature of the beast.

It can range from the light crushes, to the intense, but it does happen.

It’s weird because you develop crushes and feelings for people you have never met, and the situation forces you to figure out how you feel about it.

Now before I get all glum and “don’t talk to strangers” about it, this is actually going to be a light-hearted post (I know it doesn’t seem like it now, but by the end of this you will be sick from the sweetness).

So this week on Twitter, #DMYourTwitterCrushDay was trending.  It was one of those weird trends where no one knows who started it but it ends up trending nationally and people join in on the conversation.

— Trendsmap SthAfrica (@TrendsSthAfrica) October 31, 2016

I swear that I must have been drunk when I decided to partake because it is the only way to explain my brazen behaviour of taking part in this.

I decided, that I was actually going to Direct Message (DM) my twitter crush.

I tweeted out about this #DMYourTwitterCrushDay trend and many of my awesome twitter friends encouraged me to do it.

Now, I didn’t actually do that because my crush for one wasn’t active on twitter, and two doesn’t follow me on the social network so I couldn’t exactly do that.

But after some repeated encouragement from the tweeps (twitter peeps) I went to the network that my crush is most active on – Instagram – and DM’d him there.

Now the crush that I have on the guy is quite measured for me.

I know the level of intensity I can be, and while that might sound disrespectful to this guy, I’m actually glad that I’ve managed to reign my level of intensity and it’s just a sweet non-consuming crush.

(Yes people, we’ve gotten to the stage when a neurotic young man with higher than normal anxiety levels is rejoicing about having a mild crush, that makes me very happy.)

My crush himself however, he is quite the adorable goof.

Doesn’t take himself too seriously, but has an intense passion for his work. I think the most interesting thing about him is that while he is extremely attractive, and knows how to take good pictures (it’s Instagram after all) – the thing that I like most about him is his sense of humour and love for family.

If this seems like an odd thing to know, he posts Instagram (IG) videos with his family and related to work.  Some people’s soul radiates, and his definitely does.

I wouldn’t mind him putting some of that soul in me, know what I mean?

Anyway, so I decided to message him and the post was really an epitome of my shy awkwardness. #BeyonceBeTheShield


So I sent him the post and then as these things go…heard no response.

I saw him post a pic on his IG having had no response and then I was all like “Oh well” and shared this moment with my twitter friends. I then used it as a teachable moment about my experience with rejection as a journalist (which one would think it not related, but my word is it really really connected).

The next day I’m carrying on with my life, when later that evening I logged on the ‘gram and see that I have a DM.

Low and behold, it’s from my crush…and it’s not just a text post. It’s a video.


Now sidebar: A part of me is really worried because it could be this “that is really creepy of you and eww you weirdo, never contact me again with your creepiness” type of video. I don’t have the most common responses to such situations, which is why I really really dislike developing feelings for people in general because I’m one of those hopeless romantic people and it’s really difficult to articulate how I feel sometimes without being completely honest.

In modern society there is meant to be this caged approach to feelings, but I have zero time to want to pretend that that is me. I’m all about the what you see is what you get, and many people feel overwhelmed or uneasy by that.

So, I pluck up the courage to press play and 3 seconds in, it starts with this buffering sign.

My reaction:


Seriously?? Just take your time phone…

Eventually it plays and I got this really sweet message. I won’t post the video because I don’t want to reveal his identity but as a writer, I will do my best to create the visuals for you:


Heey, Thanks so the message, sorry I just got up from a nap so I’m reeaally fucking tired…

IG CRUSH is busy rubbing his eyes in an extremely cute and adorable way. Rocking the cutest post-nap face THELIONMUTTERS has ever seen.

(Besides babies, because babies have the cutest post-nap face ever)

IG CRUSH (Continued):

…Uhm, what was I saying?

THELIONMUTTERS is grinning at this video.

IG CRUSH (Continued):

OH, Thank you yes –grins- I really appreciate that so much. It did make me smile, thank you very much…Uhm and yeah…Don’t feel bad to private message me. I love getting private messages. I, like, always go through the direct message boxes…

IG CRUSH then starts going on a bit of a cute flustered rant.

IG CRUSH (Continued):

…It doesn’t show me when I get private messages from people sometimes. So I have to go in there and it says, “You have these requests” and I always check that occasionally just in case. So thank you, have a great day.


I was pretty much grinning from ear to ear as I was watching that video.

However, when he said, “It doesn’t show me when I get private messages from people sometimes. So I have to go in there and it says, “You have these requests” and I always check that occasionally just in case…”

I was thinking to myself, “Of course his DM’s are probably lit because he looks so damn attractive and here I’m being a fool trying to slide into his DMs.”


I managed to eventually type a reply…and needless to say it was worse than my first message.


Instagram reply to video… #EnglishHasForsakenMe

He read it, and I haven’t received a reply, and I’m not sure if that is because he is not interested, already has a boyfriend/person he is seeing, or if he doesn’t know how to respond?

All of which are completely valid responses and totally acceptable.

All I can say is that I would really like to take him out for coffee. I’m not sure if I should message him again because I don’t want to be that dude constantly lurking in someone’s DMs. Maybe I should just let it be…

Either way, let me get back to the whole message of this blog post (yes, there was a message to be learnt kids, have you ever known me to know write posts without teachable lessons attached to them?)

We live in a new age where such interactions and experiences happen. They sometimes feel completely foreign and might require an adjustment but they are in no way, shape or form less valid experiences.

Given that technology continues to advance, we need to be prepared to advance with it, while also being equally skeptical. I’m just really glad that I get to have such moments, and while they might not always work out how you think, they always leave me thinking and reflecting upon them.

Maybe that dumb song wasn’t so dumb after all; it does go down in the DMs.

I take that back…at least it’s a catchy song.


Theo. Over and Out


This is here for no particular reason… Thanks Wanderlove for this pic.


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