Chronically Ill Woman Struggles to Meet Friend’s Insatiable Thirst for Communication

There are four dreaded words that local graduate student Katherine Carter never wants to hear.

Far too often the message, “Hey how are you!” suddenly flashes onto her iPhone. The most common culprit is former classmate Ariana Brady, who recently graduated and is enjoying a leisurely summer break before entering the workforce. Within seconds another message appears, reading, “It’s been too long!”

It hasn’t.

At first it was a monthly coffee, but then it became the relationship updates, the holiday greetings and the “just checking in” texts. It spiraled quickly to a point that seemed excessive to Carter, but still Brady wanted more. Memes and TikToks popped on Carter’s screen, and random selfies were triggering alerts on her phone daily.

“Everything good??” read one message. “Haven’t heard from you since Tuesday.”

It was Thursday, and everything was not good. Carter struggled to explain that she does value their friendship, but that the pace of communication was becoming overwhelming and unsustainable. “Sometimes I just need to focus on my life and chill by myself,” she texted, with a gif of an animated ice cream scoop snuggling down into its cone.

“I understand, no worries!!!” wrote Brady. 

And just like that, Carter’s worries began to fade. That is, until those three ghost dots — signaling “Brady is typing…” — reappeared to haunt her phone’s glowing screen.

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