How to Respond to a Heart Emoticon

Written by robert schrader
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As its name suggests, an "emoticon" is an image or icon usually used in e-mails or other Internet communications and meant to convey an emotion from the sender to the receiver. For example, the heart emoticon -- which you form using the character sequence "<3" (without the quotes) -- is meant to show love, care or concern. How you respond to receiving the heart emoticon depends on your belief in -- or assessment of -- the sender's intentions.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Respond using a "kissing" emoticon if the heart was romantic in nature and you want to keep escalating the conversation. Form the kissing emoticon by typing the characters ":-" (minus the quotes) -- or in programs such as Gmail Chat, ":" (without quotes).

  2. 2

    Use another heart emoticon if you want to echo an identical emotion to the one your friend sent. Copy the heart and paste it into your reply or simply type "<3."

  3. 3

    Make a standard smiley face to signify your happiness at receiving the heart. Type the characters ":-)" -- or in some chat programs, simply ":)" -- without quotes.

  4. 4

    Type a text-based message if you don't care to use another emoticon. Explain how the heart emoticon made you feel, whether it was loved, touched -- or, if you didn't want or expect to receive it -- perturbed or upset.

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