iPhone: Leave This Conversation Grayed Out or Missing? The Fix!

You’re in a group text message or iMessage conversation and you want out. You like your friends, but they’re blowing up your iPhone and enough is enough. You tap Details in the upper right-hand corner of the Messages app, scroll down, and Leave this Conversation is grayed out or missing. In this article, I’ll explain how Leave this Conversation works, why it’s missing or grayed out, and how to get out of a group text message or iMessage conversation on your iPhone.

We’ve been getting group text messages for years, but Leave this Conversation was only recently introduced. The reason is that Leave this Conversation applies to iMessage conversations, which are iMessages between more than two people.

Leave This Conversation in Messages App Details

If you’re wondering where to look for Leave this Conversation, open the Messages app, open any group message, tap Details in the upper right-hand corner, and scroll down.

Group Text Messages vs. iMessage Conversations

Up until very recently, all of the “group texts” we’ve participated in have used the text messaging plan we purchase through our wireless carriers to send and receive messages. Apple recently introduced iMessage conversations, which are group messages that use Apple’s iMessage technology instead of your text messaging plan.

Check out my article about the big difference between iMessages and text messages if you’d like to learn why using iMessage for group texting is an important step forward.

Why Hasn’t There Been A “Leave This Conversation” Button Before?

To understand why Leave this Conversation is a new feature, it’s important to first understand the fundamental difference between group text messaging and iMessage conversations.

Group Text Messages

With group text messages, each person directly messages all the other people in the group, and each person’s iPhone keeps track of the participants in the conversation.

Group Text Messages

iMessage Conversations

With iMessage conversations, the iMessage server acts as a middleman between all of the participants. Instead of using the cellular network, all of the messages travel through the iMessage server and the server keeps track of the participants in the conversation.

iMessage Conversations

How To Tell If You’re In A Group Text Message or iMessage Conversation

Open the Messages app, tap to open the group message, and look just underneath the clock at the top of the screen. If you see Group MMS, you are in a standard group text message. If you see Group, you are in an iMessage conversation.Tell If Group iMessage or Text on iPhone

The Big Difference

Your iPhone doesn’t have the ability to directly tell other iPhones that you want to leave a conversation, but it can communicate with Apple’s iMessage server. Since the iMessage server keeps track of the group participants, each person has the ability to leave a conversation – usually. If Leave this Conversation is missing or grayed out, read on to find out why.

Why Is Leave My Conversation Missing?

Leave This Conversation MissingIf you don’t see the Leave this Conversation button, you are in a traditional group text message, not an iMessage conversation. Group texts use your wireless carrier’s text messaging plan, and since iPhones can’t directly tell other iPhones they want to leave a conversation, leaving is not an option.

How Do I Leave A Traditional Group Text Message?

This may seem trite, but it’s the truth: Ask nicely or block the numbers. You don’t have any more control over whether you receive a group text message than you do when receiving regular text messages. If you’re really fed up, my article about how to block callers on an iPhone works for text messages too.

If Leave This Conversation Is Grayed Out

If Leave this Conversation is grayed out on your iPhone, there are only three participants in the iMessage conversation, and you can’t convert a three-person iMessage conversation to an iMessage between two people.Leave This Conversation Grayed Out

Even if you delete the entire conversation from your iPhone, you will be added back to the group the next time someone sends a message. The only way to leave a three-person iMessage conversation is to add someone else to the group so it becomes a four-person conversation: Then you can leave.

Why Can’t I Leave A Three-Person iMessage Conversation?

Bear with me: Theoretically, if you were to leave the conversation, there would be only two participants, and it would no longer be an iMessage conversation. Instead, it would be a regular two-person iMessage.

This seems like a feature that should have been introduced along with iMessage conversations, but it wasn’t. Apple programmers are undoubtedly working on this functionality now and will release it as part of a future iOS update.

When Can I Leave This Conversation?

Leave This Conversation WorksLeave this Conversation only works if you are in an iMessage conversation with four or more participants.

Leave this Article

Leave this Conversation is a great feature that has yet to fully mature, and it’s definitely confusing if you don’t understand how and when it works. Feel free to share your thoughts in the comment section below, and if you have any other questions, the Payette Forward Community is a great place to get help.

Thanks for reading and remember to pay it forward,
David P.

About Author

I'm a former Apple employee and the founder of Payette Forward, and I'm here to help you with your iPhone.

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Anonymous
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Anonymous

now 2 yrs passed, you still cannot leave a Three-Person iMessage Conversation.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

I am bothered at work phone goes off some useless convo. I have an iPhone 7 Plus and not being able to leave a conversation is not very convenient for the tec no this phone displays. Bay move APPLE!

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Thank you for your non- techy explanation. Appreciate the info. Look forward to a future enhancement to manage this behind the scenes.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

did anything work?

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Leenah Shaikh A year ago, holding the Power and Home buttons simultaneously worked after it went black for no apparent reason. Today, while playing a music video while recharging it made it get unusually, extremely hot, and it just went black within seconds and can’t be resurrected.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

thanks for the info…however, I used to have the “blue” imessage icon but for some reason it has gone to “green” text message and now I cant get it back to imessage…all the rest of my phone is “blue” except this group which we use all the time…help please

Anonymous
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Anonymous

you definitely need to fix THIS FEATURE 3 people are a GROUP!!!!! I want out and I can’t just randomly add someone to this messy convo! reallly? This is APPLE

Anonymous
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Anonymous

You shouldnt be forced to be in a group messages

Anonymous
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Anonymous

First article about iPhone usage that I have read that fully made sense and wasnt outdated or an apple geek speak. Thank you however I do have one question, even though I know I am part of a group regular text message and not an iMessage group because we have no power and no Wi-Fi instead of group MMS Or group it says 10 people and if I click on that it shows all the 10 people that are part of it. Is the display under the clock different now?

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Same, what did u do to fix it?

Anonymous
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Anonymous

The three person convo is the dumbest thing Ive heard in a while. Ive no doubt its true but gosh do you add some hapless person to the convo so you can leave, and then they cant leave! LoL Apple what is wrong with you??

Anonymous
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Anonymous

This is a terrible application. I am being driven mad by all the trivial conversations in my small groups.
I hope apple fix it quickly.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

I am also thankful for the tip, the 10 second hard pressing of power and home buttons did the trick.Phone started working.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

All the answer I needed was on the bottom. “Can not leave if there’s only 3 ppl in a group” it is NOT a fix, it was an explanation. So there is NO fix…

Anonymous
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Anonymous

my question is can other participants in the Imessage group know when you leave the conversation? this is just general curiosity.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

same do you fixed it?

Anonymous
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Anonymous

i just read your comment and tried it worked! my iphone had blacked out for 2 days, thanks alot

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Same thing happened to my iphone SE. It was at 8% battery life so I charged it. When I came back after a few minutes, it’s screen is already black. I restored it and everything but the screen just went from black to dimly lit. It still functions well, I think, because it still receives messages (I was able to check because of the sounds). I don’t know what to do anymore.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

same here omg

Anonymous
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Krisha Lynne Juan iwas in the middle of using it, fully charged, not problems and it went black! I have no clue what to do and the factory reset nor charging is working!!!

Anonymous
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Yash Sidamon HA! total omg

Anonymous
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Tabby Red That’s exactly what happened to me, I was scrolling through Instagram and it went all black. I can still hear it receive notifications and iTunes on my computer says it’s at 100% battery. I tried updating and restoring it but nothing works 🙁

Anonymous
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Tabby Red were you able to get you phone back up and running? if so how, I just had the samething happen to mine and nothing is working to fix it.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Good info–thank you. I am in a traditioal group family msg–I like being in it but when I reply it will not deliever. Don’t eant to leave. Also–when some family members reply, their msg shows up on a different family group. Frustrating.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

yes

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Thanks heaps, that was driving me nuts!

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Thank you!! This was the solution to my IPhone 7 display screen going black!!

Anonymous
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thankyou! fixed mine

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Phew, it was such a relief when the screen lt up again

Anonymous
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Anonymous

OMG! Thank you so much! Phew! I thought I was going to have to bring it to get fixed. Recently just bought my iPhone 7plus and my son dropped it a few times. Screen went black. Until I read this. Tried the home screen and power off button that didn’t work but this one truly worked. Ty again!

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Thanks so much- this also worked for me!!

Anonymous
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Anonymous

it worked!! omg it was such a relief thank you so much T.T

Kim Clash
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Kim Clash

Apple recently announced a defective battery in some iPhones and there is a replacement program.Google it and you can enter your serial number to see if your phone is eligible.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

thankss so much dear for your help

Anonymous
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Anonymous

my 7 is all black and i tried the thing and it turned off… but how do i turn it back on?

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Thank you just fixed mine!!!!!

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Power Home button method was the solution for me as well…thank you!

Anonymous
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Anonymous

thanks

Daniel Wuu
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Daniel Wuu

I do have a question. While this worked to reset my phone, but whenever I leave my phone to charge, it does it again (blank screen). And then I need to reset it again.

What is the cause of this issue? Anyone knows? Because it is not normal, and wonder if there are bigger issues I need to be concerned about (to bring it to the service center).

I don’t want to have to reset my phone everyday because of charging.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

thanks!

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Thanks man, it worked!

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Thanks!!! this worked

Anonymous
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Anonymous

THANK YOU!!!! This worked for me, too!

Anonymous
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Anonymous

TY!!

Anonymous
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This adivce is still useful in Nov 17. Thank you! The article has iphone 7 instructions included, but they are incorrect. This is what worked for me.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

I’m with the same problem, and still waiting a solution from apple.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

This worked for me also. iphone 7 256GB in Jet Black. Had a black screem but the phone was still on (as the home button still had its tactile feedback). The power button and volume down key combo brought it back to life.
THANK YOU!!!!

Anonymous
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Anonymous

You just saved the little bit of sanity I had left Sue, Thank you.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

OMG THANK YOU!!!

Anonymous
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Nikita Kuzmich-Shimanovsky u just saved my life…thanks a million

Anonymous
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Daniel Wuu do you still have the genuine display on your phone or was it fixed in some workshop? I clearly have this issue after installing the latest iOS, and I suppose the reason is a screen replacement I had half a year ago…

Anonymous
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Nikita Kuzmich-Shimanovsky oh yes

Anonymous
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Anonymous

thank you! you were more helpfull than the person who wrote this article lol i almost went and ordered a new screen..Thanks again!

Anonymous
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Anonymous

thanks much, this helps a bunch. Instructions are so difficult to write. I presume that if group includes non i phone users, then you are in a regular text messge and can’t leave either. and BTW, i have i phone 7 and under the clock in an open message trail, i don’t see group or group mms. i see the bubbles of the folks i’m texting with

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Well done! You knew exactly when the exasperation hit and the drawings helped. Very thorough, thank you!

Anonymous
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i love you too <3