Ghosting: The act of breaking off a relationship without any warning or justification. This is done by ignoring and refusing to partake in any form of communication with a former partner.
Many people do this because they feel it’s a better method to ignore the person than communicate that they’re no longer interested in dating anymore. People ghost others primarily because they’re avoiding their own emotional discomfort. They may not know how to articulate their feelings so they make the decision to walk away and avoid conflict.
The act of ghosting is acting out of fear and uncertainty. We have become so fearful of conflict and rejection that we choose to ignore crucial conversations and situations. When you are forced outside of your comfort zone, you are vulnerable and learning a bit more about yourself that you didn’t before. It’s an experience that breaks us down only to build us up more. By ghosting others, we stay in our safe zone.
So what happens to the person you left high and dry? You see them texting you every couple of days, maybe even a phone call or two, hoping for your response. You may check up on them by looking at their social media, but don’t bother messaging them because you’ve already left them with enough confusion and no closure. You don’t say anything because you have no valid excuse for your behavior without making yourself look selfish and insensitive. You have been emotionally cruel to someone and that won’t be easy to repair.
That girl or guy you ghosted; is probably still replaying every situation you’ve experienced together wondering what the f*ck they did wrong. They feel powerless, rejected, and question what they could’ve done differently, or what is wrong with them. You’ve pretty much shot their self-esteem in the most cowardly way possible.
I’ve been ghosted once. I felt feelings of desperation to get in contact, because we had such good communication before. Then all of a sudden, it just flipped on me and it made no sense. I replayed everything over and over, trying to analyze the situation, searching for answers because he refused to give me any. I was scared that I was looking like an insecure and desperate girl dying for his attention. The feelings of sudden loss took over my body, and I wasn’t able to concentrate at work or school. He would give me false hope by looking at my snapchats and liking my posts online, and I couldn’t help but wonder if he was still thinking about me as much as I was of him.
Having experienced this myself, I have to take responsibility for the many times I’ve done it to others in the past. Saying sorry now can’t change anything, but I truly mean it. I didn’t know the kind of pain I was inflicting on others until I felt it myself. For my own personal conflicts that I didn’t want to address, I cut off other people without warning. It was heartless of me.
So, how do we get past this common dating trend?
Well for starters, forgive yourself. This isn’t something you could’ve predicted or prevented. I used think to myself, “How did I not see this coming”? It had more to do with them than it does with you. Maybe they didn’t want to get your hopes up or the chemistry wasn’t was good as you thought it was. The harsh truth is that you’ll really never know, and once you accept that, you can move forward.
Even more so, try to forgive whoever ghosted you if you can. You will regain power over yourself by letting go of all that energy and time you’re putting into trying to figure out why they ghosted on you.
Remember, it’s their loss, not yours.