So here’s something that didn’t really happen 15 years ago… or if it did, it was a LOT harder to do.
Basically, you start talking to someone, you think everything is going ok, and then they suddenly disappear. Radio silence. They may as well have turned into a ghost.
This is not the same as something kind of running it’s course and no one puts forth the effort to keeping things going. No. This is when one party continues to reach out to the other and they simply get nothing. It’s like talking to brick wall. And it’s annoying AF.
Why do people ghost? Well, there’s a few reasons I think folks ghost:
1) Time – this might be for a variety of reasons. Work got stupid busy. They realized they don’t have time for a relationship (or whatever it is you guys were doing) and rather than just be like “hey, I’m swamped” they say nothing.
2) There’s someone else – they suffer from the “look, shiny!” syndrome. That’s not to say that you were not good at the time… it may be something else better came along. Just because someone offered me for spaghetti, which I like, and then said, “oh, or I could make you filet mignon” and I take that instead doesn’t mean I don’t like spaghetti anymore. I just like filet mignon better. But you’re not spaghetti, you’re a person, so fuck that a-hole if this is the case.
3) They’re freaked out – this could be positive or negative. Maybe you did something that set off alarms in their head and rather than risk the chance of offending you (and maybe making the situation worse), they just disappear. Or… and I think this is more rare, but I’m sure it happens …. things got too intense too fast and they became terrified of what that meant. So they disappear.
When I was like single, you couldn’t really do this. You’d run into them at some point, because people usually met either in person or via other people they knew. But in the age of the interwebs, I can meet people who have never crossed paths with me geographically or in my social circles. It’s more bizarre when I meet someone who also knows someone I know, and if I do, the relationship with that third party is rarely close. So in this day and age, it’s super easy to just fade into oblivious and never be heard from again. Just fade into the crowd. You could say it’s a form of leading on, which was definitely a thing when I was younger, but it was easier to call people out on it. If someone wants to ignore me all day now, they can, and pretty easily. Even when you know their IG, their SnapChat, their Facebook, LinkedIn, whatever…. they can just keep ignoring you. Which is frankly infuriating.
Have I done it? Yeah. Was it ok? No.
And honestly, when I’ve done it, it was mainly because I simply became uninterested after a while or they freaked me the fuck out. This is part of the reason that I’ve realized when dating in the online world, I need to strike while the iron is hot. Our attention spans seem to be getting smaller by the day, and men especially, seemed to suffer from Shiny Syndrome, so I need to find a way to meet them ASAP and determine if this possible relationship is something worth hanging onto or just letting it go. But I really do try not to ghost, because it’s the asshole thing to do. It hurts because it leaves us with so many questions. At least give people closure, especially if it looked like something really promising was happening. Because otherwise it’s incredibly hurtful.
You know what’s sad though? Ghosting isn’t even the worst thing you can do… you can be a zombie or cloak someone. Which hurts even more.