The (Not So) Subtle Art of Ghosting
By: Salma Ahmed
The beginning of a relationship is always so magical. Everything is exciting and almost too good to be true…until you realize that it is. Slowly but surely, instant text-backs turn into a few hours between texts, hour-long phone calls turn into missed calls and daily social media interactions decrease to a rare occasion. If this sounds familiar, you’ve become one of two people—a ghoster or a ghostee.
What is ghosting?
The rise of dating apps made finding a partner more convenient than ever, but innovation does not come without its woes. Ghosting is one of many negatives that technology has brought to dating. If you’re unfamiliar with the term, ghosting is the practice of ending a relationship with someone by suddenly and without explanation withdrawing from all communication.
This technique makes it fairly easy to disappear from someone’s life and erase however long they took residence in it. A small number of taps on your phone screen and you could soft block whoever you decide to cut ties with.
To ghost or not to ghost?
As we welcome the new year, we preach about starting fresh and wiping our slate clean of any relationships that no longer serve us. However, some do that without thinking about how their actions might impact the other party involved.
On the last Friday of the year, I had a guy send me a paragraph-long apology text nine months after we last talked. It marked the beginning of one of the most awkward conversations I’ve ever had. He was “reflecting on his year” and did not like how he left things on bad terms with several people, including myself, and decided to right his wrongs.
His apology and the texts that followed, expressing guilt, were not the product of the goodness of his heart but the extreme guilt he was feeling like a product of his poorly thought-out actions.
We’ve either done it, been victims of it, or witnessed it from afar, in a generation terrified of confrontation ghosting is slowly becoming a norm. Why bother considering someone’s feelings when you could take the easy way out and simply disappear?