If you follow me on instagram you’ll know the story of "Pub Guy". A chance meeting in my local that led to a movie moment romantic gesture; him running across the train bridge to stop me leaving and get my number. This led to over a week & a half of back and forth messaging, two 2 hour long phone calls and a date arranged.
Which then led to;
And no date
The modern-day term is of course ghosting.
When a person cuts off all communication with their friends or the person they're dating, with zero warning or notice before hand. You'll mostly see them avoiding friend's phone calls, social media, and avoiding them in public.
I haven't seen Tom in 3 months. I think he may be ghosting me.
Now this isn’t the first time I’ve been ghosted and I doubt it will be the last. Sadly, it happens all too often now in this digital age of dating. In a world where people are just matches and online convos can be cut off quicker than Van Gogh’s ear and with very little guilt or reprisal it’s all too easy to ignore someone.
The truth is before you’ve actually met, it’s simple for someone to see you as just another message and not a real person and thanks to the plethora of people on dating apps their next match is never far away.
I suppose to a ghoster, they don’t see it as hurting a person, they’re just not messaging anymore. But being ghosted hurts. No one ever wants to be the person that says “I’m just not into this anymore” so often silence must seem like the easier option. Easier for them? Harder for those on the receiving end.
The reason I struggle so much with ghosting is it never gives you any sense of closure. For an over thinker like me that is killer. Most people would delete and move on but for me, ahhh the lingering “whys??” and “what did I do wrong?” inevitably follow
An article I read on Pyschology Today says about ghosting:
"It renders you powerless and leaves you with no opportunity to ask questions or be provided with information that would help you emotionally process the experience. It silences you and prevents you from expressing your emotions and being heard, which is important for maintaining your self-esteem.”
How can you have closure if you don’t know what the hell happened?
Of course, it could be a million reasons and its highly likely that most of them have absolutely nothing to do with you. Because let’s be honest, if you thought about it properly, how could it be about you? They didn’t even know you!
So why did was this ghosting any different and why afterwards did it make me decide to quit dating altogether.
Well firstly, this time came after a long string of other failed dating exploits. As I said in my post about Modern Dating you have to be pretty thick skinned to take the highs and lows of online dating and the many knock backs on the chin. I’d been hurt a few times, confidence dented by several guys who had swept me off my feet, only to promptly knock me on my arse. So, I hadn’t been using online apps that much and maybe a bit disheartened by the whole online dating idea.
But pub guy ghosting really knocked me for six because we had met. This was no tinder match this was a full on, in real life romantic encounter that came out of the blue and despite several red flags that I should of paid attention to (1 he was VERY young and 2 had not been long single) I got swept away by the romantic nature of it all and by someone who messaged the way I’d always wanted to be “ Morning, have a great day” “how is your day going” etc etc The messages came thick and fast and this only made the ghosting and the abrupt end of any messages at all, such a punch to the gut.
The frustration with ghosting and why in the end I gave up dating was because I just got tired of all that wasted energy. The hours spent messaging or talking on the phone, building up a picture of someone, their likes, dislikes, building chemistry, making plans, for it all to go absolutely nowhere? It’s the equivalent of spending hours making a cake mix and baking it, only to then throw it in the bin. What’s the point if you never actually get to the good bit right?
So, I quit. Deleted my apps. Decided not to invest my energy in any of it. Focused on my house move and everything I had going on at the time. And it was the best thing I could of done because to be honest anyone I would of met wouldn’t have got very far thanks to my pessimistic belief that eventually it would fuck up and they would ghost. I mean I’m not going to lie I pretty much hated the male species by this point.
A couple of months and a house move later I felt like a change had happened. I’d lost those cynical thoughts and my good old hopeful romantic self was back. So, I redownloaded my apps. Put myself back out there. And I was ghosted again. It’s a side effect of the world of online dating and along with “caspering” which is a new softer way of ghosting by just replying with polite answers but never actually arranging a date, there are many ways for the app user to reject someone without the use of actual honesty.
Me I’m straight up and honest. Always have been. It’s one quality that has often got me into trouble in dating over the last year, but one I wouldn’t change. I will always speak from my mind and from my heart.
As for ghosting, sadly it will continue. For me now I just try not to let it bother me and I certainly don’t let it convince me that I’m anything other than a beautiful, intelligent and talented woman who won’t settle for anything less than a guy who 100% gets that.
So, I’ll carry on dating. Eternally hopeful, but a little bit wiser to the world and damn sure that
“ I aint afraid of no ghost”