On 'Ghosting' and Why It's Wrong

Pretty young woman using mobile phone
Pretty young woman using mobile phone

I have been "ghosted" a number of times.

For those of you who don't know, to "ghost" is to, out of nowhere, stop responding to a person, to fade away from communication, to disappear... like a ghost.

I only learned of the term a few months ago, after one of my roommates was ghosted. She had hung out with an OkCupid boy, they both seemed to have a glorious time, he texted her after saying he had a blast, and they texted for a bit. Then out of the blue he just stopped responding.

The other roommates told her that maybe he was a bad texter, maybe his phone died or maybe he was just really busy. But when she went on to his OkCupid profile, he had been online after not responding to her. She messaged him. No response. He ghosted her. He had told her he had such a great time with her, and then all of a sudden stopped responding. Who does that? Many people. A simple "I am not interested," or even any acknowledgement of existence would be nice!

When my roommate was internet browsing one day, she saw that people had termed what this boy had done "ghosting." It was great to finally have a term for everything we had experienced. This has happened to so many people I know. To me, it seems with all the different forms of communication, it is getting easier and easier to just fade out of contact.

No matter how easy it is to do, you shouldn't ghost, and here's why:

Three reasons why you shouldn't turn into a ghost while dating

1) Do you really think you're that special?

In my opinion, if you ghost someone, it implies that you think that the other person likes you so so much and is going to be crushed if you aren't interested. We probably all would like to think this, but chances are it's not true. Rejecting someone is hard, but just rip the bandaid off and do it already. Most people are going to have reject someone in their lives. And besides, if you've only hung out with the person a couple times, you can probably reject them over text. That way, you don't even have to see the person's reaction! There is a whole dating universe out there -- the person you reject, even if that person is hurt, will move on quickly. I promise.

2) Knowing is so much better than not knowing, even with rejection.

I would rather know that someone is not interested than wonder why that person hasn't responded to me. Do you really want that person to be racking their brain for why you didn't respond, while you're already on to your next OkCupid date? That person may think a number of things. One time I was worried that someone who ghosted me had died, since he seemed so into it. Just give the person some clarity so they can stop wondering! When I went on a date with the Hipster Jew, I spent a whole day feeling anxious about whether or not he would respond, and when he did, even though it was with rejection, I felt so relieved.

3) You wouldn't want someone to do it to you. I'm pretty certain no one likes to be ghosted.

Regardless of your level of interest, wouldn't you rather know someone is not interested than silently muse about them? If you politely reject someone, no matter how much guts it takes (usually it takes two sentences in a text message), they'll get over it! And you'll probably get some good karma for being honest with the person, and maybe the next time someone isn't interested in you, they'll just tell you rather than ghost you.

In summary, please don't be a ghost! It just ain't right!