Being the victim of ghosting generates questions and deep emotional pain. On the one hand, you should distance yourself from them as this is what they want. On the other hand, you might wish for closure.
Are You the Victim of Ghosting?
Most people think the best option is to block your ghoster on all social media platforms and not attempt contact. After all, the message is clear: they no longer want to stay in touch. So, you should move on as soon as possible. If you don’t, you’re giving them the upper hand, and they’ve ‘won’. Respect yourself, they say. Additionally, many believe no one owes you anything, and you shouldn’t expect a person to explain themselves even if you’ve been dating or friends for many years.
But I don’t think it’s the only way to look at it. First, I believe everyone deserves respect, especially if you were previously in a close relationship with them, shared important moments, saw each other naked, talked for hours, etc. Now that I’m more experienced, I realise that a person who ghosts you is ultimately terrible at communicating. They might even believe it’s a better way to let you down. But, I still think that not reacting to their behaviour is a way of normalising it.
Is Ghosting A Big Deal?
Nowadays, ghosting is increasingly popular due to how easy it is to remove someone from social media. Also, many accept it as a part of the dating game.
A ghoster doesn’t owe you a letter explaining why they don’t want to be in your life anymore. But it takes two seconds to type a short message letting you know the relationship isn’t working out. These two seconds could probably save someone hours of overthinking, worrying about the person’s safety and a dip in self-esteem.
When you are the victim of ghosting, it’s like a slap in the face. That’s because the person you thought was a friend or a date doesn’t respect you enough to reject you properly. This is why I think it’s a good idea to respond to a ghoster and stand up for yourself. Instead of saying, ‘It is what it is’, we should stop normalising ghosting. We should explain to the person why their behaviour is hurtful. I also believe it’s not shameful to be vulnerable. Letting someone know they made you feel bad doesn’t make you a loser. It makes you human.
Should I React to Being Ghosted?
I’m not saying you should send an angry message calling them names but telling them it’s not right to treat you this way could make them more self-aware and change their behaviour; fingers crossed. This can also be pretty therapeutic; once you admit that someone hurt you, there’s nothing else left to say, and moving on with your life might be safer.
While silence speaks louder than words, silence doesn’t make society more compassionate. It’s easy to say that we should have no expectations and accept harmful behaviours from others. Still, it doesn’t help anyone and turns us into emotionally cold people.
It’s okay to expect basic human decency and express your feelings when someone lets you down. I’ve been the victim of ghosting by friends and partners, and what helps me the most is typing a few words that let them know that ghosting is disrespectful. I might have dodged a bullet and feel too proud to react sometimes, but I still care about how little respect people have for each other and how oblivious they can be. We all go through difficult times and might not have the best communication skills, but we can all work on our flaws and make the world kinder.
Joanna is the Junior Wellness Lead for SSEDITORIAL Magazine, specialising in mental health, wellness and lifestyle. In her spare time, she likes to write scripts and dance.