Knowing your attraction style can help you to play to your strengths when dating.
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Ghosting. This word has quickly become a big part of our modern dating lexicon, and for good reason. It’s a phenomenon that has seemingly taken over the dating world, leaving too many heartbroken individuals in its wake.
But what exactly is ghosting?
Simply put, it’s when someone disappears from your life without any explanation or warning (though don’t jump the gun if you haven’t heard back from someone in less than 2 days).
Ghosting can happen after one date, five dates, or even in the midst of a seemingly committed relationship. As the term suggests, the person just disappears, leaving you with the bittersweet memory of them – a ‘ghost’. No more calls, or texts, or communication of any kind. All too suddenly it’s as if they never existed in the first place.
Unfortunately it’s hard to give you a straight answer on that one. Sometimes it’s just pure laziness. But more often it’s the result of fear – fear of confrontation, fear of rejection, fear of being vulnerable.
To some people, it just feels easier to disappear and avoid any uncomfortable or difficult conversations. And while it may be the easy way out for the ‘ghoster’ it often has very painful and long-lasting consequences for the one who is left behind.
In our opinion, ghosting is a coward’s way of ending things. It takes courage to be honest and upfront with someone about your feelings – and while that can be uncomfortable, it’s the right thing to do. Even a text message is better than nothing!
That said, we understand that often a ghoster might want to close things off more kindly, however they can sometimes feel paralysed by not knowing what to say. And so they put it in the ‘too hard’ basket and turn their attention elsewhere to avoid the discomfort.
If this sounds like something you do, we encourage you to cultivate an awareness of this pattern and seek support to break it. What can you do to make ending things easier?
Perhaps you create a ‘Ghost buster’ template on your phone that you can use to gently let people know you’re no longer interested in dating them.
I just wanted to send you a message to let you know where I’m at. You’re a lovely and easy going person which is why I feel I can be honest with you. We’ve been on a couple of dates now and while I’ve enjoyed your company I’m just not feeling the connection I’m personally looking for. Who knows maybe you’re also feeling something similar? You are a great guy/gal with so much going for you and I hope there is no hard feelings.”
First and foremost, don’t blame yourself. It’s not about you, it’s about the person who chose to ghost. It’s not a reflection on your worth as a person.
Know that it’s okay to feel hurt and confused, but try not to let it consume you. Reach out to friends and family for support, and take some time to process your emotions. It’s important to take care of yourself during this difficult time.
If you were left hanging and it’s been 2-3 days since your last contact you could try to re-engaged them by sending a single text that says:
“Just bumping this up in case you missed it.’
Note: each situation is different and this is just a suggestion, so please use your judgement here.
If there is still no response after that, it’s often best to let things be.
As tempting as it may be, don’t try to track down the person who ghosted you. It’s not worth the emotional energy and it’s not going to bring you any closure. Instead, focus on moving forward and finding someone who is willing to be honest and communicative in a relationship.
Truthfully, we can’t really control how others will treat us, we can only choose how we respond to how we are treated. Just know that if ghosting is how someone chooses to end a connection, they aren’t really going to be a great candidate for a healthy, loving relationship, so you dodged a bullet there.
In a world where it’s easy to hide behind screens and avoid confrontation, it’s more important than ever to be open and honest in our relationships and that includes the break up. While ghosting may seem like an easy way out it’s not a sustainable way to handle conflicts and will rob you of a useful opportunity to practise healthy communication.
Great relationships aren’t found, they are built. And a big part of building a strong and lasting relationship is being able to communicate openly and honestly with your partner. So if you’re single and looking for a meaningful relationship, approach the task of ending an unsatisfying connection as a worthwhile opportunity to communicate your feelings honestly.
And if someone ghosts you, please don’t take it personally. Keep an open mind and look for someone who is willing to put in the work to build a strong, healthy relationship.
Understanding your dating strategy takes you closer to truly understanding the dynamics of attraction, improving your relationship skills, and expanding your opportunities to find a great partner!
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