Ghosting: /gostiNG/ noun 1. One-sided ceasing of any and all communication in a relationship without warning
The dawn of the smartphone celebrated convenience in simplicity. Smartphones brought a general ease to how we communicate and ushered in a new era of communication practices. From emojis to text abbreviations, new wave communication methods have left their mark, but this isn’t necessarily for the better. Ghosting, for instance, is just one of those practices.
Ghosting as a phenomenon is the result of social media’s rise in popularity. Ignoring someone or being ignored completely isn’t an ideal situation, but its practical use in determining relationship potential shouldn’t be dismissed so easily. It lets recipients know the relationship no longer has value while making the whole ordeal incredibly easy on the other end. Your actions, however, don’t come consequence free. Nick Santiago is one individual who found out that lesson early on in his dating life.
Santiago reflects on this experience with sadness and regret. He says his regrets stems from a deeper understanding of the people he ghosted. The relationship he built, although only for three months, forced him to reflect on his actions. Santiago says he dreams about what could have been but, at the same time, doesn’t let it consume him.
Most people I’ve spoken to realize how damaging ghosting is as a practice but admit to doing it anyways. They are all familiar the dreaded feelings on the receiving end but justify do it on their own terms. These excuses vary but summed up, people ghost others because of:
- Avoiding confrontation
- To keep options open
A short survey was given to several university students. The results weren’t surprising and generally fell in line with suspect assumptions.
Ghosting is what it is because of ease. Little to no action with guaranteed results is ideal in such a fast-paced world. It’s the open-endedness of ghosting that can be utterly devastating. It leaves you wondering where you went wrong. It forces you to ask questions like, was it something you’ve said? Was it something you didn’t do? More often than not, you’ll simply never know the answer. The recipient is left is the dark, forced to bear the truth of such an abrupt and uncertain end in the relationship.