If you have dated in the last five years or so, you have probably been ghosted. Ghosting is just the name of the game nowadays. There are no more breakups or conversations when someone loses interest, but instead, silence. Silence to contemplate why being ghosted hurts so much.
Now, there are the rare decent people who won’t ghost. Sadly, they are few and far between.
And even with the increase in ghosting, it seems like it still doesn’t make much sense. There are no answers or reasons. It just happens. You are left to deal with it and the pain and confusion that goes along with it. [Read: What is ghosting and how does it affect you?]
Why being ghosted is so confusing
Now, in a normal breakup, you usually get a reason. You can go to your friends and vent and move on because you have closure. But, when you’re ghosted you have a breakup without any of that.
To anyone that has never been ghosted it may seem odd to fret over someone you weren’t technically dating, as ghosting usually happens in that “what are we?” phase.
But, being ghosted can be a huge loss without reason. The reason we dwell so long when being ghosted is that we have a lot to consider. We constantly wonder what went long. We want to know if we did something wrong. And we need to know why.
Without that clarification, the not knowing eats away at our confidence, our trust, our judgment, and our hope.
When you don’t get the closure a breakup requires, even something casual or early can feel so much worse. Not having an answer prevents you from moving. You stir in that confusion for so long. [Read: Ghosted after the very first date? 13 ways to quell the rage]
Why being ghosted hurts so much
Confusion is not the only reason why being ghosted hurts so much. There is a major lack of respect when you’re ghosted. It feels like a slap in the face.
This person you were hopeful about and probably talked to regularly and almost definitely had a connection with, ditched you without so much as a goodbye.
Enduring that lack of respect makes you feel like you don’t deserve it. It makes you feel unworthy of decency. And that’s only the edge of all the feelings that come along with being ghosted.
After the lack of respect comes uncertainty. You wonder what you did wrong. You read those messages over and over to see where things went south. Maybe you check their social media to see if they’re active.
This not only makes you feel like crap but also like you’re crazy. Logging onto social media to see if the person that ghosted you really ghosted you or just went dark online completely, is a lot. [Read: Why do guys ghost? 15 real reasons why guys turn into cowardly pricks]
We rationalize it and hope that we are reading too much into it. So, we tell ourselves they’re just busy or lost their phone or accidentally deleted our number. We will hope that we are not being ghosted.
And this leads to the next stage of pain caused by being ghosted. We hesitate. Whenever we start talking to someone new, we wonder when they will ghost us. Will it be in a week? A month? Will we even get to meet someone from that dating site before they ghost?
We now go into every potential relationship waiting to be ghosted. We question if someone is telling the truth right off the bat. We can’t take what people say at face value because we have before and we’ve been burned.
And we don’t just lose trust in other people but in ourselves. We lose faith in our own judgment. We never know when someone will seem so right only to ghost us in a few weeks. [Read: How to stop loving someone else and love yourself more]
A ghosting pattern?
And one of the big reasons why being ghosted hurts so much more is that it isn’t a one-time rejection. It tends to be a pattern. Once you’ve been ghosted, it happens again and again.
It isn’t the same as pure rejection because you don’t even get feedback. You are just dropped from someone’s life and meant to pick up the pieces all on your own.
Your friends tell you that it is better you learned this now and not after getting even more emotionally attached, and you know it’s true, but it doesn’t take away the hurt.
Being hurt by ghosting leaves a mark on you that is different than your average breakup because you don’t learn from it. You don’t get stronger or really recover from it.
There is nothing to learn or gain from being ghosted. There are often no red flags or signs you can decipher to know if it is coming. And if you build a wall so you can’t be hurt by someone else who may ghost you, you only bring negativity and doubt into every future situation.
That is the thing about being ghosted. There is no silver lining or bright side. Being ghosted just sucks, pure and simple. [Read: Haunting vs. ghosting and why haunting is so much worse]
What to do when you’ve been ghosted
I know up until now this article has probably just depressed you further about being ghosted. I mean it could have helped you feel heard or related to which is great, but that’s not all I’m here for.
I may not be able to take away the pain caused by being ghosted, but I can remind you of all the reasons someone ghosts. What will this do? Well, it reminds you that anyone who ghosts is not worth your time, attention, tears, or even thoughts.
When someone ghosts you, they show you that they are a coward. Do you want to be with a coward? I don’t. [Read: 5 signs of ghosting and 5 ways to deal with it]
There is no logical, explainable, or acceptable excuse for ghosting. But, if you are looking for what to do when you’ve been ghosted, I advise you remind yourself of these facts about ghosting.
#1 Anyone who ghosts is lazy.
#2 Anyone who ghosts is afraid of not just confrontation, but communication.
#3 Anyone who ghosts is a jerk.
#4 Anyone who ghosts is disrespectful.
#5 Anyone who ghosts doesn’t see you as an equal, deserving of decency.
#6 Anyone who ghosts is immature.
#7 Anyone who ghosts thinks their time is more valuable than yours.
#8 Anyone who ghosts doesn’t care about you or your feelings.
#9 Anyone who ghosts is sure to be dysfunctional in a relationship. [Read: Prepare yourself for the 10 consequences of ghosting]
#10 You are not the problem. It is the person that ghosted you that is the problem.
I know why being ghosted hurts like hell, yet I am still hurt by it when it happens. There is no preventing it or running from it. All you can do is remind yourself how crappy the person who ghosted you is. Remind yourself that they didn’t ghost you because of you, but because of them. [Read: 15 ways to ghostbust a ghoster like a real badass]
It isn’t much help in taking away the pain or confusion of ghosting, but it reminds you that even with the pain and confusion of being ghosted, you are worth a hell of a lot more than that.
[Read: How to find closure with yourself after a relationship]
So, why does being ghosted hurt so much? Because jerks are good actors that make us feel foolish. But that is all they are, a bunch of jerks.
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