Ghosting: The Tinder-era Post-it Note

What Urban Dictionary has to say on the subject of Ghosting:

Ghosting: The act of suddenly ceasing all communication with someone the subject is dating, but no longer wishes to date. This is done in hopes that the ghostee will just “get the hint” and leave the subject alone, as opposed to the subject simply telling them he/she is no longer interested. Ghosting is not specific to a certain gender and is closely related to the subject’s maturity and communication skills. Many attempt to justify ghosting as a way to cease dating the ghostee without hurting their feelings, but it in fact proves the subject is thinking more of themselves, as ghosting often creates more confusion for the ghostee than if the subject kindly stated how he/she feels. “
Carmen: How was your second date with Kyle?
Beth: I thought it went well, but I’ve texted him a couple of times since then and he’s been ghosting me.
Carmen: What? I thought he was more mature than that.
by Ghostface Illa November 27, 2013

Have you heard of Ghosting? No, we’re not talking about Swayze. This is a different kind of thing, and it certainly isn’t friendly. Chances are high that you’ve experienced this dating phenomenon, either as the perpetrator or on the receiving end.

Ghosting is the ultimate silent treatment. Its when someone decides for whatever reason that they are no longer interested and they just disappear without an explanation or a trace. This term has come to light recently due to an article in the New York times. I’m glad a light is being shone on this behaviour – how is this considered an acceptable form of communication? When did this become okay? If even Urban Dictionary is implying that it’s immature, we have an issue.


So to be perfectly transparent, I’ve ghosted. After a couple of dates, I saw it wasn’t going anywhere and just kind of disappeared. That being said, I’ve also been ghosted on, by friends after years of friendship and by people I was dating for multiple weeks. I see the appeal – it’s on the extreme end of the non-confrontation spectrum.
When you’re playing Casper, you rationalize that this is easier – no one wants to have an awkward conversation. They get it, right? Of course they know what happened and get the hint… right?

I’m here to say: wrong. They don’t know, because you never told them and humans can’t read minds. One of the worst feelings to have, and one I truly hated when I was younger and dating – was the feeling of being the girl who ‘just doesn’t get it.’ You look and feel stupid, and often the ghoster is talking to everyone but you. And you don’t know, which gives you the horrible feeling of being stupid; like you should have known. Also, it makes you crazy. Maybe you have an idea, but you’re just guessing. And you’re hoping you’re right. Then your insecurities and imagination kick in – and now you’re convinced its for all kinds of reasons.


Why cause all this hurt? It’s not acceptable when Carrie gets broken up with on a Post-it; it’s not acceptable by text. I am putting ghosting firmly in the ‘unacceptable’ folder for breaking up. It’s time we all pull up our pants and grow a pair – have an adult conversation. Even, “it’s not you, it’s me” is better than nothing.
I mean, if you can get naked in front of someone, you should be able to sit them down and give them a respectful, “I can’t even.”

Have you ghosted someone? Would you again? Share you thoughts or tweet at us @NundergroundTO

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