Dating · Friends

Give up the ghost

I’ve been thinking about ghosting a lot lately (while listening to this song). Maybe it’s my incessant need to finish a conversation, or my curiosity/need to know, but I find few things as irritating frustrating assholeish as when someone just up and fucking disappears. I think it might be the most disrespectful thing you can do to someone you have any kind of relationship with. Have the courtesy, courage, and common decency to end things properly, lest you be forever labelled a fuckwad.

After a couple of good dates, it looked as though I was being ghosted on (we were at a steady Ghost Level Orange), only to have him come back from the dead a week later. Rather than a ghost, he was a zombie; technically undead but still smelled like shit death. The problem is during his time on a different spiritual plane, I lost interest. If someone can’t be bothered to respond to a text over the course of a week, then I can’t be bothered to muster up some excitement. So now I’m faced with a choice: do I woman up and just say I’m over it, or do I get my spookiest outfit ahead of Halloween and go all spirit Steph on him?

Perhaps the most infuriating ghost situation is when it happens in the middle of a conversation. One minute we’re talking, the next *poof* they’re gone. From a (recent) cease in communication as soon as I said something they didn’t want hear to Ahab and his punitive silence, it all reeks of taking your ball and going home because you don’t like that you’re losing the game. Grow the fuck up.

I tend to talk a lot (more) when I’m angry, so to prevent big blocks of ragey blue paragraphs in these situations, I came up with my patented two text limit: I will send two messages without a response. After that, I’ll just bitch about what an asshole they are to my friends. It just baffles me that a grown ass adult would think the appropriate way to have a conversation is to not.

That being said, there are a few times when ghosting makes sense. Talking to a new guy on Tinder and he says something crass? Unmatched and no explanation given (after a screenshot if it’s funny, of course). I’ve also been ditched mid-convo for revealing my vegetarianism, the fact that I ate dog when I lived overseas, and because of my employer (not including all the times I’ve ‘offended’ someone by not being DTF or wanting to talk about genitals). There was no ragey response there, rather I’m glad we weeded each other out so early on.

In other situations, there’s also the pre-ghosting method: the slow fade. This works a bit better if everyone just gets the hint. I’ve had it used on me, and I’ve applied it in dating and friendships to various results. Sometimes things just trail off and both parties are fine with it. Other times, not so much, which requires you to either have that awkward conversation or pull a Casper. Just know if you do choose the spirit slip, a group of supportive friends is going to shit talk you over wine in the not too distant future.

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