Just when you think that everything is going well… you never hear from the person ever again. You quizzically ask yourself, “What happened? I thought that you liked me? Were you using me? Did I take this too seriously?”
What should you do? How should you react? What is the appropriate way to move on once you get ghosted?
According to Psychology Today, the term…
“Ghosting… is abruptly ending communication with someone without explanation.”
In the dating world, you may cross someone’s path and find them unique and physically attractive. Then you meet again and find them psychologically alluring. You want to know more about them. You start to enjoy seeing them frequently and find yourself becoming vulnerable. You start to become emotionally attracted to them for all the right reasons. They fulfill almost all the criteria of your dream partner.
Time goes by, and you find yourself really starting to fall for this person. You hope that it is reciprocal. Then, one day, they are MIA! One hour of being unresponsive turns into one night, one night turns into one day, then one day turns into one week… Reality hits…
Did I just get ghosted?!
If this were to happen, I will take you through the l steps that will help you to recover from getting ghosted.
We become attached to certain people easily; you want their attention, and you hope that this other individual feels the same way. However, some individuals are unable to reciprocate those feelings, and sadly, they will turn you down, even in the harsh method of ghosting.
Some people can shake it off, and move on their way, but others take it to heart.
Ghosting hurts. You want closure so that you can move on with your life. You would like to know what happened and how to react.
Here are the three things that you need to do if you get ghosted…
1. Get Closure
I know what you may be thinking:
“That’s what I’ve been trying to do!”
However, you may be surprised, take a deep breath and become the observer.
You may have done one of the following: A) failed to respond to the person’s last text or B) had the case of “overly sensitive syndrome.” It is always good to backtrack, look at past texts, and think about the last time that you and the other person were together to assess where you were in this relationship. Reflect and figure out if you were actually ghosted, or just being overly sensitive. Sometimes, when we want that love and affection so much, it may be perceived as “too much” to the other party. This is called “fluke or flaw;” is this just a one-time thing, or is this what I think it is (ghosting)?
The best-case scenario in approaching this situation is to get closure. As tempting as it may be, refrain from spamming their phone to get a response. Instead, remain calm and be open and honest, so that you can express yourself simply and rationally. In this way, they will be more inclined to reciprocate in an equally open and honest manner.
You might simply text, “Hey! How are you?”, “How’ve you been?”, “How’s your morning so far?” If they fail to reply to you, leave you on read, or in the worst case, fail to open your message, you will know that you have been officially ghosted. If this is the case, where do you go from here?
2. Mourn Their Death!
Of course, this is figuratively speaking, but it is a necessary part of the healing process!
When you have been ghosted, understand that it has nothing to do with how amazing and fabulous you are as a human being! This is instead an arbitrary case in which you are simply in different places in your lives.
It could be that they are not ready for a relationship, they are unable to reciprocate the feelings, or they may not be ready for what you bring to the table.
Here is the next step: you need to realize that you deserve to live your best life! So, move on from this individual! It might be difficult at first, but your strength and passion will see you through!
There are so many things that you can do to mourn their death, but first, “mope, then cope.” Give yourself the time to really feel the loss and take baby steps to move forward. In this period of “mourning,” with the power of social media, either “mute” or “unfollow” the ‘ghoster’. By keeping them on your social media, it will increase your chances of seeing their next post, story, or update. Take the social media step as a “burial,” the last nail in the coffin.
Next, go through the “5 Stages of Grief.” When applied to ghosting, they include the following scenarios:
- Denial: Denying that you got ghosted. – “No… there’s no way.” “They must be busy or something.” “Maybe I should text them.” “Maybe something happened, and they can’t be on their phone.”
- Anger: The feelings of being ghosted get the best of you. – “HOW DARE THEY GHOST ME?!” “I DID NOTHING WRONG!” “HOW COULD THEY?!” “I AM A GOOD PERSON; I DON’T DESERVE THIS!!”
- Bargaining: Convincing yourself of “What if’s” and “If only” moments when feeling vulnerable or helpless during the process of ghosting – “If only I didn’t text so much”, “What if I acted this way during our date?”, “What if I did this?”, or “If
only I did that.” Try to refrain from second guessing yourself!
- Depression: Sadness overcomes you. – “I can’t believe they ghosted me…”
According to Healthline, experiencing the five states of grief is a common occurrence when dealing with the death of a loved one, loss of a job, end of a relationship, and now, getting ghosted.
Of course, not everyone experiences all five stages, but in the case of ghosting, you may go through all of them. This will make it easier for you to move on to a better relationship. Grief is different for everyone, so levels of each stage may differ for each person. This all leads to the last step of coping with the grief of being ghosted …
3. Build a bridge and get over it! // or Step 5: Acceptance
Perhaps you thought that this individual was ‘the One’ in which case, being ghosted by them was a blessing in disguise! You may ask yourself, “How is this a blessing? Why should I be happy that I got ghosted?!” Understand that it is a clear sign that this individual was not ‘your other half.’ Release your fears and worries and remember that you are a remarkable individual who is the star of your own show. The ‘ghoster’ was no more than an “extra” on your set. You
still have time to find your “co-star.”
If you constantly think of the person who ghosted you, it will only wear you down. Once you have been ghosted, go through the steps of the five stages of grief. Keep in mind that this is your life, and you are the star of it! It may be difficult at first, but you will rise above this circumstance. You deserve to find your other half, and until they come into your life, you should
live your best life!
Anthony Canapi is a professional matchmaker based in Los Angeles who helps gay men seeking meaningful relationships. Offering both coaching and matchmaking services, he’s helped over 800 singles connect around California. Learn more about working with Anthony at bestmanmatchmaking.com