Dec 19, 2018 - Things to Do

In defense of ghosting



This might sound like a stupid question, but what is so wrong about ghosting?

After some great Bumble conversations and one or two awesome dates, you think you’ve hit it off with a new match only to suddenly stop hearing from them.

You’ve just been ghosted.

Everyone seems to think ghosting is horrible, but it doesn’t look like it’s going anywhere. Millennials aren’t only ghosting our dates, but we’re ghosting job interviews, and even ghosting jobs themselves.

And I, for one, think it’s great.

Maybe ghosting isn’t entirely polite, but it’s a valid and effective way to protect your own space.

Despite what the think-pieces would say, I don’t believe ghosting has anything to do with a fear of commitment or poor communication skills. It’s the result of a generation raised to be decisive and confident.

Some things don’t require a conversation, such as choosing to not to go on another date with someone, or choosing not to go to an interview. All it takes is a decision. That’s what makes ghosting so effective. It cuts straight to the decision.

Boomers and Gen Xers who clown on Millennials for ghosting are just jealous that we’re self-assured enough to skip social etiquette and make decisions for ourselves.

It’s not even malicious most of the time. Ghosting is often more of a “final no.” You get a call from a recruiter for a job interview, you try to explain that you’re not a fit for the position, but they talk you into interviewing. When you ghost the interview, you aren’t doing it to be mean, but to reject the pressure you were put under to attend.

Nobody owes me an explanation for not spending time with me.

A firm no in the form of ghosting helps avoid unwarranted pressure. That’s why even though I don’t personally ghost people, I understand why others do, especially women. Men aren’t exactly known for handling rejection well. If I were a young woman in the dating scene, I’d see ghosting as a much better alternative to an in-person conversation.

The hatred of ghosting feels a lot like a boundaries issue. I’m not entitled to anyone else’s space or time. I’m not owed an in-person conversation or a half-hearted apology if someone decides they want to split.

That’s just how life works.

It’s the same thing as “losing” someone’s number in the ’90s or giving out a fake number at a club. This isn’t new. In real life, we lose track of contacts all the time. It isn’t a personal attack.

Ghosting is here to stay — and that’s a good thing.


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