What’s the deal with Ghosting?
- Gemma Gladstone
- July 8, 2021
Ghosting. Oh boy, this behaviour is really getting boring isn’t it? A guy that shows you lots of attention in the first place, you have fun together, you feel great when you’re with him (mostly, it’s likely you also feel a little anxious underneath….), you feel like there’s a connection (most of the time….) and then……wait for it……crickets! You hear absolutely nothing!!
Or maybe it’s a slower, more torturous phasing out process, where he doesn’t answer your texts and you initiate contact waiting to hear from him. He might get back to you a little bit, but his communication just fades out….. He’s incommunicado!
And then? Then you start asking yourself the same old questions. What happened? I thought we had something? Did I do something wrong? How could he have been so interested and now he’s not? Was I imagining things?
And then your mind starts contemplating some of these old favourites. Maybe he was hit by a bus? Maybe he’s in a coma? Maybe his mother just died and he’s grief stricken and can’t speak?
NOPE! It’s none of those things and it has probably already been preceded by a few earlier red flags which may have slipped under your radar.
Ghosting is not nice. Nobody likes it. To be on the receiving end is painful, it hurts and it can make you feel just miserable, particularly if it’s happened more than once.
Ghosting is essentially an avoidant behaviour. It’s passive, it’s non-relational and can often be a marker of wider-spread emotional avoidance. So, if someone ‘Ghosts’ you and then reappears weeks or months later, be warned. Unless they have done real work on themselves in the mean time, they are just likely to repeat this behaviour in the future. I’m not saying that the person who ghosted you is a terrible person or a bad seed or anything like that. They have just demonstrated to you their limited ability to lean into difficult or uncomfortable emotions and their tendency to avoid being real or having hard conversations. Do you really want or need a partner like that? I’m guessing NO!
So what gets in the way of a a person actually being real and simply getting in contact and expressing how they feel? In this case – that they don’t want to pursue anything further with you (for whatever reason). Well, we know the answer is avoidance, but let’s break it down.
(1) Wanting to maintain the Mr Nice Guy image. For some men, the thought of losing another person’s approval of themselves is frightening. This is counter-intuitive of course because you’re not exactly going to have a good opinion of someone who ghosts you. However, some men (and women of course) are big approval seekers and will do anything to limit having another person think less of them in the moment – so they’ll avoid being honest. They’ll say ‘yes’ when they mean ‘no’. They’ll say things like “well, we should do this again“, when they have absolutely no intention of ever seeing you again. They will do almost anything to avoid the discomfort of being authentic in the moment, unless they know their authenticity will be met with positivity from the other person. So they will often project a false persona, just to be liked! They seem to convince themselves that just ‘disappearing’ will be less painful all round.
We love sharing our insights around these and other red flag behaviours. To learn about how our online course – The Red Flag Project, can help you screen out avoidant or emotionally unavailable partners and date with self-respect, check out the link here https://goodmoodclinic.com.au/rfp-org.