“So yeah,” my annoying friend, Jenna, slurred as she reached for her fifth tequila shot. “He just like, didn’t answer,” she tossed back the clear liquid and focused her watery, unsteady gaze on me, “he fucking ghosted.”
I did all of the things a friend is supposed to do. I handed her shot after shot. I changed his number in her phone to mine, so every time she tried to text him, I received the “I fuchjing hate yob wait nooo I miss youd” messages, and I held her hair back that night when she threw up the multiple free shots she received at the bar. I get it. She was hurt. She had been talking to (read: sleeping with) Ben for just about three weeks when suddenly he stopped texting back.
At first, she just thought he was busy. Rush had just started and she knew he was looking to take another little. But then, as more and more texts went unanswered, she started to get a little more anxious. He was posting to Snapchat and she kept seeing him online whenever she went on Facebook. As more and more days went by without a reply to her ever growing unanswered messages, it finally dawned on her — she was getting ghosted.
And that’s about when shit started hitting the fucking fan.
You see, lately society has developed this obsession with ghosting. From creating stories about it online, documenting peoples’ tales, to playing the victim if it happens to you, to naming it for God’s sake, ghosting has officially become mainstream and a total annoyance in our lives — but not for the reason you think.
Sure, ghosting is annoying. It’s rude and petty and immature, but just because a guy stopped texting you back, it doesn’t make you special. The amount of stories I hear at brunch, articles I read online, and emails I get asking what to do when a guy stops texting is starting to really grate on my nerves because, guess what? Ghosting. Isn’t. New.
“Ghosting” has been around since the dawn of time. You think cavemen weren’t giving the ladies the snub when they stopped bring dead animals to their dens and instead started seeing the slutty cavewoman next door? You think they went up and calmly explained with grunts that even though they hadn’t had the “talk” he still felt the need to let her know that he no longer wanted to see her?
No. Fuck no. He just stopped seeing her.
And that’s what’s happening now. And it’s what happened to our parents and to our grandparents. Sure, back in the day it just meant that some boy stopped calling your mom’s landline every night and when she saw him a few weeks later at the school carnival with another girl, she got the picture. And for our grandparents, it was when he stopped knocking on the door at 5 p.m. asking if he could take her to the soda fountain and he stopped meeting her before class to carry her books.
This isn’t a new concept. This isn’t weird or crazy or novel. Sure, it’s annoying. And it’s rude. And it makes you feel like shit. But you’re not the first person to have a text go unanswered and a relationship fizzle out without an explanation. I’m not saying this to be mean — I’m saying this so you stop dwelling on the asshole who decided you weren’t worth a text and start doing something about it.
The funny thing is, that in a world where we crave attention, never want to take responsibility, and can’t stomach the idea of being rejected or not wanted, being ghosted is pretty sweet. Do you really want closure? Do you *want* to know what’s wrong with you? Most likely, no. You don’t. And he doesn’t want to tell you. Instead of talking to you face-to-face and telling you that you’re annoying and conceited and honestly he just wants to girl who sucks his balls more or whatever, he just stops talking to you. He’s not doing it to be mean. He’s doing it because he doesn’t like you but he still doesn’t want to be “mean.” Because saying he doesn’t like you to your face? Yeah. That’s mean, right?
So the next time you’re “ghosted,” I want you to really think about it. Because while you’re sitting there with all of these unanswered questions wondering why he suddenly up and left your life, you’re not realizing that you have all of the answers you need: he doesn’t like you. Because if he did? He wouldn’t be ignoring your texts. He wouldn’t be making you sit there wondering what was going on and he wouldn’t suddenly stop being a part of your life. And once you realize that you can pull yourself together and move the fuck on, just like he has.
Because why would you want to waste your time on someone who can’t even be mean to your face? Why would you want to waste your time on someone who can’t even text you back?.
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