Last year, I’d been on a few dates with this guy but they’d been a bit sporadic. We got into a conversation about whether or not he was actually into me, and he said he was interested in a relationship. His replies then fizzled out, so I blocked him. A few weeks later, he messaged me on Facebook asking if I’d blocked him, and I told him I had because he’d stopped responding to my messages. He then told me he wasn’t that into me.
My friend was seeing this guy for 2-3 months. In retrospect, he may have had his doubts about the relationship, but he’d told her he wanted to continue seeing her and seeing how things developed. He then went silent and stopped responding to messages.
My friend had been seeing this guy for around 4 months. He was going to ask her out, but she told him she wasn’t looking for anything too serious. Later on, he faded out communication. She found out later on that he’d slept with his ex-girlfriend, and realised he didn’t want to get into another long-term serious relationship and was worried things were heading hat way.
It seems there are more ways to communicate than ever before. You can go on a dating app, and soon you’re chatting with potential matches you wouldn’t have met in real life. You can go on Twitter, and end up chatting with people from all around the globe. You can go to Meetups every night of the week, if you wish to. Yet it seems, despite the communication we have at our fingertips, we’ve forgotten how to well, communicate.
People blame technology on the rise of bad behaviour. And I’ll admit, sometimes it doesn’t help. I had one guy arrange a date then disappear on the day, and when I used to use Bumble BFF I got flaked on more times than I can count. When people are reduced to images behind a screen, the experience becomes depersonalised and it’s a lot easier to rationalise ditching someone last minute. But to be honest, it’s been that way for as long as I can remember. I remember experiencing the phenomenon of “ghosting” when it used to be just “he disappeared”, and I’m sure I’m not the only one. I’d say it’s a symptom of the modern era. A lack of community, decline in traditional values, and generally less manners/ respect. But perhaps it’s always that way. Perhaps there were fuckboys who stopped replying to carrier pidgeon messages and telegrams.
I’ve covered bad dating behaviour on this blog before. However, this post is slightly different. My Halloween theme this year is, well, honesty. Sometimes in life, you have to disappoint people. You don’t always want to date someone. Sometimes, you don’t want to go to someone’s party. Sometimes you don’t want to be someone’s friend, or you can’t do that favour for someone. And you know what… that’s fine. I mean it’s not ideal, but we accept that not everything in life goes our way. But you know what, just be honest. Developing feelings for someone then not getting closure hurts. And being left in the lurch without an explanation causes unnecessary inconvenience and is just plain rude. So just be honest. Lay it out in the open. Then we can all move on.
So let’s practice.
“I’m not really feeling a romantic connection between us.”
“I’m not looking for anything serious right now.”
“I don’t really see long-term potential between us, so I’d like to end things here.”
“I’m afraid I can’t help you out with that party.”
“I don’t want to come to your fundraising dinner.”
“I don’t want to date you.”
“I don’t want to be your friend.”
OK perhaps not the last two, but you know what, it’s better than flipping silence.
So in conclusion, just be honest. Don’t ghost.