Why You Shouldn’t Ghost

Drew Stegmaier
2 min readOct 15, 2020

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First, let’s define ghosting- its essence is acting out of integrity. It’s disappearing, not showing up. Ghosting is saying one thing, and doing another. It’s lying. The fact that I can use the word “ghost” as a verb and have it be widely understood is sad. This wasn’t a thing 30 years ago. If you said this to a grandparent, they’d likely be confused.

Ghosting makes me lose faith in humanity. First, most dating apps only allow you to speak if there’s mutual attraction. Then, you pass the cesspool of people who don’t even reply. After that, you get to the people who are ambivalent. Then, after that, you may have a few decent conversations.

Honestly, I’ve made the same mistake a number of times, allowing me to get ghosted. This is my fault. I did this to prevent myself from getting hurt, and really it's simple- do a video chat before meeting in real life. If someone isn’t willing to do that little bit of effort, I don’t care about buying you dinner and spending an evening with you. That is a big effort activity. Meeting via video chat is low friction relative to meeting in person.

What happens when you ghost? Well, your selfishness gives people trust issues. This leads to commitment phobia at scale. This leads to people assuming its “ok” because it has happened so many times.

It is not ok.

It is disgusting.

It is rude.

It takes a few seconds to tell someone you won’t be showing up. Heck, you can even just say “I’m done”. You could even tell them you won’t be hanging out again. If they are heinous, block their ass. Dating apps often have safety features now, too. I understand that people can and do get assaulted, but ghosting doesn’t prevent assaults. If someone is rude and angry enough and evil enough to assault you, ghosting doesn’t help that. To claim that someone can’t hear no robs them of their agency. In depriving them, you are also depriving yourself.

Ghosting involves treating people like objects. When we do that, others do it, too.

Don’t.

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