We Ghosted: Now What?

I ghosted one of my good friends from high school. A brief backstory: She was a junior when I was a freshmen, and had dealt with some abuse growing up which led her to be diagnosed with a couple disorders, along with her abusing drugs (recreational and prescribed) and alcohol. After years of being there for her when she was kicked out of her house, on drugs and/or drunk, listening to all of her boy drama through multiple boyfriends, and being at the birth of her child, I couldn’t take it anymore. This was about two years after I graduated high school. I ghosted her because, even though I care about her, I didn’t like the feeling of being surrounded by her energy – and I didn’t know how to tell her that. Even after her child was born, there was drama with her child’s father, substance abuse, and manic episodes. She always told me I was like a sister to her and the only person to stick around, and I want to be that for her, but the amount of energy she drains from me is no longer conducive to my lifestyle. She still tries to get me to come over and hang out, and I always tell her I’m busy. It’s been about two years of this, and I am busy, but I still find time to see my other friends. I felt terrible when it started, and I still feel terrible. I wish her the best and the most happiness in the world. As terrible as I feel, not sacrificing my energy to someone who drains me, and putting that energy towards people who enrich my life, puts me at ease. I know growing up means being particular with your time, resources and energy, but I wish I knew a way to tell her where we can both be at peace and move on.

Type of Ghost: The friend that brings you down
Why you Ghosted: It was becoming unhealthy for you to be around her.
St Says: Sometimes distancing yourself from unhealthy relationships is the best thing to do. Often the distancing happens before you are cognizant of what’s going on. You may find yourself saying no to hang out, or responding to their messages more slowly.I hope that your friend is able to seek out help for the issues that have been hurting her in her life and that you’re able to reconnect one day, if the time is right.
About a year ago I met a guy on Plenty of Fish. On our first date I learned that he was in town trying to move the company he worked for to Houston from Utah so he was pitching it to a business here. He was here for a total of about 10 days after I met him and in those 10 days we hung out 7 times. He was unable to land that bid in Houston so he had to move on to Midland, TX; we had dinner the night before he was to leave. After he left, we texted a few times but then he stopped. Previously, he had said he was going to keep in touch and we’d hang out when he got back. We had a really good time together and had a lot in common; I sincerely don’t understand why I got ghosted.
Type of Ghost: Where’d you go?
Why they Ghosted: They didn’t feel the connection
St Says: I’d pull this up to one of the big three. 1) He didn’t feel a connection 2) He reconnected with someone else 3) He met someone else. These are frequently the reasons this specific type of ghosting happens. Whatever the reason, it seems like he was too self-conscious of the reason to give you an appropriate explanation. At best, he makes for a good story to share, and hopefully some fond memories.
I think it was an accidental ghosting on both our parts. We’d be dating for a little over 2 months when he went away to Asia for a month and I felt a bit uncomfortable texting him while he was there. I didn’t want to come off as clingy, and I also didn’t know if he’d had reliable wifi connections while he was there. Basically by the time he came back, I felt like we’d completely fallen out of touch. We texted back and forth a few times, and then just… stopped. I ran into him a few months later and we were both like, “I didn’t think you were into me, so I just kind of let it go.” (Which was only half true for me, I had met my now boyfriend who I felt I had a waaaay better connection with) I don’t feel bad about it, and I don’t think he does either. It just seemed like a natural progression in our relationship.
Type of Ghost: The Flat Side of Velcro
Why they Ghosted: There was nothing to cling onto
St Says: This is such a totally silly and totally human interaction, isn’t it? You had a cool connection but life entered in and you found another, stronger connection. It was a “flat side of velcro” ghost because neither of you were particularly gripping onto the other one. I love this because it describes so clearly why some relationships end. They just live out their time, and we find someone new. The dating opportunities are endless, and good on you for seeking them out!

All of these stories share something in common: readers had the opportunity to speak up, to be very clear in how they felt. You’re unhealthy for me, I’m not interested in continuing dating you, how you doing, I’m thinking of you. I think that happens between ghosting and communication is so interesting. We pause. We think. And then we overthink. Will I hurt them? Is it worth it? Do they even expect me to say anything? I think, and I hope, that we’re entering into a culture of “over”-communication. Where the seemingly obvious is communicated clearly and openly and early. Where we say what we think and we feel even if we’re concerned how it may impact our relationship with that person, even if we’re concerned how it may impact our relationship with ourselves.

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