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Ghosting: Why it hurts so much.

Ghosting, a term that has become popular in today’s lingo which describes disappearing on someone you were dating. (I would like to differentiate between dating and being in a relationship because a lot of people think when you are dating you are in a relationship; in this instance it refers to getting to know someone.) People often use this as a justification for ghosting you, that you two were not in a relationship so they did not owe you any explanation. I have had my fair share of ghosting and I think I may have done it to others. Let me tell you a story of, let’s call him Peter for the article’s sake, who ghosted me last year and left me feeling bitter for opening up to him.

I met Peter at an event his company was hosting, and I happened to be working there as well, we started flirting from the minute we laid eyes on each other. I won’t lie I was charmed by looks and how he played with his words, a wordsmith of some sorts. We spoke most of the afternoon and ended up sharing a joint at some point where he told me he had been checking me out and there was one particular picture on my Instagram that got him hot. Obviously, I was smitten by this and ended up giving him my number and he promised to call me later that evening. Fast forward, I am now at home and my phone rings, it’s him! He says he wants to come over and wish me goodnight and give me a goodbye hug because he forgot to give me one before he left. I should’ve known better, because that was a hint he wanted to get in my pants and because I am slutimus prime, we did hook up that night and ended up hanging out.

Now Peter omitted the fact that he was in a relationship that was ending. I was hurt when I found out because I had already started picking wedding planners and potential honey-moon places. I let it go because I really liked him and stuck it through as a third party till the relationship ended. Now I knew that I did not want to be a rebound, so I told him we could continue dating and seeing other people but when we’re together it’s just us. Peter had this habit of checking his Grindr whilst we’re together and this bothered me to a point, I addressed it and he was shocked by this and his response was the first red flag I missed because he brushed it off. This was followed by ignored texts where I would be left on read for a number of days whilst he was online and the only time he would text me, would be when he wanted to come over and hook-up. Essentially, I was a human flashlight.

The third flag came when he got in a relationship with someone I know form the streets, and never mentioned this. Instead, he just went quiet and when I asked him about it. He left me on read and later I learnt that he had blocked me. Now I realised the issue was that he suffered from communication problems and felt that when someone was addressing something it was an attack on his character, that is a problem in any setting because how will a person know how you are really feeling? I was truly hurt by that because he did not have the decency to let me go gently instead of wasting my time investing in someone who had no intentions of being with me. This is my main issue with Ghosting someone, you spend so much time with someone thinking you’re on the same page only for them to go silent on you. What is even worse is when they tell you they are not ready for a relationship and just want to date but they ghost you for a relationship. We’re grown now and should be able to communicate our feelings without people thinking it is an attack on them, use your mouth (I wanted to say something dirty but I will pass for now) and your words. A lot of issues in gay relationships happen because there isn’t proper communication between the partners. If you’re dating someone and you later learn that you’re not compatible why not let the other person know?

Phumlani Kango is a contributing writer for the Anova Health Institute and these are his views, which may or may not reflect those of Anova and its affiliates. 

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