Tell me if this sounds familiar:
Everything was going well with him for a few weeks or months.
And then he disappeared into thin air.
You were disappointed, hurt, and angry. Maybe you were even heartbroken. But you got over it.
Now, weeks or months later, he’s back and you’re confused about what to do.
Unfortunately, this situation has become so common that it has even been given a name.
You have been ghosted.
What Is Ghosting?
Ghosting happens when someone cuts off all communications abruptly and without any explanations.
It is not just men who are guilty of this behavior. Both men and women disappear when they don’t dare to tell the person they are dating that they aren’t going to continue to see them. They are not brave enough to tell you that they are breaking up with you.
Now that he’s back, this can be a very confusing situation. If you really liked him, you may wonder if a relationship with him has any future. Understandably, you are also concerned about getting hurt again. What should you do?
How to Handle a “Ghoster” Tip #1: Don’t Get into a Text Exchange
If he’s just checking in to say hello and see how you are doing, don’t encourage him. He’s been quite rude by cutting you off like that and now he’s not even addressing the fact that he ghosted you. Wait a few days to text him back. If he’s apologetic, let him call you and tell you what happened.
How to Handle a “Ghoster” Tip #2: Expect an Apology and Explanation
He made a big mistake and he has some explaining to do. If he doesn’t apologize, he probably doesn’t understand how serious a mistake he made. You probably don’t want to start a relationship with someone who isn’t even able to apologize.
Don’t ask him if you did anything wrong. Don’t let him off the hook by avoiding the subject of what happened. If you let him waltz back into your life without a good apology and explanation, you are essentially telling him what he did was OK.
How to Handle a “Ghoster” Tip #3: Don’t Accept Vague Explanations
If he won’t give you an explanation or it’s vague and hard to understand, then he may not really understand why he disappeared. Or maybe he feels he can’t explain it because it makes him look bad. For example, he might say the timing wasn’t right for his life. But why would this time be any better? That kind of explanation is not likely to be very reassuring or make you feel confident that he won’t do it again.
If he disappeared on you once, he could easily do it again.
How to Handle a “Ghoster” Tip #4: Be Open to Legitimate Explanations
If he is genuinely sorry and has a reasonable explanation, then you may want to listen to and try to understand his explanation. If he lost his job or someone in his family was very ill or died, maybe he pulled back from his life to cope with the situation.
How to Handle a “Ghoster” Tip #5: Don’t Just Pick up Where You Left off
He damaged the trust in your relationship by ghosting you, so can that trust be rebuilt? Start your relationship over from scratch. That way you can determine whether he is willing to put effort into your relationship or is just lonely and wants you back. Make it a priority to protect your heart. Date other people and don’t be in a hurry to get involved with him again until he has fully regained your trust.
How to Handle a “Ghoster” Tip #6: Clearly Set Your Standards
If you decide to move forward with him after he has ghosted you, be clear about the boundaries in your relationship to try to prevent future ghosting. Can he make a firm commitment that he has changed and is committed to your relationship? Is he really in this relationship or not? Listen to your gut when you explore these questions with him to make sure you truly believe what he is telling you.
How to Handle a “Ghoster” Tip #7: Let Go If He Can’t Meet Your Standards
No matter how much you like him, if you don’t fully trust him, then this relationship won’t work for you. Sometimes two people simply aren’t a good match. Try to find someone who is a good match for you.
Don’t rush back into a relationship with a “ghoster.” Make sure he is worthy of your trust or find a better match.
What has been your experience with ghosting? Leave us a message and let us know.