Ghosting is a standard part of online dating life. So why do we make such a big deal about it? I get ghosted. I ghost. If I was interested, if they were interested, we’d message right? I could simply type ‘I’m not interested’ but is that just as bad as ghosting? And how many times a day would I be typing that? 10, 15, 20?
Sometimes I’d rather not know what someone really thinks of me. I am really good at swerving awkward conversations. So maybe the silence is just doing me a favour. And yes, maybe that makes me a coward. But so are they. It’s a hassle free way to move on.
Chaolan’s eventual message three weeks after our missed date at the end of March was unexpected and I’d really got over it by then. So I didn’t bother to answer him. There was zero future between us. He was mildly unhappy that I ghosted him, as evidented by his curt message two days later, but you know what, when I have to wait a week between text messages, I’m sorry, you deserve everything you get. Sometimes you message with people in the off chance they will become more interesting. Or because there’s noone else to talk to, and then someone infinitely more fun comes along and you’re off. Sometimes people just don’t make the effort. And it looks like you don’t care.
If you’re doing online dating right, you’re not daft enough to put all your eggs into one basket. We all do it. We bank up conversations, we see who sticks around, we see who make the effort and allow the others to fall by the way side. It’s like stocks and shares – business transactions. The value of your fund can go up as well as down. It’s all about how well you perform in the market. And that works both ways. But there are also a lot of hedonists using online dating. They just want the attention and they will never follow through. I have come across plenty of these, and it explains a lot of the ghosting.
I’m known for my long message streams and my perseverence in conversation, even when things don’t pan out. My Whatsapp archive with Gianluca ran to 73 A4 pages alone. I used to continue conversations out of politeness because rejecting someone seemed so cruel. But I’ve stopped worrying about it and I now focus my time on the ones who are worth the effort, the ones who try, the ones who possess communication skills and who offer something that I want. Yes it sounds harsh, but life is harsh and with online dating you really have entered the meat market and you need to get tough.
It’s the same in nature. You’ve seen the Birds of Paradise on Attenborough’s nature programmes, right? The male bird is there and displaying like his life depended on it to attract a mate. This could be his one shot. Sometimes (like the Bower Bird) he makes a nest and she decides if it’s up to her standards. And the others she just dismisses even after all their work. Well I kind of think of people like that. Because that’s basically what this comes down to.
Maybe these guys don’t realise they’re having to measure up to others at the same time. But we all know that’s the case surely?
Colourful Sperm Banks – you’ll never look at Tinder the same way again.