You might have read BuzzFeed's earlier collection of horror stories from people who were completely ghosted by their partners. But one of the worst parts of being ghosted by someone is that you never get an answer to that tortuous question: “WHY?”
1. “I don't want to be be hurtful, so I just disappear.”
2. “If I'm ghosting someone, it's because they've done me dirty and I don't feel they deserve any more of my energy.”
“Either that, or I just forgot to text back.”
3. “‘Out of sight, out of mind’ type of deal.”
“Once I've made up my mind, I don't care enough to be around the person. I don't put any more energy into the thought, and I just move on with my life.”
4. “I did it when I felt like I wasn't being heard or understood, my feelings weren't being taken into consideration, and my boundaries were being crossed.”
“So, I felt like it was my only choice after continued communication didn't work. After having it done to you, it really changes your perspective. It's avoidant behavior and not a good example of maturity.”
5. “I have only done it a few times on dating apps, and it's usually because I change my mind about the person.”
“Maybe I don't like the way the conversation is going, maybe I see their social media profiles and don't like what I see, or maybe I just decide that I'm not attracted to them after all. It's just easier to cut them loose and not waste any more of my or their time. I've never really ghosted on anyone I know IRL though — that's so much more messed up.”
6. “I ghosted a group of friends. I honestly didn’t enjoy hanging out with them anymore, and they all did me dirty in some form.”
“One of them ghosted the whole group and ended up returning before I ghosted them all. One kissed my crush at the time in my house. One lied to me, telling me his mother was dying of cancer. She was in remission for six months before I found out she wasn’t ‘dying’ anymore. Also, I would have anxiety hanging out with him because he would never leave me alone. Always came up with more lies to draw me back in.”
7. “If I ghost someone, it’s because I don’t trust them or they make me uncomfortable. Would you want to tell someone that? And if I did, it would only create bigger problems, which I don’t want to deal with.”
“I only ghost people if it’s warranted, and at that point, you don’t deserve an explanation or conversation that only makes me feel worse. If you’re getting ghosted and you’re offended by it, think about how you’re interacting with people and why people might feel the need to cut you off.”
8. “The only people that I’ve ever ghosted were people who refused to let me go.”
“We'd argue, I would tell them that I didn't want to speak any more, just for them to send me four to five texts a day guilt-tripping me into responding.”
10. “I ghosted my whole family. My parents and elder brother are covert narcissists.”
“I had enough of their manipulation and psychological bullying after tolerating it for a decade. I haven't seen or spoken to them since 2017.”
11. “I'll ghost if I have a sudden and complete loss of interest.”
“Or I just completely forgot someone exists for an extended period of time, and now it feels awkward to un-ghost.”
12. “I did it once when I went on a date with a guy I met online. We met at a restaurant after chatting, texting, real phone calls, etc. and I felt like we were hitting it off. As we were waiting at our table, I realized that things were feeling really awkward, but I wasn't sure why. He seemed really relaxed and open while talking on the phone or chatting, but he was obviously tense. I decided to go to the ladies room, and since our booth was near there, I could see the back of his head and hear his voice. He was saying all of the stereotypical stuff that you overhear when someone is talking to their wife…..which he was. I didn’t know that he was married and looking for a hookup on the side, so I was blindsided. I sat back down, and the call had ended so he was acting all into me, being flirty and smiling and stuff, and I was trying to figure out how I wanted to handle this. It sucked because I had liked him a lot and what I’d hoped for wasn’t going to happen.”
“I didn’t want to just leave because he would never know that I was onto him. So I pretended like things were fine, chatted about work, normal stuff, etc. and ate my meal. He was all over me with his eyes, and held my hands across the table, and I just played along.
The check came and he paid for it. Then, we went outside and he hugged me. But I just hugged him back and thanked him for dinner and let him hold my hand while we walked to our cars. He leaned in to kiss me, and I told him that I really wanted to, but had to get up super early for work.
So we hugged again, and he said that he was going to call me soon and that he wanted to see me again. I pretended to be really excited about it, and then we said goodbye and I went home.
As soon as I got there, he started calling me, and I let it go to voicemail. He must’ve called, like, 10 times for several days in a row, plus sent a bunch of texts. I didn’t respond to any of them. He kept asking me why I wasn’t getting back to him, what did he do wrong, etc. I sent one text to him and said basically, ‘You want to know what’s wrong, ask your wife,’ and then I disappeared.”
13. “I mainly ghost people that I don't like or I haven't talked with in a long time.”
“I don't feel good about it, but it's better than suffering talking to them.”
14. “I ghosted a group of three girls that I had been friends with since high school (I was 30 years old at the time). I realized one day how tense and miserable I felt every time we got together. One of the girls was criticizing me constantly over my weight, my diet, my workout regimen, my taste in movies and TV, etc. One of the other girls always sided with her, and the third girl just wanted all of us to get along, but refused to acknowledge any of the nasty shit going on. So I blocked all their numbers and shut down my social media accounts. I felt such relief afterward. Bottom line: Ghosting can be an appropriate behavior in some situations. So I don’t judge people for doing it.”
“I had tried to address my friend criticizing me multiple times. It often ended with me crying and her laughing and saying her behavior was nothing to be offended over because she went to art school and had better aesthetic viewpoints than I did.
I realized that no attempt I made was achieving any sort of positive change. I was growing and changing, and I was happy with that growth and sick and tired of rehashing high school.
Since then, I’ve made new friends that I have more peace and kinship with. I found several blocked messages on my phone where one of them was crying or raging about how horrible I was being…and deleted them with no guilt whatsoever.”
15. “I do it when I'm completely done with them.”
“They've pushed my boundaries WAY too far, and for the last time.”
16. “I often feel like I'm unnecessarily bothering people by even saying anything to them, so I don't say anything at all.”
17. “I make an effort to not do this anymore because of how painful it can be to others and how immature it is. The times that I would do it would be on dating apps where we had never met in person yet and were in the early talking stages, and the way that they communicated turned me off. It was usually because they would go on and on about themselves and never ask me anything about myself. I felt it was too early on, and I didn't care enough about them to be calling them out on it.”
“I don't want to continue any form of conversation, friendship, or relationship with someone who is that self-absorbed. It was best to just cut them out and focus on someone else who did care to get to know me.”
18. “I ghosted because my ex completely humiliated me with a fake engagement, cheated on me with one of my friends, and I was the last person in my friend group to find out. When it all came out, all of our mutual friends stuck with the new couple and just, like, pretended that I hadn't been in the picture for more than seven years. I honestly do not know how I made it through this time because this was dark.”
"They all knew what was going on, and nobody had the decency to clue me in. Then, they went on as normal, and I was left single, homeless, and just completely devastated.
I found out that they would occasionally look me up on social media to laugh about my pathetic sad posts, and I guess that was the thing I needed to hear. I deleted Facebook, quit my job, cancelled my phone, moved to another continent, and never spoke to any of them again.
I'm doing great now, married to an amazing person, and I've built a happy new life in the new place that I moved to.”
19. “I unintentionally do it."
“My life gets overwhelming, and I ghost those who are generally chatty when I need them not to be. I don’t want to ask them if they can leave me alone. I just don’t respond because I feel like I physically can’t.”
20. “I just think it’s been part of life. It’s just that texting and social media have made it a much more palpable action.”
“I sure as hell avoided contact with people purposely in the '80s and '90s…it’s just way more obvious now. Life is short; there simply is no room for people in one’s life that detract from ourselves.
If they make us miserable, then you drop contact. It was easier 30 years ago, obviously.”
21. “I do it sometimes because I don't have the energy to respond, but it makes me feel really bad.”
22. “I only ghost people if they've been draining my energy and negatively affecting my mental health, and I've told them to leave me alone, but they won't.”
23. “I don't know how to maintain a relationship. I don't even know what friendship actually looks like.”
24. “Because I don't want to talk to them anymore.”
“Before I ‘ghost,’ I become distant, so it becomes obvious that I don't want to continue communication.”
25. “I ghost people when the conversation feels very one-sided.”
“For example, if the only reason we’re still speaking is because I am asking all the questions, then that’s really tiring. It also falls the other way, too. If the only conversation I have with someone is them complaining about everything wrong in their life, it's very draining. Like, I am not a therapist, I am your pal.”
26. “Sometimes I'll imagine a response, but forget to write it because I don't have the energy at that moment.”
“Then, I don't realize until later that I didn't write anything, at which point the thing I meant to say seems less relevant than it was. Then, I don't know what to say anymore.”
27. “I did it a few times, not trying to defend it. It was when things got too close or when people confessed to me.”
“I'm not sure why, I was just overwhelmed with the situation and didn't know what else to do. So I just ran away from them, broke off contact, and crawled back into my comfort zone. A lot of people around me dreamed of being confessed to. I never got why. It was a nightmare to me.
I don't think anything has changed inside me since then, but I do understand how much damage ghosting can do now. So the next poor person who wants to confess to me will get a proper rejection, at least.”
28. “We didn't have a name for it when I did it a hundred years ago. But I did it because I wanted to, and I was a teenager who didn't know any better.”
Ever ghosted someone? Tell me why in the comments!
Note: Some responses have been edited for length and/or clarity.