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About Claire J. Harris

Claire Harris is a writer in exile who has spent the last decade travelling and working around the world. This is not nearly as glamorous as it sounds and usually involves scraping by on a diet of muesli and cheap wine. Occasionally together. You can find her at www.clairejharris.com

It’s an age-old question. Why do those who ghost you still haunt the halls of your social media? 

 

 

Yesterday a Tinder date from two years ago replied to one of my tweets. I had forgotten he still followed me on Twitter, even though he did that before he got my phone number.

Modern romance, eh?

The tweet was about my thoughts on a Netflix show and he replied with a single word. “WHAT?” I asked if he’d seen the show and he clarified that he hadn’t. It was the most interaction we’ve had since he essentially ghosted me after our second date.

So my correct response to his comment should have been “WHY?”

Not just any old “why do men ghost?” but, why don’t men who ghost you have the common decency to just disappear? And why do they resurface on your social media to give you a little reminder that yes they are still alive and kicking around Twitter?

Side note: I was pretty gutted by that ghosting because those two dates were eight hours each so that was 16 hours of investment into my own humiliation. I even bought a new phone because I hoped there was some chance that his messages weren’t getting through. He owes me 100 bucks, is what I’m saying.

A year before that ghost, I was dating another guy for a couple of months. I didn’t meet him online, but apparently men feel no more sense of obligation to women they meet in the real world than they do on Tinder.

We met or spoke to each other every day during the time we dated. On the last day I saw him, we had plans to go to a concert that evening. He left my house saying he’d be back in a few hours—then never returned. I actually feared he might be dead.

And yet he watches all my Instagram stories. I mean, if he wanted to know how I was doing he could have asked me in person or—I don’t know—tried not ghosting me in the first place.

I didn’t think it was a relationship (I wasn’t even sure I wanted one) but c’mon, two months is more than two dates. Surely, two months deserves some sort of “Don’t worry, I haven’t been run over, I just have no respect for you as a human being, PS go to the concert by yourself” text message—at the very least.

But surprise twist, he’s not dead! I know that because he watches every single one of my Instagram stories. And I just want to understand why.

I once ran into this guy at a concert—it was the same band that we were supposed to go and see together the night he ghosted me, so he must have known this might happen eventually. As I walked in, he took one look at me and literally fled the room. When I went to the toilet, I accidentally caught him peeking around the doorway so he could continue watching the band without me seeing him. (He doesn’t know that women also need to pee, I guess.)

And yet he watches all my Instagram stories. I mean, if he wanted to know how I was doing he could have asked me in person or—I don’t know—tried not ghosting me in the first place.

A lot has been written about ghosting, how little accountability people now take for their actions towards others while dating. And while we all long for the good old days when people couldn’t ghost you simply by un-matching you on a dating app, I miss the good old days because if they continued to follow you after ghosting, you could just turn around and ask them:

Why do you do it, ghosts?

 

This post was originally published on Medium. You can check out more of Claire’s work here.

 

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