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Healthy Conflict: How to Let Someone Down Without Ghosting Them

Healthy Conflict: How to Let Someone Down Without Ghosting Them

Popular dating app Bumble, which boasted 50 million users in e by requiring women to make the first move on potential dates. Now, Bumble is on a mission to change dating habits again. The app recently launched its second annual anti-ghosting campaign, reminding users that everyone can reduce the pain of online dating by keeping the hauntings to Halloween.

It might seem ironic, in our hyperconnected, digital age, that not communicating has become the default in online breakups. But perhaps the convenience and immediacy that our devices bring to our relationships make us value them less? Many relationships begin on apps like Bumble. We can meet with a swipe, carry around our matches, friends, and other important people in our pockets and as life gets chaotic, we only respond to those whom we consider a priority.

And that is the problem with ghosting. By not responding to someone, you're telling them that they aren't important. It's not like a reply requires a lot of effort. Sending a text takes all of two seconds.

So, what's the big deal, you might think. Afterall, ghosting is standard behavior on apps, it's just part of the trials and tribulations of online dating. Well, the way I see it, it runs deeper than that. The way we communicate (or don't) online may impact the relationships in the rest of our lives. Let's explore why this digital silent treatment is problematic.

Not Communicating

As someone who has been on both sides of uncomfortable silence, I'm aware that sometimes you really just don't know what to say. But I also know that this avoidant behavior can cause self-doubt and pain in your potential date.

Avoidance can work in the moment, but it's an unhealthy way to deal with conflict overall that can cause long-term repercussions. You can know your behavior is veering into unhealthy territory if you use ghosting to toy with people's emotions or to maintain your dominance in a “situationship.” Ultimately, what shosting really shows is that you prefer not to deal with conflicts and uncomfortable situations head-on, and might not be ready to deal with the major decisions and difficulties that come later on in a serious relationship.