'Ghosting' is a term being thrown around on the interwebbities a lot lately. Apparently it's the new way to leave a relationship without suffering the pain and embarrassment of actually having the "it's not you, it's me" conversation or writing the "Dear John" letter.
I'd heard the term and filed it away under the "not applicable to me" category in the back of my brain. It all seemed a little cold and hard hearted when dealing with someone who has meant something (even briefly) to you. But then I had to rethink things a little when I saw a blog post recently entitled "I ghosted my own mother" on scarymommy.com. It opened my eyes to a whole new level of how we engage with others.
This young woman had chosen to cut off all communication with her emotionally unstable and draining mother and was rejoicing in the freedom she now has. I totally understand the whole concept of dysfunctional family life and I'm sure she thought long and hard about it before she turned the cold shoulder and 'ghosted' her mum. It was probably a lot easier than having a big tumultuous showdown with someone who can't understand and doesn't want to change.
I took the thought one step further and realized that I'd actually done the same thing when it came to a friend who proved to be less than a friend should. I never had the "throw down the gauntlet" moment when I confronted her about her actions or her motives. I never took the time to tell her how much she hurt and betrayed me. Instead I just shut down communications and didn't bother to contact her again - which translates to "ghosting" in all its glory. I assume she barely noticed and has moved on, and it saved a lot of anguish on my part.
The only problem with ghosting is that it leaves a lot of things unsaid and unresolved. Neither party gets to have their moment in the sun. Neither gets to air their grievances. It's all neat and tidy and a little cold - just how we seem to like things nowadays. No mess, no pain and no resolution - just a ghosting and an end.
this post was part of the #1word challenge - this week's word was "cold"