For anyone who is unfamiliar with the term “ghosting”, it is when one person blocks another on social media, and completely shuts them out of their life without giving a reason why, or what they did wrong to deserve to get blocked in the first place.
Family and friends who end up getting blocked by someone they see as a loved one will most likely never speak to that person again, because they were perceived as toxic and unkind. Or, it could be that they are scared of dealing with the fact that the person doing the ghosting has to tell the truth and wants to protect the other person’s feelings.
Two Hutchinson Community College students, a professor, and a counselor gave some thought on why they think ghosting occurs.
Mariah Buck, a sophomore at HutchCC, said why the ghoster might act the way he or she does.
“Because they don’t want to talk to the other person, and is done with them. they got what they wanted out of them,” Buck said.
Freshman student Paje Roberts has a similar opinion on why people get ghosted.
“I think the main reason people tend to ghost others is because face-to-face communication has become a tedious and menial task to many” she said. “At some point, the entire idea of any communication whatsoever becomes too tedious. Due to their own laziness, people neglect to be considerate enough to take the time to be emotionally and personally responsible”.
HutchCC psychology instructor Brian Nuest, who holds a doctorate degree, said a person’s personality can cause them to ghost.
“However, I can imagine that one reason people ghost could be because they are passive rather than assertive,” Nuest said. “They simply want to avoid confrontation. Also, perhaps the would-be ghost feels that telling the other party the truth might actually be more hurtful to them than fading away.”
Christopher Lau, Coordinator of Advising, Career Development and Counseling at HutchCC, gives his explanation on why students tend to ghost others.
“I have very limited experience with students and/or professionals ‘ghosting’ each other in relationships,” Lau said in an email. “However, I can make assumptions about why this is done and the potential impact it might have on the person who is ghosted. First, I would assume the person ghosting is doing so because it is easier to do this than face the awkwardness that is sometimes present in difficult conversations (such as) breaking up with someone.”
Lau said the emotional damage that comes with ignoring or ghosting someone can last.
“This behavior seems to me, to be incredibly rude, disrespectful, and inappropriate. In some ways, it may be easier for a person to deal with the death of a partner than to be ghosted by one. Death is a natural end to life whereas with ghosting there is an abrupt, unnatural, unexplained end to a relationship,” Lau said.
Tabitha Barr is a Nickerson freshman studying Media Communication and Production