Should I Confront Someone Who Ghosted Me?
They ghosted me after we had sex. Is it worth it to reach out?
Let’s say you meet someone and there’s a great connection. You’re both clearly feeling vibes, and you sleep together after your second date. And then, poof! They disappear quicker than you can say ‘Harry Houdini.’ Do you reach out to them and let them know how hurtful it was when they ghosted you, or do you let it be?
Or to put it another way: do you have the right to confront someone who ghosts you? Hell yeah! Some folks would disagree with me, saying, “Screw them. Don’t give them the satisfaction of knowing they hurt you.” But you know that they hurt you. Who gives a f*ck about them knowing that they hurt you? At this point, they’re clearly not a valuable person to have in your life. But you’re not expressing pain in order to receive validation from them for your pain. You’re not doing this for them. You’re doing it for yourself: so you hear your own voice, you speak up for yourself, and you stand up for you.
Their reaction doesn’t really matter. They could reply, “Who’s this?” Or block you, or not answer at all. It’s not your job to worry about how they respond. Your job is to self-express. If you’re doing it because you want closure, you’ll likely get it, but probably not from them! The secret sauce to all self-expression is that you don’t do it to hear their answer, but just to hear your own voice speak. And then your job is to move on, recognizing you do not deserve such low-value behaviour in your life.
You might think they don’t even deserve to know how you feel, but usually at the root of that resistance is fear — fear of expressing pain and vulnerability. I have major compassion for this, and for the pain of being ghosted in the first place. If you have a habit of not telling people how you feel or communicating how their behaviour impacts you, then now is a great time to start speaking up. People need to hear how they’re experienced by the world, whether that’s hurtful or helpful. They might never change and they might not even really listen, but it’s not about them. This is about you caring (but not about them!). It’s about you caring enough to stand up for
Ghosting is often rooted in a fear of intimacy and a fear of communicating rejection. People who disappear without cause or reason don’t know how to hold the capacity for rejection themselves, and they don’t want to experience someone else experiencing rejection at their hand. This isn’t to condone or excuse the behaviour, but they’ve probably been rejected at a deep level and don’t know how to deliver a rejection at all, let alone one that’s kind or honours the experience you shared. They might not be able to express any of that, but that doesn’t mean you can’t express to them how you’ve been hurt or impacted by their behaviour.
Hopefully, this never happens to you again, but if it does, here’s a sample script you can customize for your own use:
“Hey – I was enjoying getting to know you and appreciated our time together. But you know, after we were intimate and you were no longer communicative, it felt really hurtful. The least I expect from someone I’m intimate with is the decency to express to me where they’re at, and whether they’re interested in moving forward. In the future, I encourage or invite you to at least give someone the decency of communication if you’re no longer interested, especially after such an intimate connection. That’s simply a decent way to treat another human, and I wanted to let you know the impact your actions had on me. There’s a saying that “hurt people hurt people,” and I’m expressing this for my own healing. Take care.”
We can go into dating with all the lofty standards in the world, but sometimes we end up in situations that are less than we desire and deserve. The pain of abandonment can be an invitation to pay attention to where we abandon ourselves. Where do you ghost yourself? Where do you abandon yourself? Where do you have a hard time
loving yourself? If there’s one thing I teach in my Dating 101 course, it’s that dating is an opportunity to
rediscover your power. Not discover your power, but rediscover — because you’re already
powerful. Dating can remind you that your power is right there, ready and waiting for you.