Why Did He Ghost?

You've been seeing a guy for a couple weeks, maybe you've slept with him, maybe you haven't... either way, he seemed really excited about you and was starting to ask you out regularly, text everyday, and maybe even sent a couple "good night" texts.  Aaaaaah, maybe this is "it."  And then...


What happened? How can somebody just disappear like that?

Well, first let's acknowledge the overall issue of horrible dating communication, particular when it comes to calling something off.  Nobody wants to be an adult and say "hey, for reason x, y, or z, I just don't think we should see each other anymore" because most people don't like drama with someone they love, let alone someone they aren't interested in seeing anymore.  So just picture a man-shaped, cartoon style hole in the wall as he runs the other way, and now we can just ponder the WHY of it all.

Possible Reason #1

He's got issues and possible unfinished business:  Men are as varied, wounded, and insecure as women are.  If you've known someone for a few weeks, you simply don't know him.  It doesn't matter if you are sleeping with him and you've shared your craziest dreams and secrets, you don't know who he is over time and in relationship.  How people respond to intimacy, closeness, and having some relational accountability is something you can only know over time.  I believe three months is a minimum, and that's only if they are seemingly transparent. "Transparent" meaning: you've easily verified where he lives and googled him, he works where he says he does, and he doesn't always pay in cash and talk about how he has to stay off the grid... you get my drift. He just might not be emotionally capable of a healthy relationship and that can manifest in a thousand different ways.  If one of those ways is to disappear, then he has saved you some time.  

As far as unfinished business, sometimes they aren't emotionally available because they aren't over their ex-girlfriend.  If he's super excited about you and then suddenly cancels a date last minute, chances are his Ex called and he's moving you off Saturday night to see if he can still have an effect on her. Again, you've dodged a bullet.

Possible Reason #2

To borrow a phrase....He's just not that into you.

As fantastic as you are, this is possible.  He could think you're really great and have lots of fun with you. But everyone has a particular way they want to feel with someone.  Men are really visceral, so they don't consider, mentally, how you're "good on paper" and how they "could be" turned on by you in the future.  They either feel it or they don't.  And single guys aren't looking for new friends.  So try not to think he's mean for not wanting to stay friends.  He's only got so much time and money budgeted for this search (dating is expensive) so he needs to move on and so do you.   Dating is not about finding someone to go bowling with. You want to find a partner you love and can't wait to have lots of sex with!  You deserve to be with someone who's unapologetically passionate about you! Again, be glad to not be wasting your time.

Possible Reason #3

You ruined the fun by being too available. What?!  But I'm the funnest!!!

Hear me out.  Part of the fun and excitement in what I call The Man/Woman Dance (not "the game" but "the dance") is the pursuit and dramatic tension. In the courtship stage, men like to solve the problem of "how do I get in her airspace?" And then they like the feeling of success and accomplishment when they solve it! If you are always putting yourself in his mental space by texting him and, by default, offering to be in his physical space, you've taken the fun out it for him.  It's not even conscious half the time, he just feels less urge to pursue.  Don't finish the puzzle for him, don't tell him how the book ends, just be kind and encouraging. Let him figure out how to be in your airspace and get some of your attention. Let him earn it... he wants to!

Most of the time, we just don't get to know why

And that never feels good. But if you keep a positive perspective of dating and keep a promise to yourself that you won't be with any man whom you have to convince to be with you, you will handle these bumps in the road with grace and confidence.  




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Sophie Venable holds a Master's Degree in Marriage & Family Therapy, is a Certified Professional Coach, Author of MYLF 101: Make Your Life Fabulous and Founder of The Real Deal: Courses in Love & Life for Women.