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Ghosting someone is emotional cruelty


How ghosting hurts both the ghoster and the ghosted

Counselling psychologist Catherine Mbau says that ghosting is essentially emotional cruelty. "You want someone to worry about you cutting communication without any basis," she says.

Ghosting, she adds, is toxic - especially to the person being ghosted: it leaves them worried, distraught, anxious: without closure. It can cause them stress or put them into depression.

"We are social beings. No man is an island. We experience life through interacting with those we love, cherish, want to be around, or live with.

"When one is ghosted it sparks feelings of rejection; which then translate into emotional pain. The person doing the ghosting may think that they have moved on but they too, albeit unconsciously, could suffer harm," Mbau says.

According to the psychologist, ghosting is not a healthy way to handle difficult relationships or situations.

Speak up

"The right thing to do would be to confront the situation and speak your truth. It is healthy to talk and speak up. If you do not want to continue with the relationship, say it as it is and perhaps explain the reasons behind your decision to the person. If you are not ready for commitment, say so.

"Ghosting says more about the ghoster than the ghosted. It shows that they may have some psychological issues they need to address.

"People who ghost others do not grow in their psychological and mental wellness. They miss opportunities to equip themselves with healthy ways of coping in a relationship.

"They are also burning bridges which they may need in future: placing them at a disadvantage," says Mbau.

Marriage and family therapist, Jennifer Karina, in a 2021 interview with this writer, said communication is a major tenet in the sustenance of a relationship.

"Being honest with the other person and speaking the truth all the time leads to greater intimacy," Karina said.

Mbau says people who ghost are bad with communication skills. Yet, "these are skills that everyone ought to have to be well equipped for being part of a community."

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