You have finally met someone on a dating app who is both attractive and likeable. He corresponds exactly to your dream ideas. Interesting, likeable and charming.
But despite all these advantages, you sometimes have an uneasy feeling in your stomach. And that has everything to do with the psychopathic traits you discover in the other person.
While not all sociopaths are serial killers, you know that people with these traits can be ruthless. And you have noticed that. What started out like a fairy tale is looking more and more like a chaotic mind game.
What exactly is ghosting?
The word “ghosting” comes from the English language and can be translated into British as a wordless break-off of relationships and friendships.
With ghosting, a person disappears from your life like a ghost. No goodbye, no explanatory words, only questions remain. Unfortunately more and more dates, but also relationships, tend to end this way in this day and age. Messages are no longer answered, calls blocked and all connections are cut off.
In fact, this millennial phenomenon has become so abominable that you know it is not for you. But how do you end a relationship at this early stage that can hardly be called a relationship?
According to recent research, ghosting could be the answer, when you suddenly and without any explanation stop all communication with a person you are dating.
According to a well-known study, avoiding a violent reaction is one of the reasons why people resort to ghosting behaviour.
Ghosting is a common phenomenon in the world of online dating. It has become a common option to end a budding relationship.
Although it is frowned upon by most people, there are many people who are guilty of it. They have several reasons for doing so. And one of these reasons is a safety aspect.
The reason why people ghost
Researchers have been studying this phenomenon for several years, trying to understand why people act this way. This includes a group of psychologists from renowned universities who are jointly researching ghosting.
The interest in this topic actually started because we were curious about some patterns we saw in ‘real world’ anecdotes.
We saw a pattern in online forums where men wrote about how frustrated they were at being ghosted, and women responded that when they were guilty of outright rejection, men reacted in aggressive ways, so ghosting seemed like the safer option.
It was quickly discovered that some of them were concerned about their safety. Since the safety issue also came up in other studies on ghosting, the psychologists thought it would be a good idea to do further research on it.
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Concerned about safety
Several studies with hundreds of participants showed impressive results in this area. Participants were shown different dating scenarios and reasons for ending a relationship. For example, participants were allowed to give their opinion on the scenario.
You have been on three dates and find out that the other person is chatting with their ex-partner. What do you do if you want to end the relationship in the easiest way possible? The participants then indicated how they would end the relationship.
The researchers found that participants were more inclined to host if the scenario mentioned a safety issue. For example, participants were more likely to host if the other person was upset enough to become handsy. The main finding is that people are more motivated to host when safety is an issue.
In the second study, the bisexual participants were allowed to express their opinions. In this study, they found that the gender of the victim did not matter: All participants were more willing to host when they were concerned about their safety, regardless of the gender of the victim.