A while ago, I met a seemingly great guy in a bar and went on five amazing dates with him… before he disappeared without a word. He stopped texting, he stopped calling, and he stopped liking my Facebook and Instagram posts with literally no warning at all. It was like he fell off the face of the earth, save for the fact that he was quite active online and just completely ignoring me. It was my first time being ghosted and it sucked, but I learned some pretty important lessons and became much stronger for it.
I quit being the girl who waits by the phone for a guy.
Okay, I’ll admit it, I was *that* girl for a seriously long time. I was the girl who wouldn’t really be paying attention to anyone because I was too busy looking at my phone every spare second I had. The one whose face would light up the moment that oh-so-special guy texted me back. In short, I was a total douche. Now that I’ve well and truly been ghosted though, I’ve stopped caring so damn much.
I learned that ‘independence’ is more than a word.
One of the things that no one discusses is that when you’re waiting for a guy to get back to you, you lose one key thing — your independence. I know I did. Spending all my time thinking about some dude meant that I was codependent in the worst way. After this guy decided I wasn’t worth his time, I realized that I need to value myself (and my time) much more highly.
I realized it wasn’t me, it was literally him.
At first, when Sam stopped texting back, I racked my brain to try to work out why. I was certain that something I’d said, done, worn, or a look I’d given him had turned him off me. Pretty soon, and with the help of some of my closest friends, I realized that was total BS. It wasn’t me. I’d just been myself. For reasons I never need to understand, he wasn’t into it. His loss.
I found out what fabulous girlfriends I have.
Let’s be real here: Most of us have great girlfriends who we overlook and take for granted. I know I do. When times got tough, my ladies well and truly stepped up. They were there for me in a way that I honestly never expected. They listened to me whine for a while but they also told me when to STFU and move on.
I started to give my BFFs the respect they deserve.
What’s worse is that I realized that they had been there all along and, perhaps, I hadn’t given them the respect they deserved. For too long, I’d taken advantage of their kindness, but seeing how they looked after me changed everything. I couldn’t be more grateful for them right now.
I learned to reach out and make the first move.
Many of my problems were self-inflicted here. I spent my time waiting around for guys to reach out to me and I never paid them the same damn courtesy! And all this from a girl who preaches equality at every chance. It was BS. These days, I know that making the first move isn’t a sign of weakness; it’s a sign of confidence and respect.
I stopped being scared of the worst happening.
So what if something doesn’t work out? How on earth will you know unless you try? There’s no sense in holding back out of pure fear. When the worst happened (i.e. I got ghosted half to death!), it wasn’t half as terrible as I’d imagined. It happened and I survived.
I gave up on hiding my damn feelings.
Over the years, I’d made a habit of hiding my feelings when it came to guys. I was so obsessed with playing it cool and not losing the game that no guy would have a clue I was into him until it was way too late. The guy who ghosted me wasn’t to blame; it’s not as though I was exactly obvious with how I felt! These days, I’m much more real — and it just so happens to work.
I finally accepted that not all relationships work.
Obviously, not every relationship will work out. It’s so not the end of the world. Parting ways with the guy who ghosted me was natural when I really thought about it. If he didn’t want me, why should I want him? Expecting that every guy you date to turn out to be “The One” is insane. Finally, I can see that as clear as day.
I moved the hell on.
After stressing over whether this guy was ever really into me or not, I finally realized that it didn’t matter. It didn’t change my life — not at all. I’d wasted too many sleepless nights and stressful hours on him. It was exhausting, so I just stopped and it was a huge relief. The feeling was so utterly liberating that I wouldn’t why I hadn’t done it earlier. I was free. I’d been ghosted and lived.
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