Responding to Rejection With Confidence

Responding To Being 'Left On Read' With Resiliance

I finally understand the whole "ghost" icon. It's a warning sign for the all-too-common ending of getting "ghosted."

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It always starts the same.

We lock eyes from across the bar, he maneuvers his way over to me, and before I can even convert my carbon dioxide to oxygen, he hits me with the "so what's your Snapchat?"

And it certainly hits. Hard. Like a tsunami of unoriginality and disappointment, further drowning my hope that maybe someone will change my views on the fate of authentic communication.

Welcome to the 21st century, where intimacy is now initiated through Casper on a yellow backdrop. However, in this case, Casper is not so friendly.

I instinctively roll my eyes, because I think, whatever happened to exchanging numbers and having those late-night phone calls that our parents use to tell us about, that now seem only imaginable in a distant galaxy far away from our technologically advanced one? Although I am convinced I was born into the wrong generation, I still go along with the "streak generation" because it's, unfortunately, all I know.

And it always ends the same.

I conform to the "streak" culture, and we snap for a few days. For some obscure reason, I become attached and start to expect his morning coffee and afternoon pizza pictures that disappear in six seconds. However, like clockwork, on the sixth or seventh day of our streak, he pulls a disappearing act on me. I get ghosted.

But what makes this time different?

My reaction.

I learned to trust the timing of my life

Essentially, the majority of people value acceptance over rejection. But in the case of learning experiences as a young adult, every loss leads to a gain, and that's just how the universe works. I now appreciate my "ghostings" because I know it leads me one step closer to discovering the person who appreciates proper communication with me and still values relationships. Everything happens for a reason, a cliché saying for a reason, because it's true. Everything's a learning experience, even something as mundane as a Snapchat left-on-read, particularly to not become overly attached to someone who attempts to initiate intimacy through an app.

"Thank u, next" helped me rewire my brain

With Ariana's help, I now bounce back fast and do not allow a silly disappearing act to dictate my mood or sense of worth. I'm no longer daunted by the self-shaming thoughts of "was it me? Was I trying too hard? Maybe because I stopped using filters on my face?" because it's not, and it's not him, either. It's all about timing. There are endless opportunities to form connections, and, thankfully, I've built up untouchable confidence that makes me respond to rejection with a shrug and a "thank u, next."

I learned to laugh it off

Initially, a man's disappearing acts use to phase me, taking a hard blow to my self-esteem. Now I laugh at their loss, and I finally understand the whole "ghost" icon. It's a warning sign for the all-too-common ending of getting "ghosted." I don't love rejection, but I do love the strong mindset I've created for myself.

So, if you left me "on read" and are reading this, don't worry. You're far out of sight, out of my "streaks," and out of mind. Don't worry about me, because I'm not searching, but waiting for a fellow, old-fashioned soul, who was also born in the wrong generation and still believes in a relationship that doesn't start on a "streak."

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It's 2019: Why Do We Still Think Ghosting is Okay?

It's time to finally be mature and confront this epidemic.

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As a fellow college student and a girl living in a big city, I'm aware that the opportunity to meet new people is everywhere. During the summer, apps like Snapchat and Instagram pave a pathway to those opportunities, whether it be a boy from your college or someone from your hometown you haven't seen before. We have all grown accustomed to those summer flings, where you speak for hours on end and it's all dandy and beautiful. You're telling everyone about this new boy, and your brain is literally reeling with daydreams. And then, the inevitable happens.

They stop responding.

Nothing feels worse than someone leaving your message on 'read,' and then never hearing from them again. It feels as though the person you're talking to could care less about you, and that they could easily go on about their life pretending you never existed. Normally, I would recommend you take a good, hard look at yourself and ask if it really matters, but this epidemic has spread far and wide enough to make me realize that society has normalized this issue.

We've gotten used to the idea of being ghosted because we're too scared to create those deeper connections. I'm used to thinking to myself, "If we talk for too long, this might actually go somewhere." I'm used to realizing that all good things must come to an end, simply because everyone ends up being too afraid to talk. And it is sad to think about, to think that someone could toss a human aside like it's nothing.

To be honest, we have all ghosted someone before. Even if it's a friend or someone who was interested in us, it is all the same. Sometimes it makes us feel like we're winning like we have all the power. We left that person wondering about us. But in what universe has it become okay to torture someone like that, to let their mind wander off about what they might have done, or why they weren't good enough for you? Sure, we might have all ghosted someone before, but that doesn't mean it should be a normalized thing.

I know I can't make a crazy impact on the world by asking if ghosting is necessary, and it won't stop the frat boys of this universe, but we should finally be mature enough to realize that ghosting isn't something to be proud of. You shouldn't be proud of hurting other people's feelings and making them feel lesser of themselves. You shouldn't be happy that you're frightened by the idea of commitment or even worse, an actual human connection.

We should communicate with people. Talk about your day or talk about why the freaking sky is blue. And if you're not interested in someone, maybe instead of ghosting them, you let them know why they might not be the right fit for you. If we communicated more with others, we might realize that there are more words and stories to every person. So, respond. Stop being scared.

Because with the way society is headed, there might not be enough words left to save us in the future.

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