If you're dependable, stable, loyal, polite, kind, respectful, and loving, you deserve someone who can match those same (unfortunately rare) gifts. Because, they are indeed gifts. And, you need a partner who both fully recognizes and appreciates that fact.
Successful people are secure people. Secure people are stable--if things aren't going to work out, they'll be straight with you. That's why they're successful, by the way. Pay close attention during those early conversations. If you're connection brings up an ex (especially if you're in bed), they're not ready. If they bring up more than one ex, they're REALLY not ready.
There are always exceptions, of course. People panic. Make hasty decisions. But I'm not talking about those scenarios. I'm talking about situations where one party is totally unaware there's a problem until the other party stops responding. Consistent with research on the psychology behind this 21st century phenomenon, those that ghost a love connection without apparent cause often aren't in stable employment situations, and yes, typically have pre-existing relationships (engaged/married and/or live-in partners). There's also a connection to familial socio-economic backgrounds that include periods of poverty.
Case in point, Charlize Theron infamously ghosted fiance, Sean Penn, after a two-year relationship. Theron has openly spoken about her struggles with anxiety and depression since; she's also from a modest socio-economic background that included addiction, alcoholism and domestic violence. Theron's father even threatened her life, forcing her to kill him in self-defense. To her credit, she has effectively channeled all of that into her work in Hollywood. But as of 2020, Theron has yet to (publicly) maintain a stable love relationship beyond the three-year mark. Theron's history exhibits patterns of self-sabotage in terms of not allowing herself the love, support and stability that a committed partnership can bring. And, she's not alone....
On the other side of the proverbial fence, talented beauties the likes of which include Halle Berry and Heidi Klum have been the victims of ghosting--Klum was even pregnant! I mean, if a freakin' runway model (and multi-millionaire!) can be ghosted, anyone can. In other words, it's not you--it's them. Your ghost, whoever they are, has a slew of issues you're likely unaware of. Keep reminding yourself of that when you inevitably start to miss that person. They probably miss you, too. But once someone makes the decision to ghost you, most of the time, it's because they have no intention of coming back.
Participants (20-45) in my ongoing transnational survey on sexuality who'd ghosted intimate partners without an explanation still felt love for the person they left behind, but a deep sense of shame via their ego/pride prevented them from reaching out again. Basically, they didn't want to take responsibility for their actions--which is why they disappeared in the first place.
Ghosts don't want to be talked out of their decision to walk away--that would defeat the self-sabotage their attempting to play out. By disappearing, a ghost knows it's a breach of trust that all-but-guarantees the end of the connection. You may want to give yourself closure at some point and say goodbye in a letter or note. But forgiving and forgetting are two very different things...but if a ghost is willing to earn back your trust, there may be hope for a happy future. Only you can decide what's right for you.
Self-respect is free. So is kindness.
Moving on from what you thought was the real deal is one of the hardest things you will ever do (emotionally speaking). When we fall in love, our bodies release a cocktail of hormones that flood the brain for about a year. Which is why it takes so long to get over a person you love, regardless of how long the relationship lasted. But hey, we happen to be in the middle of a pandemic anyway--it's the PERFECT time to exorcise those ghosts! If you do, you'll emerge from your quarantine-cocoon having achieved a total metamorphosis.
For those reading this who have haunted the hearts of ghosting victims far and wide, I encourage you to sign up for one of my sessions. We can work on why you aren't able to see things through in the romance department by identifying the psychological reward you receive by leading people on:
If you've been ghosted and need help exorcising your own personal ghost, sign up for a session and we'll work on coping strategies for grief, including exercises that will build both your resiliency and confidence so you will NEVER AGAIN fall for a ghost wearing a human-suit:
Whether you've been ghosted or are a ghost yourself, a little self-respect goes a very LONG way. In other words, ghosts need to APOLOGIZE or live with regret. And, those who have been ghosted need to focus on themselves, not the disconnects of others--their loss is your gain! So, put the Ben & Jerry's down and remember that you, too, are BUILT for VICTORY.
Stay safe out there!
*Photo insert: "St. Francis Borgia Helping a Dying Impenitent" (1788) by Francisco Jose de Goya y Lucientes (1746-1828), a prominent Deaf "romantic" artist from Spain