Have you ever ghosted someone or been ghosted? I have on both counts.

This article touches on a subject that is more complicated than presented. There are several possible reasons for ghosting that aren’t listed.

Firstly, if I haven’t heard from someone in a while, I message them. Facebook has an algorithm that makes it so I can see the posts of only a small portion of the people on my friend list. If you don’t see them any more, it is possible they aren’t seeing your posts either.

Sometimes people are just curious. They want to know about your life but don’t really want to nurture a friendship online or otherwise. I get that. But I don’t collect friends. Why gather a slew of people on your friends list if you don’t participate? That just seems a little one-sided and well, strange.

If I ask someone to connect on Facebook it’s because I have some other connection to them. Occasionally, I will friend a stranger if they have requested and we have mutual friends, but I first verify the relationship to weed out any posers and fake accounts.

At one point, someone I had been online friends with for several years was posting some things that bothered me.They just didn’t sit right, and I started to pull away. I was hesitant to tell her why when she asked because she was a highly educated professional, and she was in grief, as was I. I didn’t want to deal with it then, nor did I want to hurt her. At her insistence, I reluctantly and I thought gently, told her what was bothering me. It was a disaster. She put me in my lowly place, and that was that.There were no opportunities for further discussion, apologies, or closure.

Sometimes people ghost because it’s the right thing to do when their priorities have changed, but they don’t want to tell you because they think it might upset you. Instead of being kind, it hurts with uncertainty.

When the ONLY time you hear from a person is when they have something negative to say or disagree with you, they might get ghosted.

If you interact with a friend’s posts, but they don’t respond in kind, or at least wish you a happy birthday or congrats on milestones, they might get ghosted.

If you know they are close to people who have hurt you and talked about you behind your back, yup, they might get ghosted.

If you are vicious, racist, or chronically rude, you might get ghosted. Most of us have bad days, but those are the times we learn to take a break from social media so we don’t bring others down. There is absolutely no good reason to humiliate or disrespect a friend or family member on social media. If you allow your friends to verbally attack, threaten, disrespect, and shout at another friend without stepping in to stop it, you will get ghosted.

Political and religious issues won’t get you ghosted unless you start making them personal with name-calling and other forms of disrespect. If you’re a professed Christian who chronically takes the Lord’s name in vain and disrespects Him without care or remorse on social media, you might get ghosted. If I speak the truth in love and you continue, I will say a quick prayer for you, then you will get ghosted. It’s that simple. It makes my stomach turn.

We teach people how to treat us. Never has that been more evident to me than in the last few years. So often, when we don’t set boundaries in real-time and online, we get run over and manipulated, mentally and emotionally. Then when we finally do set boundaries, we may be verbally attacked, ignored, unfriended, or even blocked completely.

I know some decisive, strong souls who advise against social media participation at all, but the fact is, social media is here to stay. Even with all its complexities and potential to do harm, it serves a purpose. Social media primarily provides a venue for good interaction and communication with our tribe: the people who have love and care for us and with whom we have interests in common.

Our job is to wisely use it and learn to set boundaries in love. It’s not easy at all.

Published by Tamra E Witt

I am a Christ Follower, Wife, Mother, Writer, Reader, Framer, Calligrapher, Cook, and Gardener living the dream in Oklahoma after thirty-five years in Colorado! I love my life and am grateful for every experience, including the challenges alongside the joys, that have molded me into the person I am and hope to be for God's glory always.

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