Ask Audrey: 'My boyfriend of nine months ghosted me, should I dump him?'

Audrey Griffen
Contributor

Audrey is a mother to a 15-year-old with another on the way. She probably should have taken into account who she was marrying (Osher Günsberg) much earlier, as she’s far more comfortable behind the camera as a freelance hair and makeup artist, than a TV host’s wife who doesn’t know how to work her angles for any on-camera duties.

Audrey loves to cook, decorate cakes, gardening, DIY and is very handy with a flat-pack, few of which you would pay her to do for you, but she’d happily give it a shot for free.

Audrey Griffen gives her advice on what to do when you've been ghosted by a boyfriend. Photo: Getty Images

Dear Audrey,

My boyfriend of nine months ghosted me and I’m seriously torn.

So we had been dating for nine months and everything seemed to be great: I met his family, he met mine and it all seemed to be going really well.

Then suddenly one day I just stopped hearing from him.

It happened the day after I spoke to him about a hard time I was having with a sick family member who ended up passing away.

I told him I might need some extra support, and then the next day I just stopped hearing from him.

He wouldn’t answer my calls, rarely replied to texts and for three weeks I didn’t see or talk to him at all, and not from want of trying!

When I eventually met up with him, he told me he had been struggling with his own mental health, and really struggled with talking about his feelings - that was why he’d gone silent on me.

I had no idea what to do, as I wanted to be sensitive to his health without compromising my self-respect and worth.

I ended up dumping him, did I do the right thing?

Yours,

Radio Silence

The woman said she thought they were getting on great and then her boyfriend of nine months completely blanked her. Photo: Getty Images

Dear Miss Radio Silence,

You have asked the age-old question of whether or not dumping a “ghosting partner” is the right thing to do or not? I heartily say “YES!”

If you don’t know what ghosting is, Urban Dictionary tells us that it’s “When a person cuts off all communication with their friends or the person they're dating, with zero warning or notice beforehand.”

Ghosting is the move of the selfish, the cowardly and the immature. It is not limited to a particular gender, age or sexual preference, and is an incredibly hurtful experience for the “ghostee”.

Miss Radio Silence, I commend you on your ability to protect your self-worth and to recognise your ex’s behaviour for what it was. Ghosting is inexcusable, and I think the only reason you could truly justify it is if he were in a coma or had died, and therefore no longer had access to a phone or social media. Either way, you’d eventually find out the news and could then react appropriately.

Being ghosted by someone who you’ve had a long-term, committed relationship with straight up sucks! I’ve had a similar experience and so have many of my friends, and the thing that gets my goat is that they always come back, and there’s always some sob story excuse for their behaviour.

My last serious live-in boyfriend before Osher, an American who I was with for nearly 3 years, told me he was heading back to the U.S to renew his visitor's visa and see family. Then, he just dropped off the face of the earth...until months later when he reached out to tell me how much he “loved and missed me” and that he’d just “needed time to get himself together” and then again, radio silence.

This was a pattern of behaviour which I didn’t recognise until much later, but for a few years there I’d just be hanging on for word from him with empty promises of him returning to pick up where we left off. I swear he was just checking in for an ego boost, and a bit of reassurance that there’s someone, somewhere in the world who, despite not getting any of the things they’d been promised for years, was still willing to chase it.

As I eventually grappled some self-respect back, while I had gained the ability to spot this behaviour from a mile off, I realised I’d wasted years on feeling pretty worthless, not being very open to other possible relationship candidates.

The thing that ghosting does that is so insidious - is that it leaves you without an answer. It leaves you wondering what YOU must have done wrong. “It must have been pretty serious or they wouldn’t just leave without an explanation?” You can see that they’re still seeing your texts or active on social media and yet here you are being ignored when you call, your pleas for an explanation dismissed. Contact is withheld from you until it suits the “ghoster” and then it’s too late, you’re so desperate for information, explanation, anything, that any excuse will do.

Miss Radio Silence, this is why I think you’ve done the right thing by dumping your ghosting man. All you “did” was have the awareness to know that you may need more emotional support from him during a stressful period of your life. That’s not an unreasonable request, especially of someone who you had been dating for 9 months. If anything, he should have been grateful for the heads up, because not asking for help often leads to people taking their stretched emotional state out on their loved ones.

Instead of being there for you, he made it about himself, about his emotional state, basically sending you the message that his emotional needs trump yours. Worse still, he didn’t have enough balls to show you some respect and explain that he couldn’t provide that support. I may have had a slightly more sympathetic approach to him if he had brought up his mental health issues at that stage, not weeks after ghosting you.

Telling you that he has issues with sharing his feelings is pretty irrelevant to your situation. You were asking for support, someone to be there for you, lend you a shoulder to cry on, not have D & Ms with about their deepest, darkest fears. Therefore I call BS and say hoorah to you for getting the hell out. Now mark my words, he will reach out again. But carry on girlfriend, you deserve a man who is just as considerate of you as you would be of him.

All the best,

Audrey x

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