Ex-lawyer turned relationship coach

They Ghost You Over Text But Like Your Online Content

The modern era of dating is pretty wild. We can lose direct contact with someone exciting we’ve been seeing romantically, no phonecalls or text messages, but get attention from the same person through our social media.

And that’s incredibly confusing.

Why does a person ignore our texts and voice notes, but like our Facebook posts or watch our Instagram stories? What motivates them to stop dating us in real life but continue to show interest online?

Does it mean they still like us? Do we still have a potential future together? Is there perhaps something outside of their control that’s keeping them from seeing us now and they’re trying their hardest to show we shouldn’t give up on them?

Stop.

When we like someone, we have a beautifully naive ability to weave our admirer’s behaviour into a love story. 

Is it just a few flame emojis on one of our Instagram photos? Or actually a 21st-century love ballad?

The moment we buy into this narrative, we invest in the narrative.

Like a siren, we’re now driven to create enchanting content to lure our paramour closer in hopes of winning them over. And it might. But more likely, they’ll respond to our bewitching content in the same way as before. 

Another thumbs up.

So what should we do when our crush shows no sign of wanting to be with us, but remains in our lives through interacting with our online content?

We stop imbueing their social media interactions with meaning. It’s the lowest form of attention we can get from someone. And if we take a moment to look at how we like other people’s content, we’d immediately understand.

Although it might not be everyone’s favourite way, many of us have hit an online like-button while sitting on a porcelain throne with our underwear resting on our ankles.

Do we really want to see such low effort activity as evidence someone has feelings for us?

Just because we want it to be true, doesn’t make it so. 

And let’s not forget that such fastidious analysis deeply hurts our love lives. When we’re hung up on someone’s morsels of attention, we won’t notice anyone else kind and fun who crosses our path because we’re too fixated on our screens looking for someone to heart our content.

It’s, of course, exciting to see that our carefully made photos and videos can entice our flame. But if it never moves offline, why should we care?

If we reward such a low form of interest with generosity, it tells the other person that we’re fine being treated so casually. And if we’re after something more deep and meaningful, that’s not going to be getting us the results we want.

Instead of focusing on what might compel someone to follow our social media posts, we want to completely shift our attention to people who are putting in effort to get to know us. 

So why might someone who’s shared laughs with us over text and in person reach out to our social media platforms instead of us?

Because they don’t like us enough. So let’s not put our time and energy into people who don’t want to return the favour.

By Jeroen Elsing
Ex-lawyer turned relationship coach