3 Concrete Signs You’re Being ‘Ghostlighted’

Don’t fall for it. Your feelings are valid and what you felt was real.

Thought Catalog


Victoria Emerson

By Molly Burford

“Ghostlighting” is a toxic new dating trend that is a fusion of ghosting and gaslighting. Nice!

Essentially, someone who ghostlights you will ghost you and then come back around later on as if nothing happened. However, when you confront them about their bad behavior, they will deny ever walking away.

Ghostlighting can cause serious self-esteem and trust issues. If you’re being ghostlighted, you may doubt your own reality about the situation and stay in a bad relationship longer than you should.

To give you some clarity, here are three concrete signs you’re being ghostlighted.

1. There was a period of abrupt absence after intense connection.

The first sign you’re being ghostlighted is that there was an initial ghosting. This ghosting happens after things were seemingly going extremely well, making their absence all that more jarring, confusing, and hurtful.

The ghostlighter in question seemed totally invested in you and your relationship. They were super present and affectionate. And then suddenly, they cut all contact and disappeared. You tried reaching out but received no response. You assumed you were ghosted and were never going to hear from them again.

2. They come back around as if nothing happened.

After it’s been some time since you heard from them last, the ghostlighter will randomly come back into your life. They will text or call you with a little too much familiarity. They’re basically trying to pick off right where you left off as if they didn’t just fall off the face of the earth and leave you confused and broken hearted. And you’re (rightfully) very pissed.

But when you try and hold them accountable for hurting you…

3. When you call them out for ghosting you, they completely deny it.

Enter the gaslighting phase of ghostlighting. When you stand up for yourself and express the pain and confusion they caused you, they completely and even vehemently deny ever leaving. In fact, they may even act insulted and angry that you would ever think this about them.

Don’t fall for it. Your feelings are valid and what you felt was real. If you relate to any of the above three signs, you were ghostlit and need to end things before you get any more wounded.



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