The whole idea of "ghosting" is that you never have to see or speak to your ex again.
Bish, bash, unfollow. In 2017, you can literally go from loving boyfriend to mythical social media unicorn in a matter of swipes.
But, what happens when a ghostee returns from the dead?
A man who ghosted his ex more than a decade ago was shocked to find out that she was about to be his new boss.
Reluctant to commit to a serious relationship at a young age and, after realising that his girlfriend Sylvia had very different expectations to him, he decided to suddenly cease all communication with her.
"I simply wanted to avoid being untangled in a break-up drama,” he explained on Ask a Manager.
The couple were together for three years and lived together for two of them.
Whilst Sylvia was visiting family over the Christmas holidays, he packed his bags, moved out and left the country, thinking he’d never have to see or hear from her again.
Now more than 10 years later, the “ghoster” is readying himself to come face to face with Sylvia once again - as his manager.
Working as a maths teacher at an international school, it was only after he read the biography of the incoming school director that he realised it was Sylvia.
“I am not a big fan of social media and had no idea what she had been up to since the unpleasant situation a long time ago,” he confessed. “I have no idea what to do and how to deal with this mess. It is clear this will be not only embarrassing but I will also be reporting to my ex.”
The reader explained that he’s not in a position to find another job right now, as there are no other international schools in the region where he lives and, prior to the news, he had always felt very comfortable in his current role.
As an expat, he explained that the community where he works is extremely tight-knit and therefore socialising with his new boss is not only to be expected, but also unavoidable.
“You were together for three years, and you lived together! And then you disappeared with no word? That’s some serious emotional destruction that you inflicted there,” wrote Alison Green, the manager who responded to the letter.
“I don’t know that you can salvage this!” she exclaimed, advising that he get in touch with Sylvia as soon as possible to give her a heads up that they’ll soon be working together.
Commenters offered similar advice, whilst also criticising the reader for his original ghosting and expressing their sympathies for Sylvia.
“You don’t seem to understand that it was possibly the most painful way you could end things and with someone who gave you 3 years of their life. It’s so important for you to register than and then to apologise, apologise, apologise,” one wrote.
“There’s NO excuse for this that makes it ok to not even leave a note. He doesn’t get the benefit of the doubt. Best he can do is try to mitigate the consequences,” another added.
So ghost with caution, as the saying goes, because your next haunting could be just around the corner.
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