It seemed too good to be true: the hottie you met on a dating app wrote you nice messages, told you amazing stories, and even created a Spotify mix for you. After then, you don’t hear from them again.
That’s a “Caleb” from West Oak.
It all started on TikTok, where women began posting stories about a man called Caleb from Vancouver who claimed to work as a furniture designer for the West Oak company. Their stories described him as someone who puts on an act for a lot of women and then disappears without saying anything. They accused him of ghosting, lovebombing, and sending unsolicited graphic photographs.
Although the outrage has been directed at a specific Caleb, the term has become a rallying cry for individuals to denounce those who harm them in ways that appear to be exclusive to those using dating apps to find love .
As individuals become more alienated and reevaluate their priorities as a result of COVID-19, Frances Kelleher, an Irish dating coach, finds more people seeking for someone who can be there for them “when the chips are down,” she said.
“I think people are more sensitive now because they’re seeking for that one individual,” Kelleher said.
The rules and manners for entering and exiting relationships are much the same as they have always been, according to Kelleher and Shamyra Howard, a licensed clinical social worker and AASECT certified sex therapist. While this pandemic point in time may feel unique, the rules and manners for entering and exiting relationships are much the same as they have always been, according to Kelleher and Shamyra Howard, a licensed clinical social worker and AASECT certified sex therapist. The American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors, and Therapists is abbreviated as “AASECT.”
They revealed what you can do to prevent becoming another version of West Oak Caleb, or perhaps becoming one yourself.
WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING FOR?
Both Howard and Kelleher agreed that not having a clear aim in mind might be a stumbling obstacle to success. A specific purpose may be to date numerous individuals, to do something casual, or to search for a long-term relationship.
Knowing what to look for can help you spot when someone is mistreating you or when you aren’t treating others as well as you should, they added.
Howard explained that being open about what you want once you’ve gotten to know someone well enough to decide if you’re interested allows both parties to make an educated decision about their future steps.
Kelleher said that not everyone you swipe right on will make it to that stage, and it’s fine to cut your losses early.
It’s like bumping into someone at the supermarket, she explained. You wouldn’t feel forced to say goodbye if you merely exchanged a “hi, how are you?” before leaving the business. However, if you spent time together and revealed some personal information, it’s only fair to follow up and let them know whether or not you want to see them again.
ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE SCREEN, THERE ARE PEOPLE!
Because of the bigger dating pool offered on apps and websites, as well as the physical isolation, individuals may not treat others as well as they would in person, according to Kelleher.
“Behind a screen, people don’t have to have manners,” she explained.
When you meet someone in your community, you have a social duty to treat them properly, according to Kelleher. You could run into that person at a neighborhood bar or at a common friend’s party, and if you ghost them, your reputation is on the line.
Even if the risk is lower when meeting online, good manners and morals are always vital.
“How would you like to be treated?” says the narrator. Kelleher explained. “It’s simply a piece of text. ‘You know, I didn’t see the link, but thank you very much for your time, and best of luck with your quest,’ you may say.”
ALWAYS BE ON THE LOOKOUT FOR PERFORMANCE
“Lovebombing” and “breadcrumbing” are two terms that signify completely different things but may have the same effect on people, according to Howard: they both involve stringing someone along for something that isn’t genuine.
When the amount of affection expressed in a relationship does not correspond to the true level of connection that has grown, this is known as lovebombing. Are they attempting to introduce you to their family, give you presents, or confess their love before you’ve had a chance to meet them? Lovebombing red signs, according to Howard.
These extravagant romantic gestures may indicate that the person is more concerned with performance than with connection. Howard believes it might be a warning sign for future behavior management.
Take a step back when this happens, Kelleher said. Don’t encourage the outlandish behavior, and pay attention to how gracefully they respond when you establish limits, Howard said.
To avoid getting ahead of yourself, Kelleher advised against skimming through social media, which might make you feel like you know someone more than you do.
Breadcrumbing typically entails maintaining touch and a sense of connection without intending to pursue it further. If you get the impression that a possible companion is breadcrumbing you, try to arrange a meeting. Howard said that if they decline twice, it might be time to move on.
STOP USING THE APP AND GO ON A DATE
Although dating apps are useful for casting a wide net, Kelleher believes that virtually everyone may benefit from getting offline with a possible mate as soon as they feel secure and comfortable.
She explained, “Attraction is built via involvement.” “How do you get around? What method do you use to contact with me? How do you make eye contact with me? How do you make contact with me?”
BELIEVE IN PEOPLE’S ABILITY TO MANAGE THEIR OWN EMOTIONS
People ghost others for a variety of reasons, according to Howard. One of the most common reasons is because they are terrified of hurting another person.
“People experience rejection literally,” Howard added. “For a lot of folks, it’s a safety precaution so they don’t feel the misery they’re inflicting on others.”
She went on to say that while you aren’t responsible for other people’s sentiments, you are accountable for your own conduct.
“Regardless of whether their feelings may be harmed, you have to believe that they are capable of regulating and controlling their own sentiments,” Howard added.
PURCHASE YOUR OWN CLOSURE
People need closure, according to Kelleher. Waiting for someone else to offer it, on the other hand, might lead to even greater heartbreak.
If someone isn’t showing up for you or isn’t treating you properly, it may be time to part ways, according to Kelleher.
“Our energy and time are the most valuable resources we have,” Kelleher added. “Don’t waste your time worrying about your image or those who aren’t giving it their all.”
Finding love may be a challenging and discouraging journey. If you’ve been accused of ghosting, lovebombing, or breadcrumbing, Howard recommends seeing a professional counselor or therapist to help you figure out why you’re doing it before entering back into the dating market.