Are Emojis & Unfollows The New Break-Up Post-It?



Alias (DO NOT USE A REAL NAME!!): ConfusedSistah
Comment: I was dating a guy for a month and then suddenly he blocks my number and I never hear from him again. This has happened to me once before when I was 20. Why do some guys decide to suddenly stop all contact without any warning? Both of these guys didn’t even hint towards wanting to break off contact. This has left me utterly confused.
Age: 25
City: Louisville
State: Kentucky

I think he blocked you because he was done and didn’t feel the relationship required any kind of in depth or official break-up speech. Thanks to the advances in technology and the explosion of communication platforms, people feel very comfortable using electronic means to end a relationship. They change their Facebook relationship status, unfollow or unfriend you, spam your phone number, etc. To many, this is a valid way to explain that a connection has been severed. They might not be using words to communicate their decision, but they are communicating. They’re just not doing it the old fashioned way. Instead of coming out and saying we like something, now we just click that little thumb or star on an update. People have whole conversations using emojis now. That’s how conditioned we have become to utilizing icons and buttons to get our feelings across. Words are sooooo 2009. Now it’s all:


Even Tinder has jumped on this trend. Now a match can click the Unmatch option and they will disappear from your inbox, usually before the first message is even exchanged. Translation: Oops. I didn’t read your bio or look at all your photos. Not interested after all. My bad. Ouch.

It is very common for people to demonstrate their dislike or disgust or disinterest not by telling the person how they fell (either in person, text, or email) but by selecting the Block option on Twitter or Facebook or Instagram or any other platform. These folks aren’t really trying to prevent you from seeing their innocuous, boring, not at all sensitive word/thought vomit.  No, they just want you to feel that initial sting when you realize they blocked you and hope you will take the hint and amscray from their lives.

Your guy spammed your number so that you would eventually realize he did so and would stop trying to contact him. People can debate back an forth whether this is cowardly or not, but that won’t change the fact that these techniques aren’t going anywhere. And the funny thing is: we’re perfectly okay with relying upon these means of communication until it comes time to say goodbye. Then and only then do we get frustrated and annoyed when the method of keeping in touch we previously relied upon is used against us.


Sometimes the love of your life is the love of your life. (R)


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19 Responses to “Are Emojis & Unfollows The New Break-Up Post-It?”

  1. SS Says:

    I don’t understand people who connect on platforms with people they’ve only just met.

    First – unless you’re selling something, why connect with a total stranger and give them that much access to your life?

    Second – there’s a 9 out of 10 chance (or higher) that it’s not going to work out. Why put yourself, and others, in the situation where there’s going to be that inevitable “ugh I never want to see them again but they can see all my stuff” ?

    Why don’t people think this through in advance?!

    • Kokopelli Says:

      As someone who has just done this, I will say because it’s an easy way to determine if my habits are for you and vice versa. I have lots of friends of the opposite sex and I communicate in a very direct way when it comes to my opinions. The fastest way to understand in a practical manner is to come into my online world. Also, it supports whati say in my dating profile. So they can see I’m not full of shit because I have real relationships with ppl I know on social media.

      If it doesn’t work out, restrict and/or block are tools. But, we might remain friends, so why not? I’m not threatened by that because I don’t aire dirty laundry or change my relationship status unless it’s warranted.

  2. Nia Says:

    I think it all depends on the level of the relationship. Gone on one date or two? Blocking the # is harsh, but it’s within bounds. I think people just don’t want to have that awkward conversation with the person they no longer want to see or open the door to a hostile conversation, so they just “firmly” ghost. (Instead of just not answering calls/texts/IM’s they make it so you can’t contact them).

    I’ve had a couple dates in the past where there was a really clear, concrete reason (one that was a deal breaker and something they couldn’t change) I didn’t want to see them again and when I told them why they argued with me (you’re not sending your four school age kids to boarding school, buddy, so drop it) to give them a second chance when I explained that I didn’t think it was going to work and best of luck. So, maybe these guys are part clueless and immature, part scared about a negative reaction.

    Also, many men (especially young ones, and I’m assuming that’s what we’re dealing with due to LW’s age) have been told by friends and relatives and the media portrayals of women that women “go crazy” when you break up with them. So, better to just block/disappear. Sad, yet could be another cause of the harsh ghosting.

  3. D. Says:

    I think this is more technology enabling a side of human nature that has probably always existed to some degree. I mean, it used to be that people would just not call/not respond to your calls.

    Put simply, some folks just really don’t like confrontation, and calling it off with someone is a form of confrontation. It’s much easier if they just disappear from your life without a trace, and you avoid that uncomfortable, awkward conversation. They’re also far more concerned with their own comfort than with the other person feeling somehow slighted, or they’ve had the experience of saying trying to be polite and having the other person blow up at them. So, now you have the “unfollow” approach or just blocking the number.

    Basically, technology has made it easier for people who hate confrontation to avoid it altogether. But it’s not like “Oh, these kids today with their hula hoops and rock and roll and emojis.” This is shit that’s always gone on, it’s just taking a different form.

  4. BTownGirl Says:

    RUDE. I know it’s just how things are done for some people, but if I chose to break off a dating relationship or a friendship that way and then ran into the person, I’d be mortified. I don’t care if it’s accepted practice or not, it’s kind of pathetic and plain old terrible manners.

  5. DrivingMeNutes Says:

    “Then and only then do we get frustrated and annoyed when the method of keeping in touch we previously relied upon is used against us.”

    Ha well it can only be “used against you” if you don’t block them. Therein lies the genius.

    The moment when a person decides they no longer want or need anything from you, is the moment when you have the least control over that person or yiur relationship with them. It’s s fool’s errand to try to exert control over them or the situation at that point. Break ups suck no matter the method.

    That said, I don’t unfriend people – even those who’ve wronged me egeegiousky, because I need every friend I’ve got. I also think most people these days don’t view social media as some intrusion into their most personal lives but rather an extension of their public selves. Those who reveal too much and therefore must block and delete for privacy purposes are doing it wrong. For the most part, blocking is an aggressive form of communication as Moxie rightly noted.

    • SS Says:

      “even those who’ve wronged me egregiously, because I need every friend I’ve got.”

      surely someone who’s wronged you like that… is NOT a friend?

      “Those who reveal too much and therefore must block and delete for privacy purposes are doing it wrong.”

      I’ve mentioned here previously… I’ve been stalked and harrassed before. And I’m the only person with my name in the US if not the world. As a result my Facebook page etc are not actually in my name, but I still try to be careful after having been burned (through no fault of my own) on a few occasions.

    • ATWYSingle Says:

      Those who reveal too much and therefore must block and delete for privacy purposes are doing it wrong.

      Exactly. It’s a very simply concept – Nothing you post on the internet, privacy settings or not, is private. So either don’t post anything you wouldn’t want an ex to see, or just stop caring.

      I’ve been “stalked” and harassed” too, and I just can’t be bothered to give a shit about what those people see on my social media. There’s a woman who has been harassing me for well over a year. I could block her from seeing my stuff. Or I could just not give a shit. Guess which option I choose? Blocking her will only feed her distorted sense of importance.

      I’m sorry, but all the blocking and omigawd stalker shit is usually done for attention purposes or do give people the impression you’re way more important or influential than you are. I follow people on Instagram who have private accounts who pull the “omigawd stalker” shit and half the stuff they upload to their private page they also link to their Twitter, where the upload is then viewable by the public. What’s the point of being private other than to create some sense of urgency or importance around what you’re posting privately. Which, btw, is usually the most innocuous shit. Oh, you took a pic of the sunset? Yes, definitely lock that up!

      There’s an egregious level of self-importance to that that I simply do not have the patience for. I get that it’s unnerving to have people with bad intentions creeping your pages, but the lengths some people go to to communicate that they’re being watched always seems suspect to me. There’s a woman on my FB feed who just changed her FB name and then announced that she was being stalked. That’s the first sign that someone is doing it for attention. Then there’s the taking down of the page, changing your username, making your page private and then not private and then private again. It’s all fucking drama to create a sense of urgency around the person, and it’s bullshit.

      • SS Says:

        Well this was the point of my initial post – I don’t friend/connect with random people in the first place – even *with* the fake name profile.

        That way I get to post all sorts of shiznit with gay abandon :)

        • BTownGirl Says:

          That must be so goddamn liberating haha! I only really let it all hang out during football games, because if there was ever a time to drop an f-bomb, it’s when one’s team is down by 6 with 47 seconds left in the fourth quarter ;)

          • SS Says:

            It is – I have no family members either. I am free to be as offensive and ridiculous as I like… and I definitely like 8-)

            • BTownGirl Says:

              Ohmygod, I would get banned. BANNED, I tell you! People with my tendencies (i.e. people from Boston) need structure and accountability haha!

      • SS Says:

        One other comment – I’ve read several articles that stated that prospective employers made candidates log into their Facebook accounts at the interview for inspection.

        So it’s not about self-importance… but I do wonder if most people would feel comfortable in that scenario. I’ve rejected candidates even on the basis of their *public* information and I know a lot of people who’ve done the same.

      • BTownGirl Says:

        Ohmygod, I totally link a lot of my (private) Instagram posts to my (private) Facebook page haha! *hangs head in shame* I went private on Insta because I like the option of being able to post a sexy picture/meme with swears/etc without everyone I’m Fbook friends with being able to see it if they clicked through the link to my Insta account. That being said, do I think anyone gives enough of a sh*t to be like, “I’MMA RIFLE THROUGH ALL HER PICTURES. 20 weeks deep or bust!”? That would be a “nope!” ;)

        • SS Says:

          Lol – all my various profiles are in different names and unlinked.

          You say no one gives a shit… but relatively recently I had a rando Match guy ask me “did you get married on a beach?”

          He couldn’t find a FB profile in my name, so he’d searched everyone with the same last name… rifled through all *their* photos and somehow manage to piece together that it was me in this particular wedding pic.

          Not necessarily a big deal but it still felt weird to me and definitely a bit intrusive.

          • SS Says:

            And the wedding was in 2008… so he rifled 7 years deep! lol

            • BTownGirl Says:

              Shut uuuuuup hahahaha!! I’m always afraid I’m going to do an accidental double-tap when I’m on a recon mission and more than two weeks deep!

              p.s. Speaking of weddings, I recently discovered that Netflix has every single Vicar of Dibley Christmas special and have already watched Geraldine’s wedding twice hehe! ;)

  6. Donnie K Says:

    Unless there’s justification, (ex: the other party bombards you with texts or calls after you’ve ghosted on them), blocking someone’s # after a few dates is extreme.

    A simple fade is usually sufficient.

  7. Kyra Says:

    I can understand the fade, although it still annoys me because I do think it’s cowardly.

    But if you’ve seen the other person multiple times over the course of more than a few weeks I think it’s highly inappropriate and rude, and just plain mean-spirited to go as far as blocking them.

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