If you haven't been victim to the person you're dating seeing disappearing on you for no apparent reason or you've done the vanishing act yourself, you probably know someone who has been ghosted. While sometimes ghosting a date is warranted (aka they're making you feel uncomfortable), in most cases, it's a pretty cowardly way to cut ties if you've been dating a while. Unfortunately, it's just a thing that tends to happen a lot today. But according to dating app The League, who looked at the ghosting behavior among their users, ghosting really isn't as "spooky" as it seems.
According to The League, it's actually a pretty acceptable move if you're in the very early stages of dating, meaning after one or two dates at the most. "We’re all busy and trying to juggle dating and matching with someone with 1,000 other things that go on in our daily lives," Meredith Davis, Head of Communications at The League, tells Bustle. "After three dates is where it gets messy and people get their feelings hurt. Before three dates, not texting is a pretty obvious sign that you’re not interested."
After three dates, Davis says it's nice to give the person closure by sending them something along the lines of, Hey, you're an awesome person, but I'm not sure we're the right fit. "By this point you’ve probably shared a combined six to 10 hours with this person, so definitely let them know it’s a no-go!" she says.
While ghosting is pretty common, it's pretty interesting to think about who's doing it the most. Unlike people might assume, it's actually not single millennials. According to The League, here are the users that ghost the most:
1. 40-Year-Old Dating App Users
Consider this one the most surprising data of them all. Ghosting may be a "millennial phenomenon," but 40-year-old dating app users are actually guilty of ghosting the most. They ghost at an average rate of 21.3 percent. The people who ghost the least? 20-year-olds!
Men ghost at an average rate of 22 percent. Women, on the other hand, ghost at an average rate of 17 percent. According to a survey, also conducted by The League, for heterosexual couples, men were most likely to ghost after a first date than women.
3. Stanford University Law School Students
People affiliated with Stanford University Law School ghost the most at an average rate of 33 percent. The school that ghosts the least is the University of Exeter in the U.K. Users from there ghost less than three percent of the time.
4. Investment Bankers
People who work in investment banking ghost the most at 33.4 percent, where people who work in oil and energy ghost the least at an average rate of only eight percent.
5. People With Higher Popularity Scores On The League
On The League, users get popularity scores based on how many times they've been "hearted." According to the data, people who've been hearted the most are actually more likely to ghost than anyone else.
Data also found that if you initiate a conversation with any of the following: Hey Gorgeous, Whatssup, or Hey, how are you?, your chances of someone ghosting you go up.
In all honesty, anyone is capable of ghosting. Men, Stanford Law students, and 40-year-olds just happen to do it more often than anyone else on The League. Your best bet? Show you're interested. "My suggestion is, if you want to decrease your chances of encountering those 'scary ghosts,' always message with questions pertaining to that person's profile or photos," Davis says. "Be more engaging than a simple stock text or waving emoji."