The term “ghosting” has become common speech. There’s now an accepted term for when someone cuts all communication. Even employers use the term for an employee who just stops showing up. What if the cutoff wasn’t so abrupt. Like orbiting, there’s a new behavior called “breadcrumbing” that some find even worse than ghosting. Today we’ll learn what it is and how you can avoid it.
What Is Breadcrumbing?
Have you ever been talking to someone who showed interest in you? But the communication eventually slowed to a trickle before coming to a full stop. Maybe the connection just wasn’t there. It happens. Nobody is to blame. But then, out of nowhere, you’ll get a text that starts with “Hi cutie.” You just became the victim of a breadcrumber. Similarly, if someone keeps sending flirty texts over days or weeks, but is non-committal about actually meeting, that is breadcrumbing as well. The person will string you along by showing you just enough attention so that you don’t lose interest.
Why Does It Happen?
You might think that person is being nice for “checking in” after you haven’t heard from them. But the truth is, if the person was really interested, they would make the effort to see you. Unlike for Hansel and Gretel, this trail leads to nowhere. It might be hard to accept, but the person most likely has no real interest in pursuing things with you or moving forward. A new message on your phone can feel good, but that’s probably as far as it will go. The ego boost from your response is what they’re really after. Contacting you is a self-serving move with no intention of furthering a relationship. Maintaining your attention this way is done for their own emotional need.
How To Spot A Breadcrumber
You’ll get a message just as you were beginning to forget about that person. It’s like they sense your interest is waning, and the text is to lure you back in. The messages themselves will usually range from vague to mildly flirty. The problem is, they haven’t gotten to know you well enough to ask an engaging question. Their texts are to get you thinking about them. Even the flirting will be lazy. You’ll almost wish you were getting booty-called.
How To Avoid Being Breadcrumbed
Your time is valuable. You have better things to do than be strung along. Follow these tips to avoid being breadcrumbed.
- Suggest concrete plans next time they make contact. This forces them to put up or shut up.
- Call them out directly by bringing up the weeks of radio silence that preceded the flirty text.
- Just ask, “Why all the breadcrumbs and no real plans?”
- Inquire about their schedule. If they’re too uncomfortable to share, you might be dealing with a breadcrumber.
- Stand firm. Ignore them for a little while and see how they react.
While all of this is occurring, try not to get too upset. The person might not be aware of how they are impacting you, and are likely not attempting to deceive you. Chances are, we’ve all done a little breadcrumbing in the past. Ultimately, you have to go with your gut. If it just doesn’t feel right, then it probably isn’t. Try not to be attached to something that’s probably not going anywhere. If a person is interested in you, they’ll make the time. Respect yourself and don’t fall for breadcrumbing. If all else fails, you can always just ghost.