Of Ghosting, Caspering and Wokefishing

By Farah G. Decano


I ENCOUNTERED the term “ghosting” for the first time when actors Bea Alonzo and Gerald Anderson broke up.  I wondered what the word meant when applied to them. As explained later by those in showbiz circles, it means abruptly ending a relationship by sudden disappearance without any warning whatsoever. It is similar to “nawala na parang bula.”  Puff! Just like that.

Then I discovered more dating terms in the internet popularized by the Generation Z. I thought it would be good to share them here to narrow the generation gap between those who still read the news on paper and those who rely on cyber reporting.

“Caspering” comes from the name of a cartoon personality whose name is Casper.  His  character is that of a friendly spirit. In dating, caspering is less harsh than ghosting because the person who wants out of the relationship will drop several hints about the impending termination of theromance  before he or she finally disappears.

“Catfishing” is a deceptive way of luring someone for financial or emotional gain by projecting a separate online persona. The trickster may use an entirely different profile picture, or an extremely edited one, and project a certain identity or lifestyle which is, of course, untrue.  According to discovermagazine.com, people fall for catfishing because of high levels of loneliness and difficulty in connecting with others.

“Wokefishing” is a manipulative strategy of a scammer wherein he or she ensnares the victim by pretending to espouse progressive political views such as feminism, being pro-farmer or pro-Filipino. They even attend rallies to strengthen their image with their victims. Their lifestyles however betray their so-called advocacies. They have no qualms in behaving like chauvinists during unguarded moments, or when, for example, undercutting prices of crops when dealing  directly with farmers, or maligning their countrymen in front of foreigners. Wokefishing, like catfishing, is fraudulent, to say the least.

“Situationship” is a reference for a certain romantic connection that is unlabelled. This may be likened to Generation X’s mutual understanding or MU set-up where commitment is not spoken about. Interestingly, this may even be categorized further into “simply dating” or “exclusively dating.”  In all cases of situationships, I suggest that one must not have any expectation, or worse, fall in love in reckless abandon with the other because there is no assurance of any form of commitment. One must always tightly guard the heart in this kind of set-up.

“Roaching” is when an individual who is in a relationship still tries to secretly flirt and/or wins another’s heart.  This is Generation Z’s allusion to cheating by giving it the name of one of the nastiest household insect – the cockroach.

“Benching” refers  to the situation when one is considered a mere option because somebody else is a priority. The concept takes after players in games where those seated in the bench are reserved players.

*          *          *          *         

Dating in the time of Generation Z has a different terrain.  What with the numerous partner choices presented by Tinder, Bumble, and other dating apps, one has to be updated in the game and very wise in screening those whose qualities may seem to have matched the seeker’s requirements.

Some questions now asked at the onset of a dating scene are:  1) What is your trauma?; 2) Have you overcome your trauma?; 3) What do you do so that these traumas won’t negatively impact your present?  

The questions are very much valid. With much weight given to mental health in the present times, asking a potential partner about his or her past tragedies is very relevant. We cannot disregard its manifestations in present relationships.       

For some members of Generation X, those who belong to Generation Z may seem to behave like an entitled brat, but their wisdom in life is beyond the former’s expectations.

Share your Comments or Reactions


Powered by Facebook Comments