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House Bill Seeks to Declare Ghosting as 'Emotional Offense'

Lawmaker cites 'adverse effects' of ghosting.
by Erwin Colcol
3 days ago
Photo/s: Shutterstock

A measure has been filed in the House of Representatives seeking to declare "ghosting" as an emotional offense, without specifying penalties.

Negros Oriental Rep. Arnolfo Teves, the bill's author, cited the adverse effects of ghosting on a person's mental and emotional state as he stressed the need to punish it as an emotional offense.


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Ghosting happens when someone suddenly cuts off all forms of communication with another person which, according to Teves, can be mentally, physically, and emotionally exhausting to the "ghosted party."

He said there have been studies showing that social rejection activates the same pathways in the brain as physical pain, which proves the biological link between rejection and pain.

"Ghosting has adverse effects on the mental state of the one being ghosted and his or her emotional state is still adversely affected as he or she will be constantly thinking of the welfare or the unexplained reasons of the one who ghosted," Teves said.

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"It can be likened to a form of emotional cruelty and should be punished as an emotional offense because of the trauma it causes to the 'ghosted' party," he added.

Under the bill, ghosting is defined as "a form of emotional abuse and happens once a person is engaged in a dating relationship with the opposite sex which affects the mental state of the victim."

A couple is considered in a dating relationship under the bill when they live as husband and wife without the benefit of marriage or are romantically involved over time and on a continuing basis. Casual acquaintances between two individuals in a business or social context are not considered under this definition.

Teves previously went viral for filing a bill that seeks to rename Ninoy Aquino International Airport after former President Ferdinand Marcos Sr.


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