When you’re ending things with someone you’ve been seeing casually, it makes sense to do it digitally. But, sending a breakup text that’s both kind and direct doesn’t always result in the response you want. Sometimes, your date throws a full-blown tantrum, which leaves you wondering why you didn’t ghost them in the first place. It’s not your delivery method that’s the problem — your date can’t handle rejection, and that’s a personal problem that has nothing to do with you. Whether you keep dating someone is your prerogative and you don’t owe any additional explanation.

Some of my friends have been on the receiving end of profanities, name-calling, slut-shaming, and even told to die because they’ve broken up with someone they’ve known for literally a week. This behavior is dangerously abusive and sadly, it’s becoming more common as we’ve come to use text messages as our main means of communication. While women certainly can be the ones throwing an emotional tantrum, there seems to be a pattern with men who can’t handle rejection and find it threatening to their masculinity. Personally, I don’t think the male ego is that fragile — I think that’s a poor excuse for bad behavior.

If you find yourself on the receiving end of this, just know you have the power to silence the other person: There’s no reason to engage with someone who’s willing to say anything to keep you in their grasp, and these rants tend to be one-sided convos. It’s highly unlikely you’ll be able to diffuse the situation — you can’t reason with someone who’s acting completely irrational.

While I am never a fan of blocking people’s numbers, there comes a time when it’s completely appropriate, especially if they’re causing you anxiety. Just remember to block them on all social media as well so they can’t troll you other places. And don’t keep it a secret: Tell your friends, tell your mama, tell everyone in your life, because you’ll want to keep them in the loop if the harassment continues. This isn’t to scare you but rather to encourage you to trust your instincts: The line has been crossed as soon as you feel uncomfortable.

If you met this person on a dating app, take the additional step by reporting them to help prevent this from happening to someone else. If this person is doing it to you, it’s likely that there are other people on the receiving end of the abuse — and that’s not cool. Tinder, like most dating apps, has systems in place to help protect its community from abusive behavior on and off the app.

Lastly, pat yourself on the back for noticing there was something not right about the relationship and ending it when you did. You clearly dodged a bullet and get lots of respect from me for owning up to your feelings and not vanishing like a ghost.

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