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How To “unghost” A Past Friend, According To Friendship Experts | The Optimist Daily

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In a perfect world, no one would ever end a personal relationship by abruptly stopping all communication with no explanation—In other words, “ghosting.” However, sometimes life gets in the way, and we ghost. 

What is unghosting?

Psychologist, professor, speaker, and author Marisa G. Franco, Ph.D., says that unghosting means reappearing in the life of someone you had previously ghosted. “It can be beneficial to unghost a friend because you might be able to give them the closure that they need to move on,” Dr. Franco explains. She adds that it can also make the ghosted feel better about themselves for having tried to correct an unethical act.

Even though the process of unghosting can feel awkward, it has the power to re-establish a friendship that ended needlessly. “It’s important to remember that people are often more open than we might think to the idea of us re-engaging with them, particularly if we’re willing to take accountability,” says Dr. Franco.

On the flip side, simply re-appearing doesn’t “entitle you to their understanding, their forgiveness, or their desire to restart the relationship,” as friendship expert Danielle Bayard Jackson explains.

How to unghost a former friend
Apologize and take accountability

No matter how distressing the reason for your ghosting may be or how much you’ve mourned the friendship, your ghosted ex-friend got the worst of it. Dr. Franco says the first step in unghosting is to apologize. According to Dr. Franco: “A good way to unghost might be to say, ‘Hey, I was thinking of you and how I hadn’t been responsive in the past. I’m so sorry. If you’re open to it, I’d love to share what happened. Thank you so much for considering.’”

If they are open to speaking, explain why you left. “Remember that no one is questioning the validity of whatever your reasons were,” says Jackson. “If it was a mental health issue, or you were caught up in financial distress, or you were burnt out at work, or it was an issue within the friendship that you didn’t know how to communicate at the time—all of that is valid, but it does need to be said.”

Be clear about why you’re unghosting

Once you explain why you disappeared, it’s best to be clear about why you are back so that your ghosted friend isn’t left with even more questions. 

If you simply tell them that you were thinking of them and wanted to reconnect, they may wonder if you were motivated because you want something from them, or at a minimum they may be unclear about why you are trying to reconnect. Are you just apologizing, or do you want to start hanging out again? 

Avoid defensiveness

Your explanation is not a justification or defense for your conduct but closure for the individual left hanging. Over-explaining can make it seem like you’re more interested in clearing your name than reconnecting or letting your friend move on. Jackson says, “you need to leave some space for them to feel whatever hurt or sadness or indignancy they feel.”

Dr. Franco advises against blaming your friend for being ghosted. Even if they played a role in the conflict, you chose to handle it indirectly, and no matter what your friend did, you should take responsibility for that decision and whatever hurt it caused.

Acknowledge that they may not want you back in their life

You can unghost an old buddy with respect, but you can’t control how the ghostee replies. Dr. Franco says there are consequences for behaving badly toward friends. Even the most honest explanation for unghosting may not bring a buddy back, she says.

They may not react to your message or decline your request to reconnect because they’re still angry, unhappy, or don’t care. In all of these situations, respect their decision, says Dr. Franco. A friendship only works if both parties are invested, as they know.

The post How to “unghost” a past friend, according to friendship experts first appeared on The Optimist Daily: Making Solutions the News.

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Scientists Improve Cervical Cancer Prediction With New Test | The Optimist Daily

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Great news! A more accurate test for cell changes that can lead to cervical cancer has just been developed by scientists.

The groundbreaking test can also detect DNA markers for some other common cancers, implying that it could be used as a predictive test for breast, womb, cervical, and ovarian cancer in the future.

The researchers behind the test previously demonstrated that by using cervical cells from a routine smear test, they may be able to detect or predict the development of ovarian and breast cancer.

The expert team has now revealed that when used to screen for cervical cancer, the new test outperforms current methods in identifying women with advanced cell changes who require treatment.

How much better is the new test?

It detected 55% of those who would have cell changes in the next four years in those who did not have cell changes but had human papillomavirus (HPV), which causes the majority of cases of cervical cancer. The findings were published in Genome Medicine.

“This new method is more specific and doesn’t lead to over-treatment, which is good news for cervical cancer prevention and great news for everyone who needs to be screened,” said Athena Lamnisos, the chief executive of the Eve Appeal charity.

“It’s so welcome to see screening tools and predictive tests becoming more effective. We want to prevent cancer – and we know with cervical cancer that we can intervene at an early stage.”

Each year, approximately 3,200 new cases of cervical cancer are diagnosed in the UK alone, with approximately 850 deaths. Half of all women with the disease live for ten years or longer.

How does the new test work?

Experts led by the University of Innsbruck and University College London (UCL) examined DNA methylation, which acts as an extra layer of information on top of DNA, in their most recent study.

DNA contains all of the genes that people inherit from both parents, whereas DNA methylation instructs cells on which bits of DNA to read.

Smoking, pollution, a poor diet, and being overweight can all alter these markers and alter how the cell behaves. Scientists believe they can detect cancer and possibly predict someone’s risk of developing cancer in the future by closely studying DNA methylation.

The new study included 1,254 cervical screening samples from women who had cell changes ranging from low to high risk, women who had HPV but no cervical cell changes, and samples from women who had no cervical cell changes but developed high-risk cell changes within four years.

“Vaccination against the virus that causes cervical cancer is now widely implemented and is leading to changes in the amount and types of virus circulating in the community,” said Prof Martin Widschwendter of UCL’s department of women’s cancer. As a result, the approaches to cervical screening must evolve in order for programs to continue to be beneficial.

“Building new, holistic, risk-predictive screening programs around existing, effective cervical sample collection offers real potential for cancer prevention in the future.”

Source study: Genome Medicine— The WID-CIN test identifies women with and at risk of cervical intraepithelial neoplasia grade 3 and invasive cervical cancer

The post Scientists improve cervical cancer prediction with new test first appeared on The Optimist Daily: Making Solutions the News.

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