What does Cloaking mean?

Vanishing from someone you’re romantically invested in

When it comes to dating, cloaking is a term used when someone intentionally hides from their romantic interest. It’s like ghosting, but with an extra layer of avoidance. Unlike just disappearing, a person who cloaks will block you on all online platforms, including social and dating apps.

No one’s entirely sure where the term ‘cloaking’ came from, but it began to gain traction in the later part of the 2010s. It’s considered a darker form of ghosting. The name is inspired by the concept of a cloak that can make a person invisible, like the ones seen in Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings.

There could be several reasons why someone might choose to cloak in a dating scenario. Perhaps they’re scared of commitment, want to end a relationship, or are trying to slip away from an affair. For instance, someone might have an affair, then completely cut off the person they were involved with to avoid getting caught.

Just like ghosting, cloaking is seen as a pretty harsh move. If you don’t want to leave a trail of upset ex-partners, it’s always kinder to explain why you want to end things. Cloaking is an unkind way to end a relationship.

Example for using ‘Cloaking’ in a conversation

Hey, how’s it going? I haven’t heard from you in a while.

Sorry, I’ve been really busy lately.

No problem, I understand. But it feels like you’ve been avoiding me. What’s going on?

I’m not avoiding you. I’ve just been dealing with some personal stuff.