Friday, 5 May 2017

Storytime... I got CATFISHED!!!


If you could see the state of me right now you'd see that this is all still a bit raw, so bear with me. I might end up doing a video on this. It will probably be easier to explain. Anyway it's probably time for me to explain...

Back in January, I had been single since September but my ex had only just moved out (tenancy agreements blah blah). I will be entirely honest, I'd never lived alone before and I was pretty lonely. So, upon other friends successes on the site I thought I'd give Plenty Of Fish a go. Yes, I do now see the irony!!

So, I was having a couple of conversations and it was okay, nothing to write home about. They have this thing at the top with just random people on it, I don't think there's any consensus as to who pops up. Either way, up popped this guy, he has this massive beaming smile, tattoos and a blue french bulldog on his lap. Of course (thanks to the bloody dog) I fell. I dropped him a message, not knowing whether or not he's respond, I thought he was pretty out of my league. I simply said 'Hey buff ting' by now you know what i'm like (socially awkward) and I thought it was funny. He replied.

We messaged for hours. We had really good chat and he made me laugh a lot. We decided to exchange numbers. From there we spoke on the phone. Every day. He had a great voice and laugh and I really was falling for him. He told me that he was a marine, the dog was called Sam, his ex girlfriend had cheated on him while he was on deployment. He had pictures in uniform and I suppose in my head it all made sense. I did try and video chat but he always said he couldn't get his camera working on his phone (red flag right there, I know). When you like someone that much, you don't want to believe it.

He didn't have any social media and said it was because of being a marine, I knew no different so thought, okay. Around March we decided to meet. He was going to pick me up and we'd go from there on a Saturday. So, Friday evening i'm messaging, no response. Then Saturday morning, i'm calling and messaging etc and still nothing. So, I've been stood up. I spent that Saturday moping about and didn't hear from him again for a week.

When I heard from him again he said that he had been posted to Austria at the last minute and that he didn't take his phone on deployment as it was all pretty hush hush. Obviously, not having any experience with the MOD I thought fine. I didn't see why it couldn't be plausible.

Again we went back to messaging and he told me he was going away for a month in May fishing in France. I said look, it's been nearly half a year now, we have to meet. I asked if he'd see me before May. He said yes. So we're in April and slow and steady the first weekend passes, then the second, then the third. I said next weekend is the last, will you see me. He would always go silent when I mentioned it but eventually said yes. But of course he didn't see me.

All during the 'relationship' I was trying to find out exactly who he was. I've seen catfish before and I'm aware of internet safety etc. I reverse image searched pictures he sent me to no avail. I scoured facebook. I googled and googled. Nothing. I thought it was quite impressive that he had absolutely no internet foot print. I realise now why.

It wasn't until yesterday that the bug of doubt got me again. Niggling. I looked at photos he'd sent me again and saw one with Jimmy Carr and him. I thought well there's more chance of getting hits if it includes Jimmy Carr and why would you take the photo if not to put it on social media. So I looked and it got a result: Webstagram under the hashtag #comedian. Got ya!

The hashtag was far too vast to even contemplate going through but it meant the picture was tagged. Surely it would be tagged Jimmy Carr! I searched it thinking it would be less popular. Damn you Jimmy for your internet fame!! There were thousands and all pretty similar. Problem is, when I put my mind to something, I do it.

I scrolled through 3 years worth of photos until I found it. The guy I was head over heels with, there, on instagram. The image lead me to his brothers page and then finally to him.

The guy I found was legit and not the person I had been speaking to. It was clear. He had a girlfriend, photos of his place, what he ate, where he went, what he wore.

My heart fell into my stomach.

I initially thought the guy I was speaking to was just lying about having a girlfriend and a seperate life so I said, you have half an hour to explain or I will contact your girlfriend (not in a mean way, I was really nice to her, none of this was her fault). So he didn't reply and I messaged the girlfriend. I asked her about her boyfriend, if the numbers matched up, if she'd seem certain photos etc etc. She basically confirmed it, I was being catfished.

I was glad in a sense, that she wasn't being cheated on because that would be awful. But regardless. It hurt.

I questioned him and he tried to lie his way out of it, he told me he loved me etc. In the end (this morning) I've blocked him on everything. He knows about this blog and is probably even reading this. In which case, Hey!

Being catfished hurts. Pure and simple. I feel like someone that I was crazy about has died. I'll never get to speak to that person, as I knew them, ever again. That really hurts, like throwing up kind of pain. I didn't sleep last night with all of it going on.

I am so cynical now about the internet. Not much good in my life has come of it. The issue is that people don't meet 'the old fashioned way' anymore. I don't go anywhere that i'd meet someone, maybe that is just me.

I hate to say this because it's stupid but I honestly hoped this was it. Case in point, if it seems too good to be true, it probably is.

Sorry guys, remember to do your research and keep safe.

Love ya x


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