Ever heard the word catfished before? If not, you’re not alone because many people haven't heard of it. No doubt, in this is the internet age, many new words will keep emerging every day.
Before I continue, let me briefly tell you the meaning of catfishing. This is when a person falls into the trap of someone who has a fake identity on social media. Everything about their profile is usually wrong, and this happens when you are trying to have an online relationship with the person.
People have different reasons for catfishing. For some, they don't intentionally plan to be a “catfish”; they could be doing it out of boredom. While for others, they do it intentionally for the fun of dating anyone online out of insecurities.
However, no matter what happens, those who fall into the catfisher trap always end up getting hurt, especially when you have created different connections with the person. The painful part is that you have never met this person. It has just been an online dating thing. Still, you feel some kind of betrayal because you thought it was a real person behind the profiles.
It hurts, especially when you thought you knew someone's real identity. It is ok to feel bad, but you must be willing to go through some recovery process. You must be willing to move on as fast as you can. On that note, here are 11 steps to deal with being catfished.
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Catfishers are professionals in pulling emotional heartstrings. When they rush in to tell you emotional tales of their childhood or personal family struggles, or financial problems, it should tell you something.
Why will a person who barely knows you or just met you open up and tell you so much about their lives? It's because they want to form a swift emotional attachment or connection to you, and you should be careful with such a person.
Such people try to create a different form of connections with you, and after that, they will always have emergency-fund needs or will be reluctant for video calls. So, be careful in your dealings with them.
How to deal with being catfished here is to act like you don't care about the stories and you aren't even paying attention to it. Don't react emotionally to the words they speak. It's just online dating; no one should start giving too many stories at the initial stage.
With most of the catfishing stories you read online or hear people talk about; one thing that is common in such relationships is the speed at which the relationship progresses. These people come on to the victims so strongly and quickly.
Just be conscious whenever you meet a new person. If the person is pushing the relationship forward quickly and trying to create connections even when they have not met you yet, you are being catfished. So, back off immediately. I will advise that you cut communication with that person to avoid being catfished.
Give yourself room to reflect and breathe well. Just calm down and allow yourself to heal instead of rushing into another romantic relationship. Remember they say, "If you don't heal from something, you will bleed on others" it won't be nice for you to rush into another relationship and be toxic. So, just take a break and chill because others will question your mental health.
Take this point very seriously so you do not end up crying later with regrets. Never give a large amount of money to an online user that you have never seen in person. Also, don't give
your account details to anyone online, no matter how carried away you get in the chat or conversation.
I understand that during online dating, it's normal for your partner to need helping hands once in a while. This is especially true when dating a person who lives in a developing country and needs financial help. However, when in such a condition, that person should reach out to their close friends or family members.
When a person online asks you to transfer a particular amount of money to a friend or whoever, please take it as a red flag and thread carefully—especially since you don't know their real identity.
You can meet someone online, and after chatting with them, they seem serious and so interested in you. But then they don't want to Skype or do any form of video call. They want typed messages and audios, and they are never willing to show you their real identity.
They might even tell you they are excited to meet you. But anytime you plan to meet up, something mysterious happens, and the date is canceled. That is a red flag. If you are dating someone online that behaves like this, it is better to leave them as soon as you can.
Be willing to get help from your family, friends, a counselor, or a therapist—whoever can help you become better. Be patient with the therapist, and good results will come out. Just be with your friends who understand and accept you for who you are. Don't let anyone ever make you feel less. You are perfect just the way you are, and none of it was your fault
Although having a social media profile doesn't show a person's real identity, try to watch their social media profiles. Check when the account was opened, the number of friends they have, and the person's interaction with others in the comment section. Also, monitor how many things they post and tag.
If the account is just dry and devoid of interaction and the guy or lady is never tagged to his friend's post, then be careful, they may be a catfish. Do not allow yourself to be catfished by these fake people. You can get a lot of information from a catfish profile, so make sure you go through their profiles very well.
You might be so excited about dating someone new that you don't pay close attention to the obvious things—until you fall victim to their lies. That's why I will encourage you to always be careful whenever you are dealing with people online.
So, if they claim they are from an English-speaking country and you can see that they have little command of the language, ask them more questions. If a catfish notices that you are inquisitive, they would quit and run to another person to scam. They might even return to you with other new profiles. So be on alert. Remember, there are many other fishes in the sea. So never settle for a catfish. You can be loved sincerely.
If someone is too perfect to be true, then the person may be a catfish. Once you start having doubts about this person, cut them off before you are scammed. Even if you don’t realize it yet (and you've fallen for the trap once), and they come with some more juicy explanation to get anything from you, cut them off immediately.
Don't buy all those cock and bull stories. When this person is flawless, their interest is so broad and just presents oneself as the perfect human, it is a warning sign. So when chatting with someone that is too good to be true, thread with caution. This way, you will not end up hurt when you finally discover that your perfect human was a liar and a scammer and all the love and romance was just fake.
Let nothing bring down your self-esteem, confidence, and awareness. Anybody can be a victim of these scammers. If you have already been catfished, focus on your personal goals and ambition and keep working on yourself to be a better person. Stand up on your feet and live smart. Guilt can't get you anywhere, neither can regret it.
One way to deal with being in such a situation is to first realize that you have been catfished. That way, your eyes are clear. You can think straight and make a decision. So one of the schemes of catfishers is to present themselves as world travelers.
So if your new online lover is like this, make a mental note. It can just be an excuse to avoid facial communications, and some will even request support for cryptocurrency and stock exchange.
You have to first realize that the person is a catfisher, then you play along like you don't know, but never accept to do anything for them, just play along with their tune.
Make sure you end the relationship immediately and just move forward. Don't hold back on anything, and never blame yourself for anything that happened; it was never your fault.
Yes, you should. This will make them know they are not smart, and it makes them feel like the loser at the end of the day. So, make sure you let them know they were caught.
No, catfishing is not illegal. It is only wrong when you try dating an underage or if you were scammed.
No, it isn't, people do this with a very sound mind; they are aware of what they do.
I hope you found this article helpful. If you ever get catfished, just be strong and move on. Don't hold on to anything that happened. Let me know what you think, and please don't forget to share this article with others.