So, I don’t actually talk about this very much, but I was watching Catfish recently and it brought a lot of memories back.
I was catfished once.
Not by anyone strange. Not by someone I met over the internet. It was SO much worse than that.
I was catfished by my (ex)best-friend.
Now, this was an elaborate scheme. It involves fake email accounts, fake phone numbers, multiple fake people..
What happened was completely insane.
It all started when she apparently started to get feelings for me of a romantic nature. Now, I always wondered if maybe she swung that way, but it wasn’t ever a problem because I don’t care one way or another who anyone else is attracted too.
Then suddenly it was a problem.
She was trying to convince everyone that she is straight. She was away at school about 3 hours from where I was living at the time, and we used to be exceptionally close. We spent weekends and such together going to concerts and whatever struck our fancy. I know she had to be lonely.
She may even be straight. I don’t know. This could have been an anomaly. Again, I don’t care.
But she basically imagined a boyfriend into existence. He conveniently lived in Kansas, so I never got to meet him. Or see him. Or even talk to him out loud.
But he emailed and texted me. Introduced “himself” to me and said he was madly in love with my best friend.
Now, don’t get me wrong, we spent a lot of time together, but she wasn’t exactly an easy person to love. I can’t imagine how in the world she thought that he would instantly just know he loved her after meeting her for about a minute.
Which is what she told me.
So, she also took it one or two or twelve steps further.. So the mysterious “boyfriend” had drug and alcohol problems. Probably because she wanted to make her seem like a savior.
She has always struggled with her own depression. Self-harm, alcoholism, and she claims “abusive” family life. (I quoted abusive because I have met and spent time with her family, with her there, and without. They love her. They don’t do anything intentional to hurt her. They bought her a truck and paid for her to go to school for almost 10 years, have paid for her to do whatever concerts, camps, and whatever else she wants. And I know that buying things could be a mechanism that basically ensures she stays quiet about things, but she hasn’t.)
Anyways, back to the story, this magically “in-love-with-her” boyfriend, he somehow had a fantastic brother! Who low and behold was in the military and deployed overseas, his girlfriend had Jane-Doe’d him and he needed a pen pal.
I feel like this is where I should have come to the realization that things were definitely not as they seemed.
Now, I did end up being a pen pal. I emailed him, yet another fake email. I should have realized how similar the emails from “Dustin” and “Jake” were. But I was a little caught up.
I made the mistake of sending him photographs. Nothing raunchy, but photos nonetheless. He always said he’d send me pictures, but never did.
And then, he did send me a picture. He sent me several pictures. Straight from Google.
I did a reverse search. And bam. There they were.
Did that stop me form continuing this odd relationship? Nope.
I was dumb. But is that the end of the story? Nope!
We were suddenly in a relationship. Then the emails stopped coming.
His “brother” said he had been attacked while on duty and was suffering from a traumatic brain injury.
Apparently he work up and didn’t have a clue who I was!
Months went by and I didn’t hear from “Jake”. Meanwhile, “Dustin” and my ex best friend had broken up and he was asking me for advice on how to get back together with her. Basically, she wanted to hear all the great things about herself and all the right words, from me. Not the pretend boyfriend.
She was “Dustin”.
So, what happened next? Cause you know it can’t just end right there.
“Dustin” ended up hitting on me. He said he needed comfort while his “brother” was recovering and the best friend had left him.
Was I smart about things? Nope.
Now, don’t get me wrong, at this point, I KNEW something was up. Something was wrong here. So, I may have played it a bit..
I basically encouraged him to pursue a relationship with me.
I was seeing cracks in the veneer of my friend at the time, and I knew this wasn’t going anywhere. I had already googled both “Jake” and “Dustin”, their phone numbers, the articles that they should have been in.. Nothing.
I pushed to meet him. I pushed for pictures. Nothing.
It was never the right time. There was never a good place to meet.
Then it all came to a stand still.
I started talking to Bobby. I ended all other contact with boys/men around me except for Bobby.
Then the best friend comes back into play.
She didn’t want me with Bobby. So, instead of saying anything to me about it, she started pursuing Bobby.
She told him that he deserved better, someone thinner, someone who was more than willing to make all his dreams come true. (Because clearly I wasn’t).
Then it got ugly.
She started sending him nudes and topless shots.
Now, she has a lovely body. She’s a perfect size 2, but she doesn’t have hips or boobs to speak of. She’s just thin.
I found the topless/naked photos. Bobby showed them to me.
When I confronted her, she told me everything. How she made up BOTH brothers. How she sent Bobby pictures to make him stop talking to me.
How she had feelings for me. How she didn’t want to hurt me. (Yeah, right.)
Now, this wasn’t just a plan that was a couple of fake facebook profiles that flirted with each other for a month or two.
This was YEARS of my life she screwed with.
YEARS. OF. MY. LIFE.
I ultimately decided I couldn’t forgive her and our friendship ended.
There were A LOT of hurtful words said. From her, and from me.
Her because she couldn’t understand why I wasn’t continuing the friendship with her, and me because she sent naked pictures to my boyfriend rather than just talking to me.
I lost a best friend. So did she.
But she did lose more. She also lost her facade. And any hope of us being friends ever again.
I lost my respect for her. My faith in her as a person.