Back in the ’90s when Bulletin Board Systems were as popular as Facebook, people made internet friends quickly. This internet user shared their experience making friends with a guy from North Carolina. He was friends with all of her girl friends from the dorm, which is obviously a red flag. A couple of months after the two were exchanging texts, the guy mentioned he was coming to her state for a wedding. How perfect, they’d finally get to meet in person! In an ideal world, this would seem like a good omen. But in this case, it was the complete opposite.
“Day arrives, dude shows up. I should mention that I and all my college friends were 18 or 19, this guy was 24. Or so he said. Guy looked like, and I’m not exaggerating, a cancer patient. Pale, gaunt features, long greasy pale blond hair except where he was bald on top, and just generally looked like he was about to die or he was dressed as a ghoul for Halloween.” That doesn’t sound like a guy you’d want to keep in touch with online.
She said, “he insisted on hugging all of us. When we all started hanging out, things just got worse. He was asking really invasive questions of all of us, making weird comments to whatever was said, just all around creepy and distressing. I was sitting on the floor with another friend and actively rocking back and forth from discomfort.” To get out of the discomfort, she said she hurt her back and preferred to sleep on the floor. He insisted on sharing the bed, but she said no, and he eventually left (via Ranker).
When we’re 15 years old, we don’t know any better. What we see is usually what we believe. This is also true for people on the internet. This user shared their experience with their internet friends Venus and Lord Gumby. They said, “I knew she was a woman but had no idea what she looked like. I also knew she was dating a guy in real life with the handle Lord Gumby, who was also a friend online. Being a socially misadjusted 15-year-old, I had a crush on her anyway even though I knew they were both like 18.”
It’s completely normal to have a crush on someone who’s a few years older than you, especially as a teenager. There’s something mysterious about an 18-year-old woman. They said, “this was like 1992, so privacy wasn’t as big concern and they knew my address. This was also when people would randomly come by your house to see if you were home. That’s unfathomable today.” If this happened today, people would lock their doors and call the cops. Even though it’s the sad reality of the world we live in, there’s nothing we can do about it.
He said, “so one Saturday morning I’m at home on my computer totally disheveled, un-showered, and just gross in ratty sweatpants and no shirt. I hear a knock on the front door and go open it. There’s a woman who was incredibly beautiful standing there and she just goes “Hi! I’m Venus!” I stood there for a minute it seemed like jaw dropped trying to say something when Lord Gumby walked up and was like “Hey doofus, ever met a woman before?”
Needless to say, I wanted to sink into a hole in the ground and die.” That’s one way of finally meeting your internet friends. At least they were friendly and made jokes to lighten the vibe. It could’ve been a lot worse (via Ranker).
Online dating can be tough. It takes a lot of effort to meet in person. Your schedules have to line up and you both have to be willing to be in a slightly uncomfortable position when you first meet. It could end well and lead to a second date or it could end horrendously and you both end up hoping you’ll never see each other again.
This internet user shares their experience abandoning their FetLife dating platform and shifting everything to Tinder. She said, “I match with a guy that looks white collar, tailored, professional. Just my type. We match, and talk for a week or so until we decide to get drinks. I get to the bar (took an Uber there) and look around… don’t see him. Until this scraggly-looking guy comes up to me and says, “Oh, hey grenadinegarden! I thought you’d never make it!”
Now, we all understand having bad days. When we’re tired and stressed, the last thing we want to do is get dressed up and put effort into how we look. Even though this internet user also understands this, she said, “his hair was significantly longer (think short, well-manicured hair versus mid-back length uncombed waves), he was covered in a patchy beard, and dressed really badly. I honestly didn’t recognize him, and he waved it off with, “Sorry. Those pictures are kind of old”. Kind of old? He probably means decades old. If it even is him. Regardless, she ignores the red flags and gets a drink with him. That’s when it gets weird.
He then “leans in toward me, puts his hand on my thigh, and says, “You know, after you didn’t message me back on FetLife, I’m surprised we matched on Tinder. You really are quite beautiful.” She’s utterly confused. They matched on Tinder, not FetLife. Then, “he chuckles, literally chuckles like a villain in a movie, pats my thigh, and says “I’m going to the bathroom. You should look at your profile and figure it out. I found you because your body is quite distinct.”
That was the last straw. Instead of waiting around, she used the “Angel Shot” protocol by explaining the situation to the bartender and escaping through the backdoor. She deleted all of her social media and only had to deal with a few angry messages from him. Let’s just say she got away lucky (via Ranker).
It’s one thing to lie about your age by a few years, but another thing to lie about your age by 24 years. This internet user said, “(he) said he was 14. Turns out he was 38. My parents gave him a stern “talking-to.” That’s downright horrendous. This guy pretended to be 14 but was 38 in real life.
This internet user probably wanted to meet him in person, but after finding out his real age, obviously didn’t. At least her parents were supportive and talked to him, aka told him to disappear off the face of the planet or else they’d call the cops (via Ranker).
Sixteen years ago, this Reddit user shared a horror story about meeting their internet friend in person. They’d been speaking on the phone for a while, so it only made sense to finally meet up in real life. They met up at their friend’s laundromat since it was public, which was a smart move.
When the guy finally arrived, she was shocked. “He pulled into the parking lot in an old beat-up car with all his belongings in the back seat and he looked about 50 years old. He was pretty scary and I was pretty freaked out. I guess he thought he was moving in which was no way happening as I had a roommate. What he told me on the phone was he was a few years older than me and I never saw a picture.” She immediately told him she was not interested and made him leave. He deserves that, though, since he flat-out lied to her and made too many assumptions (via Reddit).
You never really know who you’re talking to online. There’s no way to tell who’s hidden behind that screen, which is why it’s so nerve-wracking to meet up with someone in real life after speaking to them often online. This internet user met up with a girl they’d been speaking to online on Quizilla. Her mother made her bring his older brother along, which is understandable. As a 15-year-old, you never know what could happen.
They met up at a museum and she looked the same in real life as she did in photos. The day was going well until her brother saw the girl up close. He knew something was wrong. “This was the first time my brother had seen her up close, and not from a few meters away, and he gets a really confused look on his face. He doesn’t react further but stays pretty much quiet the rest of the drive. I think nothing of it, and just assume that he’s letting us talk and doesn’t want to interrupt.”
They arrive at the restaurant, and the girl chooses to sit next to her brother, not her. She asked why she did this, to which the girl responded, “this is because she wants to be able to look at me while she’s talking, but my brother is looking more and more uncomfortable with the situation. Suddenly, the conversation starts to drift from me and her, to just about my brother. I start getting really jealous, and eventually blow up saying “are you here to talk to me, or to just my brother???” She starts backpedaling, and apologizes for ignoring me.” At least this person is straight up. She knows something is wrong and wants to get to the bottom of it.
Then, it happens. “At that moment, my brother finally realizes that he recognizes her as a girl that had been stalking him on MySpace for the past few months, but without all of the terrible filters/makeup/angles that he was used to seeing her with. He immediately gets super freaked out and starts saying that we need to leave and that she needs to find her own way home. We end up leaving as soon as her parents come to pick her up, and I never hear from her again.” That’s one way to end an internet friendship. Their Junior High online best friend also happened to be his brother’s MySpace stalker (via Reddit).
You never really know someone’s personality until you meet them in person. This Reddit user shared their experience of meeting their internet word game friend in real life. “We were both 16-year-old girls and we just hit it off and became very close. Finally, in 2004 she was passing through where I lived so I invited her to stay for a few days.” It sounds like the perfect alignment. But she was completely thrown through a loop. “She shows up totally coked up.
Then she invites some guy over and they were snorting cocaine off her car key in my living room. I didn’t know she used coke and I was so uncomfortable the entire time. It was like having a stranger there, yet we knew everything about each other. We remained in touch and I still really like her but it was just such an awkward visit. We haven’t seen each other since, though.” It doesn’t sound like a healthy friendship to keep around. At least she saw her true colors and never made an effort to see her again (via Reddit).
Even though dating apps are incredibly convenient, they’re far from 100% foolproof. This Reddit user met a girl on a Yahoo dating site and finally met up with her in person. They said, “we talked for a few days and exchanged pictures. She even sent some sexy ones. There was sexual tension and I was sure we’d hook up.” When he went to pick her up at her house, he felt let down. She looked totally different in person than she did in her photos.
“She catfished the f**k out of me. Now I’m not judgmental and am not the greatest looking guy at the bar but I was honest in my pictures and I’m not entirely sure what she sent was even or ever her.” This guy got a slap in the face. It’s a shame, but it happens. He showed her around town anyway and dropped her off at the end of the day, rejecting her invitation into her home. To make matters worse, “a couple of days later I get a nice-girl rant about how I’m an a**hole for not hooking up with her because she’s overweight and s**t like that. She made it much easier to ghost after that.” Once people take the mean road, it certainly makes it a lot easier to never speak with them again. This guy dodged a bullet (via Reddit).
After receiving commission for their art at comic, anime, and art cons across the world, this person met someone who paid them $700 for Soft Core art, even though it was slightly out of their comfort zone. This continued until they created an online name that became popular to many others seeking their form of art, which is known as furry and identifies with anthropomorphic cartoon animals. While it sounds like a success story at first, it quickly went south.
Eventually, they made an online friend. “She was another furry artist, and we just sort of hit it off in the online community. She seemed like an edgy self-hating furry so our jabbing humor at the expense of furries made us bond, and she was cool, all was well. Eventually, I admitted to her that I didn’t actually [care] about furries, and she took it in stride. Said she understood why I used the community to make money because she wished she wasn’t a furry either, but you can’t help what you like.” This woman convinced them to go to a furry convention and even share a room with them, which is typical and is something many artists do to share costs.
Still, “she seemed like a good person and it’s not uncommon to just meet someone IRL when you’re rooming with them.” Time passed, and it was time for the furry convention. She said, “I was… surprised to find her at the table. In full fursuit. That was the weird part. I was immediately on edge. It got worse when I sat down and introduced myself and she did that… thing. That thing that furries do where they are in fur suits and don’t talk.” That sounds strange and unpleasant. Trying to have a conversation with someone who’s only making noises in return is not a great first impression, convention or not.
They said, “she nodded when I made sure she was who I thought she was, but she just did the overly exaggerated cute poses and even had a squeaky toy in her fursuit to make noise. But she didn’t say a word. She hugged me, and interacted with customers who all knew her and adored her (I guess she was well known in the community) and if she wanted to communicate, would write. Or text in this big a** oaw things. She said she hates wearing suits but because she doesn’t have to talk in them, she doesn’t have to interact much with customers.”
While that seems incredibly strange and out of anyone’s comfort zone, it’s still entertaining. The good news is that she seemed likable by everyone at the convention, so that’s a green flag. But that’s when things went south. She said, “at around 7 p.m. we packed up to leave to go to the hotel room. She stayed in suit the whole way up. In the room, I flopped down on my bed exhausted. I asked her if she was going to come out of that thing, understandably a little freaked out.” Anyone would be freaked out. It’s like something from a horror movie, but it’s real life.
It doesn’t stop there. “Then she did the thing that made me want to run out of the room, which I didn’t do against my better judgment. I had flopped on the bed with the upper half of my body, my feet still on the floor, and my shirt had ridden up my torso. She stepped in between my legs and TICKLED me on my exposed belly. I flipped out, as one does when sneak attacked by tickles and wriggled out of her reach.”
That’s certainly one way to cross someone’s boundaries. Anyone would be creeped out, especially by someone hovering over them in a furry suit, someone you’ve never even seen in real life. Then, “she made that “laughing” pose that furries do where they hold their paws to their mouths bashfully but still silent. I was so creeped out. My go-to way of handling stress like that is laughing it off nervously.
She got the hint and motioned she was going to get a shower. As soon as she was in the shower I decided I didn’t want to be there when she got out, for now. But instead of lugging all my stuff, I decided I would come back for it, preferably with friends. But I needed a key, so I went to her wallet she had taken out of one of her suit pockets, and tried to find the keys I had seen her slip into her wallet.”
That’s when the truth came out. People can lie, but wallets do not. Honestly, we’d creep on their ID too. “I just had to see her ID. I just had to, I was too curious not to. And when I opened it I looked at the ID slot and I flipped. My. S**t. I didn’t know the super personal details of my friend beside her name and age and general descriptive factors. Mid-20s, white girl, etc. That was not who was on this ID. It was a man, with long greasy hair, glasses, and stubble, in his mid 40 or early 50s I’d wager.”
There’s nothing to do at that moment except run as fast as you can. “I was so shocked that I literally threw the wallet across the room after grabbing a key and ran out of that hotel room.” They ended up deleting their fur affinity account, blocking the person on the chat app, and never reached out to them again, and understandably so (via Ranker).
This internet user shares their experience with their two internet friends ‘Adam and Betty’ from Livejournal. Betty was the same in real life as she was online, but Adam was a different story. They said, “the first night we met up, we were going to karaoke. Adam and Betty would drive to my house, meet my mom, and pick Twin and I up to go to the karaoke bar. Betty doesn’t drink, so she’d drive the rental car.” It sounds like a great, safe plan. There’s no way the evening could take a turn for the worse, right? Wrong. That’s not what happened here.
At first, it seems great they were able to meet up in real life, but it didn’t end well. “They knocked. I opened the door. Missy, my elderly terrier mutt who I love so much, immediately made friends with Betty. Betty walked all the way in, backing Missy up, and then Adam walked in. It was like a switch had flipped. Miss Dog lost. Her. Sh*t. She did the “I am going to kill you” bark – hackles raised, tail tucked between legs, snarling, snapping, and it sounded like she was screaming!”
Never ignore a dog’s intuition. They know exactly what’s going on and can read a person to a T. This dog happened to be spot on. The mom also knew, and told this person to be wary of Adam. “I said Missy was obviously freaked out about him, too, so I wouldn’t trust him as far as I could throw him. So, we went to the karaoke bar. Betty ordered pop. This was a non-issue as she was a devout Mormon and didn’t drink. I ordered pop, and Adam immediately started trying to talk me into alcohol because he knows I drink.”
That’s a huge red flag. Even though peer pressuring your friends is common, it’s different when it’s someone you barely know. Their twin also ordered soda, which surprised him. They sang karaoke, went home, and the night was over. Apparently, Betty did a spontaneous bounce back home and admitted that Adam was creeping her out and kept hitting on her. They all blocked him (via Ranker).
We never really know if someone we’re talking to is completely single. We just have to trust that they are, in the hopes they’re not lying to us. It gets even harder to judge the situation when it’s an online friend since they can be anyone they want to be. This is exactly what happened to this Reddit user. They approached their online friend with the assumption they were single. Eventually, they made plans of meeting up with their online friend for an evening of sharing each other’s company.
Friends don’t immediately tell each other where they live. That takes time. It’s very personal, and for security purposes, it’s kept secret. This internet user shares a time when their internet friend of several years found out where they lived, without them telling them. That’s downright terrifying. They said, “a few days later, I come home from class and see a message on AIM. “Figured out where you live. I’m outside of the dorms at the cafe across the street. Meet me.”
This guy lived on the West Coast, and after finding out where I lived, he makes an unannounced trip across the country, tracked down the building where I lived, and was camped out at the cafe across the street… asking him to meet him. All of this without any head’s up.” Just because they’d been talking in person for a while, that doesn’t mean they wanted to meet in person. Not only that, but the guy had to make a serious trek across the country and then camped out in front of their apartment. When she didn’t immediately respond to him, he sent her a slew of hostile messages, each getting worse than the last. This guy wanted to meet her in person. With every message, she felt more scared.
“More messages came, and each time, they started to get more agitated, more impatient. He started asking for my class schedule so he could meet me outside class, asking where I’d be going, where I usually ate, and what time my dinner schedule was. He started getting weirdly specific about wanting to know about every facet of my life. I was getting full-on stalker vibes. So I lied and told him that I was visiting my sister and that I’d be back over the weekend, and I’d just miss him.
That’s when he said “That’s fine. I can wait.”And he did. Three days later, he’s still there, still messaging me that he’s “Still at the cafe. Waiting.” She ended up deleting her AIM account, creating a new name, and changing her entire online persona. Luckily, she never heard from him again (via Ranker).
It’s all about first impressions. If you’re not cool enough, you can really mess up a relationship. It’s okay to be yourself, but there are some things you don’t do on a first date, like picking your nose. After this girl’s internet friend picked her up at the airport, “he started picking his nose.”
There’s a lot that goes through your mind when you hop into a vehicle with someone you’ve never been alone with and you immediately catch them two knuckles deep in their rostrum. I looked quickly away so that he wouldn’t know I caught him and be embarrassed, if he was just trying to sneak one out before I noticed. If he did notice, he didn’t seem embarrassed, so I relaxed a little. I guessed maybe he was just so confident about himself and our friendship that he’d ascended past caring if I saw him take care of a quick booger.”
She let it pass. Fair enough. But it doesn’t stop there. When she looked back at hime, she caught him wiping his fingers across the dashboard. She said, “this guy spent the entirety of the few hours we were together scooping out boogers and wiping them off on parts of his car or the table or wherever it was that we’d stopped at. I realized I was being transported in a rolling booger shrine and that there was nothing I could touch without needing to wash my hands.” That’s repulsive. There’s nothing more disgusting than feeling like you’re surrounded by a wall of germs, with no way to escape (via Ranker).
Being the third wheel is never fun. It can be tough, especially if it’s with a couple you’ve never met before and are only meeting for the first time, just as this Reddit user experienced. When he finally met his internet friends in person, they ended up ignoring him the whole time. “At first, I put it down to anxiety as I was nervous too. But even after lunch, they were only talking to each other and I felt left out. I even took a sneaky video of them talking to each other and sent it to a friend, who agreed it was odd.”
It’s extremely odd to ignore someone that much. Why would they even bother meeting up with him? It seems pointless. He decided to say goodbye and left, which was probably a good thing. They were hurt by the entire experience. Their friend tried to help them out and asked why they were ignoring him. “They tried to turn it on me saying that I was the quiet one and that I was being rude to them, especially “leaving without saying goodbye”. I blocked them all on the game.” Some things are better left as they are (via Reddit).
It takes a long time to get to know someone. Years, even. This Reddit user finally met up with one of their long-time internet users for a second time. They said, “in the short period I was over there, I watched her physically attack her mom and bust a door. I mean, I was already aware of some home problems but I was not prepared to get caught up in the middle of it immediately.” If she could bust a door on a random day in her friend’s presence, there’s no saying what she could do later on down the road.
That doesn’t sound like a pleasant environment to hang around in, at all. That’s a huge red flag. It’s a good thing they saw this from the get-go, instead of six months down the line when they’re already invested in the friendship (via Reddit).
It’s one thing to talk to someone and then meet someone in real life and feel disappointed, but it’s another thing to drop out of school and move to a completely different place for someone you’ve never even spoken to in real life. There’s something seriously wrong here. This internet user helped their friend move six hours away to meet up with a girl they’d supposedly been talking to online.
They said, “we arrive and it turns out he doesn’t have an apartment lined up. And he found a job posting in his girlfriend’s town, but he hadn’t gotten the job. Or even applied yet. I make a bunch of phone calls and find him a room to rent that will let him move in that day with just first, last, and deposit, even without a job.” At least this person supported their friend and helped them find a place anyway. That shows true friendship. But it gets worse. “Then he breaks down and confesses that he hasn’t met this girl. The nights he spent “video chatting” with her were just him watching her vlog. They’ve never talked. Never texted. Never even emailed. Hell, he’s never even left so much as a comment or “like” on one of her videos. She genuinely didn’t (still doesn’t) know he existed.”
He’d made up their entire relationship in some fantasy world that didn’t exist. “His plan was to hang out at this game shop she talks a lot about until she showed up and somehow create a relationship from that. He thought that they’d meet and she’d fall in love with him and move back to our college town to marry him… all before the next semester began. She bought him a bus ticket back to school, he came back, got more cringe, and they lost touch with him (via Ranker).
This one’s an eye opener, especially to a twelve-year-old. There are creepy guys out there who seem to have zero awareness or boundaries when it comes to age. We’re not sure why, but it happens. These young kids have no way of defending themselves, and if they get themselves into serious trouble, it could end horribly. We just hope that these creeps get caught and leave the youngsters alone. This internet user had a close call with a truck driver who was much older than her. Even though it was creepy, it ended well. She never met this creepy truck driver in person.
She said, “I used to play a war game and I was friends with this other person (a guy). We became good friends and then out of the blue, he asked me to be his girlfriend. He was a truck driver in the US and I was only 12. It freaked me out a lot and I ghosted him. It was a terrifying experience and a real eye-opener for me.” Her intuition was right. Even though this one burned quickly, it was powerful enough to save her from a future encounter and maybe an even more terrifying experience (via Ranker).
Sometimes, there are success stories when it comes to online friends and online dating. Even though it seems rare, it does happen. This internet user met up with an online friend and when they both started families, they’d meet up and all take their kids to the zoo. Eventually, “she wanted us to go on a cruise together, with our husbands and kids. I commented on the effect of “We can’t afford that,” and she went nuts.”
Even though we understand sticking to your budget, we don’t understand someone flipping out about someone else’s budget. It’s rude and uncalled for. She continued and said, “we shouldn’t have had kids if we can’t afford them, we shouldn’t have more children, our life sucks, all because I didn’t want to go on a goddamn cruise with her and her bratty kid. Sounds like a nightmare.” At least they probably dodged a huge bullet. Who knows what would’ve happened on that cruise. It’s better that it ended the way it did, and that their in person friendship didn’t take a turn for the worse during the cruise ship (via Ranker).