Until a few years ago, we were relatively naive to the concept of ‘catfishing’. But thanks to the introduction of Nev Schulman’s film Catfish and spin-off TV show, we’ve learned the terrifying lengths some people will go to deceive others.
For anyone who’s not familiar with catfishing, it’s when a person creates false or partially false online profiles to lead others to believe they are someone they’re not, and it’s pretty scary.
If the TV programme is anything to go by, most catfishes tend to be people with low confidence, who believe they must try and pretend to be someone else to get others to like them, but sometimes it can be a lot darker than just using a pretty girl’s pictures to gain some male attention.
Now, being deceived by a stranger is one thing, but imagine if someone close to you was pretending to be someone they’re not – that’s even more scary.
One girl has told the heartbreaking story of how she was catfished by her friends when she believed she was texting a boy who wanted to meet up with her, and it’s understandably devastating.
Maria was appearing on Channel 4’s First Dates when she made the revelation to her date Albert while talking about how she used to have ‘a load of shitty friends.’
‘So I went out for my brother’s birthday,’ she recalled, ‘and the next day I got a text from Will. I was like “sorry, who’s this?” and he was like “you met me at your brother’s 21st last night”.’
She continued: ‘So I was texting this Will, and I said to my pals at the time “oh, Will’s coming tonight, I’m really excited to meet him, and they were like “yeah, we know”.’
To Maria’s horror, she discovered she had actually been texting her friends the entire time. No wonder she called them shitty.
Imagine being catfished by your ‘mates’ literally the lowest of the low 😡 #FirstDates
— Natasha Clara Jay (@NatashaClaraJay) May 21, 2019
‘I just didn’t understand really understand how they could manipulate and make someone feel so small,’ she told her date as she started to well up with tears.
Speaking to the camera, she recalled: ‘I went home and I cried all the way home. How can you toy with my emotions like that?’
Luckily, Maria’s date Albert called out her shitty friends, telling her: ‘Don’t tell me they’re your pals now, fuck them right off!’
We couldn’t agree more, Albert.
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Emma Rosemurgey is an NCTJ trained Journalist at UNILAD. She graduated from the University of Central Lancashire in Preston and started her career in regional newspapers before joining the LADbible Group team in 2017.