I thought for sure I wouldn’t be able to go on. The pain was absolutely unbearable. 2 months earlier I had met the man of my dreams in an online chat on a popular dating site. I figured if I avoided dating sites with bad reviews I would be safe from any of the negative stuff.

I remember seeing his bright, perfect smile first pop up in the corner of my screen on the dating website. I thought to myself “Wow, he’s handsome.”

Ryan was his name.

Ryan introduced himself and let me know that I was one of the most beautiful women he has ever seen. I was flattered as quite frankly he appeared to be far out of my league personally. I clicked through his profile a bit to see if he had any other pictures. I saw two daughters, a golden retriever, and the most attractive part – a U.S. Army uniform. I like a man in uniform, so I fell for him right away.

As the days went on, I would speak with Ryan through the online portal and over text messages on our phones throughout my days at work and my nights at home- he would send me sweet little messages with just enough flirty-ness to keep things respectable but intriguing.

Then, one day, I couldn’t get a hold of him. I panicked, telling myself he must have slept in late or broke his phone. I waited anxiously until about 5PM, when I finally received a text message from an unknown number. The person texting was Ryan’s sister, Jasmine, and she was alerting me that he had accidentally been driving without his ID when he was pulled over. In a case of unknown identity, the police arrested him for driving without a license. Of course, Jasmine couldn’t afford the bail, which was only $2000.

This is the part where you’re thinking I’m dumb and sent them the money, and then never heard from them again.

If you thought that, you’re right. I was absolutely devistated and embarassed, and have not looked into online dating any further at this time.

If you are looking to start online dating, all I can say is that you stay away from outright scams and try to keep a high level of alertness personally.

Looking back, it’s so hard to believe I fell for such a generic scam, but I really truly didn’t know any better.

Unfortunately, I hadn’t read anyone else’s detailed account of an online dating scam, or I probably would have known what to look for.

The only solace I have is the fact that I can now spread this message of hope and recovery for any other victims of online dating scams, so I will keep telling my story!

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