I Was a Catfish & I Hate Looking Back on it

Back when I was a young, immature, ignorant preteen, I decided to take it upon myself to make a Facebook profile. My mom would not let me have one of my own until I was in high school and I desperately wanted one. Fortunately for me, I had my own computer, my parents had one in our basement, and I had a phone that could go online. All of my friends had one, so I believed I needed one. Little did I know how much I would hate looking back on it twenty years later.

I believe I was around 12 or 13 when I first created the profile. I was really feeling down on myself and during that junior high age, you get really self-conscious. I decided I was going to make a fake profile so that I could be online without my parents knowing, but it’s not like they had a Facebook anyway.

I am not giving away the name of the profile, as I definitely added people from my hometown and began conversing with them. They guys, and even some girls, would compliment the person in the picture, sayinghow pretty she was. I felt like it was coming straight at me though. It made me feel so good, I didn’t know how or if I was going to stop.

My persona also found herself in a few relationships. The first one was with a guy who was a total babe. The only bad part was that we could never meet in person or he would know I was fake. I kept an archive of pictures of this girl because her face was all over the internet. If a guy ever asked for a picture of me that wasn’t on Facebook, I was ready. I can’t remember how long we “dated” for, but I moved on from guy to guy to guy.

I think I kept this charade up for at least a year. I was dodging questions of if I was real or not. I even attempted to try and meet someone to convince them I was the girl. I’m sure the poor dude could tell that I was definitely not the girl and he spent the afternoon with some stranger. I don’t think anybody really knew, or if they did, they did not say anything to me. I was also not in the time of video chatting, so I never had to worry about people asking to Skype with me.

When the last part of eighth grade rolled around, I was starting to date someone that I really really liked at the time, as me not my persona. I figured that if I was to continue with the fake profile, it would put a damper on my relationship with the real guy I was with.

I made an announcement on her profile saying that she was really sick and deleting her Facebook account to focus on her health. For those that had the number, I just never answered them back. I also got in a lot of trouble with my parents, as they somehow found out about it and were pretty upset with me. Looking back on it, I am pretty upset with myself. I think about the girl whose pictures I stole, and I wonder if she was affected by my wrongdoings in anyway. Now, I am much more happy with myself and I don’t need a fake account to make me feel good.

Here are some ways to spot a catfish:

  1. If you suspect someone may be a catfish, reverse Google search an image or two of theirs. If they only have one picture, but say they’ve been active for a few years, they’re likely a catfish.

  2. If they ask you for money.

  3. If they don’t have any posts on their profile for their birthday or have hardly any pictures with friends or family.

  4. Try to video chat or Skype with them. If not, at least get them over the phone. If they avoid it, they’re a catfish.

  5. Watch out for the 3 Cs; cancer, car crash, or coma. If someone you suspect tells you any one of these, they are most likely a catfish.

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