The Biggest Scammer of All

Oh how I have missed writing entries for this blog. It provides such entertainment to me, and well, it’s been nice to receive emails/messages from people who actually read my entries. When I first started writing this blog, I did so in response to the amount of scammers that always targeted my dating profiles. Instead of crying, I decided to share in a humorous way. 

You may be wondering why I haven’t written anything for a while. I’ll go ahead and tell you that I have not found anyone that would cause me to quit my online dating profile ways. Unfortunately (well, unfortunately for my writing) I moved to a country where it is illegal to write about anyone else without their permission. So…no more ScamTales entries regarding particular scammers for now. I will share that I have met some while living here; I have even seen a few of the same profile pictures which always delight me. 

A huge thank you to those who have shared your stories with me, from being scammed to finding these idiots on various dating platforms. Please, continue to share the blog and share your stories with me. When I am not in this country anymore, I do plan on sharing more. It is like NBC says: The more you know. 

Now, you may be asking about why I’m writing this now. The answer is basically, it’s been on my heart…. 

And let’s talk about our heart, the biggest scammer of all. 

That’s right. I said it. The heart is the biggest scammer of all.

Now, hold your horses, I’m not saying this in a depressing, negative way to reveal how cold I am sometimes perceived. 

No. I am saying this in a reflective manner. A retrospective, if you will.

Think about it, have you found yourself falling for someone? Your mind says “DANGER DANGER!” as sirens go off and warning lights flash. But then your heart says “Oh, love. Isn’t he (or she) wonderful?” Who do you most often listen to in this case? The heart.

Or, what about when you have been dating someone for a while and you push aside all of their negative qualities. Your mind says “Watch it…be careful.” Your heart says “Oh, he’ll change.” 

What about being friendzoned by someone you just can’t seem to forget?

Now, I’m not saying this is the case ALL the time, but it does happen. Frequently. And all of those scenarios suck.

So, for the sake of full transparency, I will share a moment of vulnerability with you. Put this on the calendar, because I rarely share my thoughts or feelings with others; you have to be in my very tight-knit inner circle for me to even share a thread of authenticity with you. 

In a few of my blog entries, I have mentioned a particular fella. Our story of friendship starts out similar to most in an online dating world. He saw my profile online and sent a message. I admit, I thought he was such a player and weirdo when he first messaged me. It was August 12th. I had just come back to Shenzhen from getting a massage at the Lush in Hong Kong. I happened to share this in my (and at the time, it was the only one I planned on ever writing back) message back; I kid you not, this guy says, “Lush, sure is plush.” I thought, okay…weirdo. I looked at his photos. Not my usual type of guy, but he had muscles and an odd sense of humor. So, I didn’t delete him. Once he mentioned a threesome, I thought “nope, not happening”. This was about a month into some casual Wechat conversations. He would also say, “Oh, don’t be a jerk or asshole.” I’d get so fired up. He’d respond with, “I didn’t say you were one, I’m saying don’t be like one.” He was unbelievable…a word that I still use today to describe him. 

We were actually supposed to meet on one of his business trips to Hong Kong. I took a day off of work and booked a room for two nights. One night to meet him for a date and the other because I was hanging out with friends. He messaged that day to let me know he was busy and probably wouldn’t be able to make it. I should have known then.

When I met my first couple of scammers that were based in Malaysia and Singapore, I asked him some questions about the area. He decided to play the role of my financial advisor and talk to those scammers. It was pretty funny. And my thinking started to shift. Instead of thinking he was this playboy guy who didn’t care about anyone or anything, I started to see him as someone who maybe had more substance to him. But, again, I never thought past that. 

In the following January, I received a Wechat call. I panicked. I hate talking on the phone. I can’t hear that great and I get distracted easily. I just hate it. But nope, this guy didn’t care. I remember his first phone call. It lasted for about 50 minutes and he was quiet for a lot of it. When he did talk, he had an Aussie accent, which made my knees weak. I remember thinking he was a nut. I messaged him afterwards and asked if he was always quiet when he called people. He replied yes and laughed. I think I made a comment about giving him 50 minutes when he wasn’t even talking and he retorted that I gave more time to the scammers. He had a point so I let it go. 

And that about sums it up. From that point, I felt my heart opening up a smidge. In the beginning, he called a few times a week. We’d talk about random things. He would sing sometimes, which I loved. I thought I would die from giddy laughter when he first started belting out N’SYNC one day. He also sang Backstreet Boys. It was then that I knew I was hooked on this guy. And don’t get me started when he started calling me by a nickname (one that was not dear, honey, or baby, which I detest). 

When he sent me this on my birthday, I was utterly confused. I have kept this saved on my phone, still not knowing what he meant; if I asked him today, the sad thing is he probably wouldn’t even remember sending it in the first place. My brain told me not to read into anything, but that stupid heart. 

For spring break, I found myself in Singapore, the country he was currently residing in. I was excited because I hoped we could meet. Conveniently for him, he was too busy. He could call daily, but couldn’t find the time to meet. I will admit, my heart cracked slightly over this. My brain pointed out his inability to find time to meet someone but that he could find the time to call daily. But that damn heart refused to listen.

That summer when I flew home and he moved to Dubai, the calls continued. I never called him, but he called almost daily at that point. I looked forward to them. And this continued. 

About a year after he began calling, I mentioned feelings…my feelings. I was told, just friends he had never been interested in more than that. And I wanted to accept this because my mind told me to listen to him; my heart said if he didn’t care, he wouldn’t call every day, and so it was totally okay to hope. 

That fall, I was attending a job fair in Dubai. This time, he actually made the time to meet for dinner. Of course, I had to pick the place. At first, my heart said it was because he wanted me to be happy with the place, but in reality, my mind was probably right in saying that it was because of the effort. During the day we were scheduled to meet, my nerves were aflutter with anticipation and nervousness. I was finally going to meet this guy I’d been talking to for over a year! I picked a nice dress. I made sure to have plenty of time to do my hair and makeup. Looking back, I realize how stupid it all was. I picked a great restaurant. It was a fancy Thai place with views of the Dubai Fountains. When I got there, I was shown to the table. He came a few minutes later, giving me a hard time about being seated at the table before he arrived (late, mind you). I remember he was wearing black slacks and a navy button down shirt. I remember thinking he was a good looking man, much more so in person. We talked some. He paid for all of it, and then he gave me a ride back to my hotel. It was a pleasant evening. I wanted to hang out more while I was in town for the weekend, but didn’t know how to approach the subject. I was busy the next day, but the night I was scheduled to leave, he did offer to take me to the airport. I accepted and let him drop me off hours before my flight. He gave me a hug and off he went. Now, in hindsight, my mind says it was all very platonic, but that damn heart just kept hoping for more. 

Our calls continued.Over the course of the last few years, we’ve been on the phone for countless hours, fallen asleep and heard each other snore, watched movies together. When I did force myself to go on dates, he asked about them and gave the men nicknames. Even to this day, he’ll bring them up randomly to ask how they are. Again, my heart hoped he brought them up because maybe he was slightly jealous, all the while, trying to convince the practical mind this was more than just an average friendship; meanwhile, the mind knew this was not the case.

Over the few years we’ve known each other, he has pushed me to be a better person. A stronger person as well. He’s made me realize things about myself and holds me (or tries to hold me) accountable when others don’t. He’s put up with my dramatic moments and checked in on me sometimes when I’ve been sick.

When I moved to my current location, an hour away in the same region—AND LET ME BE CLEAR, I DID NOT MOVE HERE FOR HIM. I WOULD NEVER MOVE FOR A POSSIBILITY WITHOUT A GUARANTEE OF SOME KIND–he did give me a few tips which came in handy.

This past year has been a rough one for our friendship, though. He’s asked me to find connections to share so he can expand his social circle. I’ve tried to do as he asked because I do appreciate him as a friend and he was helpful, but struggle with this because I know I will eventually be replaced by one of these connections, if I haven’t already. I think of the times he’s made me laugh and think the world should experience him, too (PSA: If anyone is currently living in Singapore or the UAE, please reach out if you’d like a connection with him; he really is a good guy, I promise). But, because of the heart, I can’t let my mind take over and be practical. The heart makes me question myself, which I hate. I’ve wondered, “Why not me? Why am I not good enough? Why even send me a message in the first place if he was never attracted to me?” I’ve been banned more than usual this year, making ridiculous apology videos because I know they bring laughter to his life and humiliation to mine, all because I don’t want to know a world in which I don’t get to hear his voice. And when I am in Dubai, he may be available for a coffee, and at times, we have met for dinner, which again, he always pays for. But even then, it’s a last minute plan, while at times he doesn’t always have time when I’m there. He once called me while also calling someone else at the same time (literally, I was on the phone when he called the other person…hearing her say “Hey baby” nearly killed me), which hurt immensely, but the heart said deal with it. He had a girlfriend and didn’t tell me, but felt it was fine to lecture me about certain aspects of my life; my heart said to look past it. Everytime he wanted an apology, I gave one; but when I was hurt, apologies never came. And my heart kept telling me this was all okay, because I am not the easiest person either, making mistakes often.

My mind adds this all together and tells me what you are probably thinking right now. But that heart never wants to harden and listen to reason.

And so, here I am today. The calls are slowly dwindling, from hours a day, to a few times a week. We haven’t watched a movie together in a couple of months. I don’t even remember the last time I heard him snore (which I get is a ridiculous thing to admit missing…trust me, I am rolling my eyes at myself as I type this). And I know it’s partly due to me and the inner war between my mind and heart. I’ve always known the day would come when what platonic interest I did hold would slowly begin to wither away.  Those connections he wants stand out more. Women he is attracted to overshadow the plain and unexciting friend I am. And I standby, because the heart is happy for him when he gets what he wants.

And so after that long tangent of a story and you wondering where this is leading to (not to mention the fact I have also been wondering where this is going because I just allowed myself to write without a plan for once), I get to my point. If it weren’t for the heart, I would be able to accept that some things in life, such as this, are just not meant to be. I could look past our history and just move on much more easily than I am able to. 

But the heart prevents it. 

So, as I mentioned in the beginning of this wordy exercise of freeform writing, the heart is the biggest scammer of all. 

Yes, we’re lucky when certain individuals enter our lives, especially when they leave marks, whether lessons or blessings, which I consider him to be a blessing. And I’ve kept him in my life because if he won’t love me, at least I still get to be a part of his life, even if it is in a small way…tinier by the day it seems. Because a little bit is better than nothing. Or so my heart says. And the mind has simply agreed to let it be for now and cave to the heart’s scam. 

Thank you, dear readers, for following me on this string of thought today. Hopefully our time apart won’t be as long next time.

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