Dear diary …

22nd November, 2017

Today is a better day.  Although I have been having a few interesting conversations in the online dating arena.  Yes, I am back there.  I decided to get back on the horse so to speak.

I have found at least two fake profiles, reported them to the relevant site and shared the images on my Facebook page dedicated to fighting online fakery and scammers.

I have turned into a bad-ass online.  I am taking no prisoners.  One or two are being scorched by this attitude, but to be honest, any man who can’t cope with a strong, plain speaking woman is not the man for me.

Although a part of me recognises that I need to let this go, the sharing of the perils and pitfalls of  online fakery is so important that I intend to continue with it.  It has also been extremely cathartic and a way to channel my emotions, which were initially in turmoil, and then somewhat subdued.  Can’t keep a girl down for long though, eh?

I have though, decided not to interact anymore with the real Thomas (we had exchanged messages about the misappropriation of his identity, and I shared with him my endeavours to try to raise awareness).

I recognise that a part of me wants to maintain some level of “connection”.  There are a few of his images that I am particularly bonded to; the ones that were used in the process of attempting to lure me in and scam me (what can I say, I am a visual-orientated kinda gal).  It was prudent, therefore, for me to leave the poor guy alone!  He has enough on his plate trying to stem the tide (in more ways than one, as he is indeed a real life captain of a very big ship).

Fortunately, in my own situation, it did not get as far as it might – and I was not scammed.  Others have not been so lucky, and it is staggering how intelligent, sensible women would part with thousands for the sake of love; although not surprising as to love and be loved in return, and have those close intimate connections, is after all a basic human need.  For myself, the moment any request for money was to be made, I would have been out of there in a nano second.

One of the reasons that I want to continue with this campaign, is that I am not easily fooled, my radar is usually fine tuned to spot fake profiles.  This time, the interaction was so sophisticated that I was unable to establish that it was fake, despite my attempts to verify who I was chatting to.  That said, I now know that I can put an image into a reverse image app and check whether the images belong to the person who is attempting to court me online.

You can get this app through Google Play Store, just look for: Google Reverse Image.

I am continuing to work on my website to share my story, and offer alternative options to the current online dating mire, together with sound tips and advice on how to stay safe, based on my personal experience.  I have not yet decided how much of my “WhatsApp Romance” I will share – I will certainly share the messages that led to me being hooked in.  I may share the rest, but this is most likely going to be on a restricted basis, where the reader has to sign up to get the full story.  After all, I do not need the additional humiliation of those I know in the real world reading about just how badly I was suckered.

It felt so real i bought a birthday gift!

Oh, look what has just arrived!  Part of the gift that I so lovingly purchased for Thomas’ birthday.  Which is supposed to be tomorrow, 23rd November.  Crazy?  Yeah!  In my defence I was expecting to meet up with him in early December to celebrate both his and mine, which were supposed to be very close together.  The real Thomas’ birthday is in August.  Perhaps  I will send it to him with a lovely picture of his husband.  Or maybe that will be too weird!

Engraved picture frame – a constant reminder of how easily I was duped.
My crush

The one thing I am not yet ready to do, is remove his image from my mobile screensaver.  I am quite attached to this image.  How I feel when I look at it is a good barometer of how I’m doing.  When I lament “my Thomas”, I know that I am still smarting a little.

I am bonded to this face. I guess I am a little in love with a gay man! Shame he is happily married. Actually, not  at all a shame for him 🙂
I know the real thomas is not my crush

When I look at it and see the lovely Thomas Lindegaard, I smile  …and think how sorry I am that he has his very own Tsunami of emotional women to deal with.  I have seen a few comments from some, berating him for breaking their hearts when he is happily married.  At the time they posted, they clearly believed that this man duped them.

Even I, initially, pondered why a gay man would start something with me – and hoped desperately that he was bi!  I can laugh about it now.  Very quickly though, it dawned on me that I had been well and truly duped.

Let me tell you, dear diary, it will not happen again.

Later, diary.  XoXo

Disclaimer:  all images of Thomas Lindegaard are used with his kind permission, and are not to be used in any way other than with his explicit consent.  He can be contacted via Facebook messenger at @CaptainThomasLindegaard if you would like to report to him any misappropriation of his images and identity.

@ThomasLindegaardFakeProfiles

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