When you’re in the middle of it, it’s hard to see how a love scammer could so easily find the cracks in our hearts…
Have you been taken in by a love scammer?
We dream of the man who will sweep us off our feet and treat us like a queen, who will value our intellect, respect our heart, body, and soul, and never let us go. Sometimes we crave that kind of love like we crave sunlight and oxygen.
And sometimes it leads us into the darkest kinds of trouble…
Take the quick QUIZ below to see if the man you’ve been talking to online is a love scammer, then scroll on down to see
- four women’s stories about being scammed
- the 7 warning signs of a love scam, and
- 5 (creepy) truths about romance and love scammers.
Here are some of the Ask Claire Casey community’s painful stories of love scams… Please read and be aware!
If you took the “Is He a Love Scammer” Quiz and found that the relationship you’re in has some red flags in it, you are not alone.
I shared this issue within the Ask Claire Casey community and was shocked at the flood of responses.
I have edited the emails below to protect the women involved, but these four stories — which are just a small sample of the responses I received — will give you a glimpse into the reality of love scammers and their tactics.
And after these four women tell their stories, I’ll share with you the 7 Warning Signs that you are being scammed, as well as 5 (scary) truths about love scammers…
And before I go any further, if you suspect a love scam, please REPORT IT HERE: http://www.ic3.gov/default.aspx
The woman who shared this first story got lucky when her love scammer accidentally sent up a few red flags; she figured it out before even more damage was done…
“Send me a care package with these items…”
After my my husband left me for a younger woman, I was lonely and desperate. I fell for a guy that called me “baby” – no one had ever done that. I received good morning texts, mid-day texts, and in the evening we would chat online. He was so good at keeping me off balance and giggling like a love-struck teenage girl. He told me he was in Afghanistan in the Army and due to retire in a few months, just after this tour of duty.
I was raised in a military family and he said a couple of things about military life that I knew were “off.” Then the request came: Send him a “care package” with specific items (he wanted me to take pics to show him to be sure I got the right items). It was mostly expensive electronics. The sad thing is I did get all those items. Then he was having a third party send me an email with the mailing address “so it would reach his special location.” I was getting even more doubts, then I received a horribly written email notice from a “diplomat” asking for the package to be express mailed to Ghana. Finally I knew beyond any doubt I had been played. I returned every single item that I had purchased and never told anyone about it for my shame at being so hungry for a man’s attention that I would believe almost anything.
He wrote amazing love letters…
I gave retirement money and even took out 2 loans that I have to repay, for a total of over $150,000!! Writing it makes me upset and angry because of the way I was hooked in and the smooth way he wrote those amazing love letters (emails) that made me feel so good. He told me how much he loves me and how thankful he is that I’m in his life. He said that he has never known love like mine. Boy I fell for it hook line and sinker. The worst thing is I am an educated professional woman who has a very good head on her shoulders, but for some reason he knew just what to say.
I even researched him…
We talked, made plans, we fell in love. I researched him, he had a LinkedIn account, he had a website, he even sent me a copy of his passport. He asked me to help him with some business and asked me to give him as much money as I felt comfortable giving him. He gave me a story about his struggle to pay for shipping issues he was having for his product. Anyway, he sent me a real plane ticket to prove that he was going to come to my home. I gave him the money. I went to the airport to pick him up and he never got off the airplane. I went to the ticket counter and they confirmed that the plane ticket was real and that he just never checked in. Needless to say I was devastated. I knew right then that he scammed me. I just couldn’t believe that I was so stupid. But I fell in love with a voice and a promise.
“I need money to get out of the country…”
I was the victim of a love scammer. My ex-husband and I had just split up and I met him on a dating site. He was nice and only talked for months reeling me in slowly. He sent love texts and emails that were amazing. He said he was in the army waiting to get out. To make a long story short he had to pay to get out of Syria and me being vulnerable gave it to him. He sent me an itinerary and I drove to the airport and wasted hours for a man that never showed up. I was hurt, embarrassed, and mad at myself for being so gullible. I never told anyone I gave him money and it was all of my money. I was embarrassed. I learned from that, but it took time. I had to grieve for both men I lost.
7 Warning Signs That He’s a Love Scammer
- He loves you too much, too soon, without ever having met you.
- He will arrange to meet you, but the meetings never pan out.
- He is an AMAZING sweet-talker. He is an expert at making women feel loved and needed.
- He ALWAYS asks for money, supposedly because he’s in a temporary bind. He may also ask for you to send him electronics or other goods, which he will later sell at a profit.
- Since love scammers often portray themselves as having plenty of money (just not being able to access it currently because of some invented crisis), he assures you he will repay your “loan” very quickly.
- You might find the exact photo he uses to represent himself elsewhere on the internet, being used by other scammers. Photos are not proof that someone is are who they say they are.
- If you get suspicious, or ask certain questions, he will immediately use guilt to make you feel bad for your suspicions.
TWO IMPORTANT NOTES: Everyone who is a love scammer is not operating out of Nigeria. Love and romance scammers are everywhere. They’re also not all men, but often linked to a NETWORK of people all working together to make the scam come together.
Protect your heart, beautiful one.
5 Scary Truths About Love Scammers
These things are not pretty to hear; if they bring up a lot of fear in you, let that fear make you even more sturdy and resolved that you will NOT let a love scammer into your life, no matter what stories they tell you…
- They are criminals
- They are often linked in a large criminal network
- They understand human psychology and how to manipulate people
- They are following PROVEN methods to con you
- They sometimes try to “seal your silence” by asking you to take off your clothes or masturbate on camera, footage they can later use for blackmail.
If he immediately and absolutely loves you (sight unseen), and asks you to send him money for ANY reason… Turn off the lights and lock the door. He’s not for you.
Be patient and watch for signs that it just might be “too good to be true.” Because all the honeyed words in the universe are not worth the kind of soul-crushing, bank account-emptying, heart-killing aftermath.
And once more, if you suspect a love scam, please REPORT IT HERE.
I wish I had a magic healing wand for all the women and men in the world who have been scammed like this. Lean on your support network, the people who love you and have your best interest at heart. And take care of yourself, beautiful.