Dear Counsellor: My online lover lied!
Q I am in love with someone who I met online. We can talk for hours online and he understands me. We communicate very well. I feel comfortable discussing anything with him. I have shared things with him that I have not shared with anyone; not even my mother. We share similar values. He is divorced and has two children. His wife did not treat him well. He has spoken about marrying me and for me to migrate. He is in a good job and the prospects of migrating are good for me. I am a graduate of a university but only working part-time. I have not had a steady full-time job for eight years. I have never been married and I have no children. I would like to get married soon before my biological clock stops ticking.
He loves me so much that he came to visit me from overseas. However, there was a shocker. He is five years older than he told me, meaning there is a 10 year age difference between us. In addition, he is fat. He was sending me pictures of what he would like to look like. He says he is working on losing weight. He said he loved me so much that he gave me the wrong age. He was afraid of losing me. Additionally, he is not as good looking as he is in the pictures. He also admitted that though he is in a good job he has to pay alimony to take care of his family. I am uncomfortable with these developments, but I think I am in love and not sure what to do. I need your advice.
A: You should be uncomfortable with your online lover because you do not know what is true. He is barefaced to lie about his age. This would not be sustainable. It is not so much the age difference but the credibility gap that matters. It was foolish to lie about his weight because he might not lose the weight. It seems he intentionally deceived you and when he thought you were hooked he was willing to reveal some truths about himself. However, you need to do some more due diligence. How do you know that he is not still married? How do you know that it is true that he was ill treated by his wife? What else that he told you is not true?
You appear too trusting, perhaps a little desperate to get married, have a child and migrate for a better life. You should be careful of sharing intimate details with a stranger online. He could be a con artist. He could have ulterior motives. There are persons who have found true love online but there have been some horror stories. You need to take time to know him. You should take him to your mother to get a second opinion about him.
Unfortunately, you are in love and that is influencing your thinking about him. Every relationship needs trust. It is very risky to develop a relationship with someone who has lied in so many areas.