I had been on Instagram for a few years. I think I had 36 or 39 followers. They meant a lot to me.
I took my youngest grandson to our favorite diner for a birthday breakfast (7 years old). I put our picture on Instagram. Suddenly, my followers increased quite a bit.
Amongst the increase of followers was a man named “Andrew”. He shared he was a 58-59-year-old man who was on an oil rig in the Mississippi Gulf area. He was so happy to make my acquaintance because he was lonely.
We began to text back and forth. Every morning, I would wake up to a text, virtual flowers and hearts and a sweet “Good Morning”. He had one daughter. His wife had died from a car accident a few years before. My heart went out to him and his daughter.
We texted almost every day. It was wonderful to have a younger man spending time texting me regularly! He sent beautiful sayings about love and lots of virtual flowers. It made my day begin well.
And, time went on with the beautiful daily words sent to me each morning. Sometimes I got sweet words in the afternoon and also some nights. Each day words of love and him loving me became stronger. He talked of the end of his time on the oil rig and our finally being able to meet in person. All those virtual flowers, beautiful words and declarations made me feel really special.
Then came the Pirates! “Andrew” said he was very concerned and fearful of pirates. One of the other vessels that was owned by the same company he worked for was hijacked in international waters. And, according to him, there were threats that they would come to the United States and board their vessel.
I spoke to my cousin about it because she had some contacts in the Coast Guard. She checked with her sources and said that there were no pirates or strange vessels in the area where “Andrew’s” oil rig was or any other area worldwide. He was surprised that I knew someone who could get that information. But he also seemed to be really relieved. It seemed to shake him up that I had the kind of friends who had access to authorities.
He shared that he wanted me to receive a package from him with money, jewels, palm oil and other articles. He was afraid it would be stolen if the pirates did come to his area. I did not and still do not believe in accepting packages from someone I do not personally know. This really upset him. You don’t want to help me. He said that I did not trust him.
That became a problem between us. Everyone I know kept saying, no way should you accept a package from a stranger. You don’t know what’s in the package. Everyone has heard of a “horror story” about an innocent person getting involved in illegal activity because of ignorance.
Slowly, but regularly, “Andrew” began to tell me that he had fallen in love with me. It took a few weeks of constant “love talk” to make me believe it could be possible to become fond of someone over the internet. Maybe I was just being too old fashioned. I began to relax and open myself up to the possibilities of “Andrew” and me.
Then he claimed that he needed to download apps and other things from the internet. His problem was that he did not have any more space on his computer and needed me to get an iTunes card and send it to him. I am technologically ignorant as to how to add more of anything to a computer. That is why I have my go-to tech guy.
When I said “no” it upset him so much that he stopped speaking to me for a few days. He kept saying that I had no trust in him and he was hurt by it. I was hurt also. I shared with him that I do not send money or anything else that involves money to someone I did not know.
My refusal to buy him multiple iTunes cards or take his package made him not want to talk to me anymore. He kept asking me to send the iTunes cards and to take his package.
Keep in mind, I was not looking for love on the internet; so, I said if that was not okay, we would stop talking to each other.
Just like that - “Andrew” cut me off.
I did miss the virtual flowers and "love notes". I knew better than to go back on my principles. But, if I was really looking for a mate or was lonely, I do not know whether I would have let him convince me to do both things. It just went against my principles.
Shortly, another person posing as one of the Nollywood (Nigerian) movie stars came into my life. After a little while, I realized that he was probably not who he said he was. This made me realize that my "Andrew" was also a scammer!
I never saw it coming. How could I not have seen this?
It seemed that I was destined to be a target for scammers. Almost as if, I needed to speak to lonely and caring women about this …
I hope you will appreciate this blog. Watch it grow. Read the information and use it, pass it on to others.
This is all I want to expose ... those who lie ... those who try to get you to send them money.
Thank you for reading my beginning ….. more to come!