‘I felt really scared’: Woman shares her horror after meeting up with her Tinder date – only to discover she was ‘catfished’ by a man who looked nothing like his profile pictures
- Bianca Boulden from Sydney has spoken about an experience of being catfished
- Catfishing is where a person assumes a fake identity to trick people into dates
- Ms Boulden says the man who deceived her turned out to be 15 years older
- She reveals how she escaped the horror date and offers a warning to others
A young woman has shared her horror after meeting a Tinder date – only to discover he looked absolutely nothing like his profile pictures.
Bianca Boulden, a brand manager and communications from Sydney, said her experience of being ‘catfished’ was terrifying as it was so unexpected.
Speaking to The Daily Telegraph, Bianca said she thought she had been chatting to a man who ‘looked like a babe on his profile’.
But when she arrived at the pub in Bondi on a Friday afternoon, she was met with a completely different person who she thought appeared 15 years older.
Bianca Boulden has spoken about her experience of being catfished by a man who ‘looked like a babe on his profile’
‘We were talking for a few days and he asked, “do you want to get a drink and we can meet?”‘ She said.
Ms Boulden said the pair decided to lock in a date after they agreed to meet.
Arriving first gave her time to choose a courtyard table and settle herself while waiting for her date.
Shortly after, she said an older man with long, unkempt hair approached her table.
Ms Boulden said she was shocked when he introduced himself as the man she had been talking to on Tinder for the past few days.
‘I said “no, I think you’re mistaken. I am waiting here for someone”,’ she said.
Much to her shock, the man stated it was him she was meeting – not anyone else.
Ms Boulden told the publication the man couldn’t have looked more different from the photo he had used for his profile.
Ms Boulden revealed how scared she was at meeting a man in a bar who didn’t look anything like his profile photo
She said the man’s appearance wasn’t a matter of weight gain or a haircut – but he was a ‘completely different person’.
On realising the seriousness of the situation, Ms Boulden plotted her escape, taking the first opportunity she could to leave when the man went to the bar to buy a round of drinks.
‘I just felt really scared. I had my car parked there but I didn’t want him to see what car I was in,’ she said.
After slipping out a side entrance, Ms Boulden took a taxi home, all while being barraged by a stream of calls from the catfish.
What are the signs you are being catfished?
1. Photos are too good to be true: Search their photos using Google Search By Image – if you find the same images on lots of different sites linked to different names or if the images turn up on a stock photo site or modelling site, you might want to think twice.
2. Too good to be true: Online dating profiles can be fabricated. It pays to read carefully, and if something doesn’t ring true, it probably isn’t.
3. No photos or webcam: Early in your interaction, ask them to send you a photo and if they refuse, you might become suspicious. If they claim to have no access to a webcam (unusual these days), your intuition might tell you something.
4. Saying exactly what you want to hear: Be wary of the person you’re chatting to saying all the right things. Don’t give too much away either as this can be manipulated by those who might be trying to deceive you.
5. Too serious, too soon: If they move too quickly into the realm of love and commitment, try not to be flattered. This may be a sign that they are not legitimate.
She said while the deception was itself unsettling, the fact the man hadn’t acknowledged he’d used someone else’s photos was particularly concerning.
Ms Boulden added it seemed as if the man hadn’t dated in his ‘entire life’ and so he thought nothing of using another person’s pictures to secure a date.
The encounter, which occurred several years ago, saw Ms Boulden stay off online dating for the following six months after she deleted Tinder.
While she is now dating again using apps such as Bumble and Hinge, she said she has tailored a verification process to ensure those who she speak to her are who they say they are.
This includes asking for their last name so she can check their details on social media to ensure she’s speaking to the same person.