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AIBU?

DD catfished

92 replies

NameChange3045 · 09/06/2017 23:29

Name changed for the safety of my DD. Sorry if it gets long but this isn't a troll, I promise

DD is 17 and a wheelchair user (This will come in later). Her 'best friend' of 5 years has been catfishing DD as a guy for the past two years! DD just came to me about it in tears as she recently clicked. She saw the girl midway through texting as she was coming.

The 'guy' isn't really nice. He acts as if he's a saint if he doesn't get angry for a bit if she has to get away from her phone..really he has a massive go at her for not messaging fast enough if leaving didn't suit him. Then the best friend has a go at her for 'upsetting her brother' and my DD would snap at her and the girls argue only for support staff having to stop them and get them 'back as BFFs'.

It's been daily for 2 months. DD went through and faked it with the friendship anddd also had to spend the time she would usually have alone as a study period with the bff because she decided to bunk lessons because of 'anxiety'.

She thought it was over and done on the last day of school BUT she has to go back in on Monday to edit her BTECs work since her teachers made a mistake with one mandatory unit. After this, she's done for the year. Next is uni and a different one.

She doesn't want to bump into the 'best friend'. Hard not to notice her wheels. They don't share lessons but generally the study spaces or if a friend speaks of her attendance the bff.

DD is naive but a bit vulnerable too and thinks the best of everyone! Bless. Well not now but she's heartbroken, scared and wants no confrontation.. It's heartbreaking... What should she do?

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NameChange3045 · 10/06/2017 15:28

MissionItsPossible Though, the friend does exist and she has a go at DD as she 'looks out for her brother'

I'll take that out and send that after DD comes from school

BalloonSlayer DD is very much scared of the consequences but I'll message the parent and call the HOY and tell them about this.

Oh goodness, I hope the friend doesn't go to prom..

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MissionItsPossible · 10/06/2017 15:38

NameChange Sorry to keep banging on about it and you obviously know the situation more than I do but it just seems odd (to me) that you encourage your daughter (by default) to have a relationship with someone that you know doesn't exist. Again, I reiterate, you know the situation better than I do, that's just my observation from your OP and replies.

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SleeplessByTheSeaside · 10/06/2017 15:53

Sorry your DD has been the victim of her so -called friend. I think telling the parents/school is a good way to go, even if your DD is reluctant. The issue needs to be dealt with, your DD shouldn't have to put up with appeasing this other girl and the imaginary brother!

Instead of using the phrase 'cat fishing' in your message to the parents, I would state exactly what's happened (as they may not be familiar with the term or understand exactly what's gone on). So instead of saying "your DD has been catfishing my DD" maybe say something like "your DD has been sending messages to my daughter, pretending to be her brother ('brothers' name)."

I'm still not clear whether the friend actually has a brother or not, but either way the parents will have a better picture of the situation if you mention him, as either the girl doesn't have a brother so has obviously been deceitful, or if she does the parents will be able to ascertain that the messages did not come from him.

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wornoutboots · 10/06/2017 15:55

never heard of catfishing before, so instead of using the term I'd just say what the "friend" has been doing in case the parents have never heard it either.

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NameChange3045 · 10/06/2017 16:19

MissionItsPossible I didn't know until last night. They haven't been talking since the end of last month. If I knew, I wouldn't have let this get to this point because why would I let my daughter be talking to this abusive person for this long. I do get where you're coming from though

Sleepless I'm clueless on that too, I think it would be clear from the parent's reply

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Italiangreyhound · 10/06/2017 19:41

OP "I'm kind of worried for her now that she's going to university in Sept and I don't know how she will be with people" I agree.

"I'll call childline with DD and ask."

Really good idea, speak to a children's charity or an organisation, like Childline, (or NSPCC or even the Police CEOP) You need help in dealing with this. To get advice how to check your dd is OK and for her to be able to handle relationships in the future.

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Italiangreyhound · 10/06/2017 19:43

I totally agree with Badweekjustgotworse, "She needs to relearn what a normal supportive friendly relationship is. I'm so sorry she's going through this, it sounds horrible."

NameChange3045 "No, DD never has been invited really, sadly enough hence why I don't have the parents' numbers."

If your dd was willing to make a complaint at 6 form/school the school would have to contact her parents, I know your dd is unwilling to do this now. But I do feel if she was willing she may get some closure.

Mission the guy doesn't exist but the girl does! The girl who has been controlling her with hassling messages for two months daily and for two years pretending she is in a relationship with her.

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Italiangreyhound · 10/06/2017 19:58

OP Having decided to go to the school, I would personally let the school deal with telling the other parents.

I know people are very keen for you to report this and I do agree but I hope you can work with your daughter to help her to see this is best for her, to protect her from any future contact with the girl.

Bullying and controlling behavior dis empowers people, as you know I am sure, so you do need to empower your dd and let her know you are listening to her.

I would really leave it to the school to contact the other parents, this abuse happened while the girls were at the school togetyher, it is their business.

However, if you feel you must contact the other parents, please do tell the school first and then use whatever wording you wish to. So your wording is OK but in your shoes I agree to spell out what has been happening.

You do not need to change anything but I would consider...

"I have found out that your daughter has been messaging my daughter on social media and pretending to be a boy (called XYZ), she has said XYZ is (other girl's name's) brother.

Unknown to me, over a two year period these messages have continued with my daughter thinking she is speaking to a boy. Over the last two months (or over ABC period of time) these messages have happened daily..." (if true) "and have been controlling."

(Pretending to be someone else on line like this is often referred to as ' catfishing').

If true you could also say "The messages have been abusive or the control has been a form of abuse)" (I would completely say this is the case but you need to use words you and your dd are happy to use.

"I am not trying to stir trouble" You do not need to say this, but I would say something like...

"I am a concerned parent and you need to talk to your daughter about this."

I agree with previous poster, do not say "... it has ruined your daughter's friendship with my daughter and affected my daughter's outlook on friendships." We know it has and school will speak about this, just remain calm and cool, do not give any information that is not necessary (IMHO).

I would not end with a please, personally.

"Inform your daughter that she should not contact my DD in any way shape or form."

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Italiangreyhound · 10/06/2017 20:00

Sorry that is long, if it is not helpful, please ignore it!

Thanks

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NameChange3045 · 11/06/2017 13:05

Italiangreyhound That's so helpful, thank you so much

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Italiangreyhound · 11/06/2017 13:18

Thanks, I hope I am not overstepping the mark to say that if I received a text about this I would make contact immediately and come over if I could. Do not feel sure the girl does not know where you live. She may do.

If you go through school it will keep it all at arms length, so better for your dd.

I wrote that suggestion for the message but I still feel letting school contact other family is better!

Also, did you take screen shots of messages, do you have proof/evidence?

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Hissy · 11/06/2017 14:48

Absolutely italian's is the response I think is best

I think you too have been sucked into this, please spare some time for yourself to process this.

Your daughter has been tricked, for years by someone she thought was a friend. I understand she doesn't want confrontation, but where is your fire?

Your initial idea for the message to her parents was so wushy washy.

Not wanting to stir? You should be putting the onus on them to find out wtf their dd is doing and making it stop there and then.

This is freakish and weird and absolutely that girl should be kept as far away from your dd as possible! How dare she pull this on your dd? It's horrifying!

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Italiangreyhound · 11/06/2017 15:23

Thank you, Hissy.

"Your daughter has been tricked, for years by someone she thought was a friend. I understand she doesn't want confrontation, but where is your fire?"

I totally agree. But I think both the OP and her daughter are totally shocked by this. I think both want to avoid confrontation and this is based on fear, perhaps.

Fear of embarrassment, that things will be worse than they are already, if this girl makes a fuss etc.

I think the important think is to get angry, to show that your daughter should not have received this appalling treatment. I know the other girl has mental health issues but so do I. I've had OCD, anxiety and an eating disorder. And I've never done anything like this to anyone! Whatever this other girl says, she has behaved abominably to your dd; OP I do think you need to get angry to make sure that your dd knows just how wrong this is. Not the kind of blind anger that makes things harder for your dd but a clear targeted anger, that does not apologizes for making it clear this is unacceptable.

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WhateverFlowsYourBoat · 11/06/2017 16:19

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

NameChange3045 · 11/06/2017 16:21

Ahhh, forgot to change my username but here it is

Italiangreyhound Hissy

You are right. I am very shocked about this, only because this sounds freakish like Hissy has said and this is a new and growing problem.

I'll have a meeting with DD's HOY and also have DD in there. I agree that it would be best to have the school to contact her parents because I don't think a message alone would get through. DD's first confrontation didn't lessen the abuse.

I have told DD that this isn't normal and she shouldn't blame herself for it. She now knows how to spot things like this. She seems a bit happier and has been going out with her cousins to clear her mind.

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user1495025590 · 11/06/2017 17:27

I think this girl has betrayed and humiliated your DD in the most cruel and humiliating manner and I am absolutely furious and disgusted by this girl's behaviour.

You can try going through the school but I am not sure really what they can do given that the students have left

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NameChange3045 · 11/06/2017 17:30

Hopefully they can just give them a stern call..

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sonjadog · 11/06/2017 17:36

I had never heard of catfishing before. I think you are right to follow it up with the school. It´s good that your DD will be heading off to university after the summer and will be out of this situation.

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Italiangreyhound · 11/06/2017 17:39

user1495025590 I agree this other girl, this non-friend, has betrayed the OP's dd but this non-friend has only humiliated herself.

Being the target for a scan it con, or for abuse, should not be seen as humiliating in my view.

The OP and her dd should IMHO not view themselves as humiliated but rather empowered. They have seen through the scam, they know the truth now.

The OP's dd can and will move on. I would encourage her, OP, to see herself as the victor not the victim. She escaped this evil girl's clutches. However, it doesn't excuse what this non-friend did!

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NameChange3045 · 11/06/2017 17:45

Italiangreyhound That's a really lovely way of looking at it

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Italiangreyhound · 11/06/2017 17:49

I like to be positive but as I say it in no way excuses what the other girl did. I know some people like to say things like "being bullied made me stronger." I do not believe that. Some strong people can survive things but bullying (abuse/cons/scams etc) are never OK and they do not make us better people, some people are just better able to survive (IMHO).

Thanks

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NameChange3045 · 11/06/2017 18:21

I 100% agree with you, Italiangreyhound

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raspberrycordial · 11/06/2017 18:24

Also remind your DD that she shouldn't feel humiliated, it's far better that she is a nice genuine person than a sneaky manipulative liar. Her 'friend' must be constantly doubting her friendships as she knows what people (because of her actions) are capable of. She is going to be extremely miserable as she gets older, your DD won't be.

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NameChange3045 · 11/06/2017 18:30

raspberrycordial

I'll definitely remind her a few times.

I think this may need to be warned of in schools nowadays

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barrygetamoveonplease · 11/06/2017 18:30

OP Having decided to go to the school, I would personally let the school deal with telling the other parents

This is the only sensible thing I have read so far on this thread.
This is a matter for school, and possibly for the police. Talk to the NSPCC.

The bullying friend alone is a worry. The pretend brother/boyfriend is an abuse. And if the friend is doing this, she needs help/guidance to stop.

Do not approach the friend's parents directly.

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