Nightmare from TinderSeptember 15, 2016
So I downloaded the Tinder app last weekend.
Tinder is a hugely popular online dating mobile app that I used to dismiss due to its notorious reputation for hookups. However, after listening to several friend's successful relationship stories, I decided to give it a chance. I wanted to open myself up to the dating world, but am too much of an Otaku to meet anyone. It doesn't help that the boys at school were too young for me either. Besides, I am more comfortable with my self behind the screen.
It was fun for the first day; I laughed at many profiles and scored a couple of Super Likes (one of them was as old as my dad, lol). It did boost my low self-esteem for a while, but I had to remind myself not to get carried away.
I got more serious with my search on the second day.
Were my standards too high? Even after narrowing the filter results of men aged from 23-infinity to 25-31, I still found myself swiping left (a.k.a rejection) to the hundreds of profiles 99% of the time. While good looking and yummy-bodied guys were aplenty and a feast for the eyes, they were not exactly the type I was after. I secretly turn heart-shaped eyes emoji for the slightly geeky ones with dad bods. I know, none of my friends understand my taste in men either. But there was a problem - I could probably pick out more of these guys at the library than on Tinder.
Anyway, after the hours I'd spent swiping past all that men, I only had 2 matches. Sadly, they barely replied much. Was I boring? Did I scare them off for being too straightforward? Maybe I was just a side thing in case other matches don't work out for them? I don't know.
Soon enough, I found this whole thing redundant for continuation. There was nothing productive achieved - I could've used the time to finish my assignments or complete an online course instead.
After 3 days on Tinder, I came to a conclusion that I was probably meant to be #ForeverAlone and proceeded to delete my account.
I went back to living my life again as I tried to put my mind off the Swipe Left days. But little did I know that a nightmare was looming.
S* came across my profile just before I deleted it. Because I'd linked my Instagram account on Tinder, he managed to find me and sent a direct message to indicate his interest. I probably swiped left on him since I don't recall coming across his profile even after he introduced himself. The conversation started out well, and he was swift with his replies. However, I was rather cautious about this person because his Instagram account was set to private. In order to put a face to the messages, I asked for a screenshot of his profile several times. S repeatedly refused to, but he was rather insistent on pushing for us to meet!?
The conversation slowly started to snowball into a mess.
The weirdest thing S sent was an unappetising picture of an oily bowl of wontons. Twice. He told me that it was what we were going to eat "on our first date".
Now, I have no qualms with having inexpensive food, but come on people,
THIS IS NOT THE WAY TO ASK SOMEONE OUT.
Excuse me, but where are his basic manners? You don't shove food in people's faces without asking about their dietary preferences first, do you? Furthermore, I never once agreed to meet with him.
I stopped replying to S for a while because not only does Instagram not alert me of notifications, I also had a full day of classes to attend. Ain't nobody got time to camp for his messages. But in all honesty, even though I may not be a seasoned dater, I have been in a relationship long enough to know what works for me and what doesn't. Topped with the cheesy pickup lines maybe other ladies would blush over, it was crystal clear that S and I do not communicate on the same level.
I thought S understood my hint, but to my horror, this guy obviously doesn't know how to accept rejections. When I finally opened Instagram, a series of rude comments he left on my posts welcomed me. One of the comments was along the lines of him accusing me to be sexting his mate on Tinder. "What is going on?" I panicked a little before laughing at what a desperate loser this guy must be. I quickly deleted the comments as my dad follows me on Instagram; if he ever came across any of them, I will probably be slaughtered for Char Siu.
I immediately confronted S about it after. There were neither any explanation nor signs of built up tension from friendly to a monster in our conversation. He basically started exploding for no reason, accusing me of linking my Instagram account to gain followers simply due to my slightly higher than average follower count (he was probably jealous because he had less than 50). It was worse than the extreme mood swings females have when they are on their periods.
I tried to reason with him - I admitted that I linked my Instagram profile as I came across countless of users, even my own friends, doing so. I saw it as a norm to validate that I was not a catfish; I am indeed real and serious about meeting people. S chose to dismiss whatever I said instead. What's worst was that the sneaky bastard left more comments on my posts while I was typing my replies. How childish is that!?
It came to a point where I gave up trying to convince him, but I kept my cool because I did not want to leave the impression that he had won from making me mad. I even wished him the best, but the Sour Bugger had no chill and never stopped his bashes. I was left without a choice but to block his account. As much as I would love to show y'all the conversation, silly me forgot to capture screenshots of our conversation beforehand, therefore all of our DM exchanges vanished like he did.
I am not going to lie - I do get slightly afraid when I step outside the house now. S knows what I look like, where I study at, and it is easy to figure my whereabouts through the postings on my social media accounts. I, on the other hand, have nearly zero information about him.
Despite having heard of similar stories for a million times, this episode once again affirms how scary the world of the Internet is. You don't know what lies on the other side of the screen. I am posting my story to serve as a reminder to everyone how easy it is for your privacy to be invaded, and how you should be doubly careful to protect yourselves. I was lucky to have escaped from the clutches of this psycho early on, but alas, luck will not always be on our side.