With the advent of dating apps, modern courtship is very different than it ever was before.
In the past, people got into relationships by meeting through their social circle, out at a nightclub, through work or something similar. Whatever the situation, the person generally had some sort of proximity to you and you interacted with them entirely face-to-face before deciding to commit to them. Now that people can meet through an online persona first, the potential for deception (or “catfishing” as it’s commonly known) is all too real.
This is a story of a catfishing that somehow had a happy ending.
The story began when 33-year-old Emma Perrier downloaded a matchmaking app called Zoosk.
Perrier was just getting over a break-up when she decided to get back out there. After skimming the app for a while, she came across the profile of a man named Ronaldo or “Ronnie” who she found very handsome. After paying Zoosk’s subscription fee, she was able to read a message that Ronnie had sent her. It read: “You look beautiful.”
What followed was a text-based love affair.
After chatting for a while, Perrier discovered that she and Ronnie had a lot in common.
Both had blue-collar jobs, both were romantic and both were looking for a deeper connection. Gradually the two of them moved on from Zoosk to WhatsApp, a free chatting app that let their bond grow even deeper. Perrier told Ronnie that he was the one she downloaded the app for. For his part, Ronnie said that he knew he wanted Perrier as soon as he saw their picture.
The only catch, however, was that Ronnie wasn’t who he said he was.
As it turned out, Ronnie was a persona created by Alan Stanley, a 53-year-old English man living in Stratford-upon-Avon.
Still, this fact was concealed for Perrier for a long time. Their conversations progressed and though “Ronnie” continually teased that one day they might meet, there were always excuses that put it off. After Perrier begged and begged him for a date, Still, nothing materialized. After consulting with a friend, she downloaded a reverse image search app to determine if the profile was a fake or not.
As it turned out, the man in the photo was not named Ronnie.
The image search revealed that the photos were of 35-year-old Adam Guzel, a male model and actor from Turkey.
When Perrier confronted Stanley about these issues, he lied again and said that they were him from a younger age. Though Perrier didn’t believe him and asked to FaceTime, Stanley refused. After that, Perrier began investigating. Later on, Stanley’s computer crashed and he was forced to buy a new one. In the process of setting up his apps again, he put in his real email address—one that Perrier could see.
Through these clues, Perrier realized that Ronnie was actually Alan Stanley.
Still, the story got more interesting after this reveal.
Stanley apologized to Perrier and the pair kept talking here and there, despite everything. In the mean time, Perrier sought out Guzel’s information and sent him a note:
“Hello Adem, we don’t know each other but a year ago I met a guy online and that man is using your picture and pretends he is you under another name. I wasn’t sure if getting in touch with you was a good idea but I needed you to know, kind regards, Emma.”
Though Guzel almost ignored the message, it ended up leading to conversation.
After connecting, Guzel and Perrier had an emotional video call.
Perrier couldn’t believe that Guzel was real and was overcome with emotions. Though the two had a lot in common, the conversation fizzled shortly thereafter. In the mean time, Perrier arranged an in-person meeting with Stanley to get closure. After the apology and some explanation, Perrier’s attention slowly turned back towards Guzel.
Perrier sent Guzel a message inviting him to London—and he said yes.
After that, Perrier sent a final message to Stanley explaining what happened.
“Alan I wanted to tell you that tomorrow I’m going to pick up Adem at the airport. And I still don’t know if it’s good or bad but I’m going to meet ‘my Ronnie.’ You built up all this shit, I’m not sure if I should thank you or detest you for that. But this is happening.”
After much ado, Guzel and Perrier finally met in person.
Though the energy was nervous and tense between them, Perrier made a move quickly and kissed him. The connection was there and the two began to fall in love. Later, Perrier told her story to the Daily Mirror more succinctly: “My catfish became cupid and now we’re living happily ever after.”
Like us on Facebook to get more stories
Despite all the dramatic turns, Perrier and Guzel are doing their best to make a life together.
Though there was plenty of deception in their path to meeting each other, Perrier says she still considers the internet an integral part of their meeting. Still, there are many more knotty details to this very unusual love story, readable in full at The Atlantic. In all, this story is a reminder to be careful about what we reveal online—and also that true love remains possible, despite all obstacles.
Please SHARE this with your friends and family.
Source: The Sun, Daily Mail, The Atlantic