People Who Met Their Friend Online Share What Instantly Made Them Regret It
Meeting an online friend can be an extremely fulfilling moment. You develop enough of a connection to decide to reach out, you build up the courage to see them in person, and then—it all falls to pieces. You realize that online friend is actually no friend at all. From eye-opening moments to scary encounters, these stories will make you think twice before you send that meet-in-person invite.
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#1 You’re Not Welcome Anymore
My husband and I used to play Dungeons and Dragons online with a guy for some time. He was a trucker and came through the area, so we decided to meet him. He was nice. A few years later, he was on hard times so we told him he could stay with us. We managed to get him a job but then he refused to go into work. He lied about it so that he wouldn’t get kicked out. He yelled at my kids for being nice to him and he talked about me behind my back. Needless to say, he won’t be invited again.
#2 Not The Kind of Friend I Want
I was talking to this guy online who was a former high school teacher. I later found out that he was a registered criminal. I thought the guy seemed a bit odd, but then I started seeing headlines in the newspaper about him and the articles detailed his strange, reclusive lifestyle. It all started making sense. Obviously, we are no longer friends. I wish I knew that he was a criminal earlier!
#3 I’m Just Not That Into You
I met this guy online and I just wanted to be his friend, nothing else. The only photos he shared of himself were ones when he was 16. He was 24 when I met him and looked nothing like that at the time—so much that I couldn’t tell he was the same person as in the photos. I was barely 18, and inexperienced in the world. Money didn’t impress me, but he kept trying anyway. Motorcycles terrified me, but he kept trying to up his bad-boy image by telling me all about his.
All in all we were totally incompatible, but he kept trying. When I wouldn’t bite, he decided I instantly hated him. That was more than 15 years ago. He’s still using the same photos on meet-up sites. I’ve called him out on it. He doesn’t care. He says no one looks twice if he uses current photos. Truth is, it’s his personality that sucks, not his face.
#4 Friends, Not Girlfriends
We met online and lived in the same area. It was instant regret as soon as I got back online. I thought the meeting was pretty normal and she was a really cool person that I’d want to be friends with—which is how I felt about her before meeting. Just friends. But when I came back online, I saw that she had posted loads of 10-paragraph posts about how every girl she meets is taken and how lonely she is. While we were out together, I mentioned I had a girlfriend. Now I pay more attention to people when they’re on their phones.
#5 How Do You Know Where I Live?
I once met an online friend and during our meeting, they said something about where I lived, even though I had never told them anything about where I’m from. Somehow, the person found my sister on Facebook, added her, and found out which neighborhood we lived in. I didn’t even give this person my sister’s name. It was so creepy. I personally don’t use social media like Instagram or Facebook anymore.
#6 Zoo Date Gone Wrong
I don’t regret meeting any of my online friends, except one. We were all 15 years old, except one kid who was 12. We went to a zoo together and he just walked away from the group without us knowing. Half our time together was wasted splitting up and searching for him because we were concerned. We finally found him and he just told us his dad was going to pick him up. He left us because he didn’t want to hang out with us. He should have just told us straight away. We would have probably understood.
#7 No Fries For You
We knew each other online for about 4 or 5 years before we met up. We ended up meeting in person and had a great time. After I moved out of my home and to university he wanted to meet up again. I was up for it. We had a great time again—until he did the unmentionable. One day, we went out for lunch at a nice little sandwich place near my house. I asked if he wants fries, he said no, he was only up for a sandwich. So the food came out, and as soon as the plate hits the table he helped himself to my fries! That’s one meeting I definitely regret.
#8 Never Give Out Personal Info
I used to play Halo with this guy on Xbox and we were playing one day when I made some off the wall comment about how bad traffic was because the city was redoing one of our local roads. He said his town was redoing a lot of roads too. I had a friend coming over and I forgot to mute my mic. I said out loud the name of the street that I lived on. The guy I was playing Xbox with heard and turns out, he lived like five miles away from me on the other side of town. We met up—I was about 12 at the time and he was about 17—and he went and bought me a burger and a milkshake while we chatted. He was a pretty cool dude! It went really well, but when I got home, I thought about how different that could have been if he wasn’t just some high schooler trying to make a kid’s night with a burger and shake.
#9 Awkward On So Many Levels
My brother met a girl in person that he had known for four or five years online during which time they had an online relationship. She had brought her friend with her to meet him and while they were sitting around a table awkwardly making conversation, with my brother apparently quite shocked at how different she looked in person compared to how she looked online, the girl sent her friend a message saying, “Oh my god, get me out of here. He’s looking at me like he wants to jump me.” She accidentally sent that text to my brother. What ensued was incredibly painful to watch. My brother showed her his phone and looked at her in disgust. They never saw each other again.
#10 Too Bad About The Girlfriend
I met my best friend on League of Legends. After talking every day for three years, I ended up moving to a state much closer to him, so we decided to finally meet. We talked before about all the things we’d do together if we ever met. I loved him so, so much. He was there for me through everything and he was a wonderful friend. He had a new girlfriend at the time of our meet-up and he brought her along with him. I had no problem with this because I’d love to meet the woman who makes him happy.
It was abundantly clear from the get-go that she wasn’t a real big fan of mine. I did my best to be kind and still had tons of fun. I didn’t hear from my friend much after that. A mutual good friend of ours messaged me and when I asked about my best friend, they said that his girlfriend was telling people that I was an awful person. Three years later and he is engaged to this woman and I’m happy for him, but I haven’t spoken to him in those three years. I still miss him every day, and I wish I could be there for him on his wedding day.
#11 That’s Not That Weird?
I used to play on a multiplayer online and game creation system. While playing, I met a really good friend and we always spoke about meeting up one day. Eventually, we did meet up, but I was absolutely appalled when we did. Instead of the person he had described himself to be, he ended up actually being 40 years old. I won’t meet any of my online friends again after that.
#12 That Is A Rough First Day
#13 Bad Vacation
#14 Clearly She Was On A Date
I had met a girl online and we decided to meet up for a date at a local pub. I walked in, looked around for her, and saw her sitting at the bar with her hand on another guy’s leg. I don’t know if she had set up one date after another, or if she just had no respect for me whatsoever. She never saw me, so after I walked in and saw her, I walked straight back out and didn’t say a word.
#15 Weird That He Posted Before Pictures At All
#16 That’s One Long Vacation
I was 13 and had a 20-year-old pen pal in Hong Kong. Both of us are female. We met on Tumblr and emailed each other regularly. My parents were Cc’ed in all of our correspondence, and we basically just talked about our cultures. About a year of us talking went by and she said that her university allowed her to study abroad in Europe for a semester and she chose my country. Fun!
I was excited. However, some time went by and our friendship kind of faded to the point where I had forgotten she was even coming. About two weeks before she was supposed to come, she emailed me that her student accommodation had to be cleaned out, so she couldn’t access it on the night that she arrived. She needed a place to stay for one night. I asked my mom and she agreed to pick her up from the airport with me, and she could stay with us for one night. I mean, we trusted this girl. I was very open about my friendship with her. We had pictures and everything.
So two weeks later, we picked her up from the airport, and we didn’t click. She kind of annoyed me, but it was late and so we just went home. We got home and got her settled. We went up to my room, she gave me some presents, and we chatted a little bit. She said, “Thanks for letting me stay here this semester!” Huh? Excuse me? This semester? I asked her, “What do you mean?” and told her, “You can stay here tonight. We can see each other during the weekends if you want to hang out, but you can’t stay here.” She went quiet. We went to sleep. At this point, I just wanted her to go away. And I got what I wanted.
The next morning I woke up, and she was gone. I don’t even know how she got out because we lock the doors at night, but she just vanished. Her suitcase was still there. I tried calling her but she didn’t pick up. She eventually texted me, asking if my mother could drop off her suitcase at a train station 40 minutes away at a certain time. My mother brought the suitcase and that was that. I never saw her or spoke to her again after that.
#17 You Tried So Hard
#18 Don’t Complain Until You Know Who They Know
#19 Maybe He Was Shy Too?
When I was in high school, I met a guy from a different high school in a local chat room. We hit it off and after a few days, we agreed to meet up at the store I worked at once I finished work. Well, I guess he showed up a little early, with a friend, and came through my check stand. I thought it was him (we had swapped photos), but I was really shy and didn’t want to be wrong.
I waited for him to introduce himself, but he never did, and he and his friend paid for whatever they had and left without conversation. I was still hopeful that wasn’t the guy, so I waited up for him for an hour after my shift. Of course, he never showed, because that absolutely was the guy. He must have been disappointed when he met me in the checkout line and instead of being a decent person and saying he wasn’t interested, he just ghosted me. If I could go back in time, I definitely would have said something to him at the check stand. That’s my one regret.
#20 You Could Be Dating A Vampire?
I was talking to this guy on a dating app and I really liked him. We decided to go on a date, and it was going really well at first, until he told me he was a vampire. Yup, a vampire. He said this within the first 10 minutes of our date. That bombshell made me want to get up and leave immediately. Needless to say, there won’t be a second date.
#21 Why Didn’t He Just Change His Name?
#22 You Were So Excited…
#23 It Must Not Have Ruined Your Friendship
I met up with a friend I met in World of Warcraft. While we were out, I fell down some steps. Instead of helping or asking if I was okay, she laughed. Hard. Like, not breathing, on the floor, gasping for air, seal clapping, hard. I regretted meeting her at the time, but we’ve been friends for like eight years ever since that happened and she still reminds me to this day.
#24 Sounds Pretty Gross
I met this guy online and we decided to go to a convention together. I brought my boyfriend. While we were there, he had a few drinks and told me and my boyfriend that he wished we weren’t together so that he could be with me. It was very awkward, and he’s lucky my boyfriend (now husband) is a patient man.
#25 Crazy Obsession
My friend Kate met this girl online, Jessica. Jessica allowed us to come and stay with her when we traveled to the U.S. one time. She was instantly rude to me and kept my friend away from me. I’d go upstairs and she’d find a reason for them to go downstairs. She had Kate share her bedroom and she’d lock the door for hours so I’d just go off and do my own thing.
We met her two very odd friends and they both ignored me, too. When it was time for Kate and I to move on to another state, Jessica insisted on coming with us. The lady we stayed with in the next state wasn’t having any of Jessica’s attitude and called her out on her strange behavior. Jessica proceeded to lock herself in a room and demanded Kate stay in there with her. They were in there all day and eventually, Kate came out and said to me that there’s something wrong with Jessica and she’s actually scared.
We had plans to stay with another online friend in another state and Jessica demanded that we cancel because she didn’t like or trust Matt. We said no, that it was our holiday and we had paid for our flights. Jessica then said she would come with us but we couldn’t meet up with Matt. When we said no, she cried and we left.
Kate blocked her on everything. Kate’s mother called us not long after saying Jessica contacted her crying, saying Kate is in danger and we abandoned Jessica, and she’s so concerned for our safety. As I recall, she claimed to be concerned about Matt and basically wanted Kate’s mom to tell us to stay with Jessica. The story she weaved was actually incredibly scary.
Kate found out later from another girl that Jessica had been telling everyone that they were in love and had even slept together. Kate denied it. Jessica was just obsessed with her, and months later, Kate heard Jessica was telling everyone that she was saving money to come and find Kate. She never did, thankfully. Other than the time spent with this girl, we had a great holiday and made some good friends (I still talk to Matt, he’s great).
#26 Pretty Tame, Considering
I had an online friend and we had been talking for six years. He flew over to Australia to hang with me for a month. Turns out, he was so tall. I was 5′ 10″, he was 6′ 7″. I never knew he was this tall, he had never talked about it, and when I was at the Brisbane airport waiting for him, I texted him saying, “I don’t know where you are,” to which he replied, “Look up.” Towering over everyone was this blonde guy that had the arm span of the airport lobby. I cried, we laughed, and I regret bringing him over because my ceiling almost hits his head.
#27 What A Happy Ending
I was in a really bad place in high school. I was bullied, kind of chubby, and I had some social anxiety. I went to a party with some friends I met online playing World of Warcraft. At the time, I regretted meeting them because for the first time in my life, I had made good friends and they made me happy. It was a weird feeling to come to terms with. Today, I love them all more than life.
#28 Roadtripping With An Unknown
#29 What Did She Expect?
When I was 19, I jumped on a flight to meet a friend I had known for about four or five months. We both went through family bereavements and were a shoulder to cry on for each other. We decided to meet for a few days in a country between us. Until then, everything had been perfect, she was the coolest girl, really smart, the kind of person you want to be around all the time.
When we met, things started great, but a day later, she confessed that I wasn’t what she expected. Erm, what? Being 19 years old and not very confident, this knocked me sideways. I never hid who I was before we met, I was completely open, and it put a real sour taste on the rest of my time with her. Instead of chatting non-stop and watching a show on TV in the hotel at night, we went quiet and straight to sleep. We ate in silence. I put as much effort as I could into it but I still never got to the bottom of how I was different. We went our separate ways, texted for a few days, then never spoke again.
#30 That Is So Mean
There were two people that I had met online that I was meeting. Maisie and Maya, for the purpose of the story. The first day we met up it went really well! We all had a good time and I thought it went brilliantly. We’d discussed meeting again, planned to have sleepovers, and to just generally have fun. Then a few weeks later, I found out that they were carrying out the plans without me. They still have sleepovers to this day when Maya is back from university and I’m just left out. I don’t speak to either of them anymore. It hurt.
#31 Regret Is All Mine
I had to travel to my country’s capital for a surgery. After the surgery, I couldn’t move for three days, but the first day when I got up from the hospital bed, I celebrated and told my online friends. They asked what hospital I was in. Long story short, they lived close and came to visit me. But I regret meeting them in a wheelchair, not having showered, under heavy opioids.
#32 Help Only Goes So Far
#33 That’s Stalker Behavior
I met this guy (we’ll call him “D”) online through a fandom. After a few years, the fandom pretty much fell apart but a handful of us stayed friends because we actually had a fair amount in common. D was very normal and the rest of the group seemed to love him. About four years after just being online mates, we met in person and it went fine. We interacted a lot and I hit a really busy period in my life but managed to squeeze in a Christmas get-together at my place for my little group of friends, including D.
After that, my online activity decreased drastically due to being busy and when I managed to get on Facebook, I noticed that most of the group were no longer friends with D. I thought that was weird, but whatever. I checked my messenger and saw message after message after message asking why I wasn’t responding, what was I doing, and if we could we arrange a meet-up. I explained that I was super busy so just give me some time and we’ll see about meeting up another time.
He said, “Fine but I expect a response after”. I blocked him, so he sent email after email after email. So I blocked his email, too. After three very peaceful weeks, there was a knock on my door—it was D. He had a six-page letter detailing why we had to be friends. I shut the door, used an anonymous email to tell him if he contacted me again or showed up at my door, I would call the police.
I went on Facebook and told everyone. The friends who had long since unfriended him started messaging me that they stopped talking to him because of how creepy he was being about me. He was always asking if they knew what I was doing, had I talked to them, was I seeing anyone, was I actually busy because he was convinced wasn’t, etc. I told them how he’d been trying to convince me to stop being friends with them because according to him they were incredibly jealous and hated how close he and I were.
But then it all got weirder. I was telling a mutual friend of mine and D’s that I was heading to the aquarium in London with my daughter (our mutual friend was also in London that day with their daughter) and that maybe we could grab a coffee or let the kids play in the park for a bit. I checked my messages later that evening and D had messaged me saying he was incredibly upset because he had waited at Farringdon Station exit for two hours so that he could come to the aquarium too. I haven’t heard a peep in over a year. He has apparently deleted his Facebook and Instagram and thankfully just disappeared.
#34 Maybe That Was Him Dressing Up
#35 Did She Flirt Back?
I actually worked with this lady that I had met online at the time. She was good looking and very flirtatious. Most importantly, we both played World of Warcraft. She ended up inviting me to join her server and, I, of course, joined up. We played for a time and had a good group going. Of course, she was still flirty with me in the game and I was flirty back… all in group chat.
We had some great times together slaying players. In the summer of that year, our work was hosting a company barbeque. I found out that she was bringing one of her online partners to the event. It was her husband. A cop. I’ve been texting inappropriate things to her in the game in front of him for three months.
#36 Mean, Inconsiderate, And A Bad Listener
I had a friend online for 11 years before we met. I’m Canadian and he’s American. We met on a site when we were quite literally still kids and were a massive part of one another’s lives, especially during our teenage years. We spoke every day through text, on the phone, on social media, and we even knew and sometimes spoke to each other’s family and friends in real life. He called me his light and I called him my brother. We were family.
It would take a whole novel to explain our 11-year friendship and what we have been through together, but I’ll just try to make it short by saying he had a very unstable life and a lot of problems. He was a narcissist. I spent many years being his emotional crutch and punching bag, helping him find jobs, and being there for his breakdowns. I never broke off the friendship because after all of those years, I kind of felt responsible for him.
Anyway, last year we finally decided to meet. We were both grown adults and had saved money to go on a 10-day trip to a dream destination of mine in the States. I knew this likely would not go well, I knew he was a narcissist, but I just had to meet him. I had to meet my brother, the guy that was there for over a decade. I needed to see him face to face.
Well, on this trip he abandoned me on a mountain during a hike because he decided he wanted herb. When he came back I was obviously mad and wanted to go back to our hotel but he told me to wait for him in the car while he did the hike on his own. I took an Uber home and he returned as well four hours later.
He also automatically assumed I’d shell out $300 for him to buy a laptop that he wanted, without asking me. He just brought me to the store to look around while we waited for our movie to start at the theatre and sprung it on me. I refused. And he was just overall inconsiderate. We only ate at places where he wanted to eat, when he wanted to eat. We only did things that he wanted to do.
I missed out on a lot because he just wanted to sit around and do nothing. What hurt the most is when I confronted him about it, he told me, “You’re not my girlfriend, I don’t need your approval or need to change for you to like me.” I cut the friendship off and blocked him when we returned home. I also plan on retaking my dream trip one day and doing it properly this time.
#37 Amazing How They Can Hide That Online
We met on an online game. He was really charming, funny, and nice. Then he fell in love with one girl from our gaming group and they started a long distance relationship. He even flew in to meet her in person. Turns out, he is an abusive, narcissistic jerk who constantly belittled my friend. He gaslighted her and loved to play mind games with our group. We stopped playing with him after a few weeks, because he was so toxic to our group. Sadly, my friend found it difficult to break up with him. It took her several weeks to finally do it. She is so much better now.
#38 Never Invite That Many Nerds
There’s only one year that I regret. My online friends and I typically have week-long, in-person meetings at someone’s house. It’s an intimate event, and there’s usually no more than six or seven of us. Well, one year, the host decided to invite double what we had the year before. The result? Fourteen socially inept nerds in one house for an entire week. I had six panic attacks. It was awful.
#39 Meeting Killed It
An online friendship that I had with a girl that I really liked turned into an online relationship. We had been speaking online for a while and finally decided to meet up one day. Big mistake. Meeting the girl led to the relationship not working out—at all. Of course, the not-working relationship turned into breaking up and not talking to each other anymore. I regret meeting up in the first place.
#40 Romantic But Pricey
I met a friend online and we spoke for a few months. He’s from a different country, so to meet him, I had to fly 2,000 miles. It went as great as it could possibly go. Unfortunately for our bank accounts, we fell madly in love and we’re now engaged to be married, meaning we’re spending thousands of dollars on flights and visa applications. He’s the most expensive date I’ve ever had… but he’s worth every penny.
#41 Of Course It Was Your Best Friend
I met a girl after gaming with her for like two years. My parents allowed me to have her visit me for a weekend. She was an unbelievably beautiful girl and we had a lot of deep talks on the phone. We flirted, a lot. She was my first love interest. We went out for a drink with a few friends of mine and she started hitting on my best friend the second she saw him. She didn’t even pay attention to me the whole evening and the first thing she said the next morning was, “Let’s go to his place.”
#42 Good For Going, But That Sounds Rough
I have bad anxiety. I met my online friends for the first time when I went to my first-ever gaming convention. Long story short, I had to excuse myself roughly every 15 minutes the first two hours because I had to go puke somewhere from social anxiety. I was terrified. After I was able to calm a little, it was really fun! But at first, I wished I was at home (or anywhere else) instead.
#43 A Free Holiday Is Great, But This Girl Is Not
I once met a girl who would befriend American gamers to the point where they would buy her plane tickets to go on holiday with them. She would totally dupe them. She said she loved walking right past them at the airport while they looked for some chick who wasn’t her. She never gave her real photo so they never knew. She would just take the plane ticket and go on holiday herself. She did it at least twice.
#44 Maybe Not Regret At First Meeting, But Soon After
I used to play a lot of online games and made a few friends through it. About 15 years ago, I moved to a state where one of those friends happened to live. We met up and we got along fine. It was a bit awkward in person. He offered that I could come stay with him any time, but he lived pretty far. We sort of lost touch, but just last year his relative contacted me out of the blue.
She told me that my friend had often spoken of me (using my old screen name) and he had recently passed. Apparently, it happened when one of our old online friends came to stay with him. It ended up being ruled as self-defense. She just wanted to know what I knew about the other gamer to try to make sense of it.
#45 So Awkward
I met a fellow seventh grader on Xbox and we were pretty great friends. Even after I quit playing Xbox, we still kept in touch. He only lived two towns over, but it was right on the edge of where my parents would drive me. So at high school graduation, I finally made it out to see him for the first time. We were having fun, until I asked him, “Hey is Karen coming?”
Karen was a middle school girlfriend he had that we’d talk about a lot because I’d third wheel a lot of Xbox live parties with them and we had a few inside jokes. Him and his friends winced and awkwardly chuckled. They made a few jokes, and then my friend leaned in on me and said, “Hey, I know you’re not from around the area or nothing, but she passed away in a car accident a few months ago.” I immediately shut up and left. They told me they were fine with it all and we should hang out again.