I don't really know how or where to post about this, but have any of you ever been "catfished" online? Either in a friendship or relationship sense. For those of you that don't know what it means, basically, a "catfish" is someone online who lies about their identity - using faked photos, using fake Facebook/social media accounts, faking their name, their gender, or whatever. I am NOT talking about scammers, pedos, or conmen who lie for financial gain, to troll, to groom or whatever. But people who use other identities to forge friendships and relationships with apparent genuine feelings and receive no apparent gain from lying. I was "catfished" by someone I considered a close friend of 4 years online and at two stages had feelings for. It was someone that claimed to be a male and even had multiple relationships over the years via internet message boards and online games with girls (who also obviously believed it was a male), but I've recently found out after months of suspicion that it was a female all along after smelling a rat after "he" was really reluctant to meet up in real life or go on webcam and finding out "he" had never met his online exes despite claiming "he" had, it was through pure luck that I found an e-trail to a forum where she was being herself on and traced a Facebook picture belonging to her to her real profile. Apart from the gender, name and photos everything else about her (such as life story details) seems to be true and I don't by any means hate her, I actually understand why she did it and how she got caught up in it (because I once did something similar), but I can't get over this feeling of loss and disappointment. I let my feelings cloud my judgement and sort of became blind to the red flags. The voice on mic/phone was not broken, which is what would usually be suspicious, but because I mentally attached the voice to the image in my head, it was something I let slide. I will never make the same mistake again of trusting someone online without verifying who they are or what they say, but despite all still want her friendship, but that doesn't stop the feelings of loss and disappointment. Has anyone else experienced something similar?