In 2012, the idea of finding love online was still seen as a bit ‘weird’. But for some people, it was — and still is — the most suitable way of finding what they’re looking for in life.
Back then, the term “Catfishing” wasn’t widely used. It was a word I knew nothing about and was even naive enough to think people were referring to fishing for actual catfish. I didn’t realise at that time just how very wrong I was and that I would come to know the full meaning of the word in the most hurtful way.
I was at a point in life where simply going out to meet a potential partner was impossible. I lacked the self-confidence to put myself into a public environment because I simply was never approached when out. I felt sad. All my friends around me were in couples, with some moving in together, others getting engaged or married and others having kids.
I began to wonder what was wrong with me and why I couldn’t find what they had. Before long, I found myself turning back to online dating.
Casey Donovan on being catfished. Post continues after video.
I wasn’t a stranger to dating online, I just hadn’t had much luck with it in the past.
But I was keen to try again. I created a profile and uploaded pictures of myself. Now all that I had to do was wait for contact requests to come in.
I recall one night coming home from work and logging on to my account (something that was becoming a daily occurrence as I realised I had to put more effort into finding someone if I was truly serious about it).
At the age of 29, I believed I had a fairly good idea of the qualities that I was looking for in my ideal partner so I scrolled through all the profiles to send out contact requests as well. It wasn’t long before I had some potential suitors to speak with.
I received a request from John* that ticked a lot of my boxes. He was very good looking. It was around the time that Channing Tatum was the pin-up thanks to Magic Mike and this guy kind of looked like him. He was a soldier in the US army, but was based in Townsville. All the qualities he listed were those I look for in an ideal partner.