Sadly, there are many lonely hurting people who want to believe there's a sincere good-hearted stranger who also happens to be rich, good-looking and interested in them and found their profile or post on the Internet.
Please people, just say NO. These are not real relationships. They are just real scams. I have at least three dear friends sucked into this faux relationship.
How to tell?
One dead giveaway, they only have 2 or a few photos, one with a pet. If men, they are doctors, military, pilots or police-and often just retired. Or they are volunteers with known relief organizations-at least according to their posts.
Two, you have no friends in common-or you only have a friend in common who has had a social media account hacked. Check with the actual mutual friend offline rather than via social media to verify.
The stories vary. They are millionaires who due to being in a war zone cannot access their money and need poor ladies on fixed incomes to send them $3,000 for airline tickets to come see you. While the money goes away, something "comes up" and they need more money again. (Stolen by pirates, needed to use it to buy medicine, etc.)
Three, the stories they tell will involve multiple versions of known scams. Such as the Nigerian prince who needs your bank account to put money in and will happily give you half of it, oil shares in foreign countries, lottery winnings overseas, etc.
You see, scammers know if they throw all these red flags in and you STILL befriend a stranger, they figure you must want (and deserve) it for being so gullible.
Did you know scammers even hire real people as "actors" to call and video talk with you? These "actors" are told you know it's fake but you are knowingly happy to pay them to lie to you and experience this scripted exchange.
Sadly, I keep getting friend requests from scammers whose only link in common to me is a friend who's either actively being scammed or has had a social media account hacked.
So unless you know and trust a person in common, just say NO. I can introduce you to people in real life who may truly want to be friends with you if that's what you are looking for.
Please, at least for today, just say NO.