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  1. #1

    Default Emotional Devastation of being Romanced Scammed.

    Emotional Devastation of being Romanced Scammed.

    By Bernard G. Vance, PhD and Dimitria McCreary, RN/MHN

    From reading reports and article on victims of "Romance Scams" is has become apparent that the real damage may not be financial but emotional. A Romance scam can devastate the already weaken emotional state of the victim. The mental stress brought on by being scammed is similar to a death or divorce of a spouse in which the victim has lost their companion, lover, hopes, dreams and direction for their life. There is no support system for victims of romance scams as most of the community around them is already laughing at them for even trying to find love in a non traditional way. Many times they are made to feel ashamed for getting scammed, losing their money, falling in love and trusting their lover (scammer). Because of this shame they do not seek help and can end up with severe mental health issues that have even lead to suicide.

    These victims are regular people whom have suffered a loss in there life such as a divorce, death of a spouse, or break up of a long-term relationship, typically older (in their 40's to 60's) and are looking to replace the love and companionship they have lost. This is what makes them an easy mark for romance scammers. Scammers using beautiful avatars, pray on the emotional needs men and women who have suffered loses in their life, promising the undying love and a new start to life with someone out of our dreams.
    Romance scammers have one thing on their minds, relieve you of "Your Money", and that is the crime that we hear the most about. What we do not see the emotional devastation that this crime takes on the victims. Almost all of the time, the victim was emotionally involved with the perpetrator (Scammer) and willing sent money or other means of support to a person that they thought was their love and soul mate.

    An example is a 59 year old man, just coming out of a divorce, looking to get back in the dating scene, signs up on a dating website to see what is out there for him. After posting his profile, he gets a request from am outrageously beautiful lady, about 34 years of age, and she has asked to get to know him. She likes his profile, thinks that his picture is handsome and that they might have interest in common. This is where it starts, innocently enough, but the scammer start to weave a web of emotions that is to entrap the mark (victim) and bind him to her. First, she profess to be looking for the lifelong soulmate, she will state that she has been hurt in a past relationship which is her way generating empathy from him, then over the space of several week or months encourages him to become in love with her, and begin planning for a life together.

    Sometime during this process emotions and egos take over and the mark (victim) becomes fully attached to the scammers beautiful avatar, becomes enamored and thinks that he is in love with this beautiful, and loving woman. This is where the scammers want the victim, as now they can set the hook and start extracting (sealing) money from the victim. At first the victim thinks he is helping and taking care of their new love one, acting as a good lover and fiancee, getting ready to bring them home to start their new life. As the scam progresses and the victim is bled dry and only then does it becomes apparent that there was never a real lover, the victim is left in despair, shame, depression and even sometimes suicide from another loss in their life.

    After a traumatic experience, one of the factors/after affects is that a victim can often suffer from PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder). An anxiety can occur after being subject to a traumatic event, some examples being; assault, bullying, Military, sexual assault, the list goes on. Unfortunately also as a result from being scammed. What follows with PTSD are anxiety/depression/agoraphobia, the agoraphobia in some cases of panic disorder. In saying this not all traumatized persons get PTSD or has the experiences, PTSD is diagnosed only if the symptoms last more than a month.
    As far as a victim of scamming is concerned, the victim is not only Mentally exhausted, but also financially drained, feeling as they are a fool, suffering the loss of a love one, loss of hopes and dreams, many time not knowing where to turn or whom to trust. The victim may experience all or some of these symptoms from this trauma; depression, feelings of helplessness, fear, flashbacks, recurring distressing dreams, nightmares of the event, anger, lack of communication, withdrawn, feelings of isolation, just to name a few.

    The first thing is to help the victim understand that it was not their fault that they were scammed, that scamming is a criminal enterprise looking to take advantage of our need and want for love. Next is to understand that the pictures of the person that they were writing /chatting /emailing with was just an avatar, not a real person. This can be devastating when the victim learns that most scammers are men and not the beautiful Avatar that they were communicating with. Get the victim involved in anti-scam web sites and educational programs so that they will have a means to reach out and find out that they are not alone. Victims will need a strong support net work, from either friends, family and if necessary a referral to a good Doctor/Psychologist, to help with the recovery.

    Education is the best prevention to this crime. The more internet users understand about the scam and how it works, the better they can recognize when they are being approached by a Romance scammer (criminal) and can protect themselves. Also we need to understand the trauma and emotional distress that one can experience from being scammed and be ready to give empathy and understanding as these victims tries to recover.
    Female Scammers from Nigeria, Ghana, Russia, Ukraine and Philippines

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  3. #11
    love sites Guest

    Default Re: Emotional Devastation of being Romanced Scammed.

    You can find another one and hope you can live happily.

  4. #12

    Default Re: Emotional Devastation of being Romanced Scammed.

    Quote Originally Posted by love sites View Post
    You can find another one and hope you can live happily.
    Similarly, I would say to treat it as a game: you knew the rules and unfortunately, it didn`t end as expected
    Naturally, you will be disappointed, but instead of asking yourself if you are guilty or not, just learn your lesson to invest in a future relationship
    Female Scammers from Nigeria, Ghana, Russia, Ukraine and Philippines



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