Thursday, August 22, 2013


It's not just a tasty seafood dish (especially when it is fried!). The phenomenon of 'catfishing' is something that could only happen to the extent and frequency it does in our 21st century cyber-society. A catfish is someone who lures someone into a relationship by pretending to be someone they are not. They use other people's photos, make up elaborate lives and lies and actually develop relationships with people using these fake identities.

The MTV show Catfish is all about getting the catfish to fess up and meet the person they have been stringing along. We are well into the second season and so far there has only been one couple who were who they said they were. Everyone else is found out to be a fake. Some of them are purposely being deceptive but most tell a similar story. They were unhappy with themselves and created this fake persona to feel better about themselves. They fell into a relationship and didn't know how to get out of it once they were so far in.

It is scary that so many young people feel this badly about themselves that they would go to this extreme. Honestly I don't understand how pretending to be someone else - someone "better-looking" or thinner or "more interesting" can help you feel better about yourself. I certainly don't understand how stringing some unwitting and unknowing person along could be seen as a positive move for the 'catfish'.

On the other hand, the person being duped often ignores flagrant signs and continues in this 'relationship' often for years. Yes, these people enter into exclusive relationships with people they have never met.

The need for acceptance and love is so strong among these people that they are willing to live a lie or accept the lies they are being told.

It's sad really and I don't know what to tell these people. Maybe I'd tell them that - only real life is real. To the catfish I'd say that life isn't not always happy or fun or what we want it to be. Being someone else isn't an option. To the person being catfished I'd say that avoiding the truth isn't an option either. Believing lies will never make them the truth no matter how hard you believe them.

I watch the show because it is as fascinating as it is sad.

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