Romance fraudsters prey on loneliness and people’s kindness and it is not gender specific, so being able to recognise the red flags of love bombing early on can save you a world of pain later.
Romance fraudsters tend to follow the same pattern, so here is what you need to look out for:
- They are usually the first to make contact and seem very interested in you
- They often have an attractive photo and profile
- They will ask lots of personal questions to make you feel special (this is to gain as much information about you as possible to manipulate you later)
- The conversation usually turns romantic very quickly
- They lavish you with compliments and extravagant gifts
- You feel so drawn in very quickly
This pattern of behaviour can go on for weeks so they can ensure they really have a hold on you, but then they will create a story to prey on your kindness and love, so they can then extort money from you.
They use tactics such as saying they’re in the armed forces and need money to get home, or a relative is poorly and they desperately need money to travel. They say they’ll pay you back, but just need a little help right now. By this point, you have been manipulated so much that you would pretty much do anything for them, and as you are a good, kind, human being, you actually want to help them!