People Are Sharing Their Own "Tinder Swindler" Horror Stories And I'm Deleting All My Dating Apps Immediately
"He messaged me afterward from a different number that showed his full name. I googled him, and it turned out he’d been in prison for murdering two people."
It's only been a few weeks since the Netflix documentary The Tinder Swindler dropped — bringing dating app horror stories to the forefront yet again.
A lot of the responses are quite shocking, proving you have to be extra careful when meeting a stranger online. Here are some of them.
1. "So I knew this guy was a bit older than me (I was around 21 at that time), but it was fine. We went with his dog around town and had an interesting chat about everything. It was really nice evening and all was good, until he pointed and said, 'Ah, look. My wife is over there.' Like, what?? What wife? But instead of asking him, or jumping into the nearest bush or whatever, I stood there, as she crossed the street and said, "Hi, nice to meet you. I've heard so much about you.' I was so stunned that I did not know that he had a wife, so I ended up eating dinner with them, until I came to my senses and awkwardly left."
2. "I met a guy on Hinge. He was very interested in meeting after light chatting for a few weeks, but didn't want to do so at a bar or restaurant. Instead he wanted to meet in a park. I went and he seemed fine, said he had just moved to the city and was crashing with his cousin. After our meeting, he continued to message me, call me pet names, say he knew we were meant to be, and convinced me to let him come over. Against my better judgment, I did and was creeped out by how overly familiar he was, acting like we were already dating."
"He also commented on my wine collection, saying we'll have to drink my nicest bottle on our anniversary. After a while of him trying to cuddle me, I politely asked him to leave. Afterward he sent me overtly sexual messages, and I asked him to stop contacting me, at which point he lashed out, called me names, and commented on my weight. Blocked him.
A couple weeks later, I logged into the app, and he came up as I was swiping, claiming my neighborhood as where he lived and even posting a pic of the view from my balcony. I reported everything to Hinge, and they very quickly took care of it, as he violated the user agreement with the name calling."
3. "I matched with a guy who I developed a deep emotional connection with really quickly. We met and everything was amazing. The perfect guy for me. Suddenly he asked me to move to Florida with him after only a week of talking. When I declined, he decided not to go because he wanted to see where things would go with us. Red flag #1. We moved on from that, and then a week later he started calling me up drunk saying I was too good for him and deserved better. When I pressured him for an answer on why he was feeling this way, he wouldn’t admit why — and kept dodging it. Ultimately though, he finally admitted to me that he was selling heroine and had no way out. Talk about the shock of a lifetime. I cut off all contact and told him to never talk to me again."
4. "My daughter went on a date with a guy she met on Bumble. She said the date started off well until dessert, when he started talking about his ex. She said he went from ranting and raving about what a horrible person she was, to full on crying about how much he missed her. When my daughter asked how long they’d been together, he said three weeks. Then he immediately dried his tears and asked if they could at least sleep together, for ‘sympathy.'"
5. "I matched with this one guy on Tinder, and he seemed super sweet. According to his bio, he was an accountant in downtown New York. We talked for a week, and he asked me if I wanted to go out for dinner that Saturday. I said, 'Sure, why not?' We were going to a nice Italian place — but he was wearing sweatpants and a T-shirt when he picked me up. I just shrugged it off even though it was a little strange. We get there, and as I’m heading for the front door, he tells me to 'come here.' I was confused, but I followed him anyway. He tells me that dinner was served while pointing to a dumpster! To make matters worse, he took out an old takeout container of pasta and started eating it. I was so disgusted and shocked, but I had no ride, so I said that I had to use the bathroom. I told the restaurant about the guy and asked if they could call me an Uber. Worst date of my life."
6. "I met up with a guy on Tinder and it seemed to be going OK. We went back to his apartment for drinks, and he excused himself for a moment, then returned to the living room naked. Full on naked. I ran back to my car and met up with a friend at a bar, but I ended up meeting the guy I've been with for the past five years from running out of that apartment and meeting up with my friend, so it didn't end all bad."
7. "This one was just weird. I went on a date with a guy from Match. We met at a wine bar, and he immediately told me he had multiple other dates scheduled for that same day. He then claimed he could communicate with dolphins in a special language and proceeded to lecture me because I did not practice transcendental meditation. Needless to say, I chugged my glass of wine, paid the bartender, and got the heck out of there. Maybe he had better luck with one of his other dates that day."
8. "I met a guy on Bumble and set a date to meet on a Saturday. He proceeded to ask me to send him a photo without makeup. I stopped talking to him after more weird stuff like him telling me he is a 'nice guy' (this was Wednesday). He texted me on Friday, and I didn't reply. A few hours later, he found ALL of my social media including my personal Facebook and left me abusive messages for ghosting him, calling me a cunt amongst other wonderful things. I blocked him and was genuinely scared and scarred. I saw him on Bumble a few years ago and tried reporting him but to no avail. I am off dating apps now, but I am sure this guy is still on them, claiming he is a 'nice guy' and abusing women. CREEEEEP."
9. "I matched with this man on Bumble. One night he wanted to meet up, and I couldn’t because of work commitments. He initially brushed it off, and we agreed on another time. Then, that same night he started messaging me again, offering me money, drugs, and designer purses to come over. I politely declined. Then he started messaging me from a bunch of 'burner' cellphone numbers (think Google voice) pretending to be women saying how much I was missing out on by not hanging out with him, which I ignored."
"The next night I come home from being out with my friends to find the NYPD outside of my building because they got a report of a suspicious man scaling the fire escape. I explained that I live in the building and I needed to get to my dog, who was in my apartment. Once they realize the apartment that the man was trying to break into was MY apartment, I had officers escort me upstairs to get my dog and bring me to an animal-friendly hotel. I had to stay there until I was able to speak with detectives. They arrested this man and charged him with aggravated stalking, aggravated harassment, and attempted breaking and entering. They also granted me a restraining order. I had to move as a result."
10. "I matched with a guy on Tinder, and he said he didn't want a girlfriend at the moment, and I was cool with it. We planned to have a lunch date to meet. He was supposed to be at work and wanted to skip it but needed a doctor's note, so he went to the dentist and stood me up. A couple of days later, he apologized and explained to me that he didn't plan it well. I listened and gave him a second chance. We made plans to grab dinner, but he stood me up again with no explanation."
"A couple of days later he offered to buy me an Uber and go to his place. I obviously declined for safety reasons and he stood me up twice. I explained to him kindly I can't trust his word and I won't go to his house. Fast-forward three hours and he is not taking no for an answer; he is convincing me to come over to his place.
When he finally figured out that wouldn't work, he started calling me profanities and insulting me. He bombarded my phone to the point where I couldn't use it — calling, texting, Facebook messaging me, sending messages on Tinder. This lasted all night from 9 p.m. to 8 a.m. I turned my phone off so I could sleep. I then turned my phone on the next morning to find hundreds of messages just calling me names — voicemails of threats and name calling.
The last text he sent was an apology for his outbursts and how he really wants to see me. I blocked him on Facebook, blocked his phone number, and reported him on Tinder for abusive behavior. It was the most unhinged Tinder meet I have ever met. He was absolutely terrifying."
11. "After a month of talking on Tinder, we decided to meet in person at a local restaurant. I got to the restaurant early and messaged him where the table was. A man came and sat down and told me he was 'Steven.' The nightmare was: I was catfished. Tinder profile pics showed Steven: a Black man who loved hiking, went to BLM rallies, loves family, has a dog. The man who sat down across from me was a Caucasian man who looked nothing like Steven. He then told me his name really was Steven — but that he was using his roommate’s pictures. I ended the date right then and there."
12. "I had hung out with a guy a couple of times I met on an app. He was quite nice, but I noticed he drank a lot. We had watched a movie at my home, and I offered for him to stay because he had been drinking. I woke up to him standing in the dark in my bathroom with the door open. I decided to ignore it and go back to sleep. I woke up in the morning to him on his computer. I don't think he had slept. I went to my kitchen, and he had finished my entire liquor cabinet and cooked around $80 worth of food."
"I said, 'OK, so you have a problem. Would you like to go home or the hospital?' He agreed to go home, but it turns out he was living in a homeless shelter. I felt very badly for him, but it also shows you never know who someone is online."
13. "When I was 25, I met this guy on Tinder. For the first couple weeks of dating we only spent time at my house or going out, never his. When I questioned why we couldn’t go to his place, he said he’d been living with a friend because his new place was still being renovated. I thought that was kind of suspect, but he was super hot, communicative, and kind, and I was young — so I overlooked it. The more we got to know each other, the more he started staying over at my place, and within two months he was basically living with me. One night while he was at work, an email notification popped up on his laptop."
"Upon further inspection, I realized he had a profile on a sugar baby website, which he’d been sending messages from as recently as the day before. I was shocked. I broke up with him and kicked him out, but it ended badly, and I never got my key back.
Two months later, he reached out while I was out of town visiting family, apologized for everything, and asked for a second chance. We discussed getting together to talk when I returned at the end of the week. I ended up deciding to come back a day early. In the day I headed back; everything seemed fine until I told him about my change in plans, and he immediately stopped responding. It seemed weird, and I was upset but shrugged it off, figuring I’d hear back by the next day. When I finally made it to my place, I walked in to find my trash overflowing, a sink full of dishes, my bed had clearly been slept in, and there were clothes (that were not mine) everywhere.
I was obviously freaked out and went to my neighbors to see if they’d noticed anyone coming or going. They told me they’d talked to Tony as he was letting himself into my place almost a week prior. He told them he was watching my dog for me while I was out of town. (Which was impossible because my dog had come with me.) Turns out, he’d seen I was out of town on social media and had been squatting in my apartment the entire week I’d been gone. He faked wanting to get back together only to find out when I’d be home. The next day, I changed the locks, threw his stuff in the hallway, and texted him that I knew what he’d done and to come pick it up. He never came to get it, and even had the audacity to be pissed at ME for removing his things from my apartment. We never spoke again."
14. "I went out with a guy I met online. First date went well and I really liked him. Second date, we went for drinks and the place was closing early. He offered to go back to his place, and I made it clear nothing sexual was going to happen. He agreed. We get to his place, I went to the bathroom, come out, and he’s stripped down naked. I freaked out, told him I was leaving, and then he proceeded to go OFF on me. He called me toxic, damaged, said I had issues, was a bitch. I'm scarred from dating for a while now because of this."
15. "I was from another country and downloaded Tinder to meet new people. After a week, I met this Irish guy, and thought I'd be living my "PS I Love You" dream. We stayed together for over a year. He ended up traveling to France (my home country), with his ex-fiancé to go to her sister's wedding. I was unaware."
"He came back after a week from a supposed 'break' (total Ross vibes) as if nothing happened. I learned he went away from a co-worker of mine (that was friends with his ex). I confronted him. He denied it at first and ended up admitting, adding that they had to spend the night in a hotel as they missed the flight back to Ireland, but nothing happened. I ended the relationship with an STD, and he is now engaged to his ex's best friend."
16. "I matched with a guy who seemed really sweet and chill at first but then immediately, like, took a sharp turn toward intimacy. We had been talking about our days, and he suddenly started mentioning wanting to come over. He wanted to know where I lived — and he said no distance was too great for him to cross. Seeing that we were in a global pandemic, I declined. Then he started begging to see my feet. Talking about how pretty they had to be and going into detail about rubbing and worshipping them."
17. "I'm a female, and I matched with a guy on Tinder last year. His profile wasn’t verified; he was in the military, didn’t have an iPhone, liked to talk over Google chat. All the red flags. His pics seemed legit, and we video chatted, but the sound wasn't working — yet he was the dude in the pics. We talked for five days before he "was getting deployed to Yemen and couldn’t access his money" — and he was "falling in love" with me. I cut it off hard and fast and didn’t think anything of it after."
18. "I met a guy on Tinder who said he lived in a nearby posh town. The night before we agreed to meet for coffee he admitted he was actually in the open-air prison in town. He said it was for fighting. I didn’t cancel because I thought what harm could one coffee do? Date was OK; he showed me his scars where he had been stabbed whilst in prison. We didn’t arrange a second date, but he messaged afterward from a different number, and WhatsApp showed his full name. I googled him, and it turns out he’s been in prison for murdering two people when he was 17. He was 35 now and out on one-day release."
19. "I matched with a guy who seemed OK, and when I read his profile, there was nothing that stuck out as a red flag. However, his first message to me was, 'I can tell a woman's bra size just by looking at a photo.' Then, he said what my bra size was. He was completely wrong, and I blocked him."
20. "I went on a date with a guy who seemed OK during drinks. I smoke (yuck, I know), and he gave me a hard time about it. When we got in his car, he proceeded to bring out a crack pipe. He then offered it to me. Yeah, I ended up getting a cab home and blocking him."
21. "A guy I met on Tinder met me in the pit of a Panic! at the Disco concert at Firefly in 2018. Even before meeting him, there were a few red flags that I painted over. At Firefly, he wanted to meet me right away, asked if I had been drinking or smoking, and kept saying, "Please just wait here, and I will meet you." Eventually he found me while I was with three of my friends. It was the first night of the festival. I was a few drinks and joints in, and was pleasantly surprised when I saw him. He was much cuter than his profile picture. Right away he opened his fanny pack that had dozens of joints. He lit up a few, and I accepted one, ditching my 'only smoke your own drugs' rule for the weekend. No more than five minutes later did I feel off."
"After that, I just felt his hand resting on my hip, and every minute he said, 'We should go somewhere else; we should leave your friends.' I felt too stimulated to even respond because suddenly the lights from the concert were becoming unbearable. One of my friends who was with me, an older guy friend of mine, could feel something was off. I remember him taking me away from Tinder guy and him still grabbing onto my arm asking where I was going. I laid on my back in a field with my friend for hours until I felt better. The next morning, I woke up to a disgusting video from Tinder guy of him with another woman at some other festival campsite.
It has been close to three years since this happened, and sadly before this took place, I had already dealt with a discouraging assault trial, so I felt pressing charges on this guy was pointless. I wish I had listened to my instincts better that night. While I was standing and smoking next to him I could already feel off, but didn't feel the power or will to remove myself from the situation. This experience has left me being very cautious and paranoid almost every day because I keep thinking this will happen again to me and could result in a far worse outcome."
22. "I was fresh out of a pretty crappy three-year on-and-off relationship with someone who had been cheating on me. I decided to try to meet someone on OK Cupid because it's the 21st century — and I wanted to do some casual dating. The first guy I met was a cute scientist who was a lot of fun, so we went on a couple of dates and hooked up. Fast-forward about three weeks and he asks me to go to a really nice restaurant for dinner, which I agreed to. Then he told me his parents would be there. First red flag."
23. "I met up with this guy at a coffee shop near my place. We seemed to be hitting it off, so I invited him over to watch a movie. While we were cuddling and making out, he kept getting more awkward, so I didn’t feel like things would go much farther. After that date, he sent me a text that said he really enjoyed our time together, but word for word in order he said, 'To move forward I’m going to need to see medical records proving you don’t have an STD or anything.' I blatantly told him I had no interest in hooking up with him, nor did I need to 'prove' myself of being clear from an STD. It was definitely a first and last to be asked something like that in that way."
24. "I am someone who tends to have too much empathy. I love taking care of the people in my life, but when I met this one guy through a dating app, he tested the limits of my giving nature. We started talking, and he told me he lived with his sister and worked at a sporting goods store. Once we finally decided to meet, he asked me to pick him up at his sister's apartment. Um...OK? I picked him up and only then did he reveal to me that he was legally blind and needed people to take him places. It felt like he tricked me into taking him out someplace so he didn't have to stay in his sister's apartment."
"Then he started telling me about problems he had with coworkers and that his sister was a stripper and spent a lot of time dancing out of state, so he had a lot of alone time in her apartment and had to beg people to take him places. He clearly hadn't yet set up a well-rounded system to navigate his own life and was just winging it based on other people's whims and schedules.
The date just kept getting worse and worse with him deciding where we should go and what we should do while I drove us everywhere. I couldn't wait to drop him off and end all of the weirdness. First and last date. I can understand him not leading with the fact that he's legally blind out of a fear that I wouldn't want to date him, but it's so important to be honest.
And even as a caretaker type of person, I would like to have a chance to decompress and have someone take care of me at times. Since this guy didn't have his life figured out yet, it was obvious that he would expect a lot from me. He already did expect a lot from me and had me drive him to his work during our 'date' to take care of an issue while I waited in my car. It was NOT a fun date. I endured a lot of complaining, and he never once considered what I wanted. I was definitely the wrong person for him."