Time Wasters, Digital Pen Pals & Pretend Girlfriends

Photo by iStock/Drazen Zigic

How to spot and avoid time wasters, digital pen pals and pretend girlfriends you never meet in person.

In this video coaching newsletter, I discuss an email from a viewer who had a pretend girlfriend for the past year. She was a digital pen pal, whom he never met in person, but he actually believes that he had a “relationship” with her over the past year. The one time he was about meet her in person, she canceled 12 hours before he was to fly there and lost the money for his plane tickets.

He continued letting her waste his time for several months before his neediness and jealousy drove her away. Then she told him she met someone else and they won’t be getting back together. My comments are in bold italics like this below in the body of his email.

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As a guy who’s dated a lot over the last 20 years, women internationally, there are some things that you’re going to do. He met this girl on Instagram, and I think the best dating app, at least in my experience, is Instagram. Especially when the women are reaching out to you because they like you, they like what you do. Maybe they like your pictures, or whatever it happens to you. Maybe you’re a photographer, or your funny posts, your memes, or whatever it is you post to your Instagram.

What’s nice about that is like attracts like. People that like the same things tend to like each other. And it’s been really good as far as attracting, at least in my own life, like minded women that already are predisposed to like my work and be into it, and then they reach out to you. But the key difference here, where this guy went wrong, is he just spend all this time talking. Plus, he was saying, because of the lockdowns. But really, for the past year in a lot of places, the lockdowns have mostly been lifted, other than the fact that up until recently you weren’t really able to fly anywhere unless you were vaccinated.

So, with that in mind, this is a really good email to know what to do to avoid it. Especially because when you meet women on Instagram, I’ve found almost 100% of them never live anywhere near you. It’s always in another state, maybe another part of the state, another part of the country, or another country altogether.

Photo by iStock/RyanKing999

And if you’re young and you want to see the world, I mean, that’s a great way to go see the world, to date women internationally. Especially ones that you meet through Instagram. Because you can have fun in their city. They know all the cool places to go to. It’s like you’ve got a hot tour guide. So, it’s really wonderful if you want to experience the entire cultural experience wherever you travel, and have a nice love story, and develop some memories for yourself. Maybe live happily ever after, maybe just have fun for a few years. It really depends on the individual and what you’re looking for.

Typically the right way to handle these things when you start talking is, usually after two video dates, when I’ve met women internationally, we usually do Skype or we’ll do FaceTime or something like that. You know right away if the conversation flows, if it’s easy and it’s effortless, they’re really interesting to listen to, and they like hearing what you have to say. If you’re going to set one video date a week and you do that for a couple of weeks, after the second one, if the second one goes real well, either you should be flying to meet her or she should be flying to meet you.

And typically, especially in the beginning, it’s usually the guys that are going to travel. I know in my experience, when it was a country I’d never been to, I was excited to go there and see the country, because I know what I’ve got here at home. But if you’re going to do that, really, within 30 to 60 days you should be on a plane. And if it goes beyond that, you’re really just wasting your time. If you want to go see her, obviously, in the last couple of years, we’ve had lockdowns, and a lot of places you weren’t able to travel.

Especially somebody who was unvaccinated, like myself. I’m not putting that stuff in my body. I don’t even get colds, so I had no problems. This stuff didn’t affect me at all. I never wore any masks, just went out and I lived my life. Nothing really changed, other than the fact that some places I went to I had to put a mask on to go shopping or whatever. But other than that, it didn’t affect me at all. The green juice is undefeated, and the green smoothies. It all works.

So, like I said, if you’re talking beyond two months, like I said, it shouldn’t take more than 2 to 3 video dates online. And if she’s not excited about you hopping on a plane to come see her, on to the next. Because this guy spent a year of his life. So, he’s 24, she’s 29. And I’m sure a lot of guys will go, “Five years age difference?” It’s like, he’s doing her a favor. I mean, really. But a whole year of his young life is wasted. All of his emotional, mental, romantic energy is given to a girl that he never even met in person.

Photo by iStock/dusanpetkovic

So, this is a good email on what to avoid. Because again, after two video dates, you should be booking plane tickets and sending her your itinerary. And she should be recommending hotels that are near where she lives that are nice, in a nice area. And typically what I’ve done is I fly in, and then we usually end up meeting for dinner that first night. Especially if it’s in another country, and you’ve been traveling 10, 12, 14, 15 hours. By the time you get there, you’ve got ratchet breath, you want to take a shower. You’ve been eating airplane food, you’ve been in airports. And if you’re going to go on your first date, you want to be clean, showered, nice cologne. The girl comes to your hotel, you go to a nice place to eat. You go to a couple other places, maybe a jazz club, a wine bar, a nice Italian restaurant, or whatever.

And then later in the evening, back at the hotel, having the indoor Olympics. That’s the way it should go down if you’ve done things right, if you’re following what’s in 3% Man. But when you’re just constantly verbally talking and texting and never getting together?

I had a phone session with a guy the other day, it was the same thing. He’s talking, texting. He met a girl through social media, and it just went on for months and months. And this guy is successful, he’s got money. She’s successful, she’s got money. And they weren’t even going to meet for many months. So, that’s just way too long. Because, again, remember, what you’re looking for is, “Hell yeah, I’d love to spend time with you.”

So, if you’re going to date internationally, or girls that are not in your state, or that are a plane ride away, or that are a 3–4 hour drive away, within two video dates, you should be on a plane or in the car to go drive and have an actual date in person, because you don’t want to waste your time. Because think how this guy feels now. A whole year of his life, and what’s he got? Just a lot of spent time and butt hurt feelings.

Photo by iStock/Antonio_Diaz

Viewer’s Email:

Hey Coach!

I found out about your work 4 months ago and have read 3% Man once so far. I’ll try to be as brief as possible, but this story was pretty complicated.

About a year ago, I (24M) met a woman (29F) on Instagram. She liked a comment that I made on a post, we started talking and we hit it off pretty quickly. Our conversation went really smoothly, because we had similar goals and sense of humor. Within a couple of days, she started sending me memes and similar posts, telling how she was missing me and thinking about me, and I reciprocated. Within a month we both told each other we’ve got feelings for one another.

So, you can tell, obviously, this guy has no idea what he’s doing. After talking for a month, “Oh, we’ve got feelings.” You should have been on a plane at that point. Granted, he didn’t know any better.

The thing is, she lives about 1000 miles away, and since we were in more dangerous times of the pandemic, we had to keep in touch through the internet.

So, if he was prevented from flying… me personally, that’s one of the reasons why I stopped dating internationally. When they had all of the mask mandate stuff, it was like, I’m not doing that. I’m going to pass on all of that. Thanks, but no thanks. But that’s just so much time to invest in somebody with nothing to show for it.

Everything went great for about 6 months. We used to have 4-hour long video-chats 2–3 a week.

Photo by iStock/Martin Dimitrov

I would have been doing that once a week, like a once a week date. And like I said, two or three of those, and you should have been on a plane.

Though I admit I was always a bit needy, at that time she was pursuing and wanting my attention just as much, (sometimes even more than me), talking about how we would build a future together, (the whole “together forever” cliché). After 6 months, (February of this year), we agreed to meet during her vacation at the end of April.

So, a six whole months. Way too much talking and not enough in person. This is what happens. You end up talking and texting all the time digitally, and then you just become a pal. You become her source of attention and validation when things aren’t going well with the guys that live near her or her primary guy. This dude, I’m sure he’s always available 24/7 and drops what he’s doing to talk to her, because he thinks he’s in a relationship with her. Meanwhile, she’s liking the attention and validation, and she’s signaling the guys that live near her that she’s open to invitations.

Everything went okay and we both seemed excited. Two days before the trip, she told me she got sick with dengue fever, apologized and told me she wouldn’t be able to receive me.

“Aw, shucks. I know we’ve been talking for six months, but gosh darn it, I’ve got a fever and I’m not going be able to see you.”

I offered to still go, even if it were to just keep her company, to which she agreed.

“Ooh, please, can I spend time with you?” What you’re seeing there is a lack of enthusiasm. I mean, if you’re going for a week or two, is she planning on having a fever for a whole week?

Twelve hours before the trip, she tells me that her mother insisted on taking care of her in their house in her home-town, (she lived and worked in a nearby, smaller town).

Photo by iStock/vadimguzhva

That kind of sounds like BS. It just sounds like she didn’t want you to come. She’s not feeling it. She didn’t have the guts to tell you, because she liked the attention and validation. And if you take a step away at this point and bottom line the actions, you already bought the tickets, you’re willing to go there and even take care of. Remember, this is “we’re going to have a future together,” right? “We’re going to spend our lives together.” So, she gets sick and you’re like, “Hey, I want to go take care of you.” And she’s like, “No, my mom’s going to do it. You can’t come.” Put the brakes on.

At this point it was too late to be refunded for the tickets, I got upset and told her she should have told me sooner, then she got even more mad telling me she didn’t have a choice.

She doesn’t care if she wasted your money, dude, at all. She’s not even the least bit bothered by it. That should tell you something.

Sometimes I’d tell her that I was a bit skeptical, because everything happened so suddenly and she wasn’t willing to send any kind of proof that she was actually sick, claiming that I was supposed to trust her.

Yeah, at that point you should have been like, Elvis has left the building. He’s like, “Well, I wasted my time and my money with these plane tickets, and I can’t get a refund. And then on top of that, you give me an attitude about me losing all my money on my plane tickets.”

From that point on, I could feel her gradually becoming more distant, showing less affection…

Dude, you’re not showing any affection when you’re talking digitally. There’s nothing happening.

…and didn’t care if we didn’t video-chat, all the while claiming that’s the way she is and that she still loves me.

Photo by iStock/DjelicS

“She still loves me.” So, she doesn’t even want to talk to you on video chat anymore. “Oh, but I still love you.” She loved the attention, that’s what she really loved. She didn’t love you. She didn’t love the idea of you being near her or actually in person.

Three months later, when we argued because of stupid jealousy (from my part).

Again, this is not your girlfriend. You’ve never even met her in person.

She sent me the classic wall of text breaking things up, claiming that she doesn’t miss me like she used to…

This is not somebody you’ve ever been in person with, so that’s kind of silly.

…and that it wasn’t fair to me. That was the end. Two months of silence later, she sent me a meme on Instagram saying that it reminded her of me and asked me how I was. Assuming she wanted to meet up, I invited her to hang out in the capital city of my state, to which she said she would love to when the next parcel of her vacations come up in a couple of months.

“Just a couple more months. Aw shucks, darn it. We ought to wait.”

I told her to reach out when her schedule was clear, and we left it at that.

So, I assume at this point he’s probably following what’s in “7 Principles To Get An Ex Back.” But we’re dealing with a guy who’s needy and doesn’t have any self control.

Two weeks later I reached out asking how she is.

You shouldn’t have done that. You told her to reach out when her schedule was clear and left it at that. Two weeks later, she still hadn’t reached out and he couldn’t take any more, because he’s got no self control, his balls never dropped, and he reached out to her and went back to overpursuing.

Photo by iStock/Hiraman

We talked for a bit, she told me she was focused on getting a better job and knew she would get involved with me if we started talking more again.

So, that tells me, again, he’s trying to seek her attention and validation and begging her to spend time and give him more attention. This is not masculine, dude. You’re doing her a favor.

A few days later, when I (unfortunately) reached out again, she said she was going out with another guy and that I should not expect us to get back together.

You know he feels like a chump now. It’s brutal.

My question is, what was that all about?

Well, she probably reached out because things weren’t looking good at that particular time with the guy that she was seeing. But then, when you reached out again, things were looking good, and that’s why she said see you later.

She reaches out, agrees to meet up.

Well, she didn’t really agree to meet up. She didn’t make plans. She just dangled the carrot, “Oh, yeah. In a few months when I’ve got vacation, sure, I’ll come see you.”

Then a few weeks later blows sunshine up my ass and finally says that she’s going out with another guy. Is it possible to ever get back together?

Dude, you were never together. You were not even close to being together. You were giving her attention and validation, because she was lonely and had nothing else going on in her personal life. And she was dangling the carrot of sex and a relationship, because it didn’t really take much to keep you engaged like a little puppy dog, because you didn’t know any better.

Photo by iStock/DNY59

Even if it was a long-distance relationship?

Dude, you were not in a long distance relationship. You had a digital pen pal who really didn’t care about you. And how do I know she didn’t care about you? You booked tickets, paid for them, and then she blew you off 12 hours before you were supposed to come see her after you spent six months of your life, and God knows how many hours, maybe hundreds of hours talking to her.

You’re willing to fly there, and stay in a hotel, and take care of her and everything. She didn’t want to see you. You should have looked at that and said, “I’m out.” Or you should have gone and then just met other girls in her city. If you had already bought the tickets, you might as well have gone and enjoyed yourself.

How could I possibly compete with a guy that’s actually there near her?

Thank you for your time!


That’s why, ideally you should be dating women that are maybe 10, 15, 20 minutes away from where you live. The other thing about dating long distance, especially if you’re going to date somebody in another country, if you’re going to stay together and be in a relationship, at some point, somebody’s going to have to move. And if you’re dating internationally, you’re going to have to get married. Because at least in the States, you get a harder and harder time, the more time goes on, from the immigration people every time your girl comes over to visit you, or vice versa.

And so, at some point, if you’re not interested in getting married, then you shouldn’t be dating internationally. It’s as simple as that. And if you’re dating, say, women that live in other parts of the country or the state, at some point somebody’s got to move. And as a man, you shouldn’t move to her city to please her. You should only move because that’s where you want to live. And if you’re not interested in living where she is, and she doesn’t want to want to move, then you shouldn’t be wasting your time.

Photo by iStock/CasarsaGuru

You’ve got to think about these things ahead of time. And so, this guy got all caught up in his delusional fantasy, and it’s obvious he put this girl on a pedestal and probably was doing most of the chasing. And she enjoyed the attention while she continued looking for a guy in her city that she actually wanted to date and sleep with. And it’s obvious that after the six months of talking, she had no intention of ever meeting him. She just would dangle the carrot, because she had already made up her mind that he was a beta male, because it didn’t take much to keep him engaged. And getting attention from him is better than no attention from men at all.

But now she’s got a guy she’s dating, and so now she doesn’t care. So, she tossed him aside. And more than likely, if things go sideways with that guy, she’ll probably reach out in the future. But say she does, I’d let her do 100% of the pursuing and I’d invite her to come see you. And if she says, “Well, why don’t you come see me?” he’s like, “Well, I bought tickets and I was going to come see you, and you blew me off 12 hours before the flight. So, if you want another chance, buy some tickets and come see me. If you’re not serious about coming to see me, we don’t need to talk anymore. It’s not going to go anywhere. You’re wasting my time, and I’m not interested in that.”

“If you really want to see me, if you really mean the things you say, I’m just looking at your actions. If you’re serious about it, buy some plane tickets. I’d love to see you. And if you’re not, then hey, wish you all the best. And it’s best that you don’t contact me, unless you really want to meet in person.” You’re going to have to draw, set, and enforce that healthy boundary, and stop chasing a girl like this, dude. Seriously, have some emotional self control. Jump up and down until your balls finally drop.

The way you’ve been acting is just absolutely pathetic. This is not masculine in any way. You’re acting like a little boy that’s treating this girl like a mommy and a celebrity he’s trying to get attention from, and that’s the opposite of what’s in the book. Granted, you’ve only read it once, but you’ve been following me for four months, and you’ve only been through the book one time. That tells me you’re not really that serious of a student. Therefore, the situation you’re in is you have no one to blame but yourself.

Photo by iStock/Voyagerix

This is what happens when you’re ignorant of how attraction works. You’ll get women like this that will lead you on. It doesn’t take much. They just dangle the carrot in front of you, because they like the attention, while they’re still searching for somebody that they really like. And you’ve got to be able to bottom line the actions. If she’s not excited to see you, and like I was talking about the beginning of the video, if you’ve done two multiple hour video dates and it went really well, you should be on a plane to go see her or her coming to see you.

And if she’s not excited about you hopping on a plane to go see her, say, you spent 3 or 4 hours on video dates having some dinner together, maybe some wine or whatever, and she’s still hesitant about you coming to visit, then on the next. I wouldn’t give her any more of your time, because that just shows that there is not enough enthusiasm there on her part.

So, if you’ve got a question or a challenge and you’d like to get my help, go to UnderstandingRelationships.com, click the Products tab at the top of your screen and book a coaching session with yours truly.



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Coach Corey Wayne

Life & Peak Performance Coach. I Teach Self-Reliance. Subscribe To My Newsletter To Read My eBooks “3% Man” & “Mastering Yourself” Free: http://bit.ly/CCWeBooks