7 Most Common Types of Nightmare Online Daters (And How to Avoid Them)

27. August 2010

If you are searching for love then the internet seems like the ideal place for you. Having outgrown their social stigma as the web equivalent of the school’s smelly kids, online dating sites are currently booming, boasting over 40 million users in America alone.

With such numbers, the law of average basically guarantees you that at least one of those people will share some of your shameful obsessions and not find you physically repulsing to boot. Add to that the comforting veil of anonymity and you have yourself a key to a brave new world of opportunities that you will never have to traverse alone.

Like this, only with more sex.

Sadly, as with all things, searching for love online has its dark side, which (as with all things) happens to be people. Everything that makes internet dating great (huge selection and anonymity) often times spells awkward and mentally scarring times for an unfortunate group of users when they run into the Nightmare Online Dater (or NOD). Luckily, there are a number of things you can do to avoid being among that group.

No… not this…

After carefully studying hundreds of stories of online dates went to Hell, we started to notice that no matter who the NOD in question was he or she always seemed to fit into one of 7 easy to distinguish categories. For the sake of not letting them ruin online dating for the rest of us, below we present the most common types of Nightmare Online Daters, the real accounts of their past deeds, and the ways you can avoid them.

7. The Liar

The Stories of Horror:

Jill” from the San Francisco Bay Area writes about her date with the “handsome bike enthusiast” she met online:

The only thing I recognized was the bike. He resembled his pics the way Stuart Little resembles Mickey Mouse. His teeth were black, absolutely disgusting, and he had a cyst beside his left eye. He had to be 10 to 15 years older than me…”

Sarah” from New York recalls her brief acquaintance with Mr. “Baby, I am like 5 minutes away from NY, honest!” who turns out to permanently reside so close to Pennsylvania he probably can see the Liberty Bell out of his window:

Getting together for date #1 was an Act of Congress; he went on and on about the train schedules. Then he cancelled out on date #2. He led me to believe that he lived someplace close in Jersey like Hoboken; turns out he was in Jersey alright…the part of Jersey that’s near the Pennsylvania border.”

Anne” shares her online dating experience with a man she took for an eloquent, well-mannered fan of music. She was wrong:

“At dinner, he asked me inappropriate questions such as if I would sleep with another woman for money (…) The rest of the night involved more speeding, more awful ska music, and his high school-ish antics…such as "punching"(…) At one point, he turned one of his songs especially loud while announcing, "listen! this one’s about DATE RAPE! Probably not the best song to be playing now, huh? Ha!".”

Red Flags:

They claim to like the same things you do, but never offer any concrete opinions on the subject.

The photo they sent you might possibly be a little vintage as evidence by the Steely Dan T-shirt and Hammer pants.

If they sound too good to be true, they probably are.

Date Escape Strategies:

After witnessing that the tall handsome blonde from the pictures is actually a 5-foot short balding retiree, claim you are a friend of his date (that is you) who had to suddenly go to the hospital to give birth. This works especially well if you are supposed to be a man.

Constantly “answer calls” from one of your 10 “children.” When your date inquires, “what’s that all about?” reassure them that it’s perfectly safe because their father/mother is in prison.

Tell your date that you are very self-conscious and ask them if it’s obvious you went through a sex change operation.


6. The “One Quirk”

The Stories of Horror:

Beth” from Portland talks about the perfect example of the One Quirk NOD after the seemingly normal guy she met online brought more than his sense of humor to the date:

Online dating can produce some of the worst dates ever. The last guy I went out with brought a sock puppet–a sock puppet–on our date and tried to talk to me with it. To be cute, I think. But it freaked me out. Seriously. Maybe I’m old-fashioned, but no sock puppets, please.”

“Rayone’s” story is a little bit creepier. In her own words (emphasis ours, horror entirely her date’s):

“He politely asks to kiss me, and I let him because it is obvious he hasn’t seen any type of action in a loooong time, and after his arm goes around the back of my neck, his other hand comes up and starts stroking the base of my throat and neck. He whispers "I like bones, collarbones." Okay, he’s got my neck in both his hands, and my oxygen could be cut off at any moment, so what else could the response to his next breathily whispered "I like you. Do you like me?"”

Jane” was the luckiest one of all. She actually got 2 good dates from a decent middle-aged gentleman. All seemed to be going well until their 3rd meet when:

“He opened a bottle of wine and then informed me that he had decided it was time for us to have sex! I told him I wasn’t ready for that and he proceeded to insult me, telling me that something was wrong with me. He then started arguing about it and informed me that he had discussed this with his 90-year-old mother and that she told him he should expect sex on the third date.”

Red Flags:

None! It’s virtually impossible to spot the One Quirk NOD from a distance. You have to get to know them first but by then they may already have put on pantyhose and asked you to spank them with a cactus.

Date Escape Strategies:

Fight fire with fire! One Ms. “Anonymous” writes about her experience with a fidgety, mumbling NOD and how she got rid of him by smelling her armpit, though in reality any disturbing quirk would probably work. Try picking the lint out of your belly button or sticking food up your nose. The sky’s the limit!

Explain how nothing gets you hotter than the LACK of sock puppets or disturbing bone fetishes and how the mood has already been ruined. Later change your phone number, repaint your house and preferably get a wig.

Invest in a Taser. Use it when you want to the date to end quickly.

5. The Cheater

The Stories of Horror:

There are more than enough stories of guys (because they are always guys for some reason) using the internet as a handy means to the end that is the destruction of their families, including:

  • Men who consider their girlfriends mere “technical difficulties” (“Ashley”)
  • Older gents who are “totally amidst a separation from [their] spouse[s],”
  • even if their partners are not aware of it just yet (nor will they ever be)
  • (“Anonymous”).

Red Flags:

 (Applies to men ages 20-40) His suit, shoes and tie look surprisingly clean and well maintained, so someone out there must be looking out for him. Best case scenario it’s his mom, though you probably don’t want to touch that can of worms.

Your date has commented on how “completely unmarried [he is]” roughly 20 times in the last 5 minutes. Also, he is lying.

Wedding ring tan line, desperation in the eyes, and a coffee mug that says “World’s Best Father/Husband” are universally recognized signs of a continuous marriage. He might possibly be a divorcee, but unless you like being called a family-wrecking harlot then stay far away from these types.

Date Escape Strategies:

Start nagging like crazy. If these guys are looking for an escape from their wives and girlfriends give them a little taste of home. Possibly topics of conversation include “When will you finally make manager at that dead end job of yours?!” You’d be surprised how often this one hits right on target.

4. The Control Freak Egocentric

The Stories of Horror:

“Lily” writes how she thought she had met the perfect gentleman online. He was charming, he was caring AND he promised her a mountain of credit cards. But it all came with a terrible price:

“[Then] he says, You know what? If you can do this little thing for me, we will work out and you can have all the credit cards you want. DRINK MY PEE, baby. I left.”

“John Fitzgerald” dubbed by The Gawker as possibly “the worst person in the world.” We will just let John tell you a little bit about himself via an e-mail he wrote after being turned down on an online dating site (trust us, it’s well worth the read):

6 pictures of just your head and your inability to answer a simple question lets me know one thing. You are not in shape. I am a trainer on the side, in fact, I am heading to the gym in 26 minutes! So next time you meet a guy of my caliber, instead of trying to turn it around, just get to the gym! I will even give you one free training session, so you don’t blow it with the next 8.9 on Hot or Not, Ivy League grad, Mensa member, can bench/squat/leg press over 1200 lbs., has had lunch with the secretary of defense, has an MBA from the top school in the country, lives in a Buckhead high rise, drives a Beemer convertible, has been in 14 major motion pictures, was in Jezebel’s Best dressed, etc. Oh, that is right, there aren’t any more of those!”

“Tracy” at one point might have thought that honesty is a virtue but we bet that changed after her date shared this wonderful bit of personal information with her:

We are in the middle of eating, having a really pleasant conversation, then out of the blue, he says, "Ya know, I expect my woman to obey me"…I’m thinking…OK, so I ask, "what do you mean, like in bed?" (I’m thinking Master/slave thing) and he says "No, when I tell my woman to do something I expect them to do it."”

Red Flags:

Your date offers to pick you up from your house, tells you what you should wear and waits in the car for you. Later, they criticize your choice of wardrobe and weight.

At a restaurant your web lover yanks the menu out of your hand, orders for you and ends up eating everything himself (yes, again, it’s usually reserved for men) – [“Dawn,” ???]. Bonus points will be awarded if he explains his actions by claiming you should probably cut down on all the food.

Will. Not. Shut. Up. About. Themselves.

Date Escape Strategies:

Start talking about yourself. Don’t be rude, but damn it let your date see you as a human being with an actual name, experiences and dreams. It usually puts them off so hard they will most likely run out the window and into heavy traffic. Do not try to discourage them from doing that.

Simply walk away without a word, do not turn around and ignore all future calls from this person. Their massive egos will usually fill in the blanks themselves why you just went up and left, probably something about you being a closet homo/heterosexual.

Make up an ex-lover who has surprisingly done the exact same things as your date but better. Your date was in a commercial? Your ex directs commercials for a living (for the Pope!) Your date promises you a BMW? Well, your ex OWNS the BMW company!  Just keep it up. The thought that someone out there might be better than them often sends the egocentric NODs into pants wetting shock.

3. The Insecure Loser

The Stories of Horror:

CJ” from South Carolina writes about her experience with the insecure NOD, demonstrating that one of the most important things on a first date is to never appear too needy:

This little insecure jerk would not stop grabbing me and trying to shove his tongue down my throat all night (…)Inside, he was jealous of my friends (my best girl friend and a gay friend) and kept trying to corner me and have me to himself. He couldn’t dance (even though he went on and on about how good he was) and had terrible breath.”

 “Bonnie” on the other hand demonstrates the dangers of meeting a guy after just one mail, because valuing one’s life apparently wasn’t enough. Luckily Bonnie did not get murdered:

“By the time he was on his third Glenlivet on the rocks, he asked me if I wanted to go away some weekend to Vegas. Not only that, he said he’d take me shopping before the trip and buy me some short skirts and 5-inch heels so he could show me off around town — it was a fantasy of his”

Red flags:

Your date tells you that you are the most beautiful person they have ever met. Before you even sent them your picture or made it clear what gender you are exactly.

The aforementioned tongue-throat-excavation missions whenever people are looking. Bonus points will be awarded if your date tries to take away your cigarettes because they are unhealthy (“CJ,” South Carolina).

Date Escape Strategies:

Tell them you want to doll yourself up especially for them. Have them wait in the restaurant/mall/cinema while you go home and slip into something more elegant/sexier. Actually get in your car and drive in one direction until the gas runs out.

2. The Pervert

The Stories of Horror:

“Jayne Hitchcock” recalls a past online flirter whose first e-mail:

(…) claimed he was a real cowboy in New Mexico and wanted to have sex with me bareback on his horse. Oy."

15-year old “Jessica’s” story is infinitely more disturbing. She thought she was meeting a 25-year-old businessman in the mall. What she got was:

“(…) a 5’7" balding 40 year old weighing at least 300 pounds.“

Unsurprisingly, the topics of conversation included how he was most interested in Jessica, her friend and a motel (and possibly 2 gallons of mayo).

A certain Ms. “Icked Out” shares her story of your typical pervert NOD who should probably cancel his subscription to Penthouse:

“So he calls me the next day to tell me again what a great time he had and to invite me to lunch that afternoon. As I’m preparing to let him down easy, he continues, "I had such a good time last night, I went home and wrote a story about how I WISH the date had ended. Then I posted it on my friend’s porno website this morning."”

Red flags:

You’re in luck, because spotting The Pervert is most often very simple. Obvious yet subtle signs include him (because let’s be honest, life isn’t that beautiful yet for The Pervert to be a woman) sending you naked pictures with detailed description of what he plans to do to you. Him being an obvious pedophile is also a dead giveaway.


Date Escape Strategies:

Excuse yourself and hide in the bathroom. Wait until creepy date takes a hint and leaves (“Jessica,” ???) or call the Police/your older brother.

Tell them that you only have sex in the missionary position with the lights off and absolutely no moaning or sudden movements. Then watch them disappear in a cloud of dust and deflated erections.

Mace to the face. Subtle yet powerful.

1. The Scammer

The Stories of Horror:

An American man who for obvious reasons wanted to remain anonymous, tells the internet of his encounter with The Scammer and his giant, throbbing idiocy: He met a nice, sexy, well spoken, educated, charming, cute, and perfect in every conceivable way Russian girl. After completely overlooking the suspicious fact that this wonderful person was interested in HIM of all people, he decided she simply must visit and marry him immediately. But there was a problem… see, her strange country gets awfully distrusting of people traveling and they will need to see about a thousand dollars in cash to let the love of your life leave the country. Let’s just let the man himself finish the story:

I think I have been scammed. I have sent this individual $2,000.00 and now I find out his/her visa is a fake. How do I get my money back?”

Though it is not explicitly stated, it is widely believed nearly a dozen Embassy employees died of laughter the second they read that.

Red flags:

Filter any online date mail for the word “money.” Delete them immediately.

Date Escape Strategies:

None, because the sad yet obvious truth is that there won’t be any date. If however you decide to follow your heart and pay the lovely “Natasha” a visit in person we can recommend one thing. When you eventually get kidnapped by the mob, beg them to at least call an ambulance after they harvest your kidneys. They probably won’t but, hey, hope springs eternal, right?

Stories taken from:






Leave a Comment

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: