The audacity of some people, especially someone you trusted and considered to be a friend. You believe you’re helping someone, only to be taken advantage of. These individuals now share their stories of regret over offering help in the first place. Content has been edited for clarity.
“I was at the park playing with my kids. A neighbor drove past, saw us and the mom asked if her kids could join mine while she went to the grocery store for a second.
Two hours later, my kids are ready to go home and I’ve still got the neighbor’s kids. I cram everyone (7 kids total) into my vehicle without nearly enough seats or seatbelts and proceed to drive home. The neighbor’s car is in her driveway. I knocked on the door to drop off her kids. She’s watching TV. There wasn’t even a thank you. Never again.”
“I had a friend who went through a rough breakup, and then a month or so later needed to move. I offered our spare room in Tahoe for the time before my stepson was due to move into it after the summer. Figured she could use some nature to help her reset.
Everything was great for the first few months… then she went legitimately crazy when her mom died. Pacing and talking to herself, thought the CIA had bugged the apartment. We helped as much as we could but needed her GONE when she started thinking my husband and I were undercover agents. That’s when I worried she’d feel like she needed to protect herself from us.
Had the cops and paramedics out several times, but they wouldn’t take her because she didn’t want to go to the hospital. It took two tries to get a restraining order, but not before she trashed our bedroom and stole some money we had in a drawer.
About two weeks after she was out, I got a text from a friend with a news report of a woman who had run her car fully into the conference room of a business the next city over (no one was hurt). Bystanders said she got out of the car with her little dog and just started walking down the road as she had simply parked her car. It was my friend.”
Sweet Old Lady?
“My husband and I used to take walks together after dinner every night, and every now & then, we’d bump into this older lady walking her dog. We’d exchange pleasantries since our baby loves her dog. During lockdown, we started getting close to her since we would take our daughter to run around the nearest open space to our apartment and it happened to be outside her serviced apartment, so she’d talk to us while our daughter played with her dog.
Anyway, about 3 weeks ago, she told us she lost her wallet and asked if she could borrow $100 while she waited for her replacement cards to arrive. She’s alone in Singapore and since we know how it feels to be all alone in a new country, we lent her $500 in case COVID delayed her card replacement. We considered her a friend and even had dinner together once the lockdown ended. We even let her carry our baby, so we didn’t think much of this.
Two weeks ago, she called me up to her apartment while I was out with my baby, saying it was an emergency. She told me for her loan to come in, she has to pay a stamp duty of $48,000 and she’s just missing $18,000 in her Singaporean bank account. She claimed her bank in NY needed her to show up in person for a fund transfer so she wanted us to loan her $18,000 for 2 weeks.
She started crying, claiming that a year’s of work would go down the drain if this loan of US$200 didn’t come in. Since I used to work in a bank, I know her story is implausible and there are so many holes in it. The documents she showed me in a rush also seemed fake from the quick glances I could get, but I didn’t want to believe someone I trusted could be a scammer, so I asked my husband to come over and talk to her while I watched over the baby. My husband insisted she email the documents so he could read through them & after we got it, it was even more clear that it was a scam.
My husband told me all signs pointed to her being a scammer, but I still wanted to believe she was a friend, so I called her up warning her she may be the victim of a scam. She got really insistent that everything was legit and had been vetted by her lawyers. She started throwing terms that she thought sounded intimidating but used them incorrectly, which made me doubt her story even more. She got very pushy in trying to get the money from us.
After I told her I wasn’t comfortable transferring the funds, she approached my husband separately and tried asking for the money from him. She insinuated he was too dumb to understand what she was doing and that she would double the money in 2 weeks if he would just transfer the funds immediately. That’s when I finally realized my husband was right and she was in on the scam, not a victim of a scammer.
We filed a police report and found out that she’s currently under investigation for scamming 4 people a year ago. She’s not in Singapore for work, as she claimed, she’s basically on a travel ban while the police investigate her. We’re told to act normally around her for safety but damn it’s hard.
Nope, she’s still not returning us the $500. Even worse, when I asked her for it point blank, she acted like I was too dumb to understand how international fund transfers work and should know it takes over 3 weeks for money to arrive. Are you kidding me?”