Dear Meredith,

Long time lurker, first time writer here. I met a man through an online video game about 5 years ago. We played together a lot over those years and we became good friends. I’m in my mid-30s and divorced. He’s in his late 30s, never married. He asked me to leave my job and my town and spend time with him on the road, promising he’d take care of me. I was a bit hesitant because even though we knew each other for some time, we only really spent that one weekend together. Now the flags. The first time we met, his company was in trouble and there was a pay freeze. When I left after the first weekend, he was stuck in that city for a while so I lent him some money (not much since I’m broke too) so he wouldn’t starve.

His company was also doing away with their cell phone plan. Since I’m struggling myself and looking for ways to save money, I agreed to add his phone to my account and we agreed to split the bill. That would save me about $40/month. The first phone bill was due a few months later. But he didn’t pay it. I kept getting excuses. I was getting a bit peeved and I let him know that I was upset that I was paying for something I wasn’t supposed to have to afford. I then asked him how he thought he was going to support me if he couldn’t support himself? That’s the last time he spoke to me. All of a sudden he took me off Facebook, took me off his friends list in the online game, and pretty much cut off all contact with me while bad mouthing me to other people we knew in the game, calling me every name in the book, saying what a terrible person I was for “making him feel bad.” After all I’ve done for him. We haven’t spoken in almost a month. I’m stuck in a 2 year contract for his phone. Why did he do this to me? Should I write him? If so what do I say?

– Left Hanging, Cambridge

Hoss Goldstein’s Answer

A: You’ve learned a lesson, LH. The right guy will not ask you to quit your job and hang with him on the road. Not after spending one weekend together. The right guy will not borrow money from you after your first date. If he’s that desperate for cash, he’ll ask his friends and family for help. You would never ask a new suitor/pen pal for money, right? The Golden Rule goes both ways. Don’t worry about your reputation on the gaming website. People will see through him — and something tells me that he’s done this before. Get closure by paying the fee to get out of that cell phone contract. Cut ties. It can’t be any more expensive than paying the bill for two years. Readers? Should she yell? Is this how the Golden Rule works? How should she approach him in this online community? Will people see through his act? What are your rules about borrowing/loaning money?


El Pres Answer

This has to be the Love Letter when Hoss realizes she’s hit rock bottom right?   Like that her little fake love letter scam she has going is about to run it’s course.  I mean she’s not even pretending that she’s getting real letters anymore.   Whatever I’ll play along…

Dear Left Hanging In Cambridge

Wake up sister.   You are in your mid 30’s.  You are divorced, single and gross.   You play online video games to pass the time.   You decided to quit your job and move to a different city to be with a guy you met playing Doom on the internet.    What I’m saying is you’re not exactly  the pick of the litter.    If this guy wants you to pay his cell phone bill you shut up and pay his cell phone bill.    You ain’t getting any younger.   You take what you can get and lock it up.  Here endth the lesson.