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- Category: Romance and Marriage
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I'd throw in a couple of pesos worth of thinking regarding finding a wife or girlfriend over the Internet. Yes, there are a lot of scams going on, but it's a good way to begin to develop your pool of potential candidates.
1. Be clear on your purpose: online communications is a good way to develop friendships - not so good for falling in love. Use the net to make friends. Save the falling in love part for when you meet face to face. And be honest about just making friends too or you're the scammer if you're telling a dozen girls that you're in love with them.
2. Verify identity: try to verify that you are chatting with the person that you think you are. Too many photos are not real. Use a webcam and discover who you are really communicating with. It's nice to see a live face and hear a real voice. The most obvious scammers will be chatting with several people at once and in some instances will even have someone typing for them out of sight. It's costly though if they have to use an internet cafe, so be considerate of that reality.
3. The money request: if you've been to the Philippines, you'll know that poverty is widespread and often times poor people will be desperate people. It is not unreasonable to get a request for financial support. To avoid being scammed, you should set up some parameters for yourself and live by them.
a. how soon - I don't like being hit up for cash on my very first chat. Be polite, decline and delete from your list of friends. Over time though, if you really get to know someone well, depending on their life circumstances ... some kind of request is likely to occur. You'll probably get it in real life too, so get used to it and learn how to manage it.
b. how much and how often - helping friends in an emergency situation is not a problem for me. But at this stage of the relationship, they should not be a financial dependent.
4. On site: go to the Philippines and meet up with your friend(s). From this point on, it's like real life. So use your own judgment. How quickly someone falls in love varies from person to person.
I don't disagree with the advice that others have given about just going there, but if it's not possible, then the Internet can be a useful way to meet people if you use a little common sense.
PS from Don:
Don't fall in love over the Internet. Wait at least until you get here my strong feelings.