The internet is a wild and wonderful place, without it there is very little chance that Molly and I and a great many of our friends would have ever met. It doesn’t hurt that I get to work online as well, the job I do wasn’t possible all that long ago.
But it isn’t all wine and roses is it? I have had personal experience way back before the time of twitter with chatrooms and the like where I met Molly and many other fine people, many who I went on to meet in real life. But that isn’t true of everyone. I have heard countless stories from my friends of people who weren’t honest about themselves at all. A very close friend was in a four year online relationship with what they thought was a woman from Australia that turned out to be a man in Wales.
This is nothing new, people have been deceiving others for years, why they do it I will never know. Maybe they are not confident in being themselves and so they put on another personality and build a life that is better than their real life. Right up until it all falls apart, and I have yet to see a case where it hasn’t. But it has lead me to be wary of people until I meet them in person at the very least.
One of the hallmarks that I look for is the people who say “Don’t you trust me?”. It is a lovely bit of trickery isn’t it? Designed to make you feel bad about doubting someone and it works really well. You end up not listening to that little voice nagging in the back of your mind for fear of causing offense. That is almost always the way the approach goes, casting doubt while pretending to listen to your problems. I know it is a hard trap to avoid because genuine people can act in similar ways. It gets to be hard to tell the wheat from the chaff.
What it comes down to in the end is trust, because all relationships (not just D/s ones) are built on trust and if that trust is broken it is nearly impossible to rebuild. So while I am an open and trusting person I go with “Trust, but verify” and if when you try to verify you get excuses and delays you know that you have your answer to “Do you trust me?”
Because you shouldn’t.