So, you’re all my friends (most of you — my regular readers, at least) and I trust you when I’ve got burning questions of how to handle life situations. So I present this one to you for discussion. But first, my situation, as told by poet laureate Rockwell with Michael Jackson.
Anyway, a while back, this friend of a friend (and when I say friend of a friend, he was only her friend because he found her on Yahoo or something …) started reading my MySpace blog. He requested to be my MySpace friend. Still, no problem. Many months pass, he’s not entirely awful, I build enough trust to give him my cell phone number because he was planning a visit to West Virginia.
Bad move. Turns out this guy’s a serial text messager with chain text messages, forwarded text messages, stream of consciousness text messages, etc. That’s fine if you’re one of my friends. In fact, I look forward to my friend Angie’s public transit text messages. However … here’s where things start to get a little creepy.
We’ll call him … Pedro … comes through Charleston for a visit so I agree to meet him for breakfast. BAD idea. The rest of the day was text messages about how beautiful I was. This, mind you, is from a guy with a live in girlfriend who also has a teenage stepdaughter. At least 20 messages.
At that point, I start to distance myself from him a little. I don’t respond to any text messages. I don’t really respond to any e-mails or MySpace messages. Then, he has some psychodrama with this married girl who he can’t let go of and he writes me to crying about something this woman said on her Yahoo 360 blog. Jacque … unloads. Jacque tells Pedro that she’s never in her life seen someone who is well into their 30s act like a bunch of high schoolers and I had no desire to be a part of this high school drama club anymore. Take it elsewhere.
Then the apologizing starts. I think at some point, I put a half-hearted “OK, whatever” back but that’s it. Jacque still ignores text messages. Jacque still ignores e-mails. All of it. Jacque moves to Washington.
And again … it starts. Mind you, I’ve made a solid, deliberate effort to have NO CONTACT with this guy, Pedro, in any way. I start getting long winded e-mails about how he’s sorry he’s not been a good friend and written me more. What?! I don’t respond to any of those. Then the text messages start.
Here are a sampling of text messages from the man with a live-in girlfriend:
“Hello beautiful. Just thinking of your smiling face.”
“Just wanted you to know somebody loves you.”
“Love you my friend”
“Just thinking about how beautiful you are.”
I wish I would have saved them all. They’re precious.
So, it happens that his Facebook is hacked. He is deleted. I use that as an opportunity to NOT re-add him. I also take the opportunity to delete him from MySpace (you have to be my friend on MySpace to see my profile). Since doing that about a month ago, he’s requested friendship at least a dozen times between the two. Every single one denied. I got a MySpace message about a month ago that said “i hope you have a wonderful weekend…havent talked much lately. i just wanted you to know you were on my mind.”
Yes. I haven’t talked to you because you scare me. That’s why.
From two weeks before that one:
“good morning my friend. how are you so far today? *HUGS* you are so beautiful. I just wanted you to know that and hear it today 🙂 ”
Today, he started following me on Twitter. I realize that anybody can follow you on Twitter, but that’s what did it. I’m officially done. I now am more creeped out than I ever have been.
How would you handle this? I’ve never really come out and said “Look, Pedro. I think you’re crazy and I don’t want you to talk to me, contact me or anything ever again.” I would think that constant rejection and silence would be enough to get the message, but I’m clearly wrong. Here’s something else to consider: This is a person I’ve met, in person, for an hour, one time. This isn’t someone I grew up with, dated, etc. I’ve NEVER felt the same kind of connection to this person as he has to me, and it’s just a little unsettling. I have a feeling that Pedro lives his entire life online, so the loss of one of these “online” friends is probably devastating, but still.
In case Pedro reads, and I don’t know that he does, this is why I don’t talk to you. You sufficiently managed to creep me out, and I have a high, high creep out tolerance.
How should I proceed, panel?