The Real Story
Updated July 21, 1999

December 22, 1998 - Info:: Hello there, I have been using the net for app. 3 years now. And I must say, i've been through A LOT.. So called love, the meeting of true friends, disapointment, hurt... a very wide variety of feelings and emotions. Its so amazing how the internet can effect your real life so greatly. Its scary. Its taken me 3 years now to wise up and start taking precautions. It's all because of one guy. His handle was junior. I had met him on an online game. He was one of those guys who stuck up for me when some people were giving me trouble. We preceeded to grow closer. But there was always something lacking in the relationship, i now realize. Something was always a little bit funny. I thought it was just his personality. I thought he was just a somewhat troubled person. He wrote poetry to express his feelings, and so do i, so we would share. The poetry he wrote would just lead me to believe he was just another real life reject that just wanted a friend. Someone to lean on. I gave him my phone number.!! I made him promise not to give it out to anyone, not to call unless i knew he was (we are both minors, my father knows of what i do on the net, but my mother is strictly against it) etc..etc.. it obviously did no good. You will soon learn why. We talked once. After that, for some reason, our relationship started taking a drastic change. We grew apart. And his feelings for me soon turned into a hatred. He accused me of hurting him. Hurting him? You are prob. wondering why. Well i cant tell you that, because i dont know.

One night (yes, one of those nights where you stay up til 3 in the morning with a large cup of coffee close by!) he told me we needed to talk. We got in a private chat room, and i cant even begin to tell you everything that happened that night. I was so scared. He had my phone number... he looked up more information on me. The first thing he showed me when i got into that chat room, was my address. Everything was correct. He then began threatning me. He kept telling me he was going to call my mom and tell her about everything i do on the net. As i said before, my mom is very strict. Very much against me being on the net...and if she even knew i was e-mailing people i didnt know, it would all be downhill from there. He knew this... He began sayin the strangest things. He was acting crazy. "Im gonna get my shot gun and come down there and shoot you" Sure it sounds a little silly... but it was definately possible. At least that he could come down here to where i live and cause some trouble. "I have all this information on you, im going to submit it to every newsgroup and personal ad i can find. Im going to make a webpage, especially dedicated to your information. I'll send the URL to everyone i know, im going to make your life a living hell, like youve made mine."This guy was more than disturbed... he was crazy. He had me shaking IRL... the threats he made. I was crying. I didnt know what to do. I tried talking to him, tried to settle things down. He told me to expect a call on the 13th of every month. Then he left. I told myself he was just saying that. He would forget.

I changed my handle, changed my information, became a new person (which is easy to do on the net) but everytime i would see him on an online game or something, i would leave. I figured out of sight... out of mind. Then one night i entered an chat room, and everyone had been talking about me.... about what, i still dont know. But apparently it wasnt good, because one of the other few people who had my phone number was on there. Justin. Junior was there also. Justin quickly noticed i was on and sent a chat saying. "hey, does anyone want nicole's phone number?" I sent him a private message "You wouldnt dare" His response... "wanna bet" He posted the area code.... i chatted nothing, i didnt want to draw attention to it. (Which would later prove to be a wise move) "Stop, why are you doing this?" I asked him in another private message. "Because you are a slut, and i dont like sluts" He told me. At this point i was lost. A slut? Funny how rumors spread online just as they do in real life. He posted the first 3 digits. I asked him why he was doing this. He replied because i never say hi to him and i ignore him. Well we settled that, and he didnt post anything else. However, Junior obviously was watching those numbers... they looked familiar to him. He posted my whole phone number. "Oh, oops, thats not nicoles phone number, is it?" I chatted nothing... i figured if i made it look like i was upset, people would know it was my number.. if i said nothing, they wouldnt pay attention. Im so glad i did that, who knows where i would be right now if i hadnt. I started privately chatting with junior. I would say anything to just end this. I needed junior on my side.. no matter what it would take. I told him things like "Im sorry, whatever i did. I didnt realize i hurt you. I thought you were a pretty great guy til this whole deal started" I cant remember the whole conversation, but i remember I added a few remarks like "I wish we could still be friends, and ya know, swap poems like we use to, would you like to hear a song im writing?" I had learned to change the subject like that when babysitting children. If they were upset or something, bring the subject to them. Ask them things like, whats your favorite movie, maybe we could watch it. I used this in the thing with junior. He was like a child. Upset, depressed, not caring what he put people through. He knew he couldnt get in trouble for what he did. Well, this worked. I wouldnt say we are friends, but we arent enemies. Now when i have to see him, i say hello and smile (ya know.. this kinda smile haha) and i have to act as if i enjoy his presence, really think of him as a friend. But truly, hes an enemy. I see him and my stomach gets tight and i start to shiver with fear. He has so much control over me. I cant do anything to upset him. Otherwise... who knows what could happen.

The internet is almost like a game of survival. You have to deal with things yourself, you get called to situations where you must act quickly...think things through and the such. Otherwise.. you die. The internet has a very large impact on real life. Its very scary. Well, i had just turned 14 when all this had happened (im 15 now) .... and i cant even begin to put into words how i really felt. I actually had nightmares every night. There was nothing much i could do.. my hands were tide.

I hope i havent jumbled up my information and i hope you understood it. So much had happened, and so many thought raced through my head as all this had happened. And so many details of my life made it seem all the worse. Stuff like this can happen to anyone. You never think stuff like this can happen to you. It happens when you least expect it from the people you least expect it from. Your best friends can turn out to be your worst enemies. And the people there to watch your back may decide to stab it instead. It takes a lot to trust people on the internet. You have to go through a lot... Get to know a person, how they respond to things. What they are like when they are upset... depressed...happy... then and only then would i say decide whether or not you want to trust them with even the smallest information, such as your phone number. Because they can quickly destroy your life. Im so glad my experiance wasnt as near as terrible as it could have been. It was just a prick on the finger that taught me a lesson.

Wild's Reply - I would have handled some of this differently. But I have the wisdom of age (a whole lotta age :)) on you. For example, if I were in a chatroom and some vindictive asshole started to harass me in private messages, I'd make em public by posting them for everyone to see, and let everyone know I was being harassed and stalked. If someone posted my phone number, I'd make it clear to everyone that I was being harassed and stalked, the police were involved, and these people should be avoided like the plague. Most people can't stand people who harass and stalk, even privately where they can't see it, they'll rallye to your defense and usually send the stalkers running.

November 24, 1998 - I was looking around on the net today, and I had stumbled upon your site by accident. I had been assigned to write an article on stalking, and I was looking for a few good resources. Other then my own personal experience. I'm just writing this to share my experience with others, hoping that I can maybe help.

While I was in college, I was introduced to the whole internet. At first, I didn't much care for it, but as I learned the school email system, I learned more about computers. Enough to program them, in fact, which is what I do in spare time now. Anyways, back in college, we had the VAX system. It's similar to other systems in the fact that you can see who all is on your system at any given time. Soon enough, the "phone" system started to intrigue me. That is where you pick a name and you can chat real time with anyone in the system. Outside it too, if they have a system that they can telnet on. This one guy in the system started to "call" me over it, and me, being naive at the time, was flattered that he did. We started to talk by way of this "phone." Also at this time I was using telnet programs and talkers to chat with people. He had a program in the VAX system that let him find me on any talker I was at. I was flattered by the attention. One night, we were up late talking online, and he said to let him call me. I thought nothing of it, seeing that he did live in the dorm next door to mine. See, though we lived on the same campus, we had never met face to face. After agreeing to let him call me, we talked for a good 45 minutes. He seemed sweet to me, and he asked me out for coffee that night. By this time it was about 2 in the morning, but I was planning on being up all night anyways, because I had some studying to do. Well, that night we met. We seemed to hit it off. I didn't find him particularly attrative, but he was nice and sweet, so I was willing to give it a chance when he asked me out again. We dated for a few weeks, no more then a month, when I decided that it just wasn't going to work anymore. We had a conflict of interests in everything, and we were fighting alot. And his temper scared me. Besides, we were just dating, and I was dating a few other people at the time also. After breaking it off with him in person, in the lounge of my dorm, I went back upstairs to talk with my roommate. A few minutes later, he called, begging me to take him back. After trying to let him down nice for some time, things turned into a shouting match on the phone. I told him then what I thought of him, and where he could go, in no kind terms. I then hung up on him. The phone rang again, and I knew it was him. So my roommate and I decided to go over to the computer lab in our dorm to talk to two other of out friends, and get away from the phone. Of course, I had to get on to check my email. There were two from him. Both begged to know what he did to make me upset with him.

I started to get a little upset. So I went to this certain talker that I used alot. He found me there, and and started talking to me. I was trying to be patient with him, and he asked me to go for a walk with him at one in the morning. In the cemetary at that. There was a cemetary behind the school. I told him no, because it was both very cold, and I didn't want to see him at all. Another guy I was seeing also used this talker, because it was cheaper for us to tlak online then on the phone, becasue we were long distance. The one guy started to tell off the guy that I was still seeing, so that one that I was seeing said he would just call me. We were on the phone from about 12-2 am. In that time, the phone beeped about 30 times. And I just knew who it was everytime. After I got off the phone, I went back over to the lab to talk to my friends there. I checked my email, and there were seven frmo him, ranging from "please take me back" to "I hate you" to "I love you" to "I'll kill myself if you won't have me." I wasn't scared at this time, just really, really angry. So my three friends and I decided we needed a break, let go watch TV. I forgot to mention that in the emails, he said that he stood outside of the dorm for an hour waiting for me to come out. I should mention that it was about 25F degrees at the time. So in order to go downstairs (you can see the stairs to go downstairs from outside) we had to sneak down. Which made me all the more angry for having to sneak around my own dorm. We sat down there for about an hour, and talked and laughed, which got me in a better mood. We then decided to go back up to the lab, and just stay online. I had to write a paper anyways, so that was fine with me. And I also said that I wasn't going to let some idiot keep me offline. In that hour, I got about 13 emails. All saying the same things. Some were 7 pages long of nothing but I love you, and some were the same length saying I hate you, I'm going to kill myself. This made me angier, and I finally wrote him one back, replying if that is what he intended to do, then he would have already, and not have told me about it. Then I got offline to write a paper.

When I got back on at 6:30 am, after a shower, and finishing my paper, he had flooded my email system, and if I didn't get rid of some stuff, it would automatically delete all that I had. So I deleted all of his, not bothering to read any of them. I then went to this one talker to talk to one of my friends, that also happened to be a police officer. I told him what was going on, and in this time, he aske me to email him anything that I had. I didn't have anything, but I promised that the next things I got from him, I would. Well, what do you know, he called on the computer phone. I cut and pasted this whole conversation and sent it to my friend.

The conversation was nothing more then a longer, angrier and more insitant, on both our parts, play of the night I just had. He sent a few more emails, and after forwarding those, I got offline to go to class. I then came back, and he called. After a heated conversation, I hung up on him, and went to sleep. I had shut the ringer off for an hour in order to be able to fall asleep. I know that the phone rang for on campus calls a few times, but I was in a sleepy fog. Then it rang for an outside call. Thinking that it was my parents, I answered it. It turns out that it was my police friend, calling to say that he just sent the police to the campus, because this guy had threated my life in such a way that made it sound serious. He said that if he couldn't have me, no one would, that he would make me love him, and so on. I still don't know what all was said online to my friend. (All this threatening was done in a talker room full of people). No one will tell me even to this day what was said. After the cops came, and a restraing order was served, I wouldn't go anywhere by myself for a long time. The emails continued. I mailed the server that copies, and he lost all his privlages. They still continued however, becasue he had other sites he could mail from. The emails tapered down, and any calls he made to me stopped. I thought that I was safe again, finally. Then he came to the dorm, and called the room. My roomate went down instead of me. She wouldn't let me go. He was standing there crying, with roses, begging her to let him see me. She refused. He kept crying, saying that he loves me, and he knows that I love him, didn't he go through enough already, coulnd't I see that he passed my test and was worthy of my love? She told him off, and brought whatever he brought up to me. I looked at the flowers and threw them in the garbage, and tore up the letter he wrote to me, not bothering to read it.

Visits from him to my dorm were put to an end by the monitors of the dorm. Calls trickled to a stop. I still get occasional email from him, telling me that he loves me, why am I still doing this, when am I finally going to let everyone know that I love him. I choose to ignore those emails, rather then get upset over them. All this happened two years ago. Since then, I've stopped dating around, and have a steady boyfriend of a year. He get upset over the mail now, but I don't let him know about most of it. I just wanted to write this to let people know what can happen to them, even if they are careful. And if you have any advice/comments about this, they would be greatly appriciated. Thank you for your time.

August 10, 1998 - Hi.i am a 16 year old femaile i had just gotten into this chat room and this guy said hello to me i was fine with that so we chated and got to "know" each other so i decide to give him my e-mail adress. Well the next day i checked my e-mail there was a card on there from him stating that he "loved" me well i wrote him back saying that it was moving to fast for me. Well we meet in the chat room the next day. He told me that he loved me and no matter what we were going to be together.I didn't go to that room for about a week and no e-mail from him so i thought it is ok to go back.Well i thought wrong he was there.He was telling me about his past and present and it freaked me out real bad so i told him it was over.Later that night i got an e-mail stating that no matter were i go he will always be there and if he couldnt have me he was going to make my life HELL. Well i told my mom and she delt with it..And luckly i aint ever heard from him again. so please be careful on who you chat with it could end up losing your life.

Wild's Reply - Even if you don't lose your life, simply losing your feeling of safety, your peace of mind is enough. If you're a minor, tell your parents. Don't worry about their reactions, they will help you. If you don't tell them, you put your entire family, not just yourself, at risk.


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