A young woman thought she had met someone special online. They had been talking enthusiastically and at length online for many months. In fact, they had fallen in love - or so it seemed - and the natural next step was to remove the physical distance between them.
Which is exactly what TikTok-er Hannah Ross did. She packed up her life and moved to Singapore to be with her long-distance love. When she arrived, however, she got the shock of her life.
In a viral video that's racked up over 338,000 views, Ross, a UK-based personal trainer, shared how she moved to Singapore to meet the man she had fallen for online, but soon wished she hadn't.
Photo / TikTok
The video shows Ross beaming as she stands in front of the window in her hotel room, with the caption: "When you move to Singapore to meet the guy you've been talking to for months…"
The second frame of the video reveals Ross with a packed suitcase, looking dejected as she leaves the hotel room, with just two words overlaying the footage.
"He's married," it read.
One stunned TikTok viewer replied: "HE'S WHAT?"
Another added: "Holy noodles, that's a twist."
While another suggested a cunning way to get revenge.
They wrote: "Take screenshots of all your conversations and send to his wife – this kind of guy needs no second chances."
Studies suggest that online dating and dating apps can make people feel more insecure about their appearance and bodies - and even become depressed.
Online dating has lost much of its stigma with 59 per cent of Americans thinking it's a good way to meet people, according to a poll from the Pew Research Center. It can, however, amplify your sense of rejection, which can take its toll.
Rejection hurts and not just emotionally. Studies have shown that the same areas of the brain that become activated when we experience physical pain are also activated when we experience rejection.
"Of course, emotional pain is only one of the ways rejections impact our well-being," psychologist Dr Guy Winch said during his December 2015 TED Talk.
"Indeed, our natural response to being dumped by a dating partner or getting picked last for a team is not just to lick our wounds but to become intensely self-critical. We call ourselves names, lament our shortcomings, and feel disgusted with ourselves.
"In other words, just when our self-esteem is hurting most, we go and damage it even further. Doing so is emotionally unhealthy and psychologically self-destructive yet every single one of us has done it at one time or another."
This article was first published by the NZ Herald and is republished here with permission.