I was very fond of online groups, as Facebook didn’t exist at the time. We used to go into Yahoo and Hotmail rooms. I was very happy in groups with people from many cultures. I had developed a huge group with a mixed membership; some members were from the United States, some were from India, some were from Europe, and so on. Since my friends were from various parts of the world, they would sign in late at night. In our Yahoo group we took attendance daily, like in a classroom, and would fine the people who were absent for three days. Ah! The good old days.
Then I met a guy from my homeland, Pakistan. Rather, I bumped into him because my friends were not online that day. He clicked me and begin talking. His name was Aamir and he was a law student in his last year of school. Being a native of Lahore, he was proud of the fact that he could eat his fill, which made me laugh out loud. He seemed really naïve and funny. He was my age and was very attractive. He owned small turtles, pigeons, colorful fish, and a dog. He got excited when he told me about his pets. This appealed to me. I invited him to my group, though he turned me down because he wasn’t into them. Instead, he added me to his private messenger.
We become good friends. He showed me his picture albums and webcam. He invited me to voice chat and we promised that we would meet again the next day.
One thing worth sharing here is the fact that I did not know when I became attracted to Aamir. He was just a simple, common guy with nothing special about him. Maybe it was the level of our frankness; I never get frank with anybody, but once I get personal with someone, I have difficulty holding back. Or maybe I was attracted to him because of his naivety and simplicity. Whatever it was, I enjoyed the fact that I had found a new friend. He was not an ordinary “Yahoo group” man who would click you, ask for your “a/s/l” (age/sex/location) and then, after confirming that you were a female, try to eat you up from behind the computer. The most special thing about Aamir was that he looked at me as a friend and not simply a female.
It became a routine to meet with him instead of with my groups. Consequently, I lost all my group contacts while retaining only one friend—Aamir. We were becoming so close and trusting that we shared our personal problems with each other. He was a great help and always tried to resolve my issues. I, on the other hand, was becoming too comfortable with sharing whatever came to mind.
Perhaps I had developed a blind trust in him. I was relying on him for everything. I asked him what I should wear every day, and which subjects I should study in school. He would pinpoint my mistakes; I liked this and regarded it as a positive thing, as it gave me the opportunity to learn from my errors. By nature, I am a person who looks for a shield, a protector, a guide for myself, and I found one in him.