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October 15, 2021 7 min read

How could they be so stupid?

Photo by Josh Calabrese on Unsplash

1) Buying a dog from a backyard or unreputable breeder after saying ‘adopt don’t shop’ for years

2) Giving away thousands, or hundreds of thousands of dollars (in gift cards perhaps) to a stranger online in a scam

3) Breaching Covid-19 restrictions and lockdown, for instance driving across the border for a shopping trip

A transformation in our mind happens, and they become ‘those people’

So why do we struggle to comprehend peoples’ actions in these circumstances?

‘But all I’m saying is… I get it in certain circumstances, maybe, but I just don’t understand how the same thing keeps happening over and over again to these people/ Why don’t they learn?/ Who doesn’t realise gift card requests are scams by now?/ Sure, maybe the widows and the elderly people would fall for it, but what about that 35 year old?/ Why wouldn’t you just stay in lockdown?/ How can they not see how bad it is to adopt from a breeder when there are thousands of rescue dogs looking for a home?’

1) Privilege

2) Lack of empathy

Perhaps you’ve been widowed for 5 years.

Your children don’t talk to you — they won’t even return your calls most of the time, not because of a falling out. They’re busy with their own lives, partners and children. Even if they are in the same state, you hardly see them, not through your own choice.

Sure, you have $300,000 sitting in your bank account from the estate of your deceased husband, but it’s not like that money is tangible to you. You have a house and afford your bills on a fortnightly payment you receive from the estate.

So what harm is there in drawing from that estate to make payments to the one person who has shown you a deep affection and love in 5 if not more years?

The one person who seems to see you in this world?

It doesn’t start out seeming like it’s risky. You feel in control. You are the one withdrawing the funds; you don’t hand over passwords yet.

And then, when you’ve known this person for 6 whirlwind romantic weeks (in which you’ve felt the most understood, more than ever before), maybe you offer to give them a password to access your account. Because you know you can trust them eternally, they haven’t done anything to burn you yet.

And then if you show any signs of hesitance or refusal, you find yourself unknowingly on the receiving end of classic domestic abuse tactics, for example:

- Being put down and ignored in response to what the scammer sees as ‘bad behaviour.’

- Being love bombed in response to what the scammer sees as ‘good behaviour.’

- Being gradually isolated from every single person in your life as you find yourself defending the one person who clearly loves you the most

In the Heat of the Moment

So what is the takeaway here?

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