For example - let's say that Guy A is actually a 45 year old in his basement, but he pretends to be a young girl on a chat site. He meets Guy B, who claims to be a young boy, even though Guy B is also around 45 and is doing the same thing Guy A is.

Guy A will believe Guy B's lie, even though Guy A is doing the same thing, and Guy B will in turn believe Guy A's lie.

What is a word that could describe this sort of situation, if there is any?

  • 2
    it's called "ironic justice" or "serves them bloody right"
    – Mari-Lou A
    Sep 12, 2015 at 4:21
  • Sounds like a couple of conceited narcissistic morons.
    – Jim
    Sep 12, 2015 at 5:32
  • 1
    mutual gullibility. If you want to apply this to your particular example, you could say mutual catfish gullibility.
    – J.R.
    Sep 12, 2015 at 8:36
  • Why can't they just go and kick a ball somewhere?
    – WS2
    Sep 12, 2015 at 9:52
  • I don't think there's a common phrase for this, other than ironic, which is very general.
    – Barmar
    Sep 12, 2015 at 20:06

2 Answers 2


You may perhaps say:

Both dupes and liars

  • Dupe definition from Cambridge dictionary : someone who has been ​tricked.

Good luck getting all of that wrapped up in one word, but I'll offer this single-entry phrase:
false hope.

CDO defines this as:

confident ​feelings about something that might not be ​true

while the Urban Dictionary defines this as:

To look forward to something that has a strong chance of not happening and you may or may not know it

Then there's this quote (found on Wikipedia), which contrasts optimism and false hope:

Hopeful people are like the Little Engine that Could, [because] they keep telling themselves “I think I can, I think I can”. Such positive thinking bears fruit when based on a realistic sense of optimism, not on a naïve “false hope”.

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