Documentary: Untold: The Girlfriend who didn’t exist

Right, after 2.5 years, I’m finally tested covid positive. So the good thing is I don’t have to travel to work (but I’m still working from home), and I have time to flip to Netflix again!

This is what I watched yesterday:

Untold: The Girlfriend Who Didn't Exist' Effectively Unpacks One Of College  Football's Craziest Scandals [Review]
Untold: The girlfriend who didn’t exist

Obviously, spoiler ahead so if you might watch it maybe do not read on. But I’m not going to be writing synopsis of the documentary, but more of what I think and feel after watching it, so if you don’t mind that, read on! (I mean, some people just don’t mind being told the ending before they watch a movie!)

I believe just like many other audience, we feel really sorry for the NFL footballer Manti Te’O, watching how his life was ruined falling in love with this “girl” online. But when we really looked at it, did he do anything wrong, at all??

The answer is clearly a big No. In fact he is portrayed as such a well-brought up kid, kind, religious, focused, determined, influential and inspirational. We can’t guarantee that his future was definitely going to be much brighter than what he has now should this not happen, but we can be almost sure about that based on how he was like before it all came out as a “hoax”. (He is a victim in this hoax but portrayed by the reporters as a perpetrator!)

Now second question, is what she did wrong? Do you think? Like wrong ethically/morally? Illegally? Is catfishing (google says: the process of luring someone into a relationship by means of a fictional online persona) wrong?

Clearly Netflix didn’t choose to portray her as “wrong”… But still, you can’t stop your audience from feeling the sympathy towards Manti which also leads to more anger towards Naya (born and then known as Ronaiah). You can’t do one thing leaving another, and I think this is the problem of Netflix in this documentary.

But I was wondering why Netflix took that stance. And my best guess would be because Naya is a trans. She is part of a minority group, she is part of the LGBTQ+ group, she had suffered a lot due to her gender confusion in her life, she was just young and confused because she didn’t understand her gender identity and perhaps wanting to explore it.

Are these some good reasons to catfish someone? Are these great reasons to ruin someone else’s life and career and even family?

Obviously no. I mean if you have been following my blog, you probably would have noticed how strong an advocate I am for the LGBTQ+, and I’m not just doing this online, but also in the school I’m working at. I think for cisgendered people like the majority of us, it’s impossible for us to imagine the struggles the gender non conforming people have. I surely feel bad for Naya. But I strongly believe that if she hasn’t already, she really should look at the consequences of her actions, own it up and sincerely face it and apologise, even though Manti already said he forgave her… Because based on what’s shown, she doesn’t seem to feel bad for him or is remorseful at all…

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