We provide the first field evidence for the role of pure self-image, independent of social image, in charitable giving. In an online fundraising campaign for a social youth project run on an opera ticket booking platform we document how individ-uals engage in self-deception to preserve their self-image. In addition, we provide evidence on stark adverse long-run effects of the fundraising campaign for ticket sales. “Avoiding the ask,” opera customers who faced more insistent online fund-raising buy fewer tickets in the following season. Our results suggest that fund-raising management should not decide in isolation about their campaigns, even if very successful. Rather broader operational concerns have to be considered.