There is an obsession regarding age in the dating world, both our own ages as well as the age ranges of the prospects we consider to be suitable. Entering your age range is and will continue to be a work in progress while you’re online dating. Go ahead and play around with it whilst staying within realistic parameters – generally about ten years, with your age falling near the middle of that range.

One of the most common questions I receive is about age – specifically, what to do when lying about said age. They claim they don’t look their age, or don’t act their age, or are attracting prospects that are too old or too young for them, and thus they want to lie about their birth date when creating their JDate profile. But that’s where people tend to find themselves in trouble.

Dishonesty In Dating

Fudging your age might not seem like a big deal at first. But think about it: now you’re starting off with an lie. Even if your intentions of attracting a better fit are in the right place, it is dishonest. If you are serious about finding a mate, then how are you going to finally admit to an exciting new date that you blatantly lied about something that most people want to know the truth about? Obviously, I strongly suggest being honest and inserting your real birth date when you create your dating profile. But if you don’t, then how do you get out of the lie while still retaining the relationship?

Time To Fess Up

The first line of defense if you’ve lied about your age is to confess immediately. If you are writing an introductory email on JDate, then you should admit what your real age is in that email. If you like someone who wrote you first, then you can reply with the admission of guilt. Either way, simply explain that you look or act younger than you are, or want someone older than a typical age range for your age, plus whatever the (hopefully logical) reason is that you have this preference. Have your explanation ready, make sure it’s worded well and include it immediately so that your prospect has an opportunity to make an educated judgment on whether or not they choose to reply.

If that ship has sailed and now you’re meeting up for your first date, then again, I recommend getting this tidbit out of the way early on and allow your date to make the decision about whether or not they want to continue spending their time and energy getting to know you. Deliver your explanation in an eloquent way that implies understanding that you have been less than honest about a subject that may be a make-or-break for someone else.

Living With The Consequences

If your date chooses to leave, you do not have the right to be angry. After all, you lied. Whereas you may want a younger or older mate, that same person may not want such an age gap, or they may simply not like the fact that you lied. You can plead your case, but you also need to respect their decision and not take offense.

If you find that many dates are not taking gently to your lie, then you really may want to consider being honest about your age. Instead, explain when you email a prospect that although there is an age gap that may lie outside their preference, you would appreciate an opportunity to prove to them why you would be a good match.

You may also be interested in Relationship Must-Haves: Adjusting Expectations Without Settling For Less

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