Dear Tamar,

I was dating this guy long distance who I met on JDate. He thought I was 3 years younger and when I told him my true age he said I lied and abruptly broke up with me. He said he cannot handle a lie because he had been lied to before. We had only seen each other twice over about 4 or so months when he came to town for two weekends but he said that I lied for too long. He said that if I would have told him the truth anytime beforehand he would have been okay with it. What happened?

Dear Lying About Your Age,

I’ve gotten so many emails from people asking if it’s okay to lie about your age so that you’re not blocked out by someone’s age preference. And if you decide to do so, when should you ‘fess up? I’m not going to endorse lying, but if you’re going to do so then you need to admit your real age right away when you meet. It’s not fair to let someone get to know you and like you when you’ve misrepresented yourself. It’s simple — when you first meet someone, exchange pleasantries and then stop the conversation and come clean. Let them know your motivation was pure and that if they’re not cool with it you understand but that you hope your connection is strong enough to continue the date.

As for the guy you already went out with, write him an email. Take your time writing it, make sure there are no typos or grammatical errors to distract him from your message and explain what happened. Let him know how much you like him and that you thought you had already told him about your real age. Apologize and ask him to forgive you based on the connection you created. Since some time has passed, it will allow him to calm down about the whole ordeal and he can read your reasoning at his pace, and he may change his mind. But he may not. It can’t hurt to try.