A woman, mid-60s, emailed me about a man who contacted her on a senior dating website.

The man’s profile stated he was 71, which she felt was close enough to her age to meet him for a date. He lived 20 miles away.

Arlene wrote, “He wanted to meet at a Starbucks near where I live, so I agreed. His photo looked OK.

“I was sitting outside waiting for him. When he walked up, he seemed much older than his photo.

“He had seen in my profile a picture of me on a cruise ship. He asked if I liked to cruise, to which I replied: ‘Yes, it’s my favorite thing to do.’

“He told me he’d been in the Navy and on many ships. I asked if it was during the Vietnam War; he told me it was during the Korean War. Since I’m a baby boomer, guys in my age group were in the Vietnam War, not the Korean War.

“I reminded him that his profile stated he was 71. He told me he’d ‘fudged’ his age; he was 81! I let him ramble on for an hour about himself and then told him I had many errands and had to leave.

“He had the nerve to contact me online again the next day. I told him we were not a match, and that 81 was not 71!

“These guys never stop trying.”

I wondered why he lied to Arlene. I pondered what he may have thought; I’m only guessing, but perhaps it was something along this line.

Her profile picture appealed to him; he found her attractive. She lived close enough that dating her would be convenient.

They had similar interests: They both liked ships.

Perhaps he thought she had the characteristics he sought in a mate and that they’d be a good match.

He knew he was too old for her. If he listed his true age, he wouldn’t get a date with her because she was at least 15 years younger.

Maybe he was convinced that if he could just get to meet Arlene face-to-face, she might think he was so wonderful that the age difference wouldn’t matter.

Technically, he was lying. I’m guessing he believed it was just a little white lie. Besides, he promised himself that he’d reveal his true age after, of course, he’d had a chance to show her what a great catch he’d be.

Is lying to get one’s foot in the door wrong?

Again, I can’t say if this is how his thinking went, or if any of my above speculation is true, but I imagine some of it is.

A dating coach I know said, “When I work with my clients, I always insist they tell the truth about themselves, including their age. It’s very important not to lie.”

Many senior singles believe that if people lie about their age, they might lie about other things as well.

I responded to Arlene: “He may have even been fudging a bit more. The Korean War was between 1950 and 1953. If he was 17 in 1950, that would make him approximately 87 now. If he was 17 in 1953, he’d be about 84 now. If he was older than 17 during the Korean War, he could be in his late 80s now.”

Lying about age isn’t acceptable. Besides, the truth will emerge sooner or later.


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