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Should He Lie So He Can Date Younger Women?

TJ asks:

I have a really quick question with almost no drama...if such a thing exists! I have been online dating off and on for about a year and a half now. I am looking for a serious relationship that leads to marriage and kids. I am also a physically fit male who is 5' 8''. I have often been told (and can confirm) that my age, especially as I approach 40, will continue to hinder my online dating efforts. This is especially true as I tend to date women a few years younger who are thinking long term and are also family minded. I refuse to lie in my profile; hence the problem from friends and colleagues who state that I look very young for my age and could easily pass for 30 to 34; if not younger.  They tell me that by continuing to use my real age I am only hindering my chances and I should at least consider shaving two to three years off; if not more. I despise this kind of lying and want to meet someone under honest and ethical terms. There is nothing I lie about in my profile! Ironically, a close friend has told me that most likely women are already assuming I am lying and think I am most likely 40 or older as it is (even though this same friend tells me I look younger than my real age of 39 ???). What are your thoughts given that I am a man approaching 40 looking for LTR?

Thank you for your response.

The problem here isn't your age, it's your ideas and opinions about women. But first, let's address the lying in your profile thing.

I don't care what anybody says, if they meet someone they're attracted to and felt a click with, they're not going to care if that person shaved 3 years off their age or added an inch or two to their height. My opinion is that men and women use the "they were heavier than their photos" and "they lied about their age" excuse as a way to avoid admitting their lack of interest in someone is based on their own shallowness.

A hearty congratulations to all of those who claim to be beacons of integrity and who swear they would never ever mis-lead anyone because lying is wrong and bad and whatever.

Yes, intentionally misleading someone for malicious and unethical purposes is wrong. Fibbing about your age or height because you know many people have some ridiculous mental threshold for what they consider appropriate, acceptable or attractive is not the same thing as giving a fake name so you can con someone out of money.

We all lie to some degree. Maybe we do it to get a refund on something we didn't like or to be included in something we feared we would be shut out of. Or maybe we lie to save face or keep the peace. Lying is an integral part of diplomacy and, often times, kindness.

TJ, please spare everyone your virtue-signaling and simply admit that you want to date younger women because you don't find women your age or older attractive. Also please confront the real possibility that the challenge here isn't how other people perceive age, but how you perceive it. If so many people think you look younger, maybe it's because 40 no longer looks like what it used to look like twenty or even ten years ago. Our frame of reference for age has changed. Well, your hasn't, but many other people's have.

If you want to shave some years off your age, go ahead. Personally, I wouldn't care if a man admitted he did that. Other women might care, but you wouldn't want to date them anyway. People who don't allow for nuance or who don't take situations like this on a case by case basis have their own internalized biases they need to address. Just understand that deducting 2-3 years is one thing. Placing yourself in an entirely different age bracket is another. Also, this just in, 35 and 40 year old women conceive naturally all the time!

Ironically, a close friend has told me that most likely women are already assuming I am lying and think I am most likely 40 or older as it is (even though this same friend tells me I look younger than my real age of 39 ???).

That is odd. It's almost like he's just telling you what he thinks you want to hear to make you feel better aka lying. An inconsistency like that should be examined, as it usually means you're not getting the truth.

Maybe, just maybe, you look your age and all your friends can see that you're a 40 year old man that wants to date twenty and early theirty-something women for your ego and not because you want to start a family.

Go ahead and change your age. You'll undoubtedly meet someone in your preferred range. Just know that your issues with aging won't go away. That hot twenty-eight year-old will eventually turn thirty-five. By then, you'll be forty-five, still insisting your could pass for much younger and therefore should have a partner that reflects your youth and viability. And then the cycle will continue.

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