Life happens online. It's life. Not! Fake life, that is!
“As more and more of life happens online…It is life.” Andrew T. Fiore, a data scientist formerly with Facebook. Actually, Andrew, I beg to differ.
SO WHAT? I LIED. LITTLE WHITE LIES
I was 41 when my first marriage ended. This was during the Pre-App Era. Yes, there was such a time, although it sounds Palientological.
People often tell me that I look younger than I am. I figured, if someone searched from 30 to 40, I wouldn’t come up, so I totally lied and said I was 39. Guilty! I also said that I was “fit.” Well, I’m not exactly an Ironman-er, but I do workout nearly everyday.
I told everyone my real age right off the bat, on the first contact. No one seemed bothered by that, but I know they still may not have searched for me.
Wendy & Steve So-and-So
A guy named Steve contacted me. Steve had an unusual surname. I thought he was Russian based on that, coupled with the typos in his profile. lol. He was 44. A Native Californian, like me. So much for my Ruski theory. We spoke on the phone.
Wendy: “There was a girl in my 7th grade class with the same last name.”
Steve: “Who was it?”
Wendy: “Nancy So-and-So.”
Steve: “That’s my sister.”
Wendy: “Well, I’m not really 39.” Oops. Busted.
Steve: “Don’t worry about it. All the women lie about their age and nearly all the men do, too."
Steve told me that he met a woman on match. She said she was 29. They met; she died. Her obituary was in the paper. She was 72.
Although Generation X pretty much invented catfishing, [they even created the addictive show, Catfish: The TV Show], they’re always stunned when I tell them that people lie about their age. Gen Zers, just you wait a couple of decades!
39. Everyone says they are 39. It kind of sucks for 39 YOs since everyone assumes you are lying.
Men who say they are 5’8.” Dudes, it doesn’t always mean you are lying. It’s just a signal to perhaps investigate a little further. That also explains why some so-called 5’8” men are, at times, reluctant to meet women who are 5’8.” Cuz some of them are more like 5’6.”
Hey, I tower over my husband in my Jimmy Choos & I wear them all the time. He loves it. Can you say shoe fetish-much? jk
What’s wrong with lying in your profile?
Using fake, ancient, or heavily filtered pictures? 30 pounds thinner?
According to Dr. Catalina L. Toma, assistant professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, nearly everyone lies. She found that “81 percent of people lie about their height, weight, or age in their online dating profiles.”
This is a self worth and self esteem issue. It’s not just superficial esthetics.
There’s a fundamental difference between exaggeration and a bold-faced lie - the wholesale bait & switch. Misrepresenting who you are is a symptom of not being in touch with yourself. How are you going to find someone who will connect with you? Are you delusional?
WHY DO THEY LIE? A Societal epidemic...
Because they can’t, or believe they won’t, meet anyone. They feel they will strike out on their own.
Sure, it may make it easier to get a first date, but, your date will probably be livid. You’ve misled them and wasted their time & effort. Who can blame them? Your odds of getting a 2nd date, much less developing a relationship, are terrible.
It’s epidemic in our society. At the highest levels.
From what I’ve seen running a dating site, if you are a “10” in the looks department, this info doesn’t really apply. For the 10’s, it doesn’t matter how old you are. 25, 30, 45, 55. Whatever.
One of our clients is such a doll that she can’t begin to vet her responses when she posts her profile online. Her mailbox instantly blows up with so many prospective suiters. She’s literally overwhelmed. That’s why she likes us. Cause we do the heavy lifting for her.
We spoke with a guy this week. He was whining cuz no one responds to him or checks him out on the Apps. We asked, "Are you contacting the 10s?" Crickets. "Yes." Yep. Cuz that's what most of you do. The norm. You contact people 25% more desirable than you are.
If you say you’re an MD. Or, list your income as over $250K/yr. Your email may explode.
Rich contacted me on match. We met for dinner. He was very nice & handsome. He’d stated his income was over $250K. He told me that he thought he’d been contacted by every single woman from a particular city in Russia, just based on the income statement.
I had a date with a doctor from Stanford named Steve that I met online. The dude told me that he’d been contacted by tons of women from New Jersey who said they would move to California for him. I thought the Jersey-Girl thing was really funny.
This famous author, John, contacted me on match. He was so handsome. Movie Star Good Looks. I knew we had nothing whatsoever in common, but I was meeting him anyway. I couldn’t believe anyone that dreamy would ever ask me out. I went. His photo was from his book jacket cover and was completely retouched. Sigh. I asked him if many women contacted him and said, “Tons.”
For those of us under 9.5 in the looks department (and, I love you, buddy, who just unsolicitedly texted me that I’m a 9.8…you probably are prone to exaggeration!), you may be hearing crickets.
Did you hear the one about...
the guy who said he was 6’ and was actually 5’4”?
the doctor who used his friend’s photos?
the 55 YO woman who met a 70 YO man who was really 86?
the woman who said she never had kids? What? Guess she forget about her daughter & son.
Are you not supposed to notice?
How about all of the people who are married and say they are either: a) never married, b) separated, c) widow(er) or d) divorced? Happens all the time.
I spoke to a woman who told me that 80% of the men she meets on Tinder say the aren’t married, really are. I guess if you want to meet a married man, it’s an ideal platform.
50% of people who send us their pictures for online dating photo editing are wearing wedding rings. Really? They all have the same response. “Oh, I didn’t notice.”
That’s not the entire issue. It’s that you're really married. And/or, you spectacularly lack self awareness.
It’s one thing to slightly color your profile by a few pounds, inches, or brightened teeth. But fundamental things, like “I’m not married,” are in another league.
If you are married and want to have an affair, why not just use Ashley Madison or SA? Or, simply pitch straight up and tell the person that you want to have an affair. It’s more admirable than people who lie about their marital status.
Is there much of a difference between omission and misrepresentation? Not really, if it’s material. The issue, partially, is yours. More profoundly, you are victimizing others.
A few days ago in London, Nelson, a rickshaw bicycle driver, offered me a free ride around town. He was delightful. Single, bright, friendly and rather cute. I told him about this blog which was under development. He told me that he’d recently met a woman on Tinder. On the 3rd date, she asked if he could cut up her steak cuz she was having trouble with it. He thought it was odd. That, maybe, she wanted to be waited on, hand over foot. Sadly, she told him that she had MS. It’s very tragic but he asked me if I thought that she should have put that on her profile. My .02: Perhaps or before the first face-to-face meeting, via text or phone.
Similarly, one of my clients doesn’t mention on her dating APP profiles that she has kids & has 3 minor children. That's a pretty big omission.
Like people who lie on their resume. There’s a distinction between embellishing your accomplishments, perhaps taking credit for closing a sale you weren’t solely responsible for, and lying about actually having a degree.
Say, you are a 45 YO guy in an unsatisfactory marriage. You’re actively hitting on other women. Why don’t you just get divorced? Or separated? Because of finances? Or kids?
I don’t buy the finance excuse. Or the kid one either, for that matter.
Several of the wealthiest people I know are divorced. And remarried. One is single. And we are working on that! And now, they are all spectacularly happy.
It’s not like their kids were ostriches and didn’t know how unhappily married their parents were. Plus, isn’t it healthier to be happy than miserable? And, better modeling for your children to see healthy, loving, respectful relationships? And how to kindly treat a partner?
I know that, sometimes, it hurts kids when parent’s marriages end. Not always, though. Some kids want their parent’s extricated from abusive relationships. Kids from divorced families may become stronger, more self reliant, and develop better interpersonal relationships. Rumor has it that Survivor favored casting men & women from divorced families cause they had better coping skills.
Divorce is expensive. Ouch. You may need to modify your lifestyle. And that’s not always a bad thing. And sometimes, when you are happier and less stressed, good things happen. You may be more successful and be presented with more opportunities.
According to Kinsey, the most nubile demographic is a divorced woman with one child. And, the Pew Research Center, found “Remarried are as well off as those in first marriages and are better off than divorced adults” in their report Four-in-Ten Couples are Saying ‘I do,’ Again.
My friend, Philip, recently said, “Wendy, the ‘rules’ about being married to one person forever were created when the average life expectancy was 30!”
Before you get to tricking or deceiving another person, use introspection to understand who you are. Do you have an identity? Perhaps, if you did, you would deal with your issues. If you aren’t willing to be honest with who you are, that’s a bigger problem.
Fear of failure. Fear of rejection. Fear of change.
Change is scary. But, it’s exciting.
Chris. He’s buff. He has a great job. He’s 39. He suffers from the bigger & better syndrome. If I commit, will I miss someone hotter? Here’s a newsflash: YES. There’s ALWAYS someone hotter. OMG. How can you live with yourself?
Some of these singles really are emotional adolescents, preoccupied with the judgement of their peers. It’s a misperception.
Many people validate themselves based on their perception of what their friends and family think. This is a reflection of their lack of recognition of their identity. They waste a ton of cycles seeking the approval of others. If the F&F’s have issues, often, that’s their problem, not yours.
"Her teeth are too big."
"He’s not outdoorsy enough."
"He doesn’t have enough hair." "He has too much hair." "I want a guy who either has a full head of hair or a shaved head." "No receding hairlines."
The poor guys. They can’t win on the hair issue.
"There are no women over a 7 online."
"She’s too fat." "He’s too fat." "I don’t want any fat whatsoever around the waste line."
"They need to be vegan for ethical reasons by the 2nd date."
We hear it all. You can miss fabulous opportunities by not meeting someone new. Or giving a person a chance. The best looking men & women I know are the least interested in looks and the most interested in what’s under the hood.
Ya know, some people just aren’t photogenic. And, others are. It doesn’t mean that they are good people. Or beautiful people. Or, good partners. Or, know the first thing about having a relationship.
It’s a bloody date. Not a marriage proposal.
We all have unique backstories. Some of us are experienced, non-stop daters & have no shortage of people wanting to date them. It’s no biggie having a date. Others, haven’t dated. Ever. Or in ages. To them, it’s monumental. Blown completely out of proportion. Or, maybe, you’re somewhere in between.
When you meet that special person
One who makes your heart intensely pound
Who really turns you on
Who makes you warm inside
And makes you happy
And vice verse
It doesn’t happen often
You can’t fish for it
The earth seems to turn slightly off it’s axis. It adds depth & meaning to your existence.