I found this one in my travels on the Net this last week. Wasn’t exactly looking for something about Internet Dating, but when this flashed across my screen the sad (I use that term very loosely) plight of dating in mid-life struck me as completely funny.
Personally, I’d be quite content with the happy medium. You know, not too thin, not too…., just right. Oh, yeah, and my age or older. I’m kind of not into the cougar scene, though, from what I hear it definitely has it’s advantages. I guess, I already have enough kids in my home to take care of. Ooops! Did I really say that?
Okay, next funny. Have you ever had this happen?
If you’ve been anywhere for very long in Online Dating World, you’ve had at least one experience where someone misrepresented their age, physical stature or posted a completely false picture. I had one instance, almost a year ago now, where I hit it off (seemingly) with a guy about a year older than me (supposedly) online. We had great fun chatting, laughing, talking via phone call and email. He lived out of town so it was difficult to meet. Then came the week midwinter last year when I attended a conference in his city. I figured, that stunningly good-looking as I was and not having to travel very far to meet me, he’d be all over coming to my hotel (hey, paid by for by the company even) to meet me. The first night I was in town he called and we talked just like I wasn’t in town. The second night the same thing. I’m a very patient person but by the third night I was thinking something was up. So, I gave him the ultimatum. “Look,” I said, “I’m thinking getting up off your butt and coming down to my hotel to meet me is a far sight better than driving the five hours you’d have to drive to see me otherwise. So, this is what I’m thinking. I’m thinking if you aren’t down here in the lobby of the hotel in an hour, I’m going to think you aren’t interested and I’m moving on. ”
He showed, but 30 minutes after the deadline. I should have walked and not met him, but by that time I was curious and, hey, I was in another town with no laundry, kids, or anything to worry about so I waited. Oh my gosh. What a surprise.
He walked in and instantly I figured out why he hesitated to meet me. The picture he’d posted of himself was probably him…twenty years earlier. I did end up going for a walk downtown and eating pizza at some no name place. During this time I had opportunity to notice that he was playing Elvis in his car (not something most people my age do without some seriously good rationale) and his hands did not look like the hands of someone my age. They looked like the hands of someone 15 years older than me. Now most people wouldn’t know this maybe, but having grown up with a father who was 28 years older than my mother…I know hands. His hands were older hands. Now, I’m currently dating someone who is 11 years older than me, which, to be honest, is the perfect age, in my mind. (So why would someone want to lie about that? Men ten years plus older than me are actually quite hot! I don’t have to change their freaking diapers and wipe their noses or clean up their messes. Works for me.) Anyway, the dude misrepresented his age then didn’t even come clean about it afterward. I ate pizza, let him pay, of course. And never communicated again with him. Except once. When I got back home, I looked up his profile. I noticed he’d changed his location. I sent him some smart ass comment about misrepresenting his location and his age and asking who he really was. Obviously, I never heard from him again.
The deal was this about that: he was attractive enough and very funny and intelligent. Clearly he didn’t want to meet me, because he wasn’t into something real and he was lying about himself and he knew it. Here’s what I learned from that: I’m not really all that concerned about what a guy’s age is (okay, I’m not dating 25-year-olds, no matter what you say) or most of the other externals, but if he lies about any of it, it is such a dealbreaker. Trust is one of the biggest issues any relationship must develop and maintain if it is going to last. Sadly, when someone lies about their age or anything else, then they’ve eroded the trust from the beginning. I decided at that point that the day I feel like I have to lie about my age or who I am, just to get the company of a date, that’s the day I hang it all up and say, “I’m done.” Because I may as well be.
Okay, and, yes, I did get into the guy’s car and drive around a city with a stranger. Girls, do NOT ever do that. It turned out okay for me…but…it’s such a stupid chance to take. I could tell you even worse risks I’ve taken and things have worked out, but I wouldn’t do them again and I shouldn’t have done them to begin with.
And, guys, especially those of you in the 50+ category, I really have no clue what you are looking for. If you are looking for some young thing to idolize you, look up to you like a daddy, and somehow make you forget that you are human and aging like we all do, well, I can’t help you there. You’re probably doing the right thing going after some 20-something thing who has had no life experience and is pretty much a blank slate. However, if you’re really into a quality relationship with a woman who wants you and loves you for who you are and will go to the wall for you because she admires, respects, loves and adores who you are as an individual on this earth (as opposed to how much you make, what lifestyle you can provide, and how long you can keep it up) then don’t be ashamed of stating your age and being yourself. The women of substance out here don’t care about the superficial things…we care about the real, authentic individual behind the text, behind the profile, and hopefully, one day when we meet, we care about the person behind the eyes. Don’t blow it in advance about lying about the things we don’t care about anyway.