Lying About Your Age on Dating Sites? Why You Should Stop

lying about age on dating sites

By Jackie Pilossoph, Founder, Divorced Girl Smiling, the place to find trusted, vetted divorce professionals, a podcast, website and mobile app.

Dating websites and dating apps are still the number one way people meet, connect and fall in love. That said, there are some downsides. one negative is the ease in which people can lie, specifically about age. So, are you lying about your age on dating sites? I want to tell you why you should stop.

The ability to get away with lying about your age on dating sites is scary, and it happens a lot. People can provide any number they choose, photos can be deceiving or site users can post old photos to back up the lie. Read this email I got from a divorced woman:

I went out with a guy who claimed to be 45 when he was really 58. He didn’t tell me his actual age until we had gone out on several dates. I liked him so I continued to see him, but his age was always an issue for me. Looking back, I probably should have ended things when I found out his age. We broke up recently (after over a year of dating), and I noticed he’s online again saying he’s 13 years younger. I find this utterly annoying and wrong. He’s not a bad guy, but it’s so unfair and misleading.

First of all, I have a hard time believing that 58 can pass for 45, but that’s beside the point. This story is so disappointing to me on many levels. First of all, any lie is a big red flag. But second, it is obvious this man is pretending to be younger for the purpose of attracting younger women, which is really, really unfair. It is unethical and quite frankly, slimy.


Alyssa Dineen -
Online Dating Coach and Stylist


I’m not going to say that if he wants to attract women in their 30s and 40s that he would get them if he posted his real age. He probably wouldn’t. But, I wonder: Why does he want such a large age gap in the women he dates, anyhow?

I cannot even count the number of women I know in their 40s and 50s who are gorgeous! They have beautiful, healthy bodies, they are active and smart and wealthy and kind and worldly. I’m really questioning this guy’s priorities. Not to say younger women don’t have any of these things. They definitely do. But what they don’t have is commonality with Mr. 58.

Men over 40

I have interviewed dozens of men over 40 who want to date women their own age for reasons that include:

• They have a lot to talk about.

• It’s comfortable.

• They find the women interesting.

• They feel a connection.

I find that so many men these days care less about a number and more about wisdom, life experience and common interests.


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Lying about your age on dating sites:

People who lie about their age in online dating aren’t very smart. Don’t they realize that almost all outcomes will be bad? The person they lied to could see them in person for the first time and know they are lying immediately, and that might be the end right there. Or, let’s say the liar and his or her date hit it off and start seeing each other regularly. The liar is going to have to come clean at some point. When they do, do they think the person they lied to is just going to say, “Oh, that’s OK. No biggie.” Wrong. The red flag will immediately go up, respect will be lost, and the person will wonder what else the liar isn’t telling them.

The other downside of lying about your age on dating sites  is that you are really lying about who you are. While we all want to say “age is just a number,” (and I do believe that) how old we are really is a part of who we are. I can say that while in my core I’ve always been the same person, I am very different in my fifties than I was in my forties, thirties and twenties.

Although no one likes getting old, aging is a beautiful thing because with every birthday we gain experience and wisdom and empathy. We become better people. We make mistakes and we learn from them. So if you think about it, we just keep getting better and better the older we get.

I do want to say that I know a lot of happy couples with big age differences, including my parents, who were 12 years apart and who were together for 57 years. But, what sets these couples apart is that their spouse didn’t lie about his or her age. The person knew the age up front. So, the relationship started out authentically.


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Online dating has its benefits and it is still the number one way men and women meet, connect and find love. But be careful. A married person can have a profile status that states he or she is single. Someone can say they are 6 feet 2 when really they are under 5 feet (not that that is a bad thing – it’s just a dishonest thing.) Someone can say they are a corporate vice-president when in reality they are unemployed, and of course, anyone can state that they are any age. Remember that when you put yourself out there online, the most important thing is to be proud of who you are.

Like this article? Check out my article, “9 Signs of a Healthy Romantic Relationship”

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    Jackie Pilossoph

    Editor-in-chief: Jackie Pilossoph

    Jackie Pilossoph is the Founder of Divorced Girl Smiling, the media company that connects people facing with divorce to trusted, vetted divorce professionals. Pilossoph is a former NBC affiliate television journalist and Chicago Tribune/Pioneer Press features reporter. Her syndicated column, Love Essentially was published in the Chicago Tribune/Pioneer Press and Tribune owned publications for 7 1/2 years. Pilossoph holds a Masters degree in journalism from Boston University. Learn more at:

    3 Responses to “Lying About Your Age on Dating Sites? Why You Should Stop”

    1. Liz Hurst

      Such a no-no for me too. The big question is this: if he lies about his age because he thinks he can get away with it, what else is he capable of lying about?
      I’ve been divorced 7 years now and after a couple of failed relationships I’m now dating again. So glad I found your site Jackie, I’ll be reading more of it 🙂 x

    2. Jason

      This is a great example of how differently wired the neurological pathways are in the brain of a man compared to a woman. Women will never try ender stand why men do it and men will never truly understand the female point of view beyond the basic objective discussion. This is deeply based on emotion and is where the male female divide is particularly polarised. Judging men harshly for doing this is just showing the ignorance for what’s really going on here. No man what’s to lie about his age to someone who he wants to build a life with but the reality must be really be so bad that men are forced to go down this path. This article says that we gain in experience and wisdom as we age but the reality is that men are also more likely to lie about their age as they grow in experience and wisdom too. The ugly truth here is that the majority of men will always find younger women physically more attractive. As someone who has had long term relationships with women not considerably older and considerably younger. Age is really no indication of comparability from a male perspective, nor is having things in common. You either click with someone and have good chemistry or you don’t. Men are simple creatures, our brain is more primitive and less interconnected than the female brain – this is just the way we are wired, it’s not our fault and it’s neither a good or a bad thing; it’s just what the reality is. A lot of men can fake it to come across more congruent to how women expect but is that really authentic l

    3. Jason

      authentic living or just doing what we have to do to get by with less drama in life. I could go on but this is a male perspective and whilst women may be able to evaluate it intellectually, emotionally they will never try ally be able to grasp it in the same way that most men can. Apologies for the typos, this was an impassioned monologue from both an academic in this field but also as a man. I hope it’s taken in good spirit in the hope that it will improve understanding between the sexes rather than just blaming men for doing things that women find abhorrent


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