Beliefnet
Everyday Ethics

If there were ever an area where the little white lie came into question, it would be online dating. Oh, you’re not 6′ 2″ with abs of steel? Or petite with the body of a goddess? Whoops. And funny how you didn’t mention that wart. Ew.

Do you blame them (or do they blame you) for these teeny-tiny exaggerations? Yes, yes, yes…lying is lying is lying, and of course, unethical. But what’s worse, judgment based on a few stats or a slight fabrication of those stats?

I’m curious – it seems as though it would be an almost irresistible temptation to stretch the truth when online dating. Should one always resist? Or are you merely circumventing ridiculous societal norms on appearance? And this doesn’t only apply to physical appearance – is it so awful to claim, say, a love for the outdoors, when you merely hope to find someone who might introduce you to rock climbing?

My friend once sent me an online profile from shaadi.com, an Indian matrimonial website. It was, by far, the most memorable piece of fiction I’d ever read in my life. How did I know it was fiction? Well, his profile described his hobbies a little something like this:

“I love surfing, mountain biking, skydiving, bungee jumping and mountain climbing….(much further down the profile and lost towards the end) I have never done any of these things, but I would like to some day.”

I’d love to hear your stories, especially if they involve a bit of ahem, exaggeration. Why did you feel the need to lie? Were the untruths ignored once you met in person? Or, on the other side of the coin, were you shocked, horrified or just
plain pissed upon meeting
someone who misrepresented himself/herself?
 

  • Never. Take me as I am or not at all.
  • Sure, shaving off a few pounds here and there is no biggie.
  • Of course! Who wants to know the truth?
Created on Aug 24, 2009

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