Alison Taylor on relationships: If you won't date people your own age, grow up

One 40-year-old internet dater wrote: 'Men just prefer younger women. It's biological fact'

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Men just prefer younger women. It's biological fact." This was a message I got from an absolute moron on an internet dating site a few years back. My state of mind at the time was fractious and my patience levels were at zero, so when this bald 40-year-old messaged my 32-year-old self, I saw it as an opportunity to do some research. And, I admit, to get something off my chest that I'd been feeling for a while.

You see, the age bracket he'd stipulated for the women he deigned worthy of dating topped out at my exact age. Lucky me. Now, I know it's a bit mean of me to point out that he was bald – I promise, I don't discriminate on such grounds – but, here he was, a walking cliché of the ageing process, saying a 32-year-old woman – still in possession of her own hair and teeth – was too old.

He messaged me, so I baited the bear and asked him why, when he's 40, he isn't willing to date someone who is also 40. He replied as above. I was furious, and a bit depressed, because he's not alone. I am all for "each to their own" when it comes to who we fancy. I get that you might prefer not to date somebody too much older or younger. That makes sense for a lot of reasons. But, it does bother me that somebody won't even entertain dating somebody their own age.

So, should you lie, then? I think that guy's cock-eyed bullshit is part of the reason why a lot of women choose to lie about their age. They think their age means they won't get a look in. Balls to that. Don't lie. I'm 38 and my boyfriend is 36. Not a whole lot younger admittedly, but he doesn't care and actively wanted to meet somebody who was around his age, "so you grow old together". That internet bloke was a douche. If you lie about your age you're just inviting the attention of idiots like him.