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Sunday, July 21, 2024


Found out guy (33M) I’m (30F) dating doesn’t date women over thirty. Is this a red flag or am I overreacting?


I met “Mark” about a month and a half ago (maybe?) at the gym. He approached me and we hit it off. We’ve been seeing each other pretty often since then. We have a lot in common and he seems like a decent guy. The day after Christmas he asked me to be exclusive with him. I thought it was a little sudden but all my friends always rib me for coming off as an ice queen and uninterested when dating because I want to go so slow. I’ve always been hyper-analytical and never someone to take a risk without thoroughly thinking it through, but one of the promises I made to myself when I turned 30 was that I would be more spontaneous and take more chances. Anyway, I said yes but now I’m wondering if I should’ve stuck to what I know and slowed down.

On our very first date, he made a comment about how it was nice to finally meet someone IRL and not on an app or something. I felt the same and mentioned I’d been on dating apps. Turns out, he is too. We started talking about how it was so funny that we’d never come across each other on the app before and I asked to see his profile wondering if maybe I had swiped past him somehow. So, we pulled up our profiles and swapped phones. His profile seemed totally normal and attractive. I probably would’ve swiped on him. When he was looking at mine, he made some sort of comment being surprised that I was 30 and that I looked much younger. I’ve always gotten comments about looking a little younger than my age so I didn’t think anything of it at the time.

I hadn’t thought about those comments much until a few days ago when Mark invited me to his friends’ NYE party. I hadn’t met his friends before but they were all very nice and welcoming. All his friends also seemed like they were in their thirties and their partners seemed age appropriate. The night went on and everyone got pretty drunk. The guys seem like the type who like to tease and rag on their friends lovingly and eventually they started teasing Mark. They started making comments about how they couldn’t believe ‘Leo’ (no one clarified but I’m assuming this is a joking nickname related to Leonardo DiCaprio) was finally dating an ‘older woman’ and it was ‘about time he grew up’. They made a lot of comments about it (in a teasing way toward him, not me) and the vibe I got was that they just thought it was a funny quirk of his that he only dated younger women.

I didn’t react at the party because I didn’t want to bring things down for the whole group, but at breakfast the next day I kinda pressed him on this. He seemed to think I was joking at first and sorta just rolled his eyes. I kept pressing and leading the conversation and eventually he admitted that he’d never dated a woman in her thirties, thought I was 24ish when he approached me, and had his profile restricted to women 26 and down. When he saw I was not super positive about this, he immediately started telling me how great he thought I was and that’s he not that serious about the age thing, and how he really saw a future with me. I let it go at breakfast because I wasn’t quite sure how I was feeling.


I’ve been brewing on it for a few days now and I think it’s given me the ick. I don’t think dating a younger person is inherently bad but when you actively won’t date someone who is at least your own age and have created a pattern of exclusively dating younger people, I think it’s kinda weird. It makes me think he probably has some really gross ideas about women and aging. I mean, I may look 20s-ish to him now but what about when aging catches up to me as it inevitably will?

I talked to my friends and they agreed it’s a red flag, but I know our little group can sometimes be a bit of an echo chamber. He is nice, clean, and has a good job. I also would feel weird breaking up with someone after only a week, but on the other hand, I just feel totally unattracted to him now. Am I being totally crazy or is this valid to get creeped out over?

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