Question: I have what is sometimes referred to as an ‘invisible illness’, a disability that is not obvious at a glance, and I receive government benefits due to my inability to work. People will generally have no idea I have a health issue unless I tell them, so my question is, how do I deal with this in terms of dating?
Often times the question of work will come up, and I’m never sure how to reply. Should I be up front when the issue comes up? Should I wait to get to know the person for a bit, and if so how long? If I were to make an online dating profile, should I disclose this right on the page? I don’t want to be dishonest, but I also don’t want to give the wrong impression or seem as if I’m just blurting out personal information willy-nilly.
Any advice on how to handle this?
MOXIE’S EDIT: He has Chronic Fatigue Syndrome ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/
If you’re unemployed for whatever reason, you should probably mention that in your profile. That is one of those topics that you really can’t fudge. If you don’t mention it you’ll look deceptive in some way. Then, when you do reveal it, your date will assign some nefarious and shady reasoning for why you didn’t tell her. She’ll make far worse assumptions about you other than you don’t have a job.
I’m toying with the suggestion that maybe you should say that you’re financially self-sufficient but not check off anything as a specific career type. Only when you engage in an email exchange should you expand on this. Your situation has to be revealed before too much time and energy is invested.
It’s not that a woman cares what exactly a man does to make a living. Some women do. The ones who will only date a man in a certain field should be avoided anyway. So at least you’ll weed them out. What most decent women care about is that you support yourself and could possibly support them should things progress. Yes, that’s how far women think into the future when reviewing a profile. She’s calculating in her head how you and she will be able to buy a home together and afford to have her leave her job to stay home and raise your children. It’s crazy, but it’s how some of us do.
The reality is that if you are not in a position to support a family, even just you and her, then that means you have to go for women who either don’t want children/marriage, are divorced and not looking to marry again or don’t mind being the breadwinner. Yes, that is going to limit your options. Better that than going on a ton of dates that go nowhere and getting frustrated. You’re probably going to have to widen your age range, too. I’m not going to tell you to wish upon a star and hope someone will love you for who you are because that’s a crock. If you don’t bring to the table an impressive level of financial security, you’re going to be ignored by a hefty portion of the female population. It sucks, but it is what it is. You are not going to Norma Rae your way out of this by trying to change the system.
Revealing an illness, even an invisible one, is going to make you appear weak and flawed. I tend to think women are more turned off by that than men. Women expect men to be “strong” in various areas, including health and physical ability. You can maybe say that a health situation has sidelined your career and that you’re thankful that you’ve still been able to maintain a secure and stable life. You have to make this sound as positive as possible.
It’s important to paint the right picture of your life and lifestyle. Ok, so you don’t go to an office or work full time. What do you do, if anything? Do you volunteer? Do you work part-time? Do you have hobbies? What does a day in your life look like? That’s what you have to share in your profile. You do not want to make yourself appear like you’re a shut in or live in a plastic bubble. If you’re active enough to be able to date regularly, that needs to come across in your profile.
(Contact me and I’ll be happy to review whatever you write and give you a complimentary profile review session. )