Why Honesty Is Always The Best Policy When Dating

Gay Dating

Why Honesty is Always the Best Policy When Dating

Robert Kingett

Written by: Robert Kingett

Robert Kingett

Robert Kingett is the chief disability journalist in Chicago and the creator of the Accessible Netflix Project as well as the initiative known as Step Above the Cracks, a campaign to improve Chicago sidewalks and streets for those with physical or visual disabilities. His essays have been published widely in magazines and blogs and read on radio stations across the country and abroad. He has been published in several anthologies. He's a humor gay dating columnist for Windy City Times. He is a strong advocate for LGBTQ rights as well as the disabled and has raised a great deal of funds for HIV and AIDS research.

Edited by: Lillian Castro

Lillian Castro

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There’s an old saying people often say when they’re torn between telling little white lies that lead up to heaping piles of bullshit.

It’s a phrase used all of the time in movies, TV shows and other forms of media that I find very educational because they make me want to read books.

It’s the phrase:

“Honesty is the best policy.”

People are afraid of online dating because they are afraid they won’t get an honest guy.

Dating is like fishing with different kinds of fish – some of which don’t know how to swim the right way and others will never bite the bait.

The point of dating is to try something new, meet someone new and see if you have the right kind of bait for that particular fish.

As I’m dangling my hook in the vast recesses of the World Wide Web, I come across a young lad I have never seen before. Usually on this site faces become so familiar you can tell how much they have aged when they upload new pictures.

The new picture captures my good eye at once because the smile flashes blinding pearly whites at me instead of other body parts. I eagerly click into the profile and gaze at an enlarged image of this new potential.

He’s tall – standing up straight as an arrow. This mocha brown spirit displays his photogenic talent by leaning against a wall, elbow resting slightly poised so his cheek is resting on his hand.

The blinding pearly whites draw me in even deeper upon closer inspection because they’re emphasized by the smile. His smile is so friendly bricks would fawn over him.

The eyes compliment the smile. They are very open and easy to see. The picture is very clear – something that’s a rarity on this dating site.

He’s an erudite grammarian, as evidenced by the spelling and grammar he displays when he writes about his various interests and thoughts.

He’s a cat collector, and this makes me want to marry him immediately. He loves to read any genre, and he even includes a link to his Goodreads profile.

Since he includes a Goodreads profile, I vow to stalk this ebony deity.

Something I notice, however, is all of the basic details are missing even though the descriptive text makes up for that. The height, weight, relationship status and hair color are all blank.

The only fields that are filed in are the HIV status and the smoking and drinking slots – he’s a no on both. As I’m staring at his stimulating picture, I hear angels start singing when a notification pops up saying  he’s viewed MY profile.

As I’m gaping, another notification pops up a few minutes later and I realize I’ve been in heaven these past few minutes.

A message has arrived.

I open it with shaking clicks.

“Hello! My name is Alex. I just have to say you’re cute.”

This game is not new to me, so I smirk before I have a chance to read the next line.

“I realize that sentence above won’t make me win you over, given your profile, so I want to introduce myself formally. I just wanted to tell you something you may not know.”

The perception gets my fingers flying so fast they stir up weather patterns.

Dozens of messages that could rival legislation at the White House lead us to a dashing night.

We’re sitting in a flourishing restaurant I have never been to before, our peepers fixed on each other as if we were born to stare at one another among the sparkling conversation and boisterous laughter.

We’re eating and talking, emphasizing our good time with flows of feelings and thoughts. When the dinner is over, I can’t believe he’s single, so I ask him if he is.

“Am I single? Oh god, no. I’m not single.”

Instantly I feel myself blanching as my brain stutters in reply. My mouth hasn’t even made it to a stutter yet.

“You should get what

you want with honesty.”


“I’m not single. I have an open relationship with a guy.”

I don’t believe in them at all and believe they are more trouble than anyone notices. I tell him this but he assures me it’s the norm now.

“I just don’t understand how your boyfriend would be OK with me being here,” I splutter.

He smiles, very calm, not fazed by my morals at all.

“Well, Robert. We all have different feelings and thoughts. Him and I have different ideas of a relationship than you do. I thought you’d be pretty good with that. I thought you were going to  be someone who we could share.”

I shake my head so hard the wind halts. His demeanor has changed to a bitter stew. It  is now I see the ring on his finger. He’s married.

“No. Even if you tell each other what you’re doing, and I don’t even know if you do, that’s cheating. That’s not an open anything. You’re going behind closed doors to get something you want to get. You should get it with openness and honesty.”

He shakes his head, smiles and pats my hand as if I’m a delirious child. “You just don’t understand. It’s OK.”

Soon after, he sees me back to my apartment and then leaves, giving me a hug. His voice brimming with sincerity, he exclaims he had a good time. I have to admit that I did too.

A few days  later, I’m sitting in a coffee shop for gay people writing a news article when I sense someone sit down across from me. I look up and Alex is there.

A worker clears Alex’s place and they talk. Since I’m close, I gape at the matching rings on their fingers. Suddenly, the worker trips and coffee soon splashes toward me.

Alex’s husband quickly comes over and mops up the mess. He’s just as friendly as Alex, with deep dark skin and very gentle hands. His smile is infectious.

“Oh gosh. I’m so sorry, sweetie. Are you OK?” he asks as he cleans the spill. He’s a sweetheart – he deserves better.

“Yes. I’m fine. Well, actually, I think some got on this table. Can you wipe it off?”

“Sure, sugar!” he gushes. “I’ll be right back, OK?” As he goes to get napkins, I quickly  type out a text on my phone on the table.

He returns in a flourish, sincerely apologizing that he’s interrupted my writing. He really is a sweetheart.

“Right here,” I say, pointing just to the left of my phone. He begins to wipe and then he reads the message I have typed, “Alex went out with me last night and others.”

I soon leave. As I stand up to leave, a tearful voice says “Thank you.” I’m not sure how to say you’re welcome.

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