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I matched with a murderer on Tinder and mum said to give him a chance

This latest dating catastrophe has made me close the book on love, for a little while.

We’ve all done things we aren’t proud of when it comes to our past and we’re usually pretty keen to keep them from our love interests at least for a little while.

Aren't we?

It seems not everyone is such a closed book when it comes to finding their soulmate, because my latest Tinder date told me after our first coffee, he had spent nine years in jail for murder.

I’m a pretty closed book when it comes to my romantic ventures, but this date left me questioning absolutely everything I've ever known about dating.

Man and woman smile as they take a selfie.
My last Tinder date didn't bring me the love I'd been hoping for (this is not us). Photo: Getty

Let's go back to the start. I didn’t exactly know about this man’s past before I accepted a casual coffee date, but we had been speaking over the phone for at least a month before it. The usual meeting on a dating app timeline happened with him. You match, you chat for a few weeks on and off, you ask for each other's numbers and then there’s a few long phone conversations and finally a date is locked in for coffee.

By the time I was due to meet him for coffee, I had developed some feelings towards him. He opened up about his difficult past growing up in a dysfunctional family and I thought if that was the extent of his issues, then he may very well be someone worth seeing again.

Little did I know, he had a few more secrets to tell me.

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The coffee date went well. There was instant attraction and while he was a little different to his pictures, I swept that under the rug and we continued chatting for hours in the cafe about life, love and everything in between. A few days later, my phone started ringing and his name appeared. I answered the call, expecting to hear all about his day and maybe plans for a dinner date but I was met with a shaky voice on the other end.

“I need to be honest with you about something that happened when I was younger before this goes any further,” he said.

“Abbey, I murdered someone when I was 15 and spent nine years in jail.”

My heart started pounding and I almost went blank before he asked if I was still on the call.

“Yeah, yeah I’m here,” I mumbled quietly.

A woman swipes on a man on Tinder.
Be careful who you swipe on! Photo: Getty

After talking to him for another ten minutes and asking him every question about it I could think of, thanks to my complete obsession with true crime, we hung up and I sat at the kitchen table in front of my laptop with every report I could find open.

We’ve all made mistakes in life, and we’ve all done stupid things, but murder?

The discussion quickly became the talk of my friend group and work colleagues. Do I forgive and forget and give him the benefit of the doubt? Do I block him on everything and walk away? How do you trust it will never happen again? Surprisingly my parents and family were the ones to say to give him a chance, but I’m pretty sure it’s because my mum just wants me to be married so she can "stop worrying about me". While my work colleagues all told me to run. Run and don’t look back.

A woman with a shocked expression speaks on the phone.
Finding out that you were dating a murderer would come as quite a shock. Photo: Getty

I don’t want to be a person who judges anyone on their mistakes because I know I’ve made many myself, but I also haven’t murdered somebody and spent time behind bars. Everybody has some sort of childhood trauma and has to make peace with their mistakes, but taking someone’s life intentionally may be the one thing I couldn’t ever forgive. The budding romance did end up fizzling out. In true Abbey fashion, I did too much research and digging and found out the "how" of his crime and felt I just couldn’t move past it.

They say you have to kiss a lot of toads before you find your prince, but in my case, I’m hoping there are not too many more murderers I need to have coffee with before I find the one.

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