Lying not bad when it comes to dating, survey shows

NEW YORK (Reuters Life!) - Honesty is not the best policy, especially when it comes to bad dates or the dreaded “do I look fat in this” question from a partner, a new survey showed on Friday.

One in two American men and women have told a lie to get out of a date, while 32 percent of men and 43 percent of women have given a fake phone number to someone they were not interested in, according to the Harlequin Romance Report 2008.

“What we discovered ... is that at the heart of every confession lies the truth about who we are,” Katherine Orr and Marleah Stout, editors-in-chief of the report, said in a statement.

When it comes to giving an opinion on whether your partner looks fat in an outfit, 61 percent of men and 50 percent of women approved of lying, while 63 percent of men and women said that in general lies were sometimes alright.

Toronto-based Harlequin Enterprises -- best known for publishing romance novels -- surveyed 2,000 men and women online from the United States and Canada.

The report also found that 46 percent of men and 45 percent of women thought a lie was not harmful if a person didn’t have anything nice to say about a friend’s significant other.

Reporting by Michelle Nichols; editing by Patricia Reaney