Would You Date Someone With A Dark Past?

ted kennedy death

Ted Kennedy's death got us thinking: Would you date someone with a serious skeleton in his closet?

Senator Ted Kennedy died last night, and today everyone is talking about his legacy—the good parts and the bad, which got us to thinking: Could an incident from someone's past make you unwilling to date them? Case in point: the Chappaquiddick incident.

A quick recap: on July 18, 1969, while driving home from a party Ted Kennedy drove off a bridge. He swam to safety, but his passenger, Mary Jo Kopechne, didn’t make it out of the car. Kennedy didn't report the incident until the next day, after a diver found her body still inside the vehicle.

Besides saying he panicked—Kennedy never fully explained why he didn't report the accident immediately after it happened. If he had done so, perhaps Kopchene would have lived. No one really knows what took place that night, and people credit the ensuing scandal with derailing Kennedy's chances at a presidential run. Jackie O's Lovers: Brando, Bobby Kennedy?

And incident like this is clearly a red flag when it comes to dating. But is it enough to make you not go out with someone? And is there a statute of limitations after which a morally dubious incident can be excused? What if you met someone who had caused a death five years ago? Ten years ago? Twenty? How soon into a relationship should someone tell you about a skeleton like this? 12 Relationship Red Flags

Readers, do you have a secret that might make people unwilling to date you? Have you given someone a pass when you found out something terrible about their past? Or have you given someone the boot when you found out their secret? Let us know in the comments.