I’ve written before about my experiences that parallel something similar to the story of the ugly duckling. About how, people mocked me on the street, in class, how I attained invisibility for the most part from people who might have otherwise wished me well. If you have been following my blog, you’ll know that these experiences were rooted in the complex consequences of the child neglect and emotional abuse I experienced as a child and adolescent.
A new state of being is a new vantage point for observations. Over the past year I have collected some more experiences to add to my understanding of my past. Fortunately, I don’t feel so flawed anymore, so I feel it does not add so much to my current condition.
I have asked a lot of people over the last year about what sort of appearancial qualities they are looking for in a partner, what the people they fell for looked like and whether there have been any usual qualities in others that they sought.
My little disabled brother’s favorite type of woman is one who is very fit and even muscular. My dad prefers women with extra weight on them, and preferably of the gothic variety. He loved my mother who was not gothic in the slightest and towards the slim side of the spectrum. Unlike his stated preferences my mother had red hair, not dark hair. My crush thinks my blushing, aka my minor rosacea, is cute and reminiscent of sex. My boyfriend originally held stock for a ‘classy woman’, which might be exemplified by an old photograph of a beautiful woman from some time ago. And yet, he loves me despite my fashion sense which is some combination of earthy, mysterious and ethereal according to him. Not only that, but I have a very asymmetrical face which is not exactly beautiful. Maybe cute on a good day. It is plain or worse most days.
I have been with a short strawberry blonde haired and curvy woman. A tall, skinny, ash brown haired man, with acne and of the dorky variety. A semi-short dark haired and dark haired man with puppy fat. And now I am with a tall, mousy brown to ash blonde haired man, with a short beard who probably has mild seborrhoeic dermatitis on his face. It is obvious by now what my point is, I’ve said before that because most people end up with a long term partner irrespective of what they look like, that you will most likely find someone even if you are unattractive. Of course there is a limit below which finding someone becomes difficult. The good news is, unless you become homeless and extremely bedraggled you’ll probably never get to that point. You know you’ve dipped below the line when shop clerks begin making sarcastic comments about your appearance, and people seem to actively move away from you in a crowd.
We have all read the studies about men focusing more on women’s bodies when they want sex, focusing on women’s faces when they want a relationship, that men prefer a certain hip to waist ratio around 0.7 and whatnot. This is true, and people will treat you differently according to how you look, and it will affect your life. But maybe you have noticed the inconsistencies between women preferring more dominant men which may imply some degree of aggression and that apparently they also prefer men who are good with children and dogs. This apparent inconsistencies are likely in part due to women’s monthly hormonal shifts, and yet such studies usually look at averages and general tendencies.
It is likely that people dating people who are less attractive is in part due to the market, and yet even if men value appearance more than anything in surveys the number of variables that fall underneath it is large. My point is, the world is not so simple. That studies looking at single variables are not an exact representation of the reality you are part of. Being more attractive will probably contribute to your happiness, but you have a massive amount of personal power in spite of what you have. The same unhappiness and doubt that can be so powerful as to push you to lock yourself away from the world. That can cripple you. Make you a shadow of your former self. Can be equaled in power by positive emotions and actions. That is part of the root of charisma, and why some people are saved by others and themselves.
There is also a certain power in featuring your flaws and using them. If you can use your unusual face to make an artistic or aesthetic impression, great. You made what many would have considered a flaw or weakness into something powerful. If you can educate others about the world and give others hope by showcasing your flaws. You are excellent, just the same. If you cannot do such with your flaw, then let the pain and stress caused by your flaw, give you energy so that you might grow in other ways. You are your best tool. Remember that.
Repeat after me:
Attractiveness is important.
Improving it will make my life better.
But is not everything I have.
It is not the determination I have.
It is not equivalent to the intelligence I can use in pursuing my goals.
It is not the power I have to influence others and myself.
Attractiveness is not me.
I am a whole person and I live in the real world.
If something stands in my way, I can find a way.
No one cares if I broke a few boring social norms to get there.
People will treat me like the person I am.
It doesn’t matter so much how I got there.
What matters is that I became stronger.
In trying to get where I am and where I want to be.