Author Topic: thank you, Dear Abby!  (Read 20163 times)

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Diane AKA Traska

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #15 on: October 22, 2012, 12:45:47 PM »
Yeah, but he basically phrased it as "I deserve a supermodel, but all I see are wildebeests.  Where can a man of my importance go to find a woman that can drink a thick milkshake from three rooms away?"
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Twik

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #16 on: October 22, 2012, 12:46:43 PM »
And there is a difference between "someone I am physically attracted to" and the obvious arm candy this guy is after.

Unfortunately, I think many people nowadays are unaware of this distinction. They spend so much time chasing the "hot" people (top 1%), that they don't realize that one might become physically attracted to someone for something other than perfect build/features, if you only slowed down enough to get to know them.
My cousin's memoir of love and loneliness while raising a child with multiple disabilities will be out on Amazon soon! Know the Night, by Maria Mutch, has been called "full of hope, light, and companionship for surviving the small hours of the night."

Nibsey

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #17 on: October 22, 2012, 12:47:52 PM »
I honestly don't understand the strong negative feelings this topic seems to stir in some posters whenever the subject comes up.  Everyone is attracted to different things and some of us find physical attractiveness important.  Substitute any other requirement for physical attractiveness and it's suddenly okay. 

"I'm looking for a car buff to accompany me through life. Most single men I know also put a premium on motor vehicle knowledge and trivia. Why don't women understand this? Where would you suggest finding a suitable partner for someone in my situation?"

Should people date people they are not attracted to?

I don't think that's what's annoying people, it's his attitude. So for example, I'm attractive to red heads and luckily live in an area full of them and am dating a red headed hunk.  :) No one (I think) would say there was anything wrong with me stating I'd only date red heads because I only find them attractive. (Not the case, I'm all equal opportunities  8) lol ) However, if I lived in a area, where say there wasn't many red headed, people certainly would have an issue if I stated all men should dye their hair to suit my perception of attractiveness.
« Last Edit: October 22, 2012, 12:49:54 PM by Nibsey »
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Allyson

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #18 on: October 22, 2012, 12:48:33 PM »
I don't think there's any problem at all with wanting someone you are attracted to. But this particular attitude and some of the phrases he uses put up all kinds of warning bells. If he'd said "Turns out, none of the women I'm meeting through traditional means are attracting me...what are some other suggestions for venues I might try?" or something, I would not have had that reaction.

First, not everyone's attracted to the same thing. Maybe to him 'attractive' means athletic blonde, and to someone else curvy brunette, and so on. It's not like there's a universal standard for what a woman of a particular age 'should' look like. Furthermore the 'let themselves go' and 'why don't women understand that' sound sexist. And is that it sounds as though he is derisive of women who don't mean his *standards*, or women he isn't personally attracted to...as though it's somehow a character flaw on their part.

I'd feel the same way if it were a woman writing in saying 'why don't men understand that women want an income at a certain level and men who have alimony payments are just not attractive' or something. It's the tone of scorn that puts some people off. Wanting someone you are attracted to isn't the problem.

Tabby Uprising

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #19 on: October 22, 2012, 12:48:54 PM »
I have no problem with people valuing certain physical traits in another person.  The only aspect of this particular LW that nags at me is the idea that if someone doesn't meet his physical preferences it means they "don't take care of themselves".  I'm a bit sick of that phrase to begin with.  I mean, how can you tell merely by looking at someone if they "take care of themselves"? Besides, that can also mean a lot of different things to different people.

I'm also skeptical that every single woman of a certain age group in his area has this problem.  Why write Dear Abby?  You want more fit women? Join a gym! A local running group/bike group.  Heck, start your own running club for x age group in your city.  Meet lots of people!

EMuir

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #20 on: October 22, 2012, 12:52:54 PM »
I am lucky in that I'm actually attracted to a person for who they are, not their looks.  So no matter what happens to my spouse's body, I'll always be attracted to *her*.  It certainly explains the divorce rate if people are so fixated on a certain physical trait in order to be attracted to someone.

Venus193

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #21 on: October 22, 2012, 12:56:49 PM »
This article may provide an insight or two:  http://www.psychologytoday.com/articles/200106/why-i-hate-beauty

I also resent the idea that women -- no matter what we look like -- are expected to accept trolls and slobs as life partners.  That is all most people think I deserve.  I'd rather be an old maid with too many cats than a miserable wife.

Judah

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #22 on: October 22, 2012, 12:58:41 PM »
I honestly don't understand the strong negative feelings this topic seems to stir in some posters whenever the subject comes up.  Everyone is attracted to different things and some of us find physical attractiveness important.  Substitute any other requirement for physical attractiveness and it's suddenly okay. 

"I'm looking for a car buff to accompany me through life. Most single men I know also put a premium on motor vehicle knowledge and trivia. Why don't women understand this? Where would you suggest finding a suitable partner for someone in my situation?"

Should people date people they are not attracted to?

I don't think that's what's annoying people, it's his attitude. So for example, I'm attractive to red heads and luckily live in an area full of them and am dating a red headed hunk.  :) No one (I think) would say there was anything wrong with me stating I'd only date red heads because I only find them attractive. (Not the case, I'm all equal opportunities  8) lol ) However, if I lived in a area, where say there wasn't many red headed, people certainly would have an issue if I stated all men should dye their hair to suit my perception of attractiveness.

Nowhere in the post does the LW say that women should change to meet his criteria. Rather he notes that he's not meeting women that meet his criteria and asks where he might meet women who do.  I think posters are reading meaning into words that aren't there. 

The only part of the letter I have any issue at all is, "Why don't women understand this?" and to this I would reply, "Why don't you get that it's not a priority for a lot of people. Keep looking for someone for whom it is a priority."
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TurtleDove

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #23 on: October 22, 2012, 12:59:14 PM »
EMuir, that came across in a way you probably did not intend. As someone for whom physical attraction is important, I can assure you I value who my SO is. Appearance is just one of many factors.

Sub in "I want someone intelligent" (which is also very important to me) for "someone I find physically attractive." If I say intelligence matters to me, it does not follow that I don't care whether my SO is kind, or has a job, or whatever else.
« Last Edit: October 22, 2012, 01:01:46 PM by TurtleDove »

Twik

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #24 on: October 22, 2012, 01:03:17 PM »
I honestly don't understand the strong negative feelings this topic seems to stir in some posters whenever the subject comes up.  Everyone is attracted to different things and some of us find physical attractiveness important.  Substitute any other requirement for physical attractiveness and it's suddenly okay. 

"I'm looking for a car buff to accompany me through life. Most single men I know also put a premium on motor vehicle knowledge and trivia. Why don't women understand this? Where would you suggest finding a suitable partner for someone in my situation?"

Should people date people they are not attracted to?

Physical attractiveness is not a set thing. People right now are chasing "attractive" as defined in an incredibly narrow way, and refusing to even consider someone attractive if they aren't supermodel thin and young. (That's one reason why us older people often bewail the current crop of movie actors as "all looking alike". Spencer Tracey or Humphrey Bogart would be lucky to get a walkon part today.)

Let's face it, there is a math problem here, if 99% of people want to only date the top 1% most physically perfect bodies out there. The 1% will just not have the time, even if they have the inclination. And even if someone "hooks up" (oh, horrible phrase) with a one-percenter, that person will, eventually, age. No, no amount of "taking care of yourself" is going to prevent that.

Sit down sometime and watch "Marty". I think a lot of people today will be like Marty's friends, spending their days wondering why they can't find someone to share their lives with, because they immediately reject anyone for not being perfect on the outside. They're like people wondering why they're condemned to a life in their parents' basement, when they will only consider moving out to a 5-bedroom mansion, and complain "Well, you wouldn't want me to waste my time moving in to a place I wasn't really attracted to, right? Why should I waste my time looking at 1-bedroom apartments? They don't look anything like those homes that the stars live in! But, sob, I just can't find the house I really, really want, so I'll just live on the Murphy bed for now. This is all the fault of the architects who won't build me my dream mansion for an office worker's salary."
My cousin's memoir of love and loneliness while raising a child with multiple disabilities will be out on Amazon soon! Know the Night, by Maria Mutch, has been called "full of hope, light, and companionship for surviving the small hours of the night."

Allyson

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #25 on: October 22, 2012, 01:08:54 PM »
I'd hope that most people will date people *they* find physically attractive. But when they are convinced they will *only* be attracted to, as Twik says, the very narrow range of supermodel-types, it is a problem. I know many people who ended up with people who looked far different than they previously said was their physical ideal. These people aren't 'settling', rather they found they can be attracted to more people they believed.

And when someone's 'I am only attracted to' happens to exactly match the conventional standards of the time, it starts to look like what they really want is someone who will impress other people.

It's the same with 'intelligent' or 'good conversationalist' to my mind. There are many ways to be those things. And I'd be giving the side eye to someone who only defined 'intelligent' as 'has a Masters degree or better'...it's a societally-decided standard. If most of the people you find intellectually stimulating have that degree that's one thing. But needing someone else's standards to tell you what you find attractive or intelligent is suspect. And that's the impression I get from letters like this guy's.

Twik

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #26 on: October 22, 2012, 01:12:05 PM »
Ah, yes, I remember when I thought my ideal type was tall, thin, and dark. Definitely dark. Blonds were not my thing.

Then, I started dating a short, stocky, blond. On the third date it hit me, "This guy is HOT! As in, scrabble right now, hot."

Unfortunately, the sedate gathering we were attending was not really conducive to that. However, if I'd blown him off because he wasn't "the type I'm attracted to," I would never have realized it.
My cousin's memoir of love and loneliness while raising a child with multiple disabilities will be out on Amazon soon! Know the Night, by Maria Mutch, has been called "full of hope, light, and companionship for surviving the small hours of the night."

Nibsey

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #27 on: October 22, 2012, 01:12:51 PM »
I honestly don't understand the strong negative feelings this topic seems to stir in some posters whenever the subject comes up.  Everyone is attracted to different things and some of us find physical attractiveness important.  Substitute any other requirement for physical attractiveness and it's suddenly okay. 

"I'm looking for a car buff to accompany me through life. Most single men I know also put a premium on motor vehicle knowledge and trivia. Why don't women understand this? Where would you suggest finding a suitable partner for someone in my situation?"

Should people date people they are not attracted to?

I don't think that's what's annoying people, it's his attitude. So for example, I'm attractive to red heads and luckily live in an area full of them and am dating a red headed hunk.  :) No one (I think) would say there was anything wrong with me stating I'd only date red heads because I only find them attractive. (Not the case, I'm all equal opportunities  8) lol ) However, if I lived in a area, where say there wasn't many red headed, people certainly would have an issue if I stated all men should dye their hair to suit my perception of attractiveness.

Nowhere in the post does the LW say that women should change to meet his criteria. Rather he notes that he's not meeting women that meet his criteria and asks where he might meet women who do.  I think posters are reading meaning into words that aren't there. 

The only part of the letter I have any issue at all is, "Why don't women understand this?" and to this I would reply, "Why don't you get that it's not a priority for a lot of people. Keep looking for someone for whom it is a priority."

Here's where I had issues with what he said,
"no longer take care of themselves".- I highly doubt every single woman he has ever met in their 40's no longer take care of themselves. So i can only read it that they don't take care of themselves by his standards.
 "a very attractive woman to accompany me through life"- he didn't need to emphasis this with the very
"Most single men I know also put a premium on a woman's appearance. Why don't women understand this?" - Ergo women should change to meet his criteria.

Granted my reading is based on my interpretation of the various phrases he uses but that's always going to be the case.
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TurtleDove

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #28 on: October 22, 2012, 01:20:25 PM »
People right now are chasing "attractive" as defined in an incredibly narrow way, and refusing to even consider someone attractive if they aren't supermodel thin and young.

What people do you refer to?  I am sure some people do this, but I see the vast majority of people happily dating or coupled.  I am not supermodel thin, and I am not young, but I am considered to be attractive.  My sister is supermodel thin and tall, but she is not young and she is considered to be attractive.  I have friends of various ages and sizes and shapes and every single one is considered attractive, if not by everyone, at least by her SO. I don't personally know anyone who would fit into your statement, and I would venture a guess that physical attractiveness is very important to most of my friends.

WillyNilly

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #29 on: October 22, 2012, 01:28:13 PM »
Maybe its just my social circles, but not too many young, hot, gym-going, appearance-prioritizing women I know would ever in a million years consider dating a guy with 2 teenage kids. Maybe his problem isn't that the women aren't out there, its that don't want to meet *him*.

Heck I'm not even hot, just average pretty, not thin but fit, and in my late 30's and I had my choice of suitors up until I took myself out of the game at 35ish. I just got married to a 40 year old. Definitely my age group. I absolutely had no interests in a guy with ex-wife & kid baggage! And none of my single girlfriends are keen on it either.

So he's probably meeting other single parents. And while I doubt all or even most single moms have let themselves go, they probably don't have a huge amount of time or funds for keeping up appearances. They probably do the basics, and supplement by being awesome people.
« Last Edit: October 22, 2012, 01:36:49 PM by WillyNilly »