Author Topic: thank you, Dear Abby!  (Read 20544 times)

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Venus193

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #75 on: October 22, 2012, 05:52:46 PM »
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.

I have never heard this idea, at least not from any source I respect.  I am not sure who you are including in "most people" but I wouldn't value the opinion of someone who said I needed to accept a troll or slob as a life partner.  You shouldn't either!  As an aside, though, how is your description of "trolls and slobs" all that different from the letter writers words about women? Did the trolls and slobs let themselves go?  Just something to think about.

Most people I know (I should have been clearer about this).

My late mother never dated really attractive men because she wanted to be the beauty.  Most of the women of my generation were taught -- but not necessarily convinced -- that we were not to regard a man's looks as anything of importance.  One friend prides herself on being willing to date men who are physically repulsive.

Let's not also forget that most men think they are more attractive than they really are.

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #76 on: October 22, 2012, 05:56:40 PM »
It's a good thing I don't have an advice column.  I'd have lit that man's tail on fire - so many double standards at play in his attitude I don't even know where to start.  The double standard many men of all ages have about their physical appearance versus the physical appearance of women they're willing to date infuriates me.

The LW described himself as attractive, as I recall.

Yeah, they all do.   ;D

Moray

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #77 on: October 22, 2012, 06:00:09 PM »
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.

I have never heard this idea, at least not from any source I respect.  I am not sure who you are including in "most people" but I wouldn't value the opinion of someone who said I needed to accept a troll or slob as a life partner.  You shouldn't either!  As an aside, though, how is your description of "trolls and slobs" all that different from the letter writers words about women? Did the trolls and slobs let themselves go?  Just something to think about.

Most people I know (I should have been clearer about this).

My late mother never dated really attractive men because she wanted to be the beauty.  Most of the women of my generation were taught -- but not necessarily convinced -- that we were not to regard a man's looks as anything of importance.  One friend prides herself on being willing to date men who are physically repulsive.

Let's not also forget that most men think they are more attractive than they really are.

You know, Venus, that attitude; that we're poor put-upon women who have only men and their unrealistic expectations to blame for our lot in life; is just as much a part of the problem. It seems like an unrelated rant that doesn't have much to do with the man's letter, assuming we take his statement that he is attractive and well-maintained at face value.

Someone is not a bad person, male or female, for preferring specific body types or lifestyles. Someone can be a jerk by spouting off that "all the [wo]men around here aren't meeting my expectations and they really need to get on the ball".
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Twik

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #78 on: October 22, 2012, 06:04:37 PM »
Someone is not a bad person, male or female, for preferring specific body types or lifestyles. Someone can be a jerk by spouting off that "all the [wo]men around here aren't meeting my expectations and they really need to get on the ball".

Well, yes, that's the issue. We all want attractive mates, for whatever definition we have of attractive. However, this man (1) considers that attractiveness is so clearly and objectively defined that Dear Abby (or anyone else) knows exactly what he wants, and (2) believes that women need, as you say, to "get on the ball" to attract such a fine specimen as himself.
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Moray

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #79 on: October 22, 2012, 06:05:47 PM »
Someone is not a bad person, male or female, for preferring specific body types or lifestyles. Someone can be a jerk by spouting off that "all the [wo]men around here aren't meeting my expectations and they really need to get on the ball".

Well, yes, that's the issue. We all want attractive mates, for whatever definition we have of attractive. However, this man (1) considers that attractiveness is so clearly and objectively defined that Dear Abby (or anyone else) knows exactly what he wants, and (2) believes that women need, as you say, to "get on the ball" to attract such a fine specimen as himself.

I think you and I are absolutely on the same page here, Twik :D
Utah

Venus193

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #80 on: October 22, 2012, 06:12:11 PM »
Quote
Someone can be a jerk by spouting off that "all the [wo]men around here aren't meeting my expectations and they really need to get on the ball".

Back during the Roman Empire days (before the internet) I used to get a big laugh out of the personals in New York Magazine where men in their 40s and older advertised for 18-24 year-old beauty queens, insisting they had to have actual titles before they were willing to date them.  I was angry with their arrogance but amused at the eventual consequences these guys would eventually have to face.

And I discovered an amazing exception to this recently.  One of my neighbors who is somewhat fit but otherwise very plain has an SO who looks like Christian de la Fuente.  Dear Abby's LW should put that in his pipe and smoke it.

hyzenthlay

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #81 on: October 22, 2012, 06:27:43 PM »
"Most single men I know also put a premium on a woman's appearance."

Then he is hanging around with a fairly shallow set of guys.  Because while almost every guy I know loves to oogle an attractive woman, very few of really expect expect all woman to look like that, or expect their partners to be anything like a perfect 10.

At 40 I'm recently divorced and in the best shape of my life. I am also well educated and making an above average income. And I am NOT looking to tie myself down again an time soon. What could this bozo possibly offer ME  ;)


TurtleDove

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #82 on: October 22, 2012, 06:34:09 PM »
"Most single men I know also put a premium on a woman's appearance."

Then he is hanging around with a fairly shallow set of guys. 

Why do you find them to be shallow?

Sharnita

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #83 on: October 22, 2012, 06:36:17 PM »
Eh, I don't think there is anything wrong with wanting a partner to whom you are attracted.  His letter didn't endear him to me, but the idea that he wants someone fit and vibrant is not offensive in and of itself, nor do I find it shallow.

I'll agree with you. My aunt is fifty and quite fit. She works out with a personal trainer and has quite the physique. One of the qualities she looks for is someone who is in as good a shape as she is. Honestly, if she can require it of the men she dates, then the letter writer get to as well. What's sauce for the gander is sauce for the goose.

I also don't find the letter to Dear Abby all that objectionable, but that's because I am used to my aunt. Everyone has standards of what they're attracted to. For some people it's more mental (e.g. personality traits) than physical.

But your aunt isn't making seeping generalizations about all men her age, their level of fitness, attractiveness and what they do or don't understand. 

hyzenthlay

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #84 on: October 22, 2012, 06:46:04 PM »
"Most single men I know also put a premium on a woman's appearance."

Then he is hanging around with a fairly shallow set of guys. 

Why do you find them to be shallow?

I've known 2 types of guys that place a premium on appearance. The first type really is just looking for arm candy and dating, and that's pretty shallow. It's not bad (so long as everyone is honest) but I'd still call it shallow.

The other type is usually the 'nice guy' who constantly bemoans how shallow attractive women are, despite never being interested in any women not very attractive, and rarely all that physically attractive themselves. I guess maybe they aren't shallow so much as delusional.

TurtleDove

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #85 on: October 22, 2012, 06:49:45 PM »
"Most single men I know also put a premium on a woman's appearance."

Then he is hanging around with a fairly shallow set of guys. 

Why do you find them to be shallow?

I've known 2 types of guys that place a premium on appearance. The first type really is just looking for arm candy and dating, and that's pretty shallow. It's not bad (so long as everyone is honest) but I'd still call it shallow.

The other type is usually the 'nice guy' who constantly bemoans how shallow attractive women are, despite never being interested in any women not very attractive, and rarely all that physically attractive themselves. I guess maybe they aren't shallow so much as delusional.

That's not been my experience.  I don't think my friends, whom I consider to be attractive, would select shallow men, and neither would I.  We also tend to select attractive men, at least in my opinion.  I am absolutely certain these men whom we have selected as our SOs place a premium on appearance.  For what it's worth, I am 39 and have close friends ranging from 26 to 56.  I also am not at all shallow and I place a premium on appearance - my own and my SOs.

hyzenthlay

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #86 on: October 22, 2012, 07:02:22 PM »
For what it's worth, I am 39 and have close friends ranging from 26 to 56.  I also am not at all shallow and I place a premium on appearance - my own and my SOs.

Maybe we are operating with differing definitions of 'premium.'

Premium "An unusual or high value"

I think the letter writer sounds like 'premium' means 'single most important factor' as opposed to  'significant influence ranked with personality, stability, whatever.'  But I admit I'm reading in to a Dear Abby letter, always a treacherous passtime  >:D

Take2

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #87 on: October 22, 2012, 07:59:12 PM »
This guy is not looking for one or even a few gorgeous women in his age bracket to date in search of someone to share his life with. That would be reasonable.

He is looking for "most" single women in his age range to realize that he and his single male peers want them to look as hot as possible and respond by making that their priority so that he has a huge pool to select from. Implied is the idea that ultimately he will do the picking and she will just be lucky to be picked, since he has an above average income and the ability to travel.

It is entirely possible that even if all these women he sees who don't "measure up" adjusted accordingly and made appearing hot to him their goal in life...the vast majority would not choose to marry him even if he chose to marry them. It simply isn't a one-sided proposition.

I was a single woman in his preferred age range, looking to date. I did not meet his criteria. I was not at all offended that some men prefer women more fit than me and didn't want to date me. The point of dating is for both people to find what they are looking for, and one of my criteria is someone who thinks I am beautiful. I was offended by any man who thought the entire point of the dating pool was for everyone to make sure he got what he was looking for. Arrogance is just unattractive.

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #88 on: October 22, 2012, 08:05:21 PM »
That's not been my experience.  I don't think my friends, whom I consider to be attractive, would select shallow men, and neither would I.  We also tend to select attractive men, at least in my opinion.  I am absolutely certain these men whom we have selected as our SOs place a premium on appearance.  For what it's worth, I am 39 and have close friends ranging from 26 to 56.  I also am not at all shallow and I place a premium on appearance - my own and my SOs.

Make up your mind.  Last page you placed a premium on people who like to be active and adventurous and who are up for anything. Now you are placing a premium on physical attractiveness.  Everything can't be the most important thing.  If looks are the most important, then active and adventurous are things you are willing to let slide... But really I'm going to bet its the opposite.  That active and up for anything is actually your real premium with attractive being a close second, but second none the less.  That if there was a choice between absolutely perfect looking couch potato and hot but not perfect adventure guy with a heart of gold, you're going to go for guy #2, right?  First you pick personality and then within that range, pick the good looking one, right? 

The LW is coming across as opposite - that looks are the first and foremost, not personality and interests and attitude. 


For me, it is very difficult to separate the mental/personality traits from the physical because I think one informs the other.  I am very attracted to people who like to be active and adventurous and who are up for anything, who will jump out a plane with me and run an obstacle course with me and play in a giant maze with my daughter - the ones who say "let's do it!" instead of "it requires effort, I'd rather watch TV" - that's the mental (not a comprehensive list by any means).  The physical aspect is that people with that mentality tend to be pretty fit.  Am I attracted to the physical?  Yep.  But I am also attracted to the mental aspects that drive a person to strive to be his physical best.

buvezdevin

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Re: thank you, Dear Abby!
« Reply #89 on: October 22, 2012, 08:15:51 PM »
It stirikes me as noteworthy (to myself only) that there is a thread in which I agree with pretty much all views expressed, though the views represent different perspectives.

Taking a slightly different tack than I have seen expressed, it was not clear to me that the letter writer was referring to physical qualities in saying, with a honking wide paint brush, that women his age do not "take care of themselves".

The distinction I wonder about is whether he is referring to overall physical fitness, or grooming and styling choices.  The reason I wonder is that I have also noticed women (and men) of most ages being more relaxed in preparations before being in public, though, in my case, for the most part I am glad.

While I would not go to the extreme of wearing pajama pants in public, I wear little make up unless I am going to be in certain settings (not the grocery or running errands), my wardrobe generally has a high proportion of informal, casual type items, even business meetings seldom involve formal suits, I still wear leggings and tights but can't remember the last time I wore "hose", i do often pull my hair into a pony tail or pin it up rather than "styling" it before i leave the house, and I love high heels, but wear them much less frequently than years before.

I just turned 51, the letter writer sounds about 5 or so years younger than me.  I remember in the not too distant past when I would not have worn a skirt or dress without hose, absolutely put on makeup for any effort outside the house and likewise spent more time on hair styling, and would not have thought anything less formal than a suit appropriate for business.  I refer to those times as the 80's and 90's.

While I am inclined to agree with others in this thread on their read of the letter, and also agree that we are all free to decide what attracts us to romantic partners, I did wonder if this guy's expectations of "taking care of themself" for women are... Outdated, for any of a number of possible reasons.
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