WTF are ‘mixed attractiveness’ relationships?
I don’t think I’m that easily offended, especially not by terms or ‘labels.’ I’ve lived my entire life with a physical disability and lots of people use lots of different terms to describe both me and my cerebral palsy.
Some people call me disabled, some people call me cripple, some people get offended when someone calls me a cripple, and, some people say that we shouldn’t use the term ‘disabled’ and should say differently-abled instead. If you want to call me disabled, please do, and if you want to call me a cripple I’m not going to complain either. Call me whatever you like as long as you’re not actually trying to offend me by doing it.
I’ve tried to apply my personal idea of ‘as long as you’re not actually trying to offend me (or anyone else)’ thing to other areas of life too. It was working out pretty well for me so far, until I noticed the phrase ‘mixed attractiveness’ relationships’ popping up on my Twitter feed again and again (and again). I first just snorted to myself about how I thought the idea of one is BS and then, by the third time I saw it, I lost my shit. I mean I really, really lost my shit and went on a massive social media rant and ranted at several members of the Eat More Team for a very long time because I personally don’t see how anyone can describe someone else’s relationship that way.
I started to actually read some of the news articles about these ‘mixed attractiveness relationships’, (which I’m going to keep referring to in inverted commas because I still think it’s a load of crap) and found that scientists had done a study which claimed that people were more likely to be on the same level of attractiveness if they had only recently met than those who had known each other for years.
The more I read, the more annoyed I got. I know, I know, it’s just a term, but it’s one that really, really upsets me. How can anyone, even a scientist, define anyone else’s relationship as being one of ‘mixed attractiveness’ when attractiveness is so subjective? What makes anyone think they have the right to label or judge anyone else’s relationship that way? In my opinion it’s mean and cruel and unhelpful.
I’ve had body image issues for almost as long as I can remember, and I know I’m not alone. I’ve cried on family holidays because I’ve felt so self conscious in my swimming costume. It’s taken me years to be able to get to a point where I feel okay about leaving the house in shorts and no tights. If someone now told me that they thought my eight-year relationship was of ‘mixed attractiveness’, I’d tell them to shut up and that I don’t think there is such a thing, but at one time I don’t think I would have. I think I would have probably burst into tears and asked my boyfriend if he wanted to break up so that he could go get a more attractive girlfriend. And if it had been someone telling me that they thought I could be with someone better looking, I’d have probably shouted at them because I’m with him for more reasons than how he looks.
You might think I’m overreacting, because it is, after all, just a term, but let me put it this way:
Imagine that you’re out having a drink with your partner and your mates when one of them pipes up “Oh, you know, we all think that your partner is way better looking than you. They could have anyone they want.” Even if you think they’re only having a laugh it might still hurt and it might make your partner feel like they have to justify why they’re with you in front of everyone.
It doesn’t matter what your friends or scientists think. It doesn’t matter if the whole world thinks that someone is too good looking to be with someone like you.
If you like them and they like you, does anything else really matter?