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“I want to look up when I kiss a man, not down.”Without missing a beat, another coworker pipes up, “Well, you don’t have to stand up to kiss him! Whether we’d like to admit it, the issue of short men still perplexes even the most progressive-minded daters.
No pun intended, but we all know that “size doesn’t matter”—or at least we’ve been espousing this rhetoric for some time now.
“Would you ever consider dating a guy who was shorter than you?
”It was a year after college, and the person asking me that was a guy I had just started casually dating.
Because truthfully, isn’t the root of this stigma surrounding shorter men rooted in gender conventions that assert that a man is supposed to, well, dominate a woman in both stature and presence?
The idea that women feel more precious—protected, even—tucked under the arm of a hulk of man? Now I certainly understand people have their tastes—my best guy friend, who stands at 6-feet-7, won’t even consider dating a guy below 6 feet, but as Vogue.com’s Fashion News Director Chioma Nnadi stresses, it’s ultimately about a connection.
Yet, when I think about why I thought tall guys were more attractive, I found that it boiled down to one thing: my own insecurities. While I didn’t exactly have an eating disorder, I can’t recall a time during my adolescence when I wasn’t on some sort of diet.
Prioritizing height on my checklist seemed like an easy way to avoid my issue with my weight. I came to realize that this idea of the right man fixing my insecurities permeated my dating criteria.
A girl who is 5'9″ is obviously going to think most guys are pretty f*cking short. Once you're towering over him, he's ready for you to get back down to his level.I distinctly remember brainstorming who I was going to invite to my first dance as a freshman. He was cute, friendly, funny, and pretty much the ideal first-dance date candidate except for one thing: He was a couple inches shorter than me. If I still felt petite wearing four-inch heels with my frame of 5 feet 6 inches, he was worth my attention.Slowly, this extreme standard of height waned, but I still felt awkward if he was near as tall as I was.“I want to feel like a dainty woman when I’m with a man,” a coworker says.She’s tall, she’s blonde, and I can’t possibly think of anyone more feminine, but I let her finish.