Why being beautiful can at times feel like a curse.
This article may sound like an exercise in conceit but I have to be honest. It’s hard being beautiful in 2015. Let me explain.
I am a very good looking man. I am tall, have excellent bone structure and possess a decent semi-athletic build that most would sell a vital organ for. I am what most would refer to as a “triple threat”. Not only am I good looking, I am also very talented and highly intelligent. It is not my intention to brag about all this but I am simply stating the obvious. You would think with all these wonderful attributes life would be easier. However being beautiful presents many challenges. For one, it means always having to use a disclaimer to assure others of your humble nature. For two, it means always having to preface your self-esteem with a blurb that quiets outside insecurities. It also means having to downplay and mask your confidence for the sake of friendship and acceptance. Somehow, I would have never guessed that being beautiful carries so much baggage but sadly, it does.
Being a triple threat, you would think I would be popular with an overstocked inbox filled to the brim with invitations, well wishes, opportunities and gifts but that is quite to the contrary. If anything being beautiful can be very lonely and can at times feel like an apology you have to eventually offer the world. It can render you persona non-grata, only kept company by those who wish to use your beauty for the purposes of their own ego enhancement.
I asked myself why being beautiful can at times feel lonely and curse-like considering it was once believed that beauty afforded you options and opportunities less attractive people weren’t privy to. I found my answer lodged in between the question as most people feel that beautiful people are already given certain advantages due to their looks. Most people assume that beautiful people will be OK and will be taken care of by the generous hands of John and Jane Q. Public. They reason that beautiful people already have sponsors and people that look out for them so why should they. Unfortunately our society finds it very difficult to empathize with the struggle of physically attractive people.
Also there is a biased perception and underlying belief that surrounds beautiful people. All beautiful people are believed to be shallow, superficial, unintelligent attention junkies who are somewhat insatiable, needing constant praise and admiration from a fan club of their peers. They are erroneously deemed high maintenance and seen as people who are demanding and require too much effort. A lot of people shy away from such “emotionally needy” individuals not realizing the beauty bias that exists even within their own unconscious.
Another reason why beauty can feel like a curse is because of its duplicitous nature. On one hand you are loved for being easy on the eyes but on the other you are feared because of the power that you hold. Let’s face it, beauty is power and freedom. The ones who have it pose a significant threat to the ones who don’t.
I have met people who have told me that they would never date me because of how I looked. They said that to date me would mean they would constantly find themselves having to fight in order to protect our bond. I was also told they wouldn’t date me because they felt that they would always have to wonder and worry if I would cheat on them because of how “gorgeous” I was. Somehow because of my looks, I was labeled unfaithful and assigned this role of Rico Suave ‘papi chulo’ whose entire DNA makeup was engineered towards infidelity and heartbreak. At the time, this line of logic was ridiculous and made absolutely no sense to me. I was befuddled by their feelings.
I finally realized that people are very insecure and often times try to project those negative feelings onto me by applying misinformed definitions to my character based on how I look. They do not like standing next to me because when they stand next to me, they feel invisible. Everybody wants to feel special and important and only enjoy standing next to those that make them feel this way. Through no fault of my own, I make others feel inadequate. Their self-esteem is compromised and extensively questioned when in my company.
Because of my physical attributes, I am unfortunately perceived as a threat. My height and stature makes me a symbol of authority which these days, most wish to rebel against. My wit and intelligence can at times be very unnerving for some who operate under the misguided belief that beautiful people are nothing more than brainless trophies.
While it is understandable why people only want to associate with those that make them stand out and look good, such exclusivity perpetuates the stereotype that beautiful people already have. They are seen as arrogant and exclusive but when they try and ingratiate themselves within various circles of ordinary faces, they are callously excluded thus forcing them to surround themselves with their own kind of wonderful. What are beautiful people supposed to do when they are both praised and avoided by a society that esteems and vilifies them all at the same time?
Being beautiful can be very difficult especially in a world that both celebrates and demonizes your beauty all at the same time. Such conflicting messages foster a painful dissonance and ambivalence about something that should be celebrated. As a beautiful man, I am learning how to disarm and defuse the negative messages associated with my beauty and celebrate my gifts. I am learning how to extract public opinion from my consciousness and continue living my life grateful for each and every part of my wonderful existence. This is important if I am to continue letting my beauty shine and I will most definitely continue letting my light shine!
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