Do The Ugly Face Unfair Discrimination?

Woman with magnifying glass

I read this blog about a recent movement to stop “discrimination against the ugly” and found it fascinating.

It makes a reasonable point. There are protections for discrimination against gays, blacks, and women, so why should we still be allowed to exercise bias against the unfortunately asymmetrical people out there?

Your gut may say that women are judged unfairly for their looks, but that wouldn’t be the entire story. Says a related New York Post article: “Men, in fact, suffer the greater repulsiveness penalty in general: Unattractive women earn 3 percent less than average-looking women, while unattractive men’s take-home is reduced a whopping 22 percent.”

The question I have for you is whether you feel that you’re judgmental of others based on looks, age, height, weight, education, or income… and, just as importantly…have you been judged negatively for one of those other characteristics?

Your comments, as always, are appreciated.

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Comments:

  1. 31
    nikefreeshoes

    I’m one who wrote that I discriminate against those with bad hygene. But it’s apples and oranges. I don’t equate ugly people as having bad hygene. Poor hygene comes with the pretty people too. I’m a hairstylist and I’ve seen some physically attrative people who were down-right scummy and gross. I don’t get it, I just don’t think there is any excuse for it.

  2. 32
    nikefreeshoes

    I actually don’t think I actually seen very many physically “ugly” people in my life. I’m usually attracted to people who are more unusual looking because they are interesting to me.

  3. 33
    Gem

    Evan, nikefreeshoes hijacked my words (from #26), in both #31 and #32!  

  4. 34
    Panda

    I freely admit I am in a shallow phase and going off of looks first in dating profiles.  Now, granted I have my particular tastes, so what I might find appealing, perhaps other women don’t.  I think I’m savvy enough to avoid the “gorgeous” model looking men since tons of women would be competeing for their affection and I’d probably end up constantly worried about him trading up for something better.  I guess I’m attracted to someone in the similiar scale as me I’d say?  So if I consider myself a seven..I try to go around the 6,7,8 in attractiveness? I feel that most of the time I am contacted by men that even their profile pic doesn’t give me any spark.  So I guess I do what Evan says you shouldn’t – I don’t “give a guy a chance” because I dont sense chemistry based on physical attraction to him.  My problem is though that I was married to, and dated after my divorce, MANY men who are not classically attractive.  I dated them because of their intelligence, and kindness or because I found their careers interesting.  But I guess I’ve found that you cannot force yourself to keep interest in someone if that one missing piece – the physical attraction factor – is missing.  

  5. 35
    Soul Sister

    IMO, while someone may not be able to control such factors as facial features or bone structure, people do have significant control over how their bodies look.  I was “hot” when I was in my 20′s, although that hotness did not appeal to everyone as I was very flat chested as well (yes, flat chested women are also discriminated against, trust me!).  After 20 years of marriage and 3 kids, I was a good 45 lbs overweight. After my divorce, when I realized what kind of men appealed to me (younger, decent builds) I knew I had to get into their range to be considered. You can whine about this or you can do something about it. As I was on match and my body type went from a few lbs over, to average, to slender, to fit and tone, my dating pool opened way up.  I lost all 45 lbs through dieting and exercise. So yes, I am superficial enough to say if I am out there running 4 miles every other day in 110 degrees (AZ!) I want to be with men who care about their bodies to still have muscles!!  Oh, and I am 50 yrs old and look better than I did in my 30s and 40s.  So I do filter by slender and athletic and toned on match.  Now, that said, I am dating a man who actually has a pretty big gut, and I don’t know what happened, but on our 3rd. date I was struck by lightening (lust, ha ha!) and I thought he was amazingly sexy gut and all.  So while we can be picky and filter as much as we want, once that chemistry gets turned on, sometimes all of our “rules” fly out the window.

    Would I love it if he got rid of that gut? Of course.  Do I care if he doesn’t? NO! 

    So take care of what you can, look your absolute best, and go out there with your head high…you will be doing more than lots of people who sit in front of their tv drinking beer and eating chips whining about being discrimanated against because they are too fat.  Fat is a choice (unless you have a medical condition) and you get what you put out in this life.

  6. 36
    saint stephen

    @Soul sister i completely agree with your last paragraph.

    i don’t know why some folks like to equate fat with ugliness and been short, traits that are certainly irreparable.     if you were born ugly there is nothing that can be done about it ( except you’d undergo plastic surgery which is very extreme to me). but if you are fat, then is way easier to loose weight- some exercise or slimming pills will do the tricks. but they would rather prefer waste the same effort sniveling about it. 

  7. 37
    Ms Maz

    My boyfriend is shorter, pleasantly plump, very fuzzy, and smells like Nag Champa. But I love him to death and could never ask for a greater partner. I’ve never really been too picky about who I date in terms of looks…or much else, really. I just want to be treated respectfully — and laughing a lot helps, too! I can pretty much work around anything else. Is that bad?

  8. 38
    UglyGayGuy

    Definitely. When I show my photos on internet dating sites literally noone is interested. When I go shopping I am openly mocked on the street. So I feel like a cross between the invisible man and the Elephantman. I feel stigmatised for being something I have no control over. It’s worse for a gay man because unlike straight men, gay men are expected to be beautiful. Like women, we are being judged by fickle men who are hardwired to go for beauty.

  9. 39
    hunter

    Hi soul sister, men know that it takes 3 dates to get a woman to warm up to us…

  10. 40
    hunter

    ….that is why most men don’t lose the gut/weight…..

  11. 41
    saint stephen

    @Ms Maz #37
    You sound like the type of woman i’ll love to date, too bad your boyfriend beat me to it.
    I’m good looking and do always get compliments from ladies, but what i hate is ladies who like or love me because of my looks, because they are superficial and would bail, should anything happen to impair my looks, (like accident). 

    I’m also not interested in good looks when dating, i just want a lady that is hard working, smart, intelligent and witty…. i have a great sense of humor and i like laughing a lot…. but i still have a problem finding a lady that is hilarious as i am….. ladies just always want a funny guy that could make them laugh but they don’t like reciprocating…. i guess they always want to be the one entertained.

  12. 42
    saint stephen

    @UglyGayGuy
     #38
     
    Why don’t you turn bisexual? that could increase your dating pool….. just a suggestion.

  13. 43
    Ned Boerm

    “The moment you have in your heart this extraordinary thing called love and feel the depth, the delight, the ecstasy of it, you will discover that for you the world is transformed.” ~ ” Jiddu Krishnamurti

  14. 44
    Heather

    I like how some people throw in, oh yeah exercise. Some people who are heavy battle mental issues, and when someone who they find attractive cuts them down and humiliates them in public it can be devastating. Food to a fat person is alcohol to an alcoholic, and yet they’re not discriminated against nearly as much as a fat person.

    I try not to discriminate, and yet I do. It’s not against ugly as far as the physical appearance, but their inner attitude a person has. I don’t want to associate with people who put themselves on a higher pedestal. 

    I, by the way do not want sympathy because I suffer from depression and battle my weight daily. I’m just pointing out one contributing factor.

    In the end all I can say is each and every one of us is different and what may be ugly to one may be beautiful to another. We have plenty of enemies in the world, best we pamper ourselves and love ourselves fully.

  15. 45
    Melvin

    Match com discriminated me because they said they do not want deaf and hard of hearing. They said, deaf and hard of hearing are not welcome. What are the rules and the statutes and constitution of this country, United States. Have the gay dating sites the right to discriminate me because I am deaf and hard of hearing? Is it right or lawful to do this? What are my rights as a hard of hearing that I have faced discrimination from Match.com?

  16. 46
    Melvin

    I am concerned that if sites does not want me because I am hard of hearing. Let me know. Next time, I will not join anymore. I know the kind of this country that is United States. Thank you.

  17. 47
    NeverHadAGirlfriend

    I’m ugly AND wear hearing aids, which is a double whammy.  Women say they can look past that, but their actions speak louder than words.  I’ve never known what it’s like to hold a woman’s hand.  I’ve never known what it’s like to hear the works “I love you” by anyone other than a family member.  I’ve never known what it’s like to have someone I am attracted to, also attracted to me.  I never had my first kiss….and I’m in my mid f*cking 30s!!!!!!!!  Those who have a reasonable expectation of finding love and affection in their lives simply lack the perspective and life experience to even BEGIN to comprehend just how hurtful that is!  My self esteem has been shot to pieces.
    I was always able to make and keep female friends very easily, so I know for certain my personality is not the reason.  Attraction is, at its core, physical, and if that piece is missing, the best you will ever be is a friend.  After 30 years of searching for an answer to why I experience such extreme difficulty in finding a partner, I have realized and accepted the reality that my looks are the primary problem.  That is a very hard thing to accept, but the evidence was all around me. 
    As such, I’ve worked 7 days a week for the past 3 years, allotting only $225 a week to live on and saving the rest for extensive plastic surgery. steroids and speech therapy. If this does not improve my dating life after a few more years, I am going to end it all because I absolutely, adamantly refuse to live like this any longer.  A life without any hope of finding love is a life not worth living and people with a “normal’ physical appearance simply cannot understand that.
     

  18. 48
    Sandra

    NeverHadAGirlfriend,
    I  truly sympathize with your plight, and hopefully the speech therapy and surgery will help your situation. But I want to submit to you that maybe you are shooting too high in the types of girls you are approaching. I’ve seen this a lot in guys that complain that women don’t give them a chance… they simply go for girls that are totally out of their league!. So in a way, they are victims of their own attitudes. There simply HAS to be a girl that will be attracted to you. Take an honest look at yourself and how would a woman on your same league look like, and then approach her. Don’t go for girls that can date guys that are ORDERS of MAGNiTUDE more handsome than you. Also, no one mentions this, but hygene is often an overlooked problem. Check that your breath is fresh at all times, no body odors, clean hair and clothes, etc.

  19. 49
    Lucy

    I remind myself of the tough circumstances others have to deal with that I haven’t. That always brings a sense of perspective. How you look at other people begins with how you look at yourself. I do not go the other way and see people who are often discriminated against as inherently virtuous. 

    I do believe that mental health stigma to be a real issue, and there really isn’t a great deal of understanding about it. I have GAD and as such I’m quite reluctant to be forthcoming with my experiences because it has caused people to react in ways I am not comfortable with. The discrimination people with mental health issues, or people with mental disabilities face can be pretty bad.

    Other than that, the worst I’ve had is dealing with people judging me based on my social background. So I may not be rich but I am kind and polite. Still, it was hard for me not to be upset when it seemed like my wealthy ex-boyfriend’s friends were sizing me up and not seeing me as an attractive prospect for him. It was also assumed that me being less well off made me into gold-digger. That could not have been further from the truth. 

    Age is a big one too. In a team-building exercise at work we had to figure out who to save first after an avalanche. The stock answers came about how younger people are more worth saving because “they have their whole life ahead of them”. Well I don’t think a person’s life decreases in value as they age.

  20. 50
    NeverHadAGirlfriend

    Hi Sandra,
    I know better than to go for the model types, and frankly, what I find attractive generally doesn’t fit that image in the first place.  I prefer someone more “normal” and within 5 years of my own age.  As far as hygiene goes, I make considerable effort to be presentable.  I would be very embarrassed to have any bad odors, dirty hair or stained/ill-fitting clothes.  I see my face in the mirror every day and know full well everything else has to be on point to help compensate for that.
    The advice to settle, while perhaps well meaning, is actually terrible advice which can cause more problems than it attempts to solve.  Also, I do not think people truly realize just how offensive the advice to settle truly is.  Here’s why:  Imagine if the only guys who were interested in you were at least 20 years older than yourself, balding, unkempt, poorly dressed and had questionable social skills. Now imagine getting intimate with such a guy.  It’s a revolting thought, isn’t it?  By asking me to settle for what I can get, that is essentially what I am being asked to do.  I am just as turned off by that man’s female counterpart as you would likely be by him. Ugly people are not a different species.  We are human beings, just like our genetic superiors, and we don’t magically find each other attractive simply by having the same unfortunate circumstances.  We have just as much right not to be in a situation where we feel sexually violated as anyone else.  I don’t want to prostitute myself out to someone I am not attracted to in exchange for companionship and affection.
    Rather than settle for what you can get, it’s better to just raise your league.  I’ve done everything I can possibly do in regard to hygiene, including hiring an image consultant to help pick clothes, shoes and a hairstyle that fits me the best.  My skin is also clear and well taken care of. However, because I have a large nose, very low cheekbones, receded lower jaw, strange lips, ears that stick out, misshapen eyes and slight “deaf speech,” good hygiene can only help compensate for so much.  I’m not aiming for model types.  I just want to experience love and affection with someone I am attracted to and if $55,000 in cosmetic surgery will allow me to have a relationship with an average, normal woman, that is perfectly fine with me.

  21. 51
    Sandra

    NeverHadAGirlfriend,
    Good for you that you hired a stylist- as long as you are not pretending for others to be more noble than you are yourself, then more power to you. This reminds me of a story about a date I was with and my date asked me to bring a friend to introduce her to his friend. Well, his friend was significantly overweight and my friend did not like him. We were sitting at a bar and someone pointed to the girl to his left. He was like “Nah, she’s TOO BIG for me”. We were like “are you F-ing KIDDING ME??”  this girl was like a size 8 or 10 tops. He should have been FLATTERED that she even looked at him. Same issue with my sister. She is 5’0 and like 190 pounds but would rather DIE than date an overweight guy, LOL. And on and on it goes…
    As obviously I have never met you (so take this with a grain of salt), as a woman I can tell you that of all the issues you mention, I would focus on the speech/voice issues and getting your chin improved. I’ve seen dramatic improvements in the looks of men with just making the chin stronger. And the voice/speech is also critical. Maybe the ears too if its an extreme problem. I would start with that type of changes first (most impactful) because extensive PS can end up leaving you with complications and that may be all you need. Too much PS and then you could start looking artificial/weird. High cheekbones in men can look feminine, same for lid surgery. If you can work out and get a nice body that helps A LOT too. Believe me, no one looks at the face if there is a hot body (but not a steroid filled body that makes you look like a gorilla, but one like the P90X guy. Yum).

  22. 52
    meee45

    Nobody has the right to discriminate natural traits because it not his/her choice but as for being not clean ,gay etc..that is supposed to change somehow

  23. 53
    bobby griffin

    i dont think that anyone is ugly or unatrractive ina ny way shape or form and to think that they are is the worst thing that any huan being ca do. no one has the right to judge on ooks or to make decesions on looks it is very spiteful and inhumane.

  24. 54
    exige

    well im an ugly guy could even be a minus on the scale.I was lucky to have found love at sixteen with a female who people would say was out of my league and had the best fifteen years of my life with her before it came sadly to an end.                                                          .Truth is people always asked her what the hell she was doing with me because of the way i looked,this would affect me in even going out for a meal at expensive restraunts as people thought she was only with me for money and truth was we had built up a buisness together.                                                     .                                                                                               .                                                                         .Been on my own for 10yrs now am i judged ,discriminated because of my looks sadly yes.Been told by a female, guys who look like me shouldnt own a car like that when i was at garage putting fuel in lol.Another time i was told by an female estate agent how could i have the money to buy this house when i look that bad,this is not a joke.                                                                                                             …what i think i am saying is people do judge on looks if your truly ugly,but  i think there  are plenty of people who when they get to know you regret there first horrible thoughts if  you have a great personality.i am lucky that i have lots of female friends who are at different ends of the look league table and although they dont want to sleep with me still invite me out with them .i guess im lucky just to have friends who do not judge on looks only.

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