Are Height Requirements Still Keeping You From Finding Love?

Are Height Requirements Still Keeping You From Finding Love?Are Height Requirements Still Keeping You From Finding Love?

In the annals of “things that definitely don’t matter when you’re 70”, nothing is more irrelevant to marital happiness than height.

Money matters. If one partner is chronically unemployed or in debt, relations can get strained.

Intelligence matters. If your partner can’t understand what you’re talking about or lacks the maturity to try, he’s a waste of time.

Weight matters. If someone is morbidly obese, he’s probably not making it to age 70.

(By the way, ladies, this does NOT mean he has to be taller, smarter or fitter than you. He just can’t be poor, stupid and fat. Got it?)

Nothing is more irrelevant to marital happiness than height.

But one thing that I’ve never really gotten – after 10 years as a dating coach – was women’s obsession with height. And it’s not a myth. It’s real. An article on Jezebel discusses a report from the Atlantic that illustrates that the average height differential between 4600 married American couples was six inches and that the wife was taller in 3.8% of couples. However, “when the author randomized the information as well to see what would come up by chance, he found something surprising: left to chance, the wives were taller in 7.8 percent of couples— twice as many as before. Meaning, people are choosing to maintain this six inches of difference by going out of their way to pair up according to this distinction.”

This is a rigid and arbitrary preference – most noteworthy, to me, in short and tall women.

With short women, EVERYBODY’s taller. So, if you’re 5’1″, what difference does it make if he’s 5’7″ or 6’1″? Yet some short women discriminate against average sized (5’7-5’11”) men.

On the other hand, with tall women, since only 15% of men are over 6 feet tall, it would stand to reason that a 5’11” woman would be well served to open up to shorter men, instead of insisting that he has to be 6’3′, because that’s how tall she is in heels. There simply aren’t enough 6’3″ men to go around, and if you restrict yourself to them, you’re killing your chances of finding love – for pretty much no reason.

It would be like a male millionaire holding out for a female millionaire who makes more than he does. Is it possible? Yes. Likely? No. Necessary? Definitely not.

The author of the Jezebel piece is 5’11” and had a very healthy and refreshing take on height:

I never felt I was making some kind of concession by dating men shorter than me — I just dated people I was attracted to. But since most men are shorter than I am, had I eliminated them on the basis of shortness, I’d have been sitting out all those dances I never actually went to. In order to find a guy six inches taller, I’d have to find a guy who was 6’5.

She ended up marrying a guy a few inches shorter than her. Good for her.

And if this bugs you and you think you should be holding out for a tall guy, that’s your business. Just keep in mind that your current height criteria cuts your potential mates drastically – and that’s before we talk about age, ethnicity, education, income, personality, religion, emotional intelligence, values, kindness, consistency, attraction to you and desire to be married. He’s gotta have all of those things, plus be in the 15% of men who are six feet tall? Good luck with that.

Please read the article here and share your thoughts below.

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  1. 61

    # 54, 56 ”Who are these women that can turn physical attraction on and off like a switch just to have more options?”
    Oh you know, your usual desperate bunch that’ll throw themselves at anyone… haha not. Seriously though, I’m guessing they are the women who develop a physical attraction as they get to know a man better, based on his character, brain and personality, provided, of course, that he is not totally physically repulsive (which he probably wouldn’t be, as with his character, brain, and personality he’d know how to present himself and take care of himself).
    Ruby – agree 100%. When I first started dating, in the 80s, you didn’t approach a guy with a measuring tape to see if he was within your height requirements. You met him IRL, you talked, you did things together, and decided whether you liked him or not. As long as you didn’t have to bend over to talk to him, you didn’t worry much about what his exact height was. It is so different with online dating, even though we all know half of those numbers are inflated.
    Evan – aw, shucks *blushes*

  2. 62

    What about the other way around? I’m 5’11 and find that a lot of dudes won’t date a taller woman. Who the hell cares? If you make me laugh, your height is a moot point.

  3. 63

    Kari R – words like “stupid” are not appropriate at all here. Is not stupid to hold on  for something you believe in. And I do believe that shorter than me men are simply not nice to be with- I do not feel protected and sheltered with him. When  we are on the street and he wants to hug me…but in fact he can not even reach my shoulders-iuykkk… Or how about if he wants /or me/ to kiss spontaneously..- he will have to ask me or pull me down to his level- horrible.. and is not about how it looks for others,is about how it feel for me. And it feels not good at all. No matter how much I try to forget about hat and focus on some good in him..
    And Yuri – easy to talk when your man is taller than you. Way to easy to talk. I would love to hear what would you say if the same man was short and you looked at him from above..
    And I will tell you all something from nature and animals. In fact, a very respectful dating coach and author was relating to Horses for comparison anyway.. So, I have those two awsome friesian stallions- one is huge- 180 cm tall,the other is short 155cm. I put that mare who is tiny and compact with…of course – the small 155cm stallion,in a yard to do the mating. At the same time the big guy is 15 m away behind electric fence and keep “talking” to them 2 in the yard.. This mare kicked the hell out of the small stallion, he was young and keen,but she indimidated him to max. At the end I didn’t have a choice, I put her with the big boy and… she stood there like a trooper,her legs bending under his weight,but she was taking it. she fell pregnant of course after that too. I observe this behiviour all the time…- have miniature stallion- his little mini mares  hate him,he runs away from them and stick’s with the big black mares. The mini mares though go and stay next to the above mentioned huge stallion.
    So,Evan and everybody, no matter how much we scratch our tongues here and call each other ugly names like – shallow or stupid..bla,bla…- SIZE MATTERS,BIG TIME. Always did in nature with the animals and will always do.

    1. 63.1

      People often say this preference for tall men goes back to caveman times when supposedly the tallest men were the best providers. How does being tall make you a better provider? Back in caveman times I would think being tall was more of a liability than an asset. You need to consume more resources to stay healthy and you’re also a bigger target for predators. Being tall doesn’t make you the fastest nor the strongest. The best providers back in those days were those most able to adapt, something that has WAY more to do with intelligence and physical/mental strength than height. Yet there are plenty of smart, short men with great jobs who can’t get a date. There are plenty of physically strong short and average height guys who are overlooked in favor of a tall, lanky guy. I have no problem with preferences but I really don’t buy into the theory of taller equals better protector/provider.

    2. 63.2

      You know Dora, I could take apart your post, point-by-point, but I can see that you borderline hate short men, just for being short.

      but in fact he can not even reach my shoulders-iuykkk… Or how about if he wants /or me/ to kiss spontaneously..- he will have to ask me or pull me down to his level- horrible..

      Your appeal to nature fallacy is easily dismissed.  I’ll just ask you this.. do you believe humans have evolved both intellectually and socially?  If not.. then why do we now deem rape and pillage as horrific? How about disemboweling? Why do we now view any number of emotional/psychological transgressions against individuals to be “wrong”? You think the “cavemen” had the same mentality and spirituality?  The same awareness to b e empathetic? I don’t think so.. and neither do you.

      You view short men as “lesser” beings, and you’re not the only woman. This is simply wrong, and needs to be overcome.  I’m not just talking about heightism as pertains to its effect in the dating realm.

      1. 63.2.1

        I’m just going to be blunt and say I’m not physically or sexually attracted to short men.  Yes I am 5’1 and date men over 6′. I’ve dated quite a few  short men to try to overcome this “bias” that you speak of and I can’t and I’m sorry.  I’m sorry that makes you angry and I’m sorry you think that’s unfair it probably is.  But lots of things are.  It sort of in the same sense that I hate the taste of asparagus or mushrooms and don’t know why.  Or you are not attracted to certain types of women and are to others it just is.  Instead of focusing on that though I would focus on all the women that want to date you not the ones that don’t.

  4. 64

    Jenna @12,
    Height isn’t a huge issue for me, but one thing that irritates me is men who don’t work out regularly. If I’m thin and work out five times a week, why do I have to settle for a flabby guy or a guy with no muscles?
    As a guy who works out regularly and has a good phjysique, I applaud your thinking. So many people don’t realize (usually the ones who dont work out or the ones who do work out with lousy results) that being fit is a lifestyle. Not an activity. Those same folks also have a silly assumption that if you are in shape and go to a gym that you are a “gym rat” and “live there all the time”. And that is so not true. If you work out 4x a week for an hour each time, thats way less time than most people watch TV or surf the net. And if someone can’t find 4 hours a week to stay fit to look good, then you surely do have a right to not be attracted to them.  I am sure I will get slammed so watch my back on this one.
    As for the height thing, this is music to my ears. I am 5’9″ and never had a shortage of women to date. There are many women that have no problem with 5’9″. The ones that require 6 feet, I just chalk it up to nothng I can do about it.  But I do feel bad for the shorter guys because they do get ruled out quickly and they cant do anything about it.

  5. 65

    I’m just going to throw this in:  I’ve met some very attractive shorter men, but there is a sect of short men who can also be aggressive towards shorter women.  I’m 5’3 (on the tall end of short), but my best friend is 5’0.  I recall many evenings out in the bar where we’ve had short men circling us and looking for opportunities to cut in. Also, I have a huge responsiveness on online dating from men who claim to be 5’6-5’7.
    As much as I want to agree that there are some picky women, there is a sect of short men who are very aggressive about marking their territory. (#shortgirlproblems :-P)
    On the other hand, I have many male cousins/uncles/brother and friends who are in the 5’6-5’7 category and do just fine.  I don’t even notice that some of them are “small” b/c they are fairly sturdy in their build.  I think that attractiveness is based on coolness and confidence, and I think that while a stigma exists, buying into it perpetuates other unattractive qualities in short men and probably a lot of women.
    I don’t know too many men who are smaller than me, but I have quite a few tall female friends – 5’7-5’10 – who have found happy relationships with men of the same height as me.  I don’t think I would be happy with a “my size” guy, though… I weigh 115.  

    1. 65.1

      And taller men don’t act this way?  Or are you just recognizing the short men who do this, as a result of your own ingrained prejudice?

      Seriously.. this is ridiculous. It is wrong to pick out some negative trait or behavior in one group of individuals (who also happen to be the minority), and then stigmatize them, when in fact the same behaviors run in the entire population.

      You can’t blame the victim. You can’t expect short men to be perfect all the time, and even if they are, then stigmatize them for “compensating”. This is disgusting, vile, deeply indoctrinated thinking, in our society.

  6. 66

    Sparkling Emerald @36
    I know my dating pool is shrunk because I am an a-cup.
    Don’t fret. Boob size is overrated.  I have no problem with “a” cups at all. Just as long as they are sensitive. Thats all that counts. If I see a girl with big fake boobs, the first thought in my mind (well maybe the second thought) is “would she even know if I was playing with them?”

  7. 67
    Karl R

    Helen said: (#59)
    “Karl… the simple answer is that you don’t have breasts. 🙂 It is genuinely awkward to be walking around with someone whose mouth level is right around your breasts.”
    I have a penis and a pair of buttocks. When I stand on the bus and train, everyone who is sitting down has their mouth at or near the level of my penis and arse.
    In 25 years of riding the bus and train, I have never had a person begin engaging in an act of fellatio or anallingus just because their mouth happened to be at the same level. Not one person has made an attempt. Not one person has made a suggestive comment.
    What kind of creeps are you walking around with where they’re causing some issue? Maybe the problem isn’t the height of the person but the quality of their character.
    And if it’s not their actions that are making things awkward, you are really uptight. Uptight people limit their options, because they’re not particularly fun to be around. It’s worth making some effort to fix that flaw.
    kiesh and cat asked: (#54 & 56)
    “Who are these women that can turn physical attraction on and off like a switch just to have more options?”
    Who are the people who can turn their physical conditioning on like a switch in order to run a marathon? Who are the people who can turn their appetite off like a switch in order to lose 40 pounds? Who are the people who can turn their brain on like a switch in order to pass the bar exam?
    Every single one of those takes time and effort. If you put some time and effort into changing the way you see people, you can find more people attractive.
    But in each example above, it’s easier to throw up your hands and cry, “It’s not possible,” rather than put in the time and effort to actually accomplish something. The doesn’t change the fact that lots of people have already proven that it is possible.

  8. 68

    @ Jenna 12 @ John 64
    Working out does not guarantee thinness but otherwise I agree with you. Even as an international (British home internationals so US state) athlete I never got below a 24 BMI.  Big and ugly is big and ugly.
    I agree with the lifestyle issue.  Thin people who don’t work out are not that way because of health consciousness.
    I don’t see many short men in the gym.  Intimidating environment?

  9. 69

    @John I don’t knock you, you like fit.  That’s totally fine.  I’m usually the spin/pilates fairly fit type.  Currently less due to an injury, but as size 4 I tend to still do okay with most fit guys (maybe not the ones that want super fit).  I like taller.  I do date 5’9, but my pref as I have talked about above is taller b/c I find it sexier.  But luckily being fit is not a criteria for me.  I may not date the 5’7 guy, but I will date the out of shape guy, the guy with a little beer belly etc.  Most of my gfs are opposite.  So I think as long as we don’t need perfection in every area we have a shot:).

  10. 70

    Karl R: I’m not hanging out with creeps. And what happened to you?  You’re the one acting uptight here, judgmental and humorless with these comments, in addition to accusing others of stupidity and having flaws they need to fix without knowing any of us.
    More relevant to this entry: In another post, I had posited that height in men is a proxy for something else, which is income. Several studies have shown that taller men earn more money than shorter men, and that salary increases on average with every additional unit of height. It’s largely men that set salaries for men in today’s world (that will change soon), so one could argue that men have a height bias as well directed toward their own sex.  Meanwhile, if women prefer men with more resources, then it stands to reason that they will seek taller men, who in society typically have more resources.

    1. 70.1

      I’m gonna go ahead and sort of disagree. I think we’re often conditioned to believe taller men are smarter, stronger, better leaders, more honest, more caring, richer, etc and so when many women see a tall guy they subconsciously associate all these traits with his height and thus with him.

      Yes, on average a taller man might make more money per year per inch (I think the study was only for C level execs) but a 6’3″ high school teacher will still probably make less than a 5’2″ financial advisor. Who will get more attraction from women? Probably the teacher.

  11. 71

    @ Karl
    “I have a penis and a pair of buttocks. When I stand on the bus and train,everyone who is sitting down has their mouth at or near the level of my penis and arse.”
    That’s not a fair comparison.  Women aren’t turned on by this stuff.  Have you ever seen a group of women spy a man in a speedo on the beach?  It’s usuallreceived with laughter or averting their gaze.  Men will happily stare at women’s chests whether they are on display or not.
    I’m also reminded of a memory from working in retail.  Anytime one of our male coworkers asked for our opinion on his look, as long as he looked sharp, put together, etc, all the female employees would say “You look great”.  When male coworkers were assessing the females trying on clothes, they’d say “Sure, it’s not bad, but it’s not really doing anything for you” (implication: showing off t&a) and would suggest something more curve-enhancing or showy, even if you told them “It has to be conservative. It’s for the office/job interview/hanging out with parents, not the club”.  Male minds think differently.
    I don’t necessarily think any of this buys into the whole height argument, but I’d believe a tall, busty woman when she says her breasts are at eye level with shorter men.

  12. 72

    I’m kind of surprised at the number of posts.  It’s just a preference.  I totally understand how a woman would find a taller man attractive.  There is something masculine about being tall.  Men, don’t you find a woman with curves attractive?  There’s something about breasts/hips/butt that makes a woman seem more feminine right?  But let’s get real.  In the long run being tall isn’t going to matter all that much.  Just like those curves won’t matter all that much in the long run either.  Heck there are disadvantages to being tall as you get older just as age takes a toll on curves.
    If a woman would rather be single than be with a great man that isn’t 6′ so what?  As long as the woman doesn’t complain about a lack of good men and understands it’s her preferences that account for her dating options.
    I think the issue with online dating is real though.  When people meet naturally a lot of the ‘preferences’ go out the window.  ‘Opposites attract’ doesn’t happen in the online dating world right?

    1. 72.1

      No, it’s not “just a preference”, for most women.  It’s an absolute requirement that trumps every other feature of a man.  Furthermore, it is not comparable to a woman’s breast size; in brief, most men won’t discount an attractive woman if she has smaller breasts. As another said in here, “attractive is attractive”, regardless of one feature.

      Women have been conditioned to really dislike shorter men, in our society. There are so many studies and anecdotal pieces of evidence to back this up.  If you want just one: Google “Put a face to the hate”.

  13. 73

    Totally off topic but I feel like the kid in the picture looks like a younger version of Evan…

  14. 74

    After posting I realized ‘opposites attract’ can very well happen online if two people happen to be looking for their opposites.  What I meant was dating outside preferences doesn’t happen online.(Since we’re all filter based on our preferences.)  But I think we’ve all experiences relationships that started offline that didn’t fit that mould.

  15. 75

    Nicole 73: interesting observation. I think the kid in the pic looks more girlish than Evan, like a cross between Evan and Anne Hathaway.  If I were his mother, I’d tell him to cut his bangs…
    Morris 72: agree with you completely, all parts. Each of us likes what he or she likes, and as long as he or she isn’t complaining, it’s not really anyone else’s business.

  16. 76
    The InBetweener

    @ Starthrower68 #51
    Oh No!  You can’t be serious!  Not cool.  🙁

  17. 77
    Girl in the Midwest

    I agree with Morris @72.  If a girl is complaining about her dating options, then one of the pieces of advice would be to date men who were shorter, fatter, older, etc.  Similar advice for a guy (date taller, fatter, older).  I don’t see it as right or wrong, I just see it as being pragmatic or not (and in many cases, it’s not pragmatic).  But each person has to decide what they are willing to give up in order to get height.
    The thing I have to admit about height though, is that it’s unchangeable.  And that really sucks. 🙁  I mean, weight isn’t always 100% within in one’s control, but it is controllable up to a degree.  So it seems like if a woman wants to make herself more physically attractive, she has more options.  Make up, lose weight, better clothes, etc.  But so much of male physical attractiveness is height, which is unchangeable.

  18. 78
    Some other guy

    I’m 6′ 2.5″ tall, and my former spouse was 4’11” (that’s a 15′ 5″ difference for the math challenged); I can’t remember a time when it served as a even a remote impediment, and in fact generated a lot of “Aww, so cute” responses. It never once even remotely got in the way of the relationship – it just never came up unless she needed me to reach for something from a higher shelf. So cute 🙂
    But I’m a guy who finds tall girls particularly attractive – I dream of 5’10” Angie Harmon – but have always been clear that height is eclipsed by so many other things that it isn’t even on the list of things that matter to me (when I had a Yahoo! Personals profile, I selected no preference for height).
    I guess I’m lucky that at least one irrelevant factor doesn’t matter to me.

  19. 79
    Sparkling Emerald

    Karl R – Why the hostile response ?  I said that I DON’T have a problem with height.  I said I used to rag on my gf’s who did, but now I have backed off.  Are you really so insecure about women having different opinions than you, that you can’t accept a woman who SHARES your opinion about height but ALLOWS other women to have theirs ?  Do you really expect me to start re-ragging on my gf’s because they don’t share YOUR opinion.
    I once had a friend who ragged on me, because I don’t date smokers.  She said I was being ridiculous to “base a relationship” on weather or not a person smoked.  It didn’t feel nice to have a gf try to dictate what I “should” date, and to make me wrong for it.  So I stopped telling my gf’s who they should be attracted to.  Why does that evoke a hostile response from you ?
    For the women who aren’t attracted to men based on height (I guess it’s OK for men to reject short women) , for all any of us know, they might be open to other characteristics that many other women reject.  So there could be several women with approx the same size dating pool, but there are just different types of men in each pool.  Maybe the the woman who likes men taller than her, doesn’t mind bald, or a few extra pounds, or a different race.  The women who couldn’t care less about height, might only want to date within their race.  I knew a black woman who said she was having trouble with dating, and she told me she was having a hard time finding a black man who want to get involved with a divorced single mom, as the percentage of black people in our area is very small.  I asked her if she was open to the idea of dating men outside of her race, and she said no, she only wanted to date black men.  I didn’t rag on her about it, or scold her for “shrinking her dating pool”.  Why should ragging on women about their criteria be acceptable ?

  20. 80

    Karl R. @ 67 said: “I have a penis and a pair of buttocks. When I stand on the bus and train, everyone who is sitting down has their mouth at or near the level of my penis and arse.

    In 25 years of riding the bus and train, I have never had a person begin engaging in an act of fellatio or anallingus just because their mouth happened to be at the same level. Not one person has made an attempt. Not one person has made a suggestive comment.”
    Karl R. – You have got to be kidding me?!  There you are being obtuse and nonsensical yet again.  Comparing what a man goes through and what a woman goes through when riding the bus or train is comparing apples to oranges.  Let me start by saying this — I have never yet had a man tell me how horrible it was that when he was pawed or groped while on a bus or train, or in a large crowd or on a dance floor (and not by the guy they are dancing with, but other guys on the dance floor), etc.  But, virtually every woman I know from 12 to 85 has a story about it happening to them, usually on more than one occasion.  Perhaps men don’t talk about it because it doesn’t happen to them or they like it, I don’t presume to know the answer to that question.  But, most women don’t like having stranger in a crowd grab and touch them, and most women have had it happen to them more than once.
    Secondly, if you ride the bus and train so much, you should have noticed the increase in both the notices posted about groping and how to report it, the presence of security cameras that are catching it on tape, and if authorities can identify the men doing it, they are being prosecuted.  Do you think the ad campaigns and increased security measures implemented by law enforcement and transit agencies are only because women are imagining it, and it’s the types of creeps women are “walking around with?”
    You cannot be that naive to believe what you said in response to Helen.

  21. 81
    Karl R

    Helen said: (#70)
    “You’re the one acting uptight here, judgmental and humorless with these comments, in addition to accusing others of stupidity”
    I’m beginning to wonder whether a few of you are deliberately trying to come up with the stupidest possible excuse for your behavior. Is there a contest with a prize that I overlooked? There’s no rationality, no logic, no thought involved.
    Helen said: (#70)
    “More relevant to this entry: In another post, I had posited that height in men is a proxy for something else, which is income.”
    On Wednesday I was approached by a panhandler (who I’ve run across periodically for the last 15 years). He’s about 6’1″. I think he mostly lives with his sister. I once heard him say, “If I had $10,000 I’d be set for life.” Apparently he’s unaware how much his sister pays to keep a roof over their heads.
    Do you think this panhandler can support you just because he’s taller than me?
    If you’re interested in wealth, choose a man who is wealthy. Don’t choose a proxy for wealth unless you’re looking to be disappointed. If you’re looking for intelligence, choose a man who is intelligent. Don’t choose a proxy for intelligence. If you’re looking for a man who is healthy, choose him based on his health, not a proxy.
    And if you want me to treat you like you’re stupid, keep suggesting that people should select a mate by traits which are a proxy for the traits they actually want, instead of selecting for the traits they actually want.
    Angie said: (#71)
    “Men will happily stare at women’s chests whether they are on display or not.”
    “I don’t necessarily think any of this buys into the whole height argument, but I’d believe a tall, busty woman when she says her breasts are at eye level with shorter men.”
    Helen’s suggestion was stupid because, as you pointed out, it doesn’t buy into the whole height argument.
    If a man is that much shorter than you, his eyes are on the same level as your breasts. If he’s substantially taller than you, he can stare down your cleavage unless you’re wearing a turtleneck.
    The issue isn’t the height of the man. The issue is whether he can make eye contact with a woman, or whether he ogles her breasts. Does staring at a woman’s breasts become acceptable if it’s done at a sufficiently steep downward angle?
    Sparkling Emerald asked: (#79)
    “Karl R – Why the hostile response?”
    What was hostile about my response to you? I disagreed with part of your statement, though I found most of it to be quite rational. (There are no shortage of statements on this thread that infuriate me out of their sheer stupidity, but yours wasn’t one of them.)
    To reiterate the point I was making:
    If I look at Roseanne Bare and say, “I don’t find her attractive, and part of that is due to her weight and age,” that seems to be perfectly sensible. If I suddenly decide that Christie Brinkley and Susan Sarandon are unattractive because they passed 50 and 60 (respectively), or Christina Hendricks is unattractive because she has exceeded some weight metric, then there’s something flawed with my reasoning.
    Attractiveness (for men or women) doesn’t boil down to one thing. Most of the women who are drawn to tall men aren’t falling over themselves to date Manute Bol. So if they’re looking at the whole package, where does it make sense to arbitrarily rule someone out for being an outlier on one trait?
    As you said, people may not have much control over what they find attractive, but if they’re ruling out numerous people before they even look at them, that’s myopic.

  22. 82
    Sparkling Emerald

    In a way, I find this amusing, about women “shrinking their dating pool”.  As EMK says, men do what MEN want to do, not what women want to do.  Men can reach out to any woman they want on most websites.  I have rec’d e-mails from men  out of my preferred age range, from smokers,  and from men waaaaaay out of my geographic range. I e-mailed one man back, who lived on the other side of the country, and told him thanks for his interest, but I am looking for someone closer to home.  He wrote back and said “distance doesn’t matter”. (I didn’t respond to that)   I really don’t have many other hard & fast  preferences listed, but I seem to get the smokers, who are young enough to be my son. If a man wants to reach out to a woman, he will reach out to the woman HE wants to reach out to, not the women he thinks have “given him permission” to reach out to them.  I know 2 women who married men considerably younger, after saying “he’s to young”.  These men pursued and eventually wed these older women.  People think they have specific preferences, but sometimes meet someone, and they are surprised by who they end up falling for.  I’ve seen it happen with age, I’ve seen it happen with desired occupation. I have a friend who said she would ONLY date men with “cerebral” occupations, she always went for the white collar alpha males.  She end up  married to a self employed roofer, they now run the business together.  She provides the “cerebral” part of the business, he provides the labor. i haven’t really seen it happen w/ the height thing, but it probably does.

  23. 83

    #55 Lia – Why do you assume that I haven’t tried to date short men??? I have plenty of times. And I think I’m pretty realistic with my definition of short (under 5’8). I’ve tried many, many times to date men that I’m not physically attracted to (5’3ers and otherwise) and that attraction just never grew even after months of dating. Some of us DO know ourselves, pretty well in fact. Attraction either is or isn’t, you can’t trick yourself into feeling something you don’t. Well you can…and end up in a marriage where you only have sex twice every 6 months.

    1. 83.1

      Agreed, Kiesh.  If you’re not genuinely attracted on a physical level, then you should not!

      You seem like a reasonable woman.  Therefore I simply ask this: if one of your friends decides to date a shorter guy, don’t be one of those women who derides said friend, for doing so.  Too many women (and some men) do that.

  24. 84
    Sparkling Emerald

    I don’t think it’s so much that women wake up one morning and say “Gee, I think I will refuse to be attracted to men with “X” quality.  (X being any variable, not meaning X rated 🙂  I think women discover a pattern of who they are attracted to, and after discovering a pattern can go with that.  However, many women change, if they discover a pattern, and they keep getting hurt.  My friend who would only date drop dead gorgeous corporate alpha-maies and kept getting hurt, ended up marrying a blue collar guy.  (But he was drop dead good looking ! ) And many people, men and women both, have a long laundry list of “must haves” in a partner, and then they meet someone who shatters that list, and they fall wildly in love !  John Lennon said before Yoko, who always went for leggy blondes.  Does she look like a leggy blonde to you ?
    I guess I’m lucky, because I usually can’t put my finger on why I’m not attracted to someone (and sometimes why I am)  I just know it when I see it. (or hear it, because I know voice has a lot to do with it)  So since I don’t know much about specifics, I am not arbitrarily ruling out someone base on height, weight, hair color, income, etc.  My real deal breakers are smoking and drug users, but I don’t think anyone, even the harshest critic would find fault with that.  I also know that I don’t want a Long Distance Relationship, so I do have a a mileage range, and I know that I don’t want someone way younger or way older so I have an age range, even tho I don’t know the EXACT cut off for the age.  I have men contact me who are slightly out of those ranges, but I’ll look at the entire profile, and make a decision based on that.  I’ll look @ the pic, to see if it’s a yes or a maybe.  I’ll check for deal breakers like smoking, being young enough to be my son, or living on the other side of the country. (If they don’t post a pic, I don’t reply) I’ll read the “about me” narrative to see if we have similar attitudes, goals, etc.   (some of those narratives scream “I’m looking for a booty call”, so I ignore those, no matter how cute, non-smoking, age appropriate, geographically accessible he is)
    Right now I have an e-mail flirtation going with someone a year older than my range, and about 50 miles further out than I specified.  But he reached out to me, so I’m not going to write him off over 1 year and 50 miles. His pic was real cute, and his narrative seemed to indicate similar values & goals.  I’m not too attached to the outcome, because I do think a 2 hour commute could be a problem,  but since most of these e-mail exchanges end up going nowhere, I’ll keep this up, and see what happens.  At least it gives me an opportunity to try out some new stuff from EMK’s Valentine’s day audio.

  25. 85

    Karl R: Has the other Karl R suddenly disappeared and left this Mr. Hyde version?
    You wrote: “I’m beginning to wonder whether a few of you are deliberately trying to come up with the stupidest possible excuse for your behavior. Is there a contest with a prize that I overlooked? There’s no rationality, no logic, no thought involved.”
    I never said a thing about my own behavior. Many of the other women didn’t, either. You misrepresented us, and then attempted to call our behaviors stupid when, again, you know nothing about our actual behaviors. I’ve dated a 5’2″ man. I’m now married to a taller man. Men of any height can be good.
    You also wrote: “And if you want me to treat you like you’re stupid, keep suggesting that people should select a mate by traits which are a proxy for the traits they actually want, instead of selecting for the traits they actually want.”
    And if you want me to consider you a hostile fool, keep putting words in my mouth that I never stated. I never stated that anyone SHOULD select a mate by associated traits. I suggested that this might indeed be a phonemenon that is occurring. I didn’t place a value judgment on it either way.

  26. 86

    Studies have been done that show that taller men make more money because people assume that they are more intelligent and powerful, so they can get higher paying jobs. Obviously, this isn’t going to be the case with every tall man. There does tend to be a “halo effect” around attractive people, in general, by which we assume they possess certain positive character traits whether they actually do or not. It’s a common occurrence, but it’s also a good reminder not to judge a book by its cover. For what it’s worth, a couple of my 6’3″, good-looking exes were not high earners at all (despite being, in fact, very intelligent).

  27. 87
    Sparkling Emerald

    John 66 Said ” Don’t fret. Boob size is overrated.  I have no problem with “a” cups at all.”
    Hi John, I’m not fretting at all, I’ve accepted that men are very visual, and want what they want and will go after it.  That pretty much shrinks my dating pool, since so many men are “T” men, but I’m OK with that. I really only want ONE man, and I want him to think I’m so freakin’ adorable, that he just HAS to pursue me from the get-go, rather than someone who is intellectually trying to talk himself into having a particular emotional re-action to my looks.  I think that is the problem with this whole subject, you have people trying to give people a LOGICAL answer to why they “should” have a particular EMOTIONAL response. 
    I’m glad you have no problem with a cups (don’t know why, you are just a stranger on a blog), you are not alone, but you aren’t in the majority either. 
    If a guy likes glamourous “hot” women, most likely he won’t be attracted to me, because I am more “cutsie” in a girl next door way, than hot & glamourous.  (I have tried different, hair, clothes & make up to try and glam it up, but I just end up looking like a cute little girl playing with mommy’s make up)
    If a guy likes tall women, he won’t be attracted to me.  Can’t do a thing about that.  I wear heels, but I’m still short.
    I know being a red-head is one of those love it or hate it.  Sometimes I think I should go back to being a brunette, which is how I was born (now I am salt & pepper), but I LOVE being a red-head, so if it means shrinking my dating pool, so be it. 
    As discouraged as I sometimes get, I still hold on to some hope, that there is a guy out there looking for a petite, red-headed, a-cup, girl next door type, or maybe THOUGHT he was looking for someone else, but finds me and thinks WOW. I would be very upset, if I was getting involved with a guy, only to find out that he was trying to be “open minded” and give the cute, short, girl with tiny boobs a chance to increase his dating pool, when really what he wanted was a tall blonde super model looking girl with cleavage. Oh yeah, and when this guy finds me, I hope he’s someone I feel the same way back about.  It really bums me out when a guy gets all over the moon for me, and I just can’t feel the same way back.
    I am glad that doesn’t have “cup size” as a question in what you prefer in your date.  😉

  28. 88

    I just want to respond to the debate over whether using height as a criteria is “irrational” or “stupid.”

    If you are a 6’0 tall woman like me, I don’t think it is irrational to prefer men who are tall. I am open to dating men of any height but all things being somewhat equal, I might use height as a factor in deciding whether to date a tall man over a man who was shorter than me. The reason is I get comments on my stature on an almost daily basis. Quite a few of these comments are, frankly, rude and insulting. When I have dated men who are significantly shorter, people cannot seem to stop themselves from making rude comments about our height differences. If you have never experienced being berated my complete strangers over your looks, maybe you can’t really understand that it can negatively affect your self esteem and it also can create stress in a relationship. But it’s not irrational or stupid for a tall woman to seek out a tall man in order to avoid constant public derision.

    1. 88.1

      I believe you, Kristen. And the rude comments are a manifestation of a deeply ingrained societal prejudice. It’s wrong, vile, and needs to change.  Change starts with individuals, and open discussion such as seen on these boards.

  29. 89

    @ Kiesh 
    Okay, got it!  You could never, ever, under any circumstances ever, ever, ever… (Is that enough “ever”s for you?) be attracted to a man under 5’ 8”.  It is outside the realm of all possibility.  And you DO know yourself.  Good.  So no question of you ever having to go out with guys that you will never, ever, ever be attracted to.   Feel better now?  
    I wrote, “No one wants you to date someone that you have no attraction to.”  How you went from that to responding with, “Attraction either is or it isn’t, you can’t trick yourself into feeling something you don’t.  Well you can … and end up in a marriage where you only have sex twice every six month.”  Is a bit of a head scratcher for me.
    I never stated that you should “trick” yourself into anything.  I just wondered if it was possible for attraction to grow if you didn’t feel it right off the bat.  Obviously that was a silly notion.  After all you DO know yourself, there is no way you could ever, ever be attracted to any guy under 5’ 8”.  Got it.  Moving on…
    @ Sparkling Emerald # 84
    I liked your post.  I had things that I looked for in a guys profile.  It wasn’t height, degree, or income but how their profile was written.  (My sister calls me a word junkie.)  If he could make me laugh and capture my interest how he looked got a lot of leeway.  (Unless he looked like my dad.)  I would also look at what he liked to read and what he wrote under the “Faith” part.  Then I found out that there were guys who really wrote well but they were no good at the face to face.  One guy seemed to have the same spiritual outlook on paper but in real life he didn’t.  
    I am taking a long look at myself and where my blind spots are.  I really like what Evan said about women going for what they want instead of what they need.  I can see that tendency in myself.  My sisters and I have been looking at our list of must-haves with fresh eyes and we are wondering if we even know what would really make us happy.  (From our past relationships I would have to say a resounding NO!)

  30. 90
    Sparkling Emerald

    Lia – 89
       Glad you liked my post.  I think it’s really rather silly how some men on this blog are so worked up over women who ask for specifics on our dating sites, or whatever.  Since WHEN do men do what WE want ?  They do what THEY want.  I have very few things specified.  I have a distance range, (50 miles)  an age range and I have said under smoking preference for my date “No Way”.  I get e-mails from smokers, guys young enough to be my son, and men from across the country.  So while I agonized over what arbitrary number to set for distance or age, it doesn’t matter, the men who want to write to me, will write to me.  Personally, I think some just look at the pics and send an e-mail to the ones that meet their looks requirements.  I wonder if I am “shrinking my dating pool” by putting in an age range, but I know I don’t want to be old enough to be someone’s mother, or to date someone old enough to be my Dad.  (In my younger years, I actually wanted a much older man, but now that I am much older myself, I really don’t want someone so much older)  So I put a 20 year range, 10 plus or minus my age.  So maybe there’s a GREAT guy 11 years older.  Oh goodness, gracious, me, I just missed the opportunity to meet Mr Wonderful because I capped the upper limit arbitrarily at 10 years older than me. (Being facetious here)  Doesn’t matter, if Mr Great Guy who is 11 years older and lives 51 miles from me, really likes my pic and/or profile he will reach out to me.  Then I can look at his entire profile and see if that extra year, and that one extra minute commute really matters.
    I know what you mean about guys who say one thing on paper, but in person it’s a different story.  One guy said he had a sense of humor (but that’s basically what they all say, but he went on about it a bit in his profile)  Well, if had a sense of humor, I certainly didn’t see it on our second (and last date)  He just acted like he had a stick up his caboose.  He also said his build was “about average” but I thought he had “a few extra pounds”, but I get that something like that is a matter of opinion, and I didn’t mind that he had quite a few extra pounds, but he did spend some time complaining about women who lie about their body type, and claimed that one woman turned out to be built like “Java the Hut”.  (another turn off for me, who want to hear disparging remarks about an ex or a previous date ???? )

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