I Think I’m Hot But My Boyfriend Doesn’t Seem to Think So

I Think I’m Hot But My Boyfriend Doesn’t Seem to Think So

Evan, I want an honest opinion on my predicament. I am in a year-long relationship and my boyfriend is a wonderful man. We have a strong connection and share a lot of values, views and interests. We’re getting pretty serious but there’s something that is eating me up inside. I think my boyfriend doesn’t think I am hot!

Being 5’5″ and 115lbs and measuring 34-26-35.5”, I always assumed that I was in the same league as a lot of celebrities who boast similar bodies. Granted, I am a little heavier towards my hips and have a bit wider frame but does 1″ really make a lot of difference here? Well, yes, according to my dear b/f. He basically told me that I can’t even compare myself to an actress or other celebrities (this ridiculous conversation started while watching TV and making comments about some actress). To him, I am “good looking” and “pretty” but, say, Angelina Jolie is “hot”, and “beautiful” and I am well… a regular person so I am not, how could I possibly be? He “likes me and finds me attractive”, but by no means am I nearly as good looking as a movie star, and I am crazy to be even comparing myself to them. That was the essence of the conversation. Of course, I felt hurt and I had a few “nice” things to say to him in response – as in “look who’s talking” kind of things and this conversation went downhill right away.

Now, am I crazy to be upset about this outlook of his? Men I dated in the past were (or at least acted the part) infatuated by me. I am used to hearing how beautiful I am. Men turn heads when I walk down the street. While I am totally OK with the idea that somebody doesn’t find me the most beautiful woman on the planet, which a lot of people probably don’t, I am somehow not OK with that person being my boyfriend! I mean, if he was truly into me, wouldn’t I be to him more beautiful than all Hollywood celebrities combined? Wouldn’t he be saying things like “honey, Angelina Jolie got nothing on you”? What happens if I gain weight with age – do I go from being “pretty” to “ugly, but I love you anyway because we have 2 kids and a mortgage and divorcing you is too damn expensive”? Am I being insecure and shallow for zooming in on this issue when everything else is fine, or have I got a legitimate concern? Is recognizing that your girlfriend is not ranking at the top of your scale in terms of looks but is the best “package” you can get in terms of looks-personality-values-etc. a sign of a mature man, or a sign of a man who’s not really in love? And most importantly, is this a deal breaker? —Diana.

Love. This. Question.

It’s a microcosm of every misinterpretation in every relationship ever.

And before I answer it, I want to share with you a story.

It was a tale from a linguistics professor in college who explained to the class that, in studies, men tend to be much more direct in their language. Women are subtle.

We can see this in many forms of personal interaction.

Because women are so kind and supportive, they don’t always speak their minds. They obscure the truth to be sensitive, but fail to communicate their true feelings.

Women are sensitive to each others’ needs. Men are blunt.

Women pick up on details. “What was he wearing? How did he kiss you? Where were you at the time?” Men just want to cut to the chase. “What’s the point?”

Women are supportive of their friends. “No, you don’t look fat in those jeans.”
Men cut their buddies down. “Dude, you gained, like twenty pounds!”

In fact, suffice to say, women are largely better and more sensitive communicators and men should really learn take a page out of women’s emotional playbooks.

Except for this one thing…

Because women are so kind and supportive, they don’t always speak their minds. They obscure the truth to be sensitive, but fail to communicate their true feelings.

My linguistics professor used an example of how a typical man and a typical woman would respond to being stuck in a hot classroom.

The man would say, “It’s hot in here! Open the window!”

The woman would turn to her friend and say, “Do you think it’s hot in here?”

The man issues a command. The woman tries to build consensus, but she doesn’t come out directly and say what she really wants: open the goddamn window!

I’m not going to get into some debate about whether this is 100% accurate, because it’s not. Not all men are direct. Not all women are subtle and nuanced.

But the reason I’m sharing this, in reference to your situation, Diana, is that the most interesting thing about women’s linguistics patterns can be summed up in one line:

Men say what they mean. Women don’t.

Thus, women are often surprised when men say what they mean.

You asked your boyfriend a question.

He gave you an honest answer. You seem shocked that he would do so.

Women are always asking for “honest” men, and then, when you finally get one, you would prefer if he told you something untrue.

I’d be shocked if he told you otherwise. His answer would be the exact same answer I would give to my wife. The difference is that:

a) My wife would never ask me to compare her to Angelina Jolie. She’s not that insecure.
b) My wife would not be surprised at my response, which is that she’s no Angelina Jolie.
c) My wife would not take it personally that I told her the truth, because she knows she’s no Angelina Jolie.

So what’s really going on, Diana, is that you wanted your boyfriend to LIE to you.

You didn’t want the truth. You wanted praise.

Even if it meant that he lied right to your face.

Ironic, isn’t it?

Women are always asking for “honest” men, and then, when you finally get one, you would prefer if he told you something untrue.

You basically set yourself up for failure on a couple of levels.

– You expected your boyfriend to be “infatuated” with you because other men have been. 

– You insulted your boyfriend’s looks because he didn’t lie and tell you were as attractive as one of the most attractive women on the planet. Catty much?

– You actually feel that a man who is truly into you would think you are more beautiful than all of the Hollywood celebrities combined? Really?

How much self-delusion do you have to have to say such things?

I mean, let’s just take it to the extreme:

A man with average looks, average intelligence and an average job gets pissed at his girlfriend who doesn’t think he’s the love child of Brad Pitt and Steve Jobs.

Note: the girlfriend didn’t say he’s “average”. She just said he’s not perfect.

Should he be upset? I sure don’t think so.

Obviously, she loves him — that’s why she’s his girlfriend.

But if you compare ANY man to the most impressive person in his/her field, ALL them are going to compare unfavorably.

So, to answer your question:

Are you being insecure and shallow for zooming in on this issue when everything else is fine, or have you got a legitimate concern? Is your boyfriend recognizing that you may not be at the very top of his scale in terms of looks but are the best “package” he can get in terms of looks-personality-values-etc? Is this a sign of a mature man, or a sign of a man who’s not really in love? And most importantly, is this a deal-breaker?

I would only say this…

You’re spot on in assessing your boyfriend’s maturity. Well done.

The real question is whether it’s a deal-breaker for HIM to stay with a woman who has such a hard time hearing the truth.

I’ve dated such women and personally, I would rather date a 7 who can accept reality than a 10 who expects me to lie to her.

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  1. 401

    I’m not so sure if I agree with this one. Sometimes men are honest and sometimes they are emotionally abusive. Men will sometimes erode at their partners self esteem and make women feel inferior.

    To me, it would really depend on how her boyfriend said it and if he said other things too. I believe I’m average looking but I’ve dated me who thought the best in me… and as a woman I’ve never settled until I found some incredibly and totally in love with me

  2. 402
    Thomas Snydell

    The guy who wrote the response is really mean. Your man should be infatuated with you. Drop him and don’t ask for advice from this website because this guy is clearly too macho to have ever loved anyone completely.

  3. 403

    Amazing reply that girl was way too damn self absorbed hahaha

  4. 404

    Jesus. Unpopular opinion but, I agree with Evan. You have got to be kidding me with this one.

  5. 405

    My ex fiancé could only admit to being 60% attracted to me. I asked if it ever went above that? Nope, but it would lessen sometimes.

    Look, I understand that feelings like attraction ebb and flow over a course of time but we didn’t even have kids or get married yet! We hadn’t even begun!

    So I broke it off. I’m really driven when it comes to work, my life and generally expectations I have for myself. I like getting A’s and knowing that I’m trying my best. I couldn’t settle for someone who was barely even attracted to me, even if I did love him very much.

    I think everyone’s right and wrong on this and there is no one truth. I also think everyone has a reality that works for them and that reality didn’t work for me. Needless to say I am with someone now who validates me often AND is attracted to me (sometimes even more than 60%!). Lucky me.

    I came to this looking for some more perspectives on the topic. I understand where the writer of the question is coming from, I do. I think that maybe she needed some validation from her partner not through narcissism ( psych major here). I didn’t detect that she needed that validation for herself (sounds like she knows her worth) this question to her boyfriend is coming from a NEED. Obviously there could be something happening beneath the surface of this question that we don’t know about that would lead her to seeking to fulfill this need. Maybe boyfriend is subtly cutting her down or withholding.

    I find the authors of the response lacking in compassion and tact. He responded very rudely and there is a difference between being straightforward and being rude. Name calling is rude. Rudely dismissing a person who trusted you enough to unbear and embarrassing Hangul and come to you for advice because they valued your perspective is not honerable in my humble opinion. If this was a person in my life I would say that them asking my advice is a gift and a compliment. And respect it as such.

    Otherwise, I actually enjoy that masculine form of communication when people are straightforward and find it makes communication a lot easier. Women or feminin esque communication is sometimes different but is good depending on circumstance but I don’t really see how it has a strong correlation to the issue.

  6. 406

    This is… joke..? Too much entertainment. Too much comparison. Why ones not learn how to stand on their own feet? This is your life. You are master of your life. Why do you need the validation from another..? live your life and love your own self before asking your partner to do so. When your partner seem doesn’t appreciate your presence but you love them enough to stay then stay, but learn and grow together. I mean “LEARN” and “GROW” TOGETHER. But if it’s no longer possible, just leave with peace, you can still live your own life without her/him.

  7. 407

    Wow, this is a strange post. While I feel sympathy for both Diana and her (ex)boyfriend, they both contribute to their misery by taking extremes – she by (genuinely?) expecting any boyfriend of hers to think she is the hottest woman in the world, and he by not finessing his comments about her looks at all.

    I was completely with Diana when she wrote about how she felt beautiful in the eyes of other men, and didn’t want to be with a man who said she wasn’t his type (in her later comment). That makes sense at a gut level, and YAG has written plenty on this. For a long-lasting physical relationship, you really should go for someone who is your type: the type you’re attracted to, and the type who is attracted to you. Not someone who has to grow on you, or someone on whom you have to grow. Since other men find her attractive, she has a choice, so why would she stay with a man who didn’t have that gut-level attraction for her? That could prove harmful later.

    But at the same time, I understand her ex-bf’s predicament. He was being honest. I think he would feel WRONG to lie, even a white lie about how she’s hotter than Angelina Jolie, because it could snowball into her expectations for him to lie about other things just to make her happy (and delusional). Maybe he didn’t have to be so blunt, but it sounded as if he was backed into a corner. If my man asked me to make an outrageous comment about him being the handsomest or hottest man on the planet… wow, no matter how much I love him, I wouldn’t do that to myself or him, to lie to us both.

    Well, after writing this, I guess my sympathy is more for the ex-boyfriend. But good for them both that they parted ways, as Diana wrote about later.

  8. 408

    This article is ridiculous. If a man is really in love with a woman, he will think she’s the most beautiful woman ever honestly. Women do want an honest man, and a man that recognizes her beauty. She does not want to be with a man who places other women before her. When you love someone, they come first. It’s not selfish to want to be #1 in your boyfriend or husband’s eyes. There are so many people who want to bring you down in the world. Your life partner should be the one person who brings you up and recognizes your beauty and makes you feel beautiful no matter what to him.

    1. 408.1

      But, do you make him feel like he’s Elon Musk? Do you make him feel like he is the King, when he’s just the town baker?

      I have noticed that women want to believe that every women is amazing and special in her own way, but are merciless in their judgement of men. Is that fair? No. The reality is that people, both men and women, come in amazing, not at all amazing, and everything in between.

      I would simply say that both partners in a relationship, should be making the other person feel good about themselves. If you don’t, they will find somebody who does. The idea that all men are just dogs and this is why they cheat, while women only cheat because the man is not giving them what they need…NO…both cheat because their partner is not fulfilling their needs.

      The question is, are those needs reasonable, or are they just selfish.

  9. 409

    I had a similar thing with my boyfriend. When I told him my feelings (at that time, very emotional due to PMS) , he replied with “I had no idea you felt this way. Tell me , what can I do to make it better? I really value our relationship, and I know you do, too. I don’t want to have any fights about these insignificant things, so tell me how we can fix it.” He then proceeded with, “To be honest, I don’t call you beautiful often, because you are just so naturally goddamn gorgeous, I thought you already knew it!”

    His reply shows : 1. Acknowledging my feelings.
    2. Admitting his part of fault & asking how he can contribute to fixing it.
    3. Validating the importance of our overall relationship, not just the little things.
    4. Complete with some sweet talk as an “excuse”, which I found as a really heart-warming compliment!

    Any person who is mature enough for a relationship can do AT LEAST the first step. In my opinion, the original poster’s bf is a little immature .

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