A man being shorter than his significant other really is ok

Dear Allsfair,
I am 5’2 myself. My story is as follows (not pretty):
When I was 17 and in University for the first time, a girl who was 5’4″ was very interested in me*. But the thought of being heckled by other men, and also being intimidated by her size etc was too much for me. Not to mention I didn’t know what my role was supposed to be.

There, I was made fun of, beaten and ignored. And I wasn’t street smart enough to just avoid people. I was afraid of other men. And especially afraid of other men, when girls were around. After all if a girl is there, men will, if they can get away with it, try to intimidate other men away.

One day, high on drugs, I attempted suicide. I survived.

I spent the next 7 or so years as a hermit. Then 3 years chasing an idea that would technically make me rich, but I was only doing it because it was out of the mainstream and allowed me to avoid other people.

When I gave up on that, I rejoined University. In the first year, there was another very attractive 5’5″ girl who was interested in me.
Once again
1) I was afraid of being heckled.
2) I was afraid of her other suitor who was much stronger and bigger than me (who did physically threaten me later on when I did try to talk to her too little too late, after she moved on and accepted him as her boyfriend).
3) I was afraid that even though she was clearly interested in me, she would change her mind if I approached.
4) I was afraid that she would look at other men more even if we were together. And the jealousy/betrayal of that thought was too much to bear.
5) I was afraid that other guys would hit on her even though I would be clearly with her – aka massive disrespect.
6) I was afraid that even if after all that, I did get with her, she would get all the attention when we were out as a couple. Very emasculating.
7) etc etc.

So Ive become 30 with never a girlfriend to soothe my mind, with being disrespected or invisible to other men. And I can’t even be 100% angry with girls, because though 90% of them would consider me subhuman – a few gems were interested in me greatly. Other men, I hate more thoroughly – they would disrespect, even attack me if social norms didn’t prevent it.

I have a MENSA level IQ (professionally tested), am quite good looking etc but being short is the unforgivable for a man.

The only ray of hope is either
a) Leg extensions
b) As I am Asian, I can go back to my part of the world where I am roughly average size for a man (1-2 inches shorter than average). Only problems with this are I totally give up on girls/a special girl that I like, and theres no money to be made there. But, OTOH, I will have some peace.
c) Both of the above.

I dont’ claim to be a fighter who’s weathered the storms of life well. I do think most men taller than, say 5’6 can simply have no idea of how it feels and is, and therefore have any right to call me wimpy etc. As for other short men who have done better, congrats – you are either luckier or more rugged than I. I still think I have gone through more **** than 95% of men ever will. And I take a little perverse pride in that.

It’s true, that I’m 5’10 and my boyfriend is 5’8 (on a good day). It doesn’t bother either one of us. I can’t tell you what to do in these situations, as it was never an issue for us. I wanted to be with him as much as he wanted to be with me. Our heights didn’t matter. I even wear heels when we go out which makes me approx. 6’1. He finds me beautiful and model-esque. The key to it all, is that we wanted to be together. A girl who is going to toy with you, and choose whomever is strongest, isn’t the right girl. The right girl will know that you’re her soulmate (trust me, everyone has one) and she won’t require feats of strength or anything else to prove your love. She would also never tolerate another guy beating up on you. I would stop anything in the world from harming my boyfriend if I could, and it was necessary.
Let me tell you a little about our relationship, so you can see what I mean when I talk about the right person. I hate to sound cliche, but he is, honestly, my soulmate. When we met, we were both dating other people and yet we had an instant connection. We stayed friends, and never mentioned it to each other. Then about a year later, by a stroke of luck, we were both single at the same time. We started dating immediately. People thought it wouldn’t last, as I’d just been engaged for four years and been cheated on, and he had been engaged for two. We talked about how we always felt something there, and it was completely serious, that we were soulmates. There wasn’t a big flash of light, or trumpets or anything, just the immediate 100% sureness that you’re meant to be with someone. He would tell you that he’s 5, and I’m a solid 10. I don’t agree, but it illustrates a difference in not only our heights. To me he’s the most handsome man in the entire world. We’ve been together for a year, and I still feel exactly the same way as I did the first time I met him (now two years ago). I know he feels the same as well.
I can’t really give you any better advice, then to wait for the right girl. If you like someone, and she’s allowing suitors to compete for her, then move on before it becomes physical. I wouldn’t change anything about yourself. The right girl will love you madly exactly the way you are, height, looks, intelligent, everything. You are everything that is perfect for her, and her soul will recognize it. Only immature girls who aren’t worth it let themselves go to the highest bidder. I think you need to seek some professional help to learn to love who you are. If you can love yourself, then it won’t matter that you haven’t found the right girl, you’ll be willing to wait.
You might also consider traveling. You mentioned going back to Asia, which might be a viable option if you’re really searching hard for her, but you also could go somewhere else in Europe. They don’t have the same issues Americans have, with looks and “societal norms” etc. Plus Europe is amazing! If nothing else, you went on a great vacation. I hope my advice has helped. If I can help more, let me know.

Rationally speaking, one thing is you are 5’10, in a sense youve been ‘trained’ to not be very boisterous around men so as not to put them off (Im not trying to be rude, I just think its a fact of sorts). On the other hand, when girls who were 5’4 and 5’5 were showing interest in me, and I liked them – I felt betrayed not only externally (which is obvious) but also internally as I felt I would be restricting their life and that wouldn’t be proper for me to do to them if I cared for them. Paranoid? Maybe. But I think you understand what I mean, right? Women like to be hypersocial and playful.

But it makes one a very bitter person, perhaps even more bitter than a 5’2 guy who never received interest from women he likes.

However, the girl who was very interested in me when I was 17, had as her ‘group’ – women always tend to pair up, a 6’0 girlfriend, whos boyfriend was 5’4. She was a very aloof person – Im sure you can empathize. Of course that made it a golden opportunity for me, to have a ready made group where I wouldn’t be so weird. But I was too naive and young to see it really.

Perhaps part of the problem was I grew up in a sex segregated school in the middle east, and just didn’t understand mixed sex group dynamics.

As for the soul mate stuff, the rational part of me calls it poppy cock. Another part of me is not so sure (Read Michael Crichton’s book ‘Travels’ for example). Might be a pity that my rational side is so dominant.

Let me just say, while I didn’t find your thoughts on this rude, I am a very outgoing person. I never kept to myself or did anything else to minimize my height. While it is extremely annoying to have every person comment on it, it doesn’t matter. I wear heels, and have just decided that when people mention how tall I am, I started saying things like you just can’t handle me in all my glory. It’s cheesy, but generally people don’t mean to be rude, they’re just making a comment. But it is rude. It’s the same as someone commenting on how fat someone is. As a society, we aren’t supposed to point out people’s differences like that. It’s becoming more and more socially acceptable for the woman to be taller in a relationship. Katie Holmes and Tom Cruise are single handedly making it ok.
Unfortunately I can’t give you any better advice than to just believe that it’s ok. It really is! If you are confident in yourself and your relationship then it won’t matter if someone is being rude about it. I’m not saying it won’t still sting, (I still feel it when people stare when I’m wearing heels) but it all come back to that ever appropriate Eleanor Roosevelt quote “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” If you don’t let them get to you, them the comments will more easily slide off your back.
The soulmate thing is hard to believe in. I never did. I watched all the movies and told myself that Hollywood gave me unrealistic expectations of men. No man could be that perfect, and there’s not one right person for everyone. Look at how many marriages fail. I went through some tough relationship things before I met my boyfriend. Now that I have him, I totally believe. I started this blog based on that idea. I’ve become a really big fan of the breakup. If people aren’t happy in a relationship then they are only preventing their own happiness. You need to make yourself available to the right person. Marriages fail because people insist on staying together and getting married because they think it will fix things. You’re much better off alone than with someone who doesn’t make you happy.
The one thing I always tell people when we talk about my boyfriend being shorter is that he’s manly enough to make me feel feminine. When I was younger, I always felt almost masculine next to my shorter friends. It was very important to me to find a man who makes me feel feminine, protected, and just generally taken care of. I can’t help you find a girl, but when you do, hold doors for her, protect her, and she’ll stick around no matter how tall you are.
My best finding a girl advice is to go to a bookstore. People generally buy books from the same sections, because it’s what they enjoy. So ask her for a recommendation. If she seems responsive ask her if she’d like to have coffee with you. Bookstores generally have coffee shops, so it’s safe because she doesn’t have to go anywhere with someone she doesn’t know. If you hit it off, then you can have dinner from there. You’re more likely to meet girls that care more about your intelligence than your looks, plus you get to find a girl who shares your interests and intelligence.


About allsfairadvice

I'm not a therapist, I just enjoy helping out with people's relationships. I always give straightforward honest answers. I notice that people frequently need the same advice, and they need a deeper insight into the way people think. I've got a pretty good handle on it
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