Tall(ism): Our Dirty Little Secret?
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After my “Soulmate Search” blog a couple weeks ago, I was inundated with suggestions on how I could find my Ms. Right. I guess the part of the blog where I said, “I am not currently in the market for a mate,” sailed over folks’ heads. Yes, I am currently single, but not looking! Repeat: Not looking!
But this weekend, to appease some of my friends, I caved in and went to a couple lesbian social events. Once at the Sapphic meat market, I found a corner to hide in and indulge in some serious people watching. Over the course of the night, I started noticing a disturbing trend: all the tall butch women (I am defining “tall” as 5’9 and better) were hooking up with or pursuing untall femme women. What was the deal? NOTE: I primarily date butch women so that is the lens this blog is being written through.
After watching my tall femme sisters get the cold shoulder all night I started sensing that there was some secret conspiracy against us. And like all conspiracies the answer was in plain sight. So like an intrepid reporter from the National Enquirer, on the trail of the John Edwards’ babygate, I set out to blow this story wide open.
I started out with an unscientific survey of all the tall women I knew and asked them about their dating preferences. After they all gave me the “I don’t care what she looks like, I am just looking for a connection” response, 4 out of 5 admitted to only being attracted to women shorter than themselves. The lone holdout stuck to her guns about it not mattering what her girlfriend looked like, but eventually coped to the to the fact that to date they had all been short (with a leaning toward petite).
When I brought this topic up to my friend, Kellie, who comes in at an even 5’11, she too admitted to having a “shorter than me” preference. She just didn’t know what to do with tall women. What? She went on to share that she’d gone out a couple times with a tall girl, but when she wore heels on their dates and it made her feel weird. Weird? What are we mutants?
Well, if we are to believe a 2008 worldwide survey on height – we actually are. According to the auxologists (the eggheads who study the physical measurements in humans) the average height of a U.S. woman is 5’4. What! Are we a nation of Lilliputians? In fact, there was only one place noted in the survey whose women averaged in at 5’7.5 and that was the Dinaric Alps. Where the fuck is that! But as I started to pay closer attention to the height of women I came in contact with, I sensed that the auxologists might be on to something. When you are almost six feet tall, almost everyone is shorter than you. But I didn’t realize how short. And then when I started to look back at my spotty dating history I realized I had only had one girlfriend that could have been called “tall.” I had been a victim of tallism!
When I hooked up with my non-girl kissing friend Barbara, who is striking at 6’1, to share my findings, she sadly nodded her head in agreement. In her world, where the average U.S. man is 5’7, she too found herself ditching her cute heels so not to “overshadow” her date. When I asked her if she sensed that tall men actively avoided approaching her in a romantic way she concurred that there were times she felt she was being overlooked because of her height. The irony. But by the end of our conversation, she was happy to report that she was currently dating a guy that was 6’5 and with some embarrassment added, “it’s nice to feel small for a change.”
Gasp! Tallism! It was rampant everywhere and it was making us feel shitty about ourselves. I understand personal preference, but this was beyond that. Us tall girls were not even on the menu. You shorty chasers aren’t even aware that there is an entire group of women who were funny, smart (scientifically proven more so than short women), good in bed, and didn’t need a step stool to get shit off the top shelf in the linen closet. Look at all that you are missing out on. And for you untall butches, who are hell bent on collecting us, like we are your personal exotic blue Avatar, that creeps us out.
Michell Sewell, founder of GirlChild Press, is 5’11 and would love to meet a tall, dark butch in about six months.