Why is it that when we try to pay a compliment to someone we always seem to focus on their physical appearance?
I realise that most of the time a person’s looks are the first and most obvious things we notice about them but this still doesn’t really justify our society’s obsession with looks and reducing people to their appearance.
We see it so often with catcalling, a man will make an unwanted comment on a woman’s physical appearance and if she doesn’t respond in the way he hopes she will he complains that he was just trying to “pay her a compliment”.
Here’s an idea, just don’t.
Personally, I don’t see being told I’m attractive as a compliment. In fact, I find it quite annoying. They can call me a bitch and tell me that they were just trying to be nice, I don’t care. Why should I be grateful that somebody finds me aesthetically pleasing? I don’t owe them anything because they noticed me.
Great, someone tells me I’m pretty. Then what? What am I meant to do with that information? All it tends to result in is an awkward interaction where they hope for my phone number and I hope they go away.
Let me make this very clear. Looks don’t mean anything.
I have no control over my physical appearance. In fact, my face is just about the only thing in life that I can’t change, (without drastic surgery, I mean). So, how about instead of trying to compliment me on something I can’t change, compliment me on something I have changed.
I have two degrees. Compliment me on my intellect. I donate to charities. Compliment me on my generosity. I’m goddamn hilarious. Compliment me on my wit.
Compliment me on my hard work. Compliment me on overcoming life’s obstacles. Compliment me on my achievements.
Do not reduce me to my physical appearance. Do not “compliment” me on the one thing I cannot control.