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Is He Too Short?

Do you consider yourself a height snob? You may be and not even realize it. Here, some things to consider when sizing up a potential date.

By Elsa K. Simcik

hat do you look for? A nice body, killer eyes and a big smile are usually at the top of the list. But hey, quit looking way up there. Take a gander down at that 5’7” hottie. You’ve never looked there before. See? You can be vertically discriminating.

So what makes someone tall versus short? Maybe it’s how tall
“A tall man is a symbol of strength and that just makes me feel protected.”
he is compared to his significant other. Or maybe it’s based on statistics. Currently, the average height for men is 5’9”. So does that make everyone under that below average?

It’s fine to want a guy that matches up well with you. In fact, when it comes to height requirements, we girls usually have one cardinal rule: When we wear heels, we shouldn’t be taller than our man.

But why is that? What’s the fascination with taller guys? Sheila, 26, loves the beanpoles: “When a guy is a foot taller than me, I feel safer, like he can take care of me.”

Alisha, 29, echoes this point: “A tall man is a symbol of strength and that just makes me feel protected.”

Hello? Have either of you taken a look at the under 5’9” crowd lately? If you want strength, that’s the place to be. Many of these guys are buff and tend to be a lot more muscular than those scrawny streetlamps you’ve been dating.

And a few more plugs for shorter guys: They’re easier to hug and you can look them in the eye.

Plus, last time I checked, it was the new millenium, and single women were making a lot of progress becoming more self-sufficient and less dependent on men. Don’t make me quote the Destiny’s Child song, “Independent Women” to prove my point.

Debra, 32, claims her love for tall guys has nothing to do with needing a bodyguard: “I’m 5’10”,” she explains,
In dating, it’s certainly smart to have standards.
“If I dated someone who was 5’7”, we’d look ridiculous together.” That’s interesting. Are you saying Tom and Nicole looked ridiculous? Okay… bad example.

Besides, in this century, diversity is in. You have the opportunity to date people of different ethnic backgrounds, different religions and even different tastes in reality television. Why not break down the height barrier?

Think about it, tall girls (which, by the way, is everyone over 5’4”). If you limit yourself to only dating tall guys, you’ve essentially cut your dating pool in half. Short girls, on the other hand, could potentially date any guy over 5’4”. This means they’ve got better odds of finding a date. Plus, they’re likely to snag a cute short guy that you literally overlooked.

In dating, it’s certainly smart to have standards. You don’t want to date a mooch or an idiot or someone who doesn’t agree with your choice for the American Idol. But when it comes to shapes and sizes, don’t be a height snob. And don’t exclude the shorties. Gone are the days of women needing big, burly men to protect them. So forget how you two match up when you wear heels. It’s time to set new rules when it comes to height. Hey, I say, as long as he can ride the big rollercoaster, he’s all right by me.


Elsa K. Simcik is a freelance writer in Atlanta. Her work has appeared in newspapers and magazines including The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, The Dallas Morning News, Texas Parks and Wildlife Magazine and CNN.com.
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