Arrow-right Camera


Carolyn Hax: Think of future with shallow one

Wed., Nov. 11, 2009, midnight

Dear Carolyn: I recently started dating somebody new who is considerably taller than I (I’m a guy). It’s not news to me that I’m short, and even before we met I’d advised her that it wasn’t an issue for me if she was taller, and I hoped it wasn’t an issue for her.

Flash-forward 10 dates. We talk, we text, we get along. Things, I thought, were going along great, until yesterday she says: “I’d really like it if you’d start wearing heels or lifts in your shoes, because the height difference makes me very self-conscious when we’re out in public.”

Now, I get that everybody’s entitled to their preferences, OK, but it really hurt, and to me this would be like my saying to her: “Gee, I like you and all, but you’re really flat-chested, so when we go out in public could you wear falsies so everybody else will think you’re stacked?” I really like this woman, but if she doesn’t really like the real me, how much of a future could we have? – Seattle

That’s one way to look at it. Another is, if she could really ask that of anyone with a straight face, how much of a future would you want?

Shallow and presumptuous is some kind of one-two punch.

What you do next depends on whether you find her request offensive, or just stupid. If it’s the former (or both), you and she are probably done.

Unfortunately, the moment for that kind of on-the-spot incredulity has passed, and to raise the issue now you’d need to speak in full sentences.

Your “it would be like my saying to her” example would get your point across nicely.

By posing it to her that way, you give her a chance to deplore her stupidity and embrace your short self – on the theory that everyone draws a stupid conclusion occasionally, and we’d probably all appreciate a chance to rethink them. If she flunks, then at least you’ll both know why you no longer call.

E-mail Carolyn at, or chat with her online at 9 a.m. each Friday at www.washington

Click here to comment on this story »