To: the future men and women in my life.
Please don’t call me pretty. Please don’t tell me I’m beautiful, or hot, or sexy.
I know this.
And it doesn’t matter.
A year ago, or even a few months ago, such words would have made me blush. I would have batted my eyes coyly at you and flirted for more compliments.
But this is now.
Now, such words will get you a raised eyebrow and a flat, “Thanks.” If you continue to fill my ears with empty words, you’ll get a warning about how far flattery will get you (nowhere).
I know this sounds arrogant and entitled. I don’t consider myself to be either of these things. Confident? Definitely. Proud? Possibly.
But the reason being complimented on my outward appearance irks me is because there is so much more to me than the skin that I wear.
If you want me to feel special, to feel important, to swoon into your arms like such a damsel, don’t call me pretty.
Tell me I’m fascinating. Tell me I made you see things differently. Call me interesting, brilliant, talented. Say that you see the galaxies in my eyes, or that being near me makes you feel at peace. Tell me you love the way I know what you’re feeling before you do, or that my writing inspires you.
But please, for the love of all that is good, don’t call me pretty.
Whether we go on one date or one hundred, it should be apparent from the get-go that physical appearances are not important to me. I have the confidence to acknowledge that, objectively, I am attractive. But I have the wisdom to know that, one day, I’ll look like a cross between Yoda and prune.
Beauty doesn’t last.
And if beauty is all you can focus on, you won’t last, either.