You know I could already feel the eye-rolls from people who don’t think heightism exist. But I feel like it’s so prevalent that it’s become a part of who we are as a society. Men of smaller stature are always seen as less “manly” than other men, and always angry/emotional and I feel like the struggle of a short man should be part of the gender equality agenda.
This of course is not to say that short women don’t experience micro-aggressions, and sometimes macro-aggressions with reasons such as how modeling agencies don’t hire shorter women to model. However, I’m more knowledgeable on the struggles of shorter men so I will speak on that, and also a lot of the reasons short men and women are discriminated against are very different. My height has affected my life more than anything in my life, almost equal to my race.
Now where do I start with this oppression session? Well, of course I’ve been called “short” to my face, though objectively that shouldn’t offend me, but a lot of the struggles I face deal with the psychological battles an especially short man has to go through. I’ve had women tell me than if I was taller they would consider being in a relationship with me even.
Online the most vicious words are said about short men to the point where I would consider it hate speech. If you go to any social media platform, you’ll see memes and quotes retweeted in the thousands praising tall men and bashing shorter men to the point of them making it seem gross to be associated with a shorter man.
Me trying to date boys under 6ft pic.twitter.com/MwJJw6YN9S
— Banterlicious (@DaniellaaDawnn) May 10, 2017
6′ are you kidding me?! I’m sorry (not really) but y’all are asking for too much. Nobody has control over their genetics.
The prejudice really shows itself on dating apps as well. Women are always putting height requirements on their profiles, saying “tall guys only.” It’s gotten to a point were the only thing I put on my profile was my height so that when then message me and inevitably ask for my height they aren’t disappointed and we don’t waste each other’s time. Despite that one woman straight up asked me after bullshitting for a couple of minutes “are you really 5’4” like I would intentionally sabotage my life like that. Yes assface I am 5’4 and I look good too.
Some of the most damaging interactions can come from over men as well. It’s not secret that most of the time men are in a constant battle of dominance over each other. Whether it’s money, strength, charisma, or just overall social status, men want to flex their ego-boners and position themselves as the “alpha male.” This ties into another point I have: how this idea of taller men being more manly is a very animalistic, archaic fight-to-the-death-in-a-dirt-arena-for-the-love-of-the-tribe-leader’s-daughter and simple assumption. The notion of an “alpha male” should be a feminist issue, as it puts added value on the same sort of attitude that oppressed women.
According to what I’ve heard and experienced, an alpha male is loud (not always in a belligerent way), aggressive, forceful, and large. Qualities that would make a women seem less “feminine” if they possessed them. Why can’t a man be small? Why can’t a man be quiet or unobtrusive? You’ll see this in any gathering of men. I’ve had guys always trying to assert their dominance over me by speaking over me, putting their arms over my head, trying to spar with me when their arms are longer than pool noodles.
This whole subject is ignored because it is mainly a male thing and it is perpetuated by the very thing it consist of, pride. Men don’t want to complain because that’s feminine. Short men don’t want to complain because they don’t have much manliness in reserve and they don’t want to come off as emotional. Women don’t want to bring it up because why would they? Their female friends would think them odd for bringing up a problem that they don’t connect with, especially when that problem concerns their partner of choice.
And here is where I attempt to approach an extremely touchy point. One that if anybody might see in the future could ruin me career.
The struggle of the short man is very similar to the struggle of the fat woman, and they deserve the same amount of attention. The only difference is, height is unchangeable ladies and gents. Unless I want to do extensive surgery there is no hope for me, I am going to have an extremely difficult sex life forever even though I’ve gloed up. I can’t exercise my way to longer legs or an extended torso. And if it’s alright for women to prefer “tall” men, then why can’t men prefer slimmer women? As I said before, being large is a manly trait, so that would mean being smaller is a womanly trait. These aren’t new ideas people. Is preferring slimmer women wrong, or is it a preference? Is preferring taller men wrong, or is it a preference? Getting past these two questions would enlighten people from either side of the viewpoint.
Now that you know that being short sucks and that short people are more likely to be depressed according to a Vice article, what do short people want you to do? I’ll tell you what I want you to do. Start the conversation.