Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Men Don't Make Passes


~*~*~

Another guest post by Dana


~*~

I picked up my new geeky-chic glasses on Saturday.

They are a stretch for me.

They scream, "LOOK AT MY FACE!" and that is terrifying in my world.

I changed my blogger, twitter and facebook avatars to the new look and got very positive, complimentary feedback. I allowed myself to feel good about the new look - maybe it really was OK to be me.

Then it happened.

A direct message* from someone I know. Someone I care about. Someone whose opinion matters to me:

"Tell Dana to change her picture. It's cute, but the lighting makes it look like she has a mustache"

Let me share a secret with all of you. Any time I hear "[Insert favorite compliment], BUT [Insert critical statement]" what I hear is "Blah, blah, blah ... Dana has a mustache."

I was hurt (still am or I wouldn't be writing this). I looked at the picture - a picture I was comfortable with (a HUGE accomplishment for me) and all I could think was that everyone had been lying to me - laughing behind my back - saying, "Dana thinks she looks cute but it looks like she has a mustache. Let's not tell her so that we can keep laughing at her."

When I communicated my hurt, I got:

"And let me tell ya Mizz Thang...How many people saw the same thing and didn't say anything...c'mon you know me better than that"


Ahhhh ... confirmation! Validation! ... and people think I'm crazy.

Now, in all fairness, I know (without a doubt) that this conversation was meant to be helpful. This wasn't someone who was trying to cut me down, trying to make me feel bad about myself.

It was constructive criticism. It was like the friend who tells you about a glaring grammatical error in your post because they don't want you to be embarrassed. It was meant to be helpful.

I took it far too personally. It hurt like hell.

I airbrushed the photo. I softened it. I played with the highlights and low lights. I adjusted the shadow. I did everything I could in hopes everyone would stop laughing at me behind my back. I tried to make it "acceptable." **The picture shown is the "fixed" photo**

I sold out ... and I hate that I am not confident enough to say, "Screw you! I'm fine just the way I am!"

Maybe some day.

*These messages were private messages, not sent to a public forum. I reprinted them (as written) here, but out of context. I didn't do this to make the person look bad, but to help you understand how my brain heard them.

~*~*~

96 comments:

Lola said...

I think the glasses make you look adorable. But then again, I'm a sucker for chicks in glasses. Lol!

Verity Vaudeville said...

They can get stuffed; the glasses look great, take no notice.

Grant said...

If you were Tom Selleck, that comment would have been a compliment. Don't be hating due to your inability to be Tom Selleck. :p

Amy K. said...

I don't see any mustache. You're a cutie. Never mind whoever said that. I think he or she is in the minority here.

tjames said...

I honestly didn't notice and even looked again and can't see anything wrong with it. Plus, even if you had facial hair I think you would look good!

Knight said...

So is this the photo before or after you messed with it? I don't see a mustache. Maybe it's one of those things where people look at the same photo and some see the rabit but most see the duck. Ya know what I mean? Either way the glasses look hot on you. Very good choice.

Matt-Man said...

You are just fine the way you are, and I have never told you otherwise...okay except your attitude thing...kidding sorta...I was just trying to relay a message.

And yes, all of you who said the glasses look good, I think they do too and I said that prior to this "incident". Chicks in glasses make me hot.

Cheers Dana!!

Dana said...

Lola, thank you. This really wasn't a post fishing for compliments as it was one that tries to address how much self-confidence can come into play in daily interactions.

Verity Vaudeville, it wasn't the glasses, but the photo they took issue with. Cute BUT ...

Grant, You know, I did offer free mustache rides!

Dana said...

Amy K., well that's good! It means I'm an expert at air brushing!

tjames, as I said to Amy, that means I did a good job "fixing" myself. The photo on the post is the after.

Gina said...

When I sent you a compliment, was it the fixed photo? Because I SWEAR I noticed no 'stache. But maybe that's because I'm Italian and mustaches on women are, well, somewhat common in my world. And perhaps in my mirror. Whatever.

Dana said...

Knight, this is the after photo - I immediately deleted the before photo after "adjusting" it. And thank you.

Matt-Man, and the message was convoluted and lost. I, like most people, just want to be OK ... not OK BUT ... just OK.

Dana said...

Gina, no, you commented on the original photo. I didn't fix the photo until late last night. There *was* a shadow. I took the photo in my car with a camera phone. And this really shouldn't have bothered me like it did. I guess it was just the fact that I was overly self-conscious about the "new" look that I allowed one "critical" comment to outweigh all of the good ones. That doesn't make me upset with the person who said it. I'm really pissed at myself.

Anna said...

The only thing I noticed was the glasses... which I like.

I think the same way you do so I understand how you were able to twist the comment. Often times I find myself convincing myself "that's not what they meant, that's not what they meant" and hoping it sticks.

Raquel's World said...

Funny you posted on this. When I first saw the updated pic, meaning the one with the glasses, I had been meaning to tell you that it looked great.
And it does. I do not think everyone islying to you to laugh at you. I think people, just like I did, thought the picture was very flattering. You can't please all the peoeple all the time so just settle for plesing those of us that you can. I like this pic much better than the last one.

Jay said...

I was going to tell you to quit being so overly sensitive and paranoid, but I'm afraid you would take that personally and think that we've been talking about you behind your back. ;-)~

I never saw a mustache.

Dana said...

Anna, my interpretation of the comment was completely self-destructive even though I *knew* better. I'll try the "that's not what they meant, that's not what they meant" method next time.

Raquel's World, ahhhh ... but I shouldn't be trying to please anyone but myself :)

Jay, I'll own overly sensitive, but I got a little help with paranoid with the "How many people saw the same thing and didn't say anything?" message. It was pretty clear that the person who said that was certain most other people noticed the "implied" mustache and were just too nice to say anything.

I think more than anything I was surprised that someone who I thought knew me so well thought I'd react well to that comment.

Vinny "Bond" Marini said...

I love the new glasses...I didn't notice the "mustache"...

Mike said...

I agree with Knight. People can see what they want to see. There is a lighting shadow on the lower part of your face but the highlight in your hair and the new glasses draw the eye away from it. And I clicked on your picture to look at the bigger version of it and it is better yet.

Post both pictures and we'll all vote.

snugs said...

I wanted to tell you that you are being awfully needy with this post... but the difference between me telling you that and me telling doggy that he is being needy wanting everyone to vote for his latest project is that doggy can laugh it off because he knows I am just joking with him AND he has enough self confidence to just let it slide if he takes it the wrong way where as you would likely do an entire post over how mean the trolls are being...so let me know when you have your big girl britches on and are past your insecurities and fishing for compliments post because no matter what you claim, this post screams of Dana needs some strokes so everyone tell her how wonderful her glasses look..Oh, and did I forget to mention, LOVE the glasses!

Dana said...

Vinny, I love that I am able to photoshop pictures well!

Mike, although I'd just love to show you the mustashe photo, it has gone the way of all bad things and has been deleted from existence.

snugs, of course I'm being needy! All of the other stuff I said in this post - my explanation for writing this post? All just a big cover-up for the *real* reason I wrote it.

Do I crave external approval and validation? Absolutely! But that wasn't what this post was about.

Too bad you missed the point. You'd have seen that I was being critical of my flawed thinking rather than begging for compliments.

SkylersDad said...

I think your picture is great! I have been on the tail end of those something, but, something conversations all my life. It sucks.

Real Live Lesbian said...

I hate people like that...and they usually turn up in your family, so you can't be rid of them.

You're beautiful. Stop listening to the one person that is attention seeking and does so by putting you down. Listen to all of us smart people that think you look fabulous in your new specs!

Maggie said...

First of all, who says that? There is no need to point out something like that and I see it as more catty and cutting someone down than being "helpful." Because honestly, I saw nothing in the original and even if there was a shadow, people are not stupid and can see that it's a shadow.

Second, sexy glasses!

Matt-Man said...

Seriously...I know what I said to Dana and have talked to her about it, but are any of you grasping the point of her post? I mean really? I don't fucking think so. Oy. Cheers!!

ME said...

I don't think you took it too personally, I would have felt the same way. And it was just one person...

Blogget Jones said...

ADORABLE glasses! But I completely know what you mean with your explanation of what you *hear*. At work, I can get a glowing evaluation and come away from it with "blah blah blah....you were late that one time...." I'll remember it for years. I hate that I do that, but there you have it....

Thanks for sharing your honesty about what you see in yourself!

:o) BJ

CheekyMonkey said...

Pfft, fuck that. I love the glasses and wtf kind of comment is that? it's a comment from someone who can't help but pick out the negative. I've always heard that you try to accentuate your best qualities instead of hiding all the ones you don't like. That, my friend, was a tool of a remark. You're beautiful and I don't think you should think twice about an alleged shadowey mustache. Unless of course it came with handlebars, in which case photo shop is okay. Just sayin.

LilliGirl said...

I love all these sassy commentators...and the glasses are cool too

Freida Bee said...

Well, I'm seeing the doctored version, but it so happens that I like mustaches on women, so I'd take it as a compliment if it weren't me, but if it were, I'd be horribly self-conscious.

My first time here.

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