I'm a woman and all through my life since high school, people have remarked that I looked androgynous and in a very hurtful way. I remember back in high school, no one has ever asked me out on a date or complimented me on my looks. Not once.
I recall one incident very clearly. Walking down the hallway, a group of guys remarked rather loudly "Is he a guy or girl, I can't tell. From the front, it looks like a guy. From the back, it looks like a woman".
I remember also, back in college, when I'd walk past people and they'd stare at me or the one time when this guy said to his friend as they passed me, "oh my god, did you see that girl". And in the computer lab one time, another guy remarked rather loudly, "is that a guy or girl?"
How would you deal with this? Sometimes I think that I will never be able to find a mate. No one finds me attractive. And it hurts me a lot when people make fun of my appearances.
I sometimes wish I was a guy. Looks don't matter to guys that much. Looks mean a heluva lot to a woman.
"Looks don't matter to guys that much."
Straight guys ... maybe
Next time someone comments like the ones you mentioned, punch them in the nipple.
Dot-Marie Jones posts here?
Are you straight? Regardless, there's someone for everyone. There are plenty of people that are into your looks. Stop focusing in the external and cultivate your internal qualities.
I once had a kid exclaim that's not a boy?!" as they got a better look at me. I found it hilarious. But it wasn't said in a rude way.
Are you a lesbian, OP? Because your look would be very appealing to lots of lesbians.
If you want to look more femme, there are loads of ways. Grow your hair to shoulder length. Wear colours and styles more coded as feminine. If people mistake you for a man, I'm guessing your fairly slender so that's a fashion advantage right there.
How do you dress?
I understand. I am kinda plain-looking myself although I do my best, and people often overlook me unless I make myself useful somehow. Your particular looks may jar people who are insecure or narrow-minded.
Try to ignore these foolish, ignorant, mean people. They are not worth your time or mental space. Do things you love. Today I went to a museum and being around beautiful things really lifted my spirits. Find friends. Be good to yourself and others. I know this sounds stupid but it can help if you let it.
Good luck. You have a lot to give.
OP, Grace Jones got a man.
If it really matters, you can dress and act more feminine. Hell, stuff your bra, slather on the lipstick and mascara, and totter around in painful high heels and ridiculous mini-skirts.
If all that matters to you is looking more feminine so that nobody questions your gender or insults you, then your problem can be solved immediately.
Personally, I recommend wearing clothes you find comfortable (within reason, of course; pyjama pants are not to be worn in public), getting a hairstyle that flatters you, and working on being happy in your own skin.
I (a very feminine female) am pretty much only attracted to androgynous men and androgynous females, and my guess is that there are a lot of others with my taste out there too (interestingly, my brother, a straight man, primarily likes dykey-looking women - we have the same taste in women, bro and I).
I agree with R5. stop focusing on the external. You are in control of you. Stop handing over the power. Doesn't matter what people think. Live your life.
Being so down on yourself may be a block to how you're presenting yourself, OP.
We all get the faces and bodies we get... there are big things we can do to change that (often too big and too drastic) and small things.
I'd start with considering your hair, make up and clothes. Maybe there are changes made there that can help boost your feelings about yourself and lessen the androgyny.) Try googling image consultant. Or maybe you just have a friend who comes by hair and makeup and clothing more naturally. Reach out. Get some advice. Try what feels right. Or what might feel right even if you're doubtful.
When I was a teenager I sometimes got is that a boy or a girl? I grew out of it, but I remember the humiliation and hurt feelings of it. People can be grossly insensitive. Through cognitive behavioural therapy I learned it isn't as much what people do as how you respond to it. There's lots of books on it. That might be something to consider too. Don't be too down on yourself. Things can be made to change, and often just incremental changes are all it takes. The hardest part will be finding the belief in yourself to take it on.
Good luck. The first step is figuring out what might be a practical, achievable second step. So start Googling and thinking. God, I wish I could figure out a way to get you in Stacey and Clinton's hands. They'd know.
Ugh ... people can be SUCH assholes. I'm sorry you have to go through this, OP. However, the problem isn't you, your looks or whatever but the very unsophisticated people you are exposed to. You might want to say "I can hear you" next time you overhear people talking about you.
This thread is useless without pictures.
Part of you must not have cared, or you would have taken greater steps to look more feminine.
Ignore the Asshole Fairy.
R12 your brother has an exceptional taste for a straight dude. i hope he doen't get his heart broken too often by lezzies...
He has had, actually (broken hearts from crushes on lesbians). He's married to a very alpha-female now. Even when he was a kid he had crushes on Jodie Foster in her butcher roles and Mary Stuart Masterson when she had short hair.
Also, I don't think it is exceptional taste for a straight man. My ex-girlfriend, who was very androgynous-looking, had straight men trying to chat her up too.
Straight men like all women, young and old, fat and thin, butch and femme, Asian, black, white - they just want to get their rocks off with all kinds of varying types. That's why it will never be a problem for any woman to get laid any time she wants.
Testosterone Cypionate 200 mg/ml, weekly.
R14, Stacey and Clinton have some books out, as do the original "What Not To Wear" English duo. It actually may be more helpful to have such guidance in book form, with pictures. OP, you could buy some of their What Not To Wear books, used, on Amazon or something.
Also, I like Robert Jones' makeup books. There is one that features non - models of different ages and sizes, and his books are helpful to people who have never applied makeup. You might decide not to fuss with any makeup, but it's worth looking at the many before and after photos to get an idea of your options.
For selecting wardrobe colors (and interior paint and furnishing colors), the best book is still Color Me Beautiful. The thing about understanding color theory is that you can surround yourself with your own harmonious colors, and your home will feel more supportive and restful. If you wear your harmonious colors, you will look more appealing - and this applies to lipgloss as well.
People still underestimate the power of color harmony and especially the power of correct eyebrow grooming and maintenance.
Cognitive behavioral therapy is great, but I personally feel better in a group CBT situation; I'm an introvert yet a one on one approach to being vulnerable is really confronting to me. Sitting in a circle that is led by a professional, and just having a structured discussion is so much better IME.
former asst. to makeup artist, esthetician
Ok OP, R20's input is better than mine.
OP must look like the female carpenter on Green Acres.
Get yourself to the Lancome counter and get a makeover.
And while you're in Nordstrom (or wherever), buy some new clothes. Approach a sales clerk you find attractive and let her guide you.
Explain you're tired of looking like Samantha Ronson and would rather be Lindsay Lohan.
Oh Darlin' you are just more beautiful than you know!
She looka like a man!
I tell you everyting.
R24 has a point in chosing a salesperson whose look you like
Darlings, OP has shit and run
This has also happened to me as an adult. I've mostly overheard people discussing my gender when they thought I couldn't hear and it's usually children, so they're being honest not mean. I dress very feminine and have noticeable boobs. The issue is that my face is very unusual and ugly, and I have a low voice like most tall women (5'11".). Throughout my life, there have always been some people who found me beautiful, but most don't. I've never really lacked finding sexual partners, except when I tried through dating sites (pics are not my friends.)
In all seriousness OP, there will always be a portion of the population who think any woman who doesn't look like a plastic, whorish porn actress isn't "feminine" enough.
The more important questions are:
What makes you comfortable?
What will make you look well tailored and together? If you're tall and angular, like Tilda Swinton, pants may look better than a skirt. Play with colors, necklines, fabric textures, etc.
If you're a jeans type of person, look at making sure your jeans are hemmed, fitting, tailored correctly, etc.
If you're not sure or still developing your own style, I would recommend simple and classic with a few splashes of color.
Worst thing to do is to try to adopt some "look" or put on too many layers if you're uncertain about it. Most magazine looks are for skinny 19 year old runway models, but look at that shit and think, hmm, what element of this can I adopt? A certain color? A shirt/pant/scarf/accessory? What are they going for here?
Best of luck, OP.
Yeah I feel funny that the avalanch of advice is pretty much "make an effort to look prettier - even though it's overwhelming and expensive!", but the thing is that you can't control how dumb strangers react to you, or what they say to you. All that's left is what you do about it - decide to not be affected (therapy) or better living through alchemy (makeup, wardrobe).
You could look well put together and gorgeous, but you'd be exchanging one set of problems for another, because life is a series of problems and trade off for us all.
And looking more feminine doesn't make those stupid people scatter - they will always be with us.
I think if you're strong and unusual looking, male or female, no matter where you are on the traditional gender scale: OWN it.
Develop a personal style that speaks to you, that makes you feel special and attractive. Maybe it means short hair and androgynous clothes. Maybe it's getting uber-femme. Maybe stone butch top.
I think the worst mistake most people make is timidity, in dressing so as not to stand out, not be seen. History is full of remarkable people who let their freak flag fly.
[quote]a group of [b]guys[/b] remarked
[quote]when this [b]guy[/b] said
[quote]another [b]guy[/b] remarked
Ah testosterone. Seems to leave one a catty, bitchy malcontent. And they talk about women being bitchy and catty...tsk tsk.
OP is more in need of self-confidence training and/or therapy to learn to deal with emotional trauma than she is in need of advice on how to beautify herself.
Confidence is attractive and sexy. Get that from the inside, girl, and then let the outside match up. Be a hot androgyne, and people -- men included -- will be attracted to you.
Cheryl, is that you?
No, R36. I am a very beautiful, heterosexual, woman - with a rather unfortunate curse that knows no cure. Besides that, I'd love to take OP shopping and give her a whole new look.
Just remember, with makeup, unless you're going out for a dressy evening, less is more.
I know it sounds drastic, but I have had a few close friends who have had plastic surgery to improve their appearance.
One, my closest friend, got a nose job. I told her she didn't need it, but she wanted it. She got the "bump" removed. I don't think she looks that different, but it made her happy, so it made me happy.
Another friend, a lesbian, recently had lap band surgery so she could lose some weight. She had struggled for years with weight. She has a partner who loves her, and I told her that she was beautiful no matter what, but she finally did it and she has lost 30 pounds and counting. She's happy.
Another friend, a straight woman, got a boob job. She didn't tell anybody, but everyone can tell. She's married, her boobs were fine, but now she's always showing them off. Of my three friends, she's the one that differs -- I think she is an insecure person who craves attention.
I myself had a hair transplant a few years back. I went to the best to get it done right. I think it looks good. If I hadn't gotten it, I'd be one of those guys with a shaved head, which looks good on some, but wouldn't look good on me.
My point is this: OP, do what you need to do to make yourself happy. It's healthier than sitting around complaining and wondering what to do.
Not sure if you're a lesbian, but there are plenty of us that love tall women with low voices :)
R39 speaks the truth. If you're not happy, do something about it. I had horrible teeth and was too embarrassed to smile, so I got them fixed. I'm happier as a result and seem to attract more people, romantically and platonically.
Hey R29, R40 is right. You're in luck if you're a lesbian. Many gay women do indeed go for the tall/deeper voice combo. Look at Angie Harmon -- she gets lots of lez adoration.
What R35 said. I'm female and I'm often mistaken for male, have been all my life.
But I've got confidence for days. And I'm the one doing the rejecting. I'm very attractive and man and woman want to be with me. I love my looks.
If you go vegan, OP, sometimes the "hard edges" we can't necessarily identify get smoothed out. Eating animals messes with your chemistry.
And try out a poncho. Lean into your issues, and they sometimes go away. Shave off your eyebrows if all else fails.
Sorry OP. but you looka like a man.
"Are you a lesbian, OP? Because your look would be very appealing to lots of lesbians."
LOL just like feminine f lamers appeal to gay men!!!
If I makes you feel any better I'd totally go for you. Some strange men, such as myself, are into that kinda thing. Heck, a woman in a suit turns me on.
OP, may I ask what your race/ethnicity is? Are you a taller woman?
Chances are that, especially if you're tall, you don't look one bit like a man, but men, even ones who don't have issues with women, will often want to categorize a taller woman as "mannish".. We can be hardwired that way.
I hope the dick who yelled that out in the computer lab has had a dose of karma by now.
I bet you're absolutely lovely OP, and I'm a snarky queen. If I can recognize that, so do many others.
"...people have remarked that I looked androgynous and in a very hurtful way..."
God, if you can't make what nature gave you work for you by now you need professional help.
And it bears repeating - this thread is useless without pictures.
The Supremes sounding their very worst. Here they are still a quartet and VERY rough, accompanied by screaming background vocals and a runaway flute. The whole thing sounds like a record that's not properly centered (remember when that use to happen?) making the needle slide.
Mary even said of this recording that in the lines "My Life (My life), oh my love (my love)" they all made funny faces during their recording because second alto Barbara Martin was so off-key they couldn't help laugh.
And Diane was dismal at the end of the song
They ALL came a long way.
Why would an adult female ask a board of gay men for advice on how to look more feminine? R52 has the only intelligent answer to the OP.
I've always looked very feminine, especially my "old-fashioned" facial features. However in my teens a hairstylist once cut my very fine hair way too short. Although my super conservative family was against it, I should have gotten my ears pierced and worn earrings, to limit the negative comments I always got from mean jerks.
IMHO it's a clear sign of mental illness for people to put down others for any reason. I now tell everyone who is rude that they must have been "raised by wolves."
Can you afford makeup (drug store is cheaper source,) jewelry, and feminine clothing? Do you know anyone with good fashion and style sense that can teach you how to look more feminine? Or do you want to follow current trends of androgyny, hello Mylie Cyrus&Lady Gaga?
Try placing a free ad on OK Cupid with pics showing how happy you look. Warmth, friendliness, and good grooming really is appealing. State that you naturally appear androgynous. I'm sure you'll get plenty of responses from men who respond favorably to that kind of look. Make sure you list your interests and hobbies, and that you're NOT looking for a jerk that just wants to get laid but a true friend who respects and appreciates you.
[quote]How would you deal with this?
Since it's clear that this upsets you and that gender non-conformity is not something you are willing to embrace, my take-away is that you lack self-awareness. You write a lengthy post about how people react to your appearance, but not once to you even hint at describing that appearance.
Why do people mistake you for a man?
Are you very tall? Not much you can do about that.
Are you "broad", stocky, muscular or overweight? You have more options if this is the case, but very few people can overhaul their body to such a degree that they present as a different gender.
Besides, big and tall does not always = male. Plenty of large women and small men navigate the world without anyone mistaking their gender.
So are you styled in a masculine way? Do you have short hair or other masculine features? Do you have facial hair? Or excessive body hair? Do you wear makeup?
What kinds of clothes do you wear? Does your silhouette resemble an hourglass or a monolith?
Do you have a waist? Do you have a bosom? Can anyone locate these things on your fully clothed body just by pointing to them?
Why do you look like a man from the front and a woman from behind? (This confuses me the most).
Finally, one last one, and it's cruel but I have to ask: how would you describe your face and its features? Do you have a large nose, a protruding brow and a lantern jaw? Because if so, you either need to get very good at applying makeup or you need to see a surgeon.
And why haven't you responded at all in this thread?
That's a man!
OP have you tried makeup?
Have you tried not walking like you just got off a horse?
[quote]And why haven't you responded at all in this thread?
Because OP is obviously a troll.
Remember the gay male weirdo we had who used to bitch in endless threads about his boyfriend, and then he started a troll thread about the zit on his labia? I'd bet it's him.