When it comes to dating after divorce, something that bugs me immensely (and both men and women are guilty of it) are that people think looks are the most important thing. Do looks matter more than personality? To some, yes. Do looks matter more than someone being a good, loyal, committed partner? To some, yes. Do looks matter more than liking and trusting the person? To some, yes. Do looks matter more than having a lot in common and having fun together? To some, yes. How sad is that?
Before I get into why I feel this way, I want to clarify something. I’m not saying that physical beauty isn’t important and that you should continue dating someone you are not attracted to. I’m not saying that at all. Physical attraction is definitely important. But when a person’s physical beauty becomes the number one criteria in dating after divorce, I have an issue with that.
Here are three stories about men and women whose behavior shows that when it comes to dating after divorce, some people will settle for nothing less than George Clooney or Cindy Crawford!
1. The Fix Up That Never Happened.
A friend of mine, “Mary” asked her girlfriend, “Jeanne” if she’d be interested in being set up on a blind date with a guy friend of hers. Jeanne asked who the guy was, and could she have his last name so she could look him up on facebook. Mary said, “I’m not sure if he’s on there, but who cares? Just trust me. You’ll like him.” Jeanne asked Mary about 10 times if he was good looking and Mary responded yes. Jeanne didn’t ask any other questions about the guy. Jeanne ended up finding him on facebook and LinkedIn herself, and didn’t care for his photos. She declined the fix up offer.
2. The facebook scanner.
A guy named “Bert” happened to see a photo I posted. He inquired about an attractive women who is in it. I told him she was married. I then figured that since he was asking about someone, he must be single and interested in dating. So, I suggested he look up another friend of mine. He did, and said, “No thanks, she looks a little old for me.”
3. The unemployed, fat guy who thinks he’s Bradley Cooper.
While out at a bar with a girlfriend, I once met this guy named “Joe” through another divorced guy I knew named “Brian”. They joined us for a drink. I’m not trying to be a biatch, I swear, (I’m just trying to make a point) but Brian was overweight, not particularly attractive, and in his 50’s.
Brian ended up asking me if I knew any single girls. “Of course I do!” I exclaimed. He asked if I would set him up and I thought of a couple girls who might like him (he was actually pretty likable, great sense of humor). Right away, he was asking all about their looks, and absolutely nothing else. Here are two more things about Brian: He is unemployed and living on his friend’s couch. Do looks matter more than personality? In Brian’s case, yes. My jaw was seriously on the ground, because I could not believe how superficial he was.
Here are 3 reasons why if you make physical beauty your number one criteria in dating after divorce, you are missing out:
1. You might hit it off on another level with someone who you don’t find attractive, meaning personality wise, or professionally, and he or she could end up being a good friend or good business contact. He/she might add value or joy or something else you might appreciate.
2. The person you meet might end up introducing you to other people, and you might find love that way. In fact, the person could end up introducing you to the love of your life.
3. You might see something in that person’s personality, and halfway through dinner, become immensely attracted to him or her (that actually happened to me once.)
So, do looks matter more than personality?
Here’s what I want to say to men and women who make looks their number one criteria in dating after divorce. CHANGE YOUR BEHAVIOR, be more open minded. You will be happier and your life will be richer if you embrace dating in a way that goes beyond looks.
Growing up, my dad always used to tell me, “Looks lasts for 2 weeks.” His credibility isn’t the best, since he is married to my mom, who is absolutely beautiful (always has been.) But, he is right. Think about it. You can be immensely physically attracted to someone, and he or she act in ways that makes you cringe at the thought of physical intimacy. On the flip side, you could go out with someone and say, “There’s no way I’d kiss this person,” and over time, get to know the inner beauty and fall madly in love.
Physical attraction is important, but it’s far from everything. Physical attraction is where it starts. In other words, it’s hard to give someone a chance when you are not attracted physically. But if you are willing to dig a little deeper–by talking to the person without ruling him/her out in the first five minutes, if you are willing to stop yourself from jumping right to “Could I sleep with this guy?” in the first couple minutes of meeting him, I think you will be pleasantly surprised.
The thing about physical attraction is, as the years go by, if you are truly in love with someone, regardless of the person’s looks, you start to see that person from the inside out. You are looking directly into their soul.
It’s kind of like you have beer goggles on all the time!
I’m not saying that a person should stop taking care of themselves physically, and that if they gain 50 pounds that’s OK. That’s not OK, mainly because that’s not healthy. I’ll leave you with this. If you have these 10 things in your relationship, I think it’s impossible not to be physically attracted to this person, no matter what he/she looks like:
6. Inspiration (the person inspires you.)
7. Adoration (the person makes you feel loved.)
These are the things that foster attraction. In other words, the person can be a Brad Pitt double, but if that’s all he’s bringing to the table, you won’t be dating him that long.
Like this article? Check out, “9 Signs of a Healthy Romantic Relationship.”