Beauty can be a heavy burden. Even maintenance alone can feel like a full-time job. So when it’s gone, it’s not the tragedy you might expect.
“It’s a relief that over the last 20 years I haven’t had the pressure to be beautiful,” Greta Scacchi, 62, an Italian-Australian actress, said last week.
In our culture, fairy tales (and movies too) have shown, many times, the beauty of finding true love.
problem? As with a string of recent celebrity breakups, we’ve been sold lies.
Take the news that model Emily Ratajkowski is divorcing her husband, filmmaker Sebastian Bear-McClard, based on his “Serial Cheetah” status.
Billionaire Kim Kardashian recently split from her new partner, Saturday Night Live comedian Pete Davidson. And Aquaman’s Jason Momoa and his stunning actress wife, Lisa Bonet, have split after 17 years together.
None of these relationship breakdowns amaze me.
Beauty, even when combined with fame, talent and immense wealth, is clearly not enough to sustain love.
In fact, it can even be said that, far from attracting true love, true feminine beauty diverts it, blinding the viewer to a woman’s true worth.
I know something of this pain And indeed, a surprising and welcome flipside when your looks fade.
At 18, I was considered beautiful enough to be approached on the street by scouts from major modeling agencies.
When I was standing at the bus stop in plain summer dress without washing my hair, a scout got out of the car. i was confused.
Who is this slim, elegant blonde and what does she want from me?
Handing me the card, she said she wanted me in the book. I stuttered that I was overweight and had the wrong face to model. She replied that it was easy for her to lose weight and in fact I had just the right face.
That may or may not be true, but I certainly lacked confidence, so the moment Kate Moss spotted me at the airport became a dinner party anecdote.
When I was a child, my mother always told me that my mouth was vulgar and that I was too heavy and strong to have a happy marriage. I may have been smart, but my best friend, who was tall and slender, with green eyes and a button nose, was a beauty.
Of course I adored her. oh so nice! Her boy half was secretly in love with her, during which time my nickname was “The Nose Who Always Knows.”
I accepted what I understood as my mediocrity, and thought there was no point in desiring what I never had: a willowy frame, a symmetrical face. Instead, I focused on friendships and schoolwork.
But in my late teens, I kind of went through a transformation. I slimmed down, my face got bigger, and my nose seemed relatively proportionate.
This was not my imagination. A former school friend bumped into me and asked if I had ever had a nose job (I hadn’t). rice field. I had no idea why the men started crowding around me. At 18, I fell in love with a band boy in the only way only her teens could.
I still marvel at his flawless beauty in pictures, but at the time I was amazed he fell in love with the ugly me.
Feeling unworthy of kindness, I ended the relationship. Looking back now, she feels sorry for her old self.
My love life went downhill rapidly. With a few exceptions — Hewasone — the men I was with when I was younger treated me badly. Some were surprisingly cruel, some were mean, and some were sneaking up on me. I was accused of a problem I have never experienced before. One person verbally abused me about other men’s reactions — reactions I had no control over.
At the time, my partner’s behavior hurt and embarrassed me. I didn’t understand the effect my looks had on men or how much they wanted me. No one told me that at the time.
Australian model and entrepreneur Elle Macpherson told me the same thing in an interview. why? To do so would have been the same as praising the water for being wet.
Eventually, it became easier for me to avoid relationships altogether. For years I preferred to focus on friendships and work.
I was on my own while my girlfriend enjoyed a committed relationship. Not all of the girlfriends surveyed were conventionally beautiful, and I had no idea that this would allow me to not only enjoy it safely, but also be loved for who I am. I envied them without understanding why it seems so easy for them to fall in love and be happy.
Looking back, I think it was the kind of men they were also attracted to — less status-oriented, less alpha, less anxious.
Model Jerry Hall, who recently filed for divorce from billionaire Rupert Murdoch, was the most beautiful woman I’d ever met. Even she had to swallow tears when she mentioned supermodel Carla Bruni, who was rumored to be in a relationship with.
I remember another friend who went on a yacht with Harland Jagger and observed how “disrespectful” Jagger was to her.
But it wasn’t just limited to models.The amazingly nice receptionist in her early twenties forgot the magazine I worked for.And was very frightened of her on the date itself .
Life never seemed like a fairy tale. The more beautiful a woman was, the worse she was treated. I began to notice that the psyche of some men was strangely twisted in regards to female beauty — on the one hand they coveted it as a symbol of their status, on the other hand other men simply couldn’t handle the thought of wanting their woman, and the prospect of her escape as a result, no matter how improbable.
When the roles are reversed women are better prepared to deal with it. Many rationalize that a woman will turn a blind eye to a man’s indiscretion as long as he is financially taken care of.
But the male ego feels devastatingly threatened even by the possibility of betrayal. .
I even asked my boyfriend (the guy I had a crush on) why he was so scary to me. To be honest, he was vulgar at times.
What did I do to deserve such emotional manipulation, such hostility? He actually laughed at me.
“Be mean and be zealous,” he replied silly. Still, this was really what he had in mind.It was his way of removing my power. After all, a beautiful woman has so many options, and a certain kind of man thinks that blinding her is the best bet. Eventually, I fell in love again — madly in love — and this time got married.
My daughter Bethesda is now 16, and my dream of a permanent marriage was dashed when we divorced eight years ago. I have settled into single life. Frankly, would any man be interested in a single mom whose face and body had better days?
Unfiltered photos drove reality home. This sorrow soon passed away.
My life has been so frantic with motherhood, work, and friends that, like Greta Scacchi, beauty ideals eventually seem redundant. After re-entering the world of kei, I was surprised to see a crowd of men. One dating app ad alone got her over 1,000 replies within 48 hours (yes, my actual age was 52 at the time). , I was unavailable to hook up).
For the most part, the dates I’ve had have been kind, friendly, funny, and human.
Gone are the terrible sexual attacks I experienced when I was younger. This wasn’t just because most of the men I dated were older. The young people were equally charming and sweet.
Of course there were disasters and weirdos, but there was also plenty of mild fun. A friend of mine encouraged me to compromise and settle down with one of these lovely men. I know you thought I was mad—who was it that I claimed passion and demanded romance because I was out of shape?
I would end up alone!Ouch, I told them I want John Lennon on Yoko Ono, not the Wolf of Wall Street to make me a lunch lady
My goal was love and I refused to settle for anything less than a pairing based on economic or social status. It has been changed. In his fifties, he’s like a very big puppy, loving, endlessly enthusiastic, and very happy. we don’t stop talking
Whether it’s a box of fudge from Fortnum & Mason, black cherries or a foot massage, he always surprises me with his thoughtful gestures.
We are dizzy together, ridiculous. He tells me he feels like a teenager in love.
Recently, I held my head in his lap on a park bench in Richmond under a full moon and laughed as he told me stories of his life. I plan to explore Iceland.
..I think this relationship and the many dates that preceded it were nothing like the tumultuous connections of my youth.
Men no longer worry that I will be swept away by a sneaky intruder.
The threat is gone. Rather than acting as a beautiful mask, my 56-year-old face allows my personality to shine through.
Antonella Gambotto-Burke: Why being beautiful can be a burden to find true love
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