If you’ve ever tried online dating or found yourself in a club, wondering whether a drunk dancer eyeing you up may look half-decent when sober, you’ve long accepted you’re likely not going to have Cinderella’s ever after – a handsome, wealthy, sweet saviour. Something has to give and society will tell you that’s appearance. The winning ticket to love is kindness, honesty and commitment. But dating someone you’re not physically attracted to, really?
Emotionally attracted but not physically
I’ve been on dates before where I have not felt physical attraction. The guys were funny, kind, sometimes generically good-looking. Some seemed to fit my ideals on paper; I couldn’t understand why we had no chemistry. One date in particular, didn’t fit my usual date aesthetics. I agreed to meet because he came across interesting. There wasn’t really anything to dislike, and I didn’t want to turn him down purely due to his appearance.
Needless to say, by the end of date two, I knew I had no sexual desire and without that, not a lot of excitement to continue dating. When you’re single and searching for a relationship, you’re supposed to be open, you’re meant to move past daydream expectations and not ask for too much. As a teenager, my list of wants far eclipsed the short demands I request today. Attraction is a big issue – are you shallow for turning down people you consider “ugly”, or is looks secretly as important as life goals and family beliefs?
On my post: Why Do People Accept Bad Sex, I published results from research implying more women than men are unhappy in bed. I read through advice columns where females wanted reassurance that their partner’s low sex drive didn’t outweigh their incredible qualities – the columnists always responded (in short) “no, sex matters.” Many feel the same about looks, they’re willing to overlook when an individual is wonderful internally.
The issue is not physique per se, it’s attraction
I don’t believe it’s shallow to disregard someone for not being attractive enough. It’s not so much about wanting a “hot” date, it’s about physical attraction placing equally against emotional. Insider listed a number of reasons people are biologically drawn to one another. The website mentions smell, hormones, diet and voice as factors. When I wrote about human sexual attraction to accents, I found studies linking our perception of cultural associations to how pleasing we find a person’s voice. For instance, believing a Frenchman sounds sexy as France has portrayals of beauty and passion.
According to Relationship Rules, psychology reveals physical attraction may actually be more crucial than attributes like intelligence and humour. The website explains why, with reasons such as sex and affection declining without physical attraction. Part of the fun in having a significant other, is the butterflies you get when glancing in their eyes and getting turned on just by what they’re wearing.
I guess being physically attracted to someone is similar to possessing chemistry. If this great component is missing, you’re likely in a situation resembling a friendship. When you’re seeking a woman or man to commit to, it’s not so much about how their looks compare to Ryan Gosling or Idris Elba, it’s whether you find their image appealing enough to feel lust and a sexual connection.
What to do if you stop feeling physically attracted
If you’re in a relationship and the sexual longing has diminished, Health.com advises to question whether you’ve completely lost desire for everyone or just for your partner. If it’s everyone, it could possibly be a health issue. Otherwise, they recommend communicating and explaining to your partner how better to turn you on.
On Deeperdatingpodcast.com, an article says “Attraction can grow”. The piece explains, if you initially don’t find a person attractive, yet there’s no warning signs flashing, consider going on more dates. Overtime, your attraction either blossoms or wilts. At the start of my last relationship, I didn’t initially find my ex handsome. During our third date, I was in the middle of conversation when something clicked and then everything about him became striking. It was as though I was talking to someone new, despite that he didn’t alter himself from our first two dates.
If you’ve stopped feeling physically attracted, the question on what to do depends on how it’s affecting your partnership. Has your partner changed, has life circumstances edited your time spent together? Have you met someone new, who has made you revaluate your romantic “type”? Since piecing these blog posts on Love and Dating together, I’ve learnt how paramount it is to have physical desire in relationships. Notions on shallowness and over aiming – wanting an unrealistic vision, has made me second-guess my past dates who beyond appearance, fit a great criterion. But, without physical attraction, what good does the rest offer?