In my seventeen years of always being among the tallest in the room, having reached a full 5 feet 11 inches (11 and a half, but I ignore that half) at the age of fifteen, I’ve gotten pretty good at living in this world despite the minor issues that arise when you’re an amazon. Some of which include…
1. The Average Sized Person vs. Hugs
Hugging is a fantastic thing; I think we can all agree. There’s nothing quite like pulling a good friend in for a long embrace. When you’re tall, though, hugs can get complicated. Any normal human’s head is going to end nestled right in your boobs, suddenly making a comforting action very uncomfortable.
2. Finding Potential Suitors
It is a cultural norm for men to be taller than their mates. Aesthetically, it just looks better. Being a tree makes it mighty hard to find a man taller than you. Height is often also seen as intimidating, which means that even the sweetest soul looks a tad tough in a big body. Plus, girls short and tall alike want men with some height, which means more competition for a smaller range of men.
3. The Lack of Nickname
As a tall woman, you will never be called “shrimp”. You will never be “tiny” or “peanut” or “minnie” or “sweetie” or anything else cute and endearing. There are no polite nicknames for tall people (if you find one, please let me know), so you will never ever have an adorable little moniker for friends and family to use.
4. No, I do not play volleyball
Because you are tall, everyone assumes you are an athlete. Toss (Hit? Bump? Spike?) a volleyball to me, and I swear it will just hit me in the face. Hand-eye coordination does not necessarily come with height.
5. You must be twenty
It’s Halloween and you’re twelve, trick-or-treating with your friends alone for the first time. You walk up to an elderly lady’s door. She looks you up and down, and then croaks, “Aren’t you a little old for this stuff? I need to save my candy for the real kids, sorry.” Seriously, that is one of my most traumatic memories. Everyone assumed I was twenty when I was twelve. Being tall can really mess up a childhood.
6. Walking at pace
I’m out with my friends, just strolling along, and then all of a sudden my friends are gone. I turn around and they’re a block behind me. Why am I only friends with tiny people?
7. You wonder why I hate going to clubs?
Everyone is shorter than me. All my friends are down at my boob-level, dancing, making faces at each other, having fun together. But I’m up here, trying not to get in anyone’s way, awkwardly shifting from side to side. Please stop bumping into my boobs. Please.
OKAY PEOPLE HIDING BEHIND ME DOES NOT PROTECT YOU FROM THE WIND/SUN/EX-BOYFRIEND’S GAZE. I am bigger, for sure, but I really don’t provide that much protection against anything. Sorry.
Being tall definitely has its upsides, though. I’ve never had a problem commanding attention; I’ve never had pants that were too long. People easily compare my height to that of models and my legs are looong. I’ve never had to wear painful high-heels. I’m only seventeen and yet I’m still offered the wine list at restaurants. I’ve never had to strain my neck at concerts.
I guess being tall really isn’t all that bad.
You can read more from Emily Joseph here.
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