Recently I wrote about how and why aging ramps up for us moms after childbirth and it got me wondering, what if you’re a mom who stays beautiful, who without trying stays looking somewhere in the twenty-five years old hot zone? My first thought was “it’s greener on the other side.” It must be really enjoyable not having to struggle with your looks, right? Well, I put on my philosopher’s hat and started to dig deep. I found in my research that in fact it’s pretty lonely being beautiful.

Think about it; let’s say you as a beautiful mom make some moms feel inferior, jealous, threatened. You might have to work harder to make friends because everyone thinks you’ve got it all going on in your life, like you’re so in demand. This all creates a force field of sorts keeping you lonely unless you put in a lot of effort to maintain relationships. You need to show that you’re not perfect, you need to prove that you won’t steal someone’s husband or that you don’t have a big ego, etc. This looking perfect or steps above in the looks department in the end doesn’t sound as enjoyable as I once believed.

And guess what, I’m not making this up. Did you know there is such a thing as a fear of beautiful women? It’s called caligynaephobia. There are countless phrases and sayings that make beauty out to be this painful thing you have to suffer for, like ‘pain is beauty’ or ‘the beautiful and the damned.’ And this article poses this whole argument that with beauty comes loneliness. Believe it or not it’s not a rare idea. “The prettiest girls are usually the loneliest” comes from a Two and a Half Men episode in which Charlie explains to Alan how the prettiest girls are usually the loneliest because guys are afraid to talk to them. The more common idea in culture is that attractive people come by friends and all things easily. But the opposite is another side of culture that we don’t hear enough about. It’s been written about not as extensively as other phenomena, but enough to prove that there is in fact a downside to being beautiful.

Men might fear rejection, but for women there is either fear or self-loathing that manifests in others by either being mean or distant to said beautiful mom. Tessah Schoenrock writes in What It’s Like To Be A Pretty Girl “You won’t have many girlfriends; that much should be obvious.” For a mom trying to make mom friends it must be hard to overcome the cruelty or avoidance of other moms, your own gender group denying you support you might really need or making you feel like there’s something wrong with you.

No wonder some people believe that “the prettier a girl is, the more nuts she is” (from the movie Blue Valentine). Have you ever found attractive people to act odd around people? I notice it with some, and most often than not it’s probably from not wanting to make a mistake so they act shy, nervous, or super reserved around new people. And in turn they keep themselves in the force field bubble more in doing so, because people will interpret their behavior as not interested in them or self-involved.

After reading this you might now see how it can be quite a catch-22 being a beautiful or attractive mom. Maybe I’ve opened your eyes about this often dismissed phenomena, or maybe this whole article hits home for you because you are a suffering beauty. So often we get stuck in a bubble regardless of how we look because we’re so focused on taking care of our families that we forget to take care of one of the most important needs we have as human beings: connection.

So if you’re a beautiful mom or not, remain open to making friends, keep an open mind, and keep trying to forge connections with other moms. No one knows what the the person is struggling with, but we can make it easier on each other if we remember we’re all struggling in some way. We’re all moms, so let’s try to focus less on what makes us different from each other and instead focus on the support we can give each other.

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