Differences in attractiveness of children? - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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Old 03-12-2010, 01:34 AM
 
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Cultivating a positive "everyone is beautiful" body image ethos is good for everyone in the family, whether or not they conform to society's standards of "prettiness".

My son is quite handsome but has something of a... challenged personality... he has special needs that make him difficult. He's not sweet and cute, to say the least. If any stranger is commenting it's an under-the-breath comment about being spoiled or something - he screams if he doesn't get his way, he is not friendly, he shouts... he's "that kid". What can I say, I love him to death but if he wasn't my own son, I'm not sure I'd want to spend much time with him. I'm sorry if that is a mean thing to say but I'm trying to see it from a stranger's perspective. He's not pleasant (most of the time; sometimes he can be wonderful, but it all depends).

My daughter is, well... she hasn't quite made it out of the ugly duckling phase. She has potential - lovely eyes - but she still only has this little mini-Afro of baby fuzz mixed in with bald spots, she's got about three chins including a masculine cleft, a huge pot belly she's always playing with (her belly button is her lovely or something)... She is definitely not a huge looker. BUT. She gets so many positive comments though from strangers because she is ADORABLE. She talks up a storm in a really adorable little voice, makes cute comments, is friendly, and has a personality like no other. Very smart little thing.

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Old 03-12-2010, 01:35 AM
 
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But, perhaps the crux of your question is how it feels to be bringing a second child into your family? I think we all have moments of wondering what it will be like, how the siblings will impact each other, do we have enough energy, love, etc. When our first seems so perfect, and we're so in love, it's hard sometimes to imagine that it will all be fine with the second. It will be, but it's normal to wonder.

ITA with that insight.

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Old 03-12-2010, 08:12 PM
 
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When our first seems so perfect, and we're so in love, it's hard sometimes to imagine that it will all be fine with the second. It will be, but it's normal to wonder.
This makes a lot of sense to me. Since your son's looks are something you value about him that you feel make him special, you wonder might be wondering what will make your new baby special and not be clear on all the other things beside looks that make a child wonderful.

As far as the comments of others, since you are the mommy you have a lot more control than you realize. One of my children is gifted and one has special needs, and I've talked to my family about the things they say. Both of my kids know they are loved and valued for exactly who they are even though they are VERY different people.

I believe our kids are best off when we see them for who they truly are -- their spirit or soul or highest self (whatever words work for you). I think they have the greatest chance for happiness when we see our role as helping them become who they truly are, the best versions of themselves. Exactly how beautiful or exactly how smart are just details.

but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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Old 03-12-2010, 08:29 PM
 
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I don't think you'll have a problem, honestly, because they're going to comment on your daughter because she's a girl. My boys are both classically beautiful (big round blue eyes, platinum blonde hair, perfect round features), and -- don't tell her I said this -- my daughter is a very pretty little girl but more plain/less oustanding than my boys in looks. Plus my boys are both very outgoing & outwardly happy, and my daughter is more introspective and quiet (and has a tendency to just stare at people blankly when they talk to her, lol). But she gets three times the compliments the boys do, and I think it's just because she's a girl, so therefore wears cute, girly clothes & has long, pretty hair. People tend to compliment/comment on girl babies/kids more in general, I think, or at least in my experience they have.
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Old 03-12-2010, 08:31 PM
 
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Oh, and the chances of you having one stunning kid & one truly UGLY kid are pretty low, I would think. I mean, I'm sure it happens, but I would think it would be rare.
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Old 03-12-2010, 09:57 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for all of the replies.

As a former ugly duckling- I know what it can be like to be teased and poked fun of. It hurts. So I'm sensitive when I see family/friends/strangers make a fuss over one child while the other is just ignored.

As for modeling to be quite honest it's been a great experience so far. The agency we're with operates very differently from the industry norm...which is why we're with them. Our experience has been 100% positive so far. If that changes, we'll stop. Frankly, we probably won't have the time when #2 arrives anyway so we'll have to stop.
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Old 03-13-2010, 12:40 AM
 
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I'm a former ugly duckling too, and have two wonderful and beautiful boys.
I do remember feeling that fear when I was pregnant with #2 , like, I hope my next baby is as beautiful as the first one....in fact, it invaded my dreams and I remember having a dream about giving birth to a two headed puppy.


Then I actually had my second son and he is perfect. Also, as beautiful as his big brother is, it is my second born that gets all the " Aww Look at those eyes! He'll be a lady killer!" comments from everyone. My oldest son doesnt seem to care about his little brother's lady killer-ness though..he seems confidant in himself. Maybe when they are teenagers there will be some competition, but I almost expect that. lol


What I'm trying to say is.. they will both be beautiful, in their own way.

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Old 03-13-2010, 01:27 AM
 
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As a former ugly duckling- I know what it can be like to be teased and poked fun of. It hurts. So I'm sensitive when I see family/friends/strangers make a fuss over one child while the other is just ignored.
you don't have any control over strangers -- but you do over your friends and family.

but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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Old 03-13-2010, 12:37 PM
 
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No, I get that. I don't get someone who wants to de-emphasize the importance of physical attractiveness having their kid in modeling....
That was my first thought, too. If you're focusing so much attn on your son's physical appearance, how can you not expect that others will do so, also?

I have a good friend whose first daughter was a beautiful baby-- petite features, lovely color, etc. They worried that there would be comparisons after their second daughter was born. Sure enough, as an infant, there was no comparison-- the second daughter was a very average looking newborn.... but now, two years later, the younger baby is clearly the more striking and pretty child, and she probably will be for their whole lives.

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Old 03-13-2010, 05:09 PM
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I agree with the posters who say get the kid out of modeling.

My sister and I are opposite ends of the spectrum. I was the "smart one" and she was the "pretty one". I was never ever told I was beautiful as a child. In fact, my mother cut my hair short and chose my clothes for me.

My sister ended up with the worse body image. Although I hate that both of us grew into our parent-intended roles quite well, I think she would have benefitted from my mom not making so many comments about her body. And she always felt like she was in my shadow academically.

Tell both your kids that they're beautiful. Tell strangers too.
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Old 03-14-2010, 03:00 PM
 
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Here's my fear: if she's not as beautiful as her brother, how will this affect her?
As long as she is loved for who she is I doubt she will have a problem with her looks. Not unless she is just born an insecure child. The biggest issue IMO is placing so much emphasis on somebody being beautiful just because they are capable of modeling and making money. There are many beautiful people who do not model. Stop placing so much emphasis on outside beauty.

One of your children models and has been modeling for a while. IMO, all children will do different things in life. My oldest plays guitar and likes art. My next oldest likes music in a different way and doesn't prefer to play instruments but is more in to dance and gymnastics. I guess the third one will have her own things too. They all have different dispositions as well. Try not to worry. It will be fine.

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Old 03-14-2010, 10:41 PM
 
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Been there, done that, bought the ill-fitting T-shirt which looked better on my sister.

I'm one of six girls, and we're of varying levels of attractiveness... but my oldest sister was and is gorgeous. People commented All. The. Time. At Uni, where I ended up doing almost the same degree she'd done two years previously, lecturers would say "Oh, you're ---'s sister? I had no idea! You don't look anything alike! She's so pretty!" Uh, thanks.

I think I was hyper-aware of any favouritism my parents showed because of the comments of strangers. They probably didn't say much about it, but I felt like they did, you know? I also had issues with my next oldest sister, who was very skinny. Looking back she was scarily, skeletally skinny and my parents were always worried about her and trying to fatten her up. But at the time I was ashamed whenever people would comment on her weight, because I felt it was a reflection on mine. I tried to eat less so I'd be as skinny as her, and I hated having underwear in a bigger size than hers (of all the things to obsess over!). The funny thing was, I was NOT a chubby kid. I just had this idea in my head that being "fatter" than your older sister was the worst thing that could possibly happen.

To be honest, I'm not sure how they could have handled it differently. It wasn't their fault my sister was prettier than me; it wasn't their fault strangers commented; it wasn't really their fault that if I overheard them saying "--- is so pretty" I took it like a knife to the heart, because that wasn't a particularly rational response of mine and who'd have predicted it? So sadly, I don't have any solution to your worries. Life isn't fair. If your daughter does turn out homely people will notice, and they will make stupid or hurtful comments. And whether or not she's affected by it will be largely outside your control, because it depends on her personality as much as anything. It sucks, but that's the way life is. (And to further be a downer, she may not end up gorgeous after the "awkward phase" either. Not everyone does. I look better at 23 than 13 because I'm somewhat cluier about hair and clothes, but no quantity of cheekbones I might magically acquire in my 30s will turn me into model material. I'd need some radical facial restructuring that age doesn't tend to impart! I think the whole "If you're ugly as a child you'll be a pretty adult thing" can be really heartbreaking for those who stay plain.)

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Old 03-14-2010, 11:01 PM
 
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I'm not sure where to put this so mods you can move if you have to.

I'm having a little anxiety over something that might never be an issue, but I'm worried nonetheless. I'm also going to try to word this properly so bear with me.

DS is 2.5 and he's reallly over the top beautiful. He models and books a ton of jobs and already has a nice hunk of change saved up for himself. Everywhere he goes people comment on his looks and to top it off, he's also a very kind sweet agreeable child. We got lucky I guess.

Well I'm pregnant with a daughter and she's due in a few months.

Here's my fear: if she's not as beautiful as her brother, how will this affect her? And here's the reason for my fears...I've seen it. I've seen families fuss and fuss over the "beautiful" kid and never give the same attention to the other one. Or I"ve seen strangers come up and comment and fuss over the beautiful one and not even cast a glance at the other child. It hurts the other one SO CLEARLY and yet nobody notices. (FYI-I'm more concerned about extended family and friends and starngers, not us...we'll love them both and fuss over them equally of course, ) Heck, DH's own family does it to his neice. One of DH's neices is stop-traffic beautiful. The other neice is perfectly lovely, but yes, to be honest her sister is simply stunning. EVERYONE talks openly about how beautiful neice #2 is IN FRONT OF #1. It's been going on as long as I've known DH- 10 years. I can think of at least 4 other families throughout my lifetime that had the same thing going on.

Personally, I don't like to focus on looks. I've struggled in the past with ED's and looks are not something I want either child to think much of. (The modeling will come to a stop when DS is old enough to understand what it can mean socially if you know what I mean, right now all he thinks is YAY we get to go to the city and take pictures)

So I guess I'm looking for advice. How do I handle it if there is a difference in my two children? How to I encourage others not to make comments or draw distinctions. If strangers do, how do I handle it? Has anyone BTDT?

Thanks and sorry this is so long and all over the place...

I say cross that bridge when you come to it. I had the same worries, although we didn't model dd#1, EVERYONE said we should. I really wished for dd#2 to be as beautiful as dd#1 and as bright and athletic, too, so they could be on equal footing. I didn't feel they needed to be the same but my father's family was really bad with one of my aunts being drop-dead gorgeous and the other not. Happily my kids have different personalities, but are similar enough in these areas that people won't be compelled to make comments.

So, anyway, wait and see how things turn out and save your worrying if you can. In the end you'll do as much as you can to show them both how loved they are and your second child will find her niche.
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Old 03-15-2010, 06:03 PM
 
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People have been telling me that I should put my daughter into modeling since she was three days old. (She's only 21 months old.) She is a breathtakingly gorgeous child and she is charismatic. I didn't put her in modeling because I assume (by looking around at my family and my husband's family) that she is going to spend a fair bit of her life chunky. I am not going to put her anywhere near the modeling world so they can mess with her head.

That said! I totally understand fears about second kid not being as beautiful. I'm worried about that too. My daughter is ridiculously verbal (she knows almost two thousand words) and she is physically advanced. How can another kid compare to that? I keep mentally stepping on myself because second kid will be a whole different person and comparing them will be totally messed up.

I confess I am praying for a boy because in my experience opposite gendered children are compared less. I need to just get a boot to the head so I can get over myself.

My advice may not be appropriate for you. That's ok. You are just fine how you are and I am the right kind of me.

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Old 03-16-2010, 12:58 PM
 
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If you don't focus on your children's looks, neither will they. Modeling focuses on a person's looks (personality counts too), so if you don't want your DS focused on his looks take him out of modeling.
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Old 03-16-2010, 01:12 PM
 
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Originally Posted by InMediasRes View Post

Tell both your kids that they're beautiful. Tell strangers too.


My dad always told all of us (me and my 2 brothers) that we were all good looking. I think we're pretty average actually, but none of us have every had self esteem issues.
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Old 03-18-2010, 02:57 AM
 
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My Dd has a classic beautiful look, Blond hair crystal blue eyes. she is proportioned nicely, lean and fit but...
Her brother has red hair. He gets noticed everywhere and everyone asks about his hair. Honestly I have no idea what the great red head obsession is b/c I see them everywhere but you'd think he had a head full of spun gold for all the comments we get.
It does hurt Dd and I feel badly for her and 2nd look comment, "Oh and you are cute, too" feels terrible to her also.
We do acknowledge the unfairness of it and I once asked DD what she wishes people would notice about her and she said her eyes.
So when people comment on his hair I say something like, "I know. I'm so lucky, one with red hair and one with blue eyes."
Once at church DD had her hair in braids and the man sitting next to us commented on how beautiful her hair was. She was absolutely glowing and I almost started to cry. After dropping the kids at Sunday school I told him how he made her day b/c no one ever notices her hair.

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Old 03-19-2010, 04:28 PM
 
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Personally, I don't like to focus on looks.
Then why is your son modeling? And why are you concerned about your unborn dd's "beauty"? Someone that doesn't like to focus on looks, doesn't/shouldn't focus on looks, right?


ETA: When people comment on your son's attractiveness, you can thank them but make sure you also praise one of his other attributes (in front of him and the other person). And if your dd isn't what you/others consider attractive...make sure you give her praise while your son is receiving his.

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Old 03-19-2010, 05:44 PM
 
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I saw my two younger sisters go through this. (I was much older - by ten years, so it never really affected me)

My youngest sister has blonde ringlets, huge blue eyes, the ten mile lashes, little bow lips, etc. Absolutely gorgeous, especially as a toddler. My second youngest sister was a cutie-pie; long dark hair, big brown eyes - but wasn't 'stunning' the way the youngest was.

People commented constantly, and my mother would graciously accept the compliment - and then make a point of talking about the other sister. How beautiful she was, and what an amazing big sister she was, etc. To try and get people to see it was important to balance it out.

For my two - the comparison is in behavior, as they're identical in looks, but five years apart in age. My seven year old is (and has always) been a sweet, agreeable, well behaved, pleasant, funny, etc. etc. child.

My two year old was born screaming and kicking, and hasn't stopped since. She really is hell on wheels! So I find people constantly comment on how sweet and gracious my older dd is, and are at a loss of words to describe my younger dd. They usually stare in horror because she's spitting at them or trying to kick them.

Yeah. So. I feel you. Just don't be afraid to speak up and point out qualities they both have, that are not centered on looks.

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Old 03-21-2010, 01:34 PM
 
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Originally Posted by sunnmama View Post
Obviously, we can only control what we can control.

We can't control what others say and do, but we can control how we respond. You can respond to comments with something that includes both your children, like "Thank you. Our children are beautiful inside and out!".

If you celebrate each child for who they are, they will have a good chance of growing up feeling good about who they are. Don't worry about the differences, and don't borrow trouble

Signed: Late Bloomer
Perfectly said.
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