Is It Okay for Women to Ask About a Man’s Height on Tinder and Other Dating Apps? [Opinion]

Are Women Allowed to Have Height Preferences?

Woman is hugging taller man, supposedly happy couple. Illustrates typical preferences.

If we phrase the question as such, most people would answer “Yes”, without having to give it too much thought. Or at least, that’s what I would hope. Having a preference for certain physical attributes is everyone’s right, and it’s also completely normal.

So, why am I asking this question? I am asking because while this may not be a controversial question in general, women preferring taller men has been a sort of hot button issue among (male) Tinder/Bumble/Hinge users, for example on the r/Tinder subreddit. One must merely post a screenshot of a Tinder conversation wherein the woman asks the guy how tall he is to simultaneously collect a lot of fake internet points (karma), and set off the same avalanche of furious outcries as every other post on this topic.

For extra points, and to spark extra fervor in the ensuing solidarity circle jerk, one should reply “So, how much do you weigh?“, thus giving her a taste of her own medicine. And it must be bitter indeed. Bitter and salty. Or maybe that’s just (some of) the r/Tinder guys, while the woman in question deletes this match and responds to one of her other dozen new messages instead.

Popular Opinion, Flawed Logic

Meanwhile, the good folks on social media are still congratulating each other on that utterly original and poignant zinger that really drove the point home. I mean, who does she think she is, wanting to know about a physical attribute that’s not easy to gauge from images? Who is she to have preferences?

At this point, it’s entirely possible the question was purely out of interest, to get a better mental image of the guy she’s at least a little bit interested in. Maybe she does have preferences, but as we’ve established, that should be considered absolutely okay. In the same vein, it is indeed absolutely okay for a guy to have his own preferences for physical attributes such as a girl’s weight. He just shouldn’t expect any kind of positive reaction to asking about it in such a manner.

But more importantly: Is it even a relevant and comparable retort? Yes, weight, similarly to height, can be difficult to gauge from images in some cases, and (some) plus size women have a tendency to try every trick in the book to hide any extra pounds behind angles, and filters. But weight, as opposed to height, is something relatively easily adjusted, given the will to do so. “Aha!”, cries the mistreated manlet, “Height is indeed something you cannot change (without surgery), so it is entirely unfair to judge or dismiss a man based on such an attribute.”

Is it? I have another example for a physical attribute that is impossible to change (without surgery): A face. Is it wrong to base one’s attraction to a person on their face as well? Has the guy being discriminated against based on his height alone – surely never his attitude – always felt attracted to women no matter their face? Seeing as only attributes one can modify with willpower and effort, such as physical fitness, or character can possibly have any merit. Surely, only these testaments to self-improvement can be ethically preferred, right?

Heightism – A New National Discrimination Epidemic?

As you might have guessed, it’s mainly shorter than average fellas who take great offense to the question of height, and feel like they got the short end of the stick in the dating game. They are convinced all women look down on them, and on anybody else who is not at least six feet tall. Of course, they are not doing themselves any favor by being defensive and passive aggressive about it at the slightest mention of the topic. But do they have a point?

Granted, as a fellow of slightly above average height (5’11”) I may lack the necessary perspective to judge the issue fairly. On the other hand, I have only once been asked my height on Tinder, by a woman who was one inch shorter than me and just didn’t want to be taller than the man in the relationship. It did not matter that I wasn’t a basketball star, and things went beautifully thereafter.

Seeing as any friends and acquaintances I ask about this, both tall and short, didn’t experience any of the lamented heightism issues either, one could think that all the discriminated against men of below average height represent a very vocal minority on social media and content aggregators such as Reddit.

Yes, there are indeed “height queens” out there, who add fuel to the flame by including things like “must be at least 6′ and 6″ to talk to me” in their bios, while they themselves would be denied access to most roller coasters. But how many guys out there wore a “No Fat Chicks” T-Shirt at one time in their lives, and how many massive-mammary-aficionados would enthusiastically discuss their special interest among like minded fellows? Should we thereby conclude that we live in a fascist, misogynistic society that is embodied by most every man out there? Maybe even the government? (Current presidents excluded. Bad Example.)

Everyone Can Prefer Whatever They Want, and That’s Okay

You’d be surprised how many women don’t care about height, or how many just don’t want to be taller than their guy. There’s even those who prefer shorter guys. But those who prefer to date giants are absolutely in the right to have such preferences, as much as men are allowed to prefer dating beautiful, fit women. Not to mention as much as those giants have the right to prefer taller women themselves.

Nobody is obligated to feel attracted to you.

Does it suck if the girl you’re interested in would prefer someone taller than you? Of course. Does it do you any good to get defensive and passive aggressive as soon as the topic of height comes up? Take a guess.

A Piece of Advice

If you feel like your height could be an issue, and you’re constantly dreading the question coming up in conversation, you can do a couple of things:

  • List your height in your bio. Not in any defensive or self-derogatory way, just as a neutral matter of fact. This precludes the question and filters out any height queens who would really, actually take issue with your height. (Hint: It’s not as many as you might think. The number of women who have (unbeknownst to you) rejected you on any other attribute is bound to be much, much higher).
  • If the question does come up, try just replying honestly and instead of asking about her weight or cup size, leave it at “and you?”. Chances are she doesn’t actually think any less of you because of your height and just wanted to know. It’s easy conversation.
  • When you actually come across a height queen, don’t let it get to you. Think about all the women you’ve rejected because you didn’t like their looks, accept that people can have preferences that don’t include your physical attributes, and that you have preferences as well. And that’s okay.

If you feel like your height may be hurting your score and desirability in Tinder’s eyes, make sure your profile is showcasing your best self. While you’re at it, make sure you are actually being your best self in real life, and if not, work on getting there 🙂

That’s it. This was a personal opinion, and yours may differ. Feel free to share your own opinion, whatever it may be down in the comments, or on the SwipeHelper Subreddit. See you there.

 

15 Comments

  1. In a nutshell my point was is that it was discrimination/unfair to discount a footballer just because of their height and it is discrimination/unfair to discount a person as a potential date/suitor just because of their height.

    • I think you’re leaving out the bit about attraction. Who cares if it’s fair or unfair. Would you want someone to “date” you in the name of “fairness” when they aren’t attracted to you.

  2. For me personally, the part I hate most of these women do on dating apps is…have normal conversation with you for some time, you get to know each other and THEN they drop the height question. So you tell them, then they disappear. Either they are testing you to see your reaction or they just ghost. That’s what I can’t stand, the games. Then they bitch and whine about guys playing games…

    • This reminds me of the whole nice guy thing. A lot of guys complain the girls don’t go for the nice guys and only the jerks then wonder why they wind up with jerks. Then women retort “well, most of these nice guys really aren’t that nice.” Yeah well, I wonder why they aren’t? I am always polite to women, never send nudes, never suggest sex prior to a date, etc. Then you talk to them, things seem to be going well, and they just disappear. So I admit I get angry and will sometimes call them out and tell them how extremely rude ghosting is (oddly enough, this usually elicits a final text from them defending themselves). I suppose that makes me a “nice guy who really isn’t that nice.” Fact is, I was driven to being rude by a rude person. It really is a chicken vs egg thing.

  3. You can change your weight, but you can’t change your height. Your weight reflects your physical fitness, health and other non physical qualities like disclipine and determination. Judging a guy by height is like judging a girl by something she can’t change like the size of her feet or the color of her skin. It’s 2019. It’s not cool anymore to hold girls to ancient feminine standards like being petite, uneducated housewives … So why is it still ok to like guys for traditionally masculine qualities like height?

    • Judging a guy by height is like judging a girl by something she can’t change like the size of her feet or the color of her skin.

      Or by someone’s face. Yes, this is literally the argument I was making and you somehow either didn’t get it, or didn’t read at all and just came here to spew your rehearsed bullshit.

      • I’m not sure what cory said that set you off. It seems to me he was agreeing with you in general. And in all honesty, like you state, there really are not that many who care about height to such a great extent. Sure those profiles stick out, but if you were to keep track of the number of them, they are actually few and far in between.

        What I find highly interesting is the 6′ number that is so frequent. When I swipe in northern Europe where both men and women are taller in general, the female height requirements are almost always under 6′. Since they use the metric system, you are far more likely to see 180 cm or even more so 175 cm. Both values are under 6′ and 175 cm is really about 5’9″. That to me makes the most sense since as a slightly above average 5’10” man, I am still taller than 95% of American women and around 90% of these northern European women.

        I also think it’s more so the middle tier in height women who are so picky. That 5’4″ to 5’8″ range. It seems the really short ones don’t care since everyone is taller. And the really tall ones don’t care because… well, that would really limit their options, wouldn’t it?

        What bothers me mostly is when you see the ones who list feminism or something in their profile then go on to put a height requirement. Wait… doesn’t part of women wanting taller men (and men shorter women) have to do with dominance and protectionism?

          • Yep, exactly what I was getting at. 6′ is a nice round number. 183 cm (6′) is not a very round number and 185 cm is going up on that unrealistic expectation point. Thus these Euro women will pick 180 cm or 175 cm.

            I know a lot of women also like to leave extra room for them to wear heels. Which is kind of funny because I could in theory just wear lifts. I don’t mind dating taller women though. One of my favorite past matches was a Dutch girl who wouldn’t tell me exactly her height, but that it was over 6′. My guess is 6’2″-6’4″. She towered over her friends in photos and was usually slouching.

            Anyways, we all have our preferences. I have mine as well. I think the only thing that bothers me about women’s height preference is how universal it is in one direction. Never once have I ran across a profile where a woman said she preferred a shorter man. So while I, like many, strongly prefer natural blonde hair and light eyes (neither of which I feel necessary to list on my profile), there are plenty out there who prefer brunettes and darker eyes. Same goes with beards vs no beard. A guy having a beard will turn on as many women as it turns off and same with having no beard.

      • With a few exceptions (in the case of people who are just very unfortunate-looking), facial preferences vary greatly among different people. Some of my friends will think one face is hot while others think its average, and invariably someone else will even think it’s ugly. Height on the other hand, appears to be a universal preference among women. While there are even segments of men who list plus-sized women as their top preference, it appears that shorter guys have no such luck with any segment of the population. There’s one thing I do agree with however, and that’s that it doesn’t matter to women as much as most think. That said, given the imbalance in online dating (where women will generally have infinitely more options than guys, who biologically are predisposed to be less picky), I would advise guys to list their height ONLY if it will be viewed positively. The reason for this is the same reason you wouldn’t volunteer negative information on a job resume. Let’s say you’re a great candidate for a highly competitive job, but you got arrested once for underage drinking when you were in college seven years ago. Even though your employer doesn’t ACTUALLY care that you made a stupid mistake as a kid, you’re giving him an excuse to kick you out of the fray when there are a ton of other people vying for the job, none of whom listed information (however irrelevant) that sticks out as negative.

        • I think another problem is that in my experience there is no such thing as a truthful 5’11’ man online. Those who claim it are actually 5’9″ or 5’10” and rounding up. It matters to me and nothing irks me more than to meet a guy who has lied about his height. Then the men who really are 5’11” are rounding up to 6′ – so also lying.

          And people have preferences. We are on line for very personal reasons. What’s fair/legal/moral for employment interviews etc. are totally irrelevant in relationships and attraction. Whether or not people are attracted to you is not something you can control or dictate by logic.

      • Lip filler, rhinoplasty, make up, foundation, eye liner, Snapchat filters, etc… shall I go on? Your “you can’t change your face” argument is what’s bullshit. There are several multi billion dollar industries for women to do just that. #wasteoftime

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