Dating is a vulnerable topic, and when it comes to personal appearances, it can be tender and difficult to talk about. Society is not always as forgiving of our flaws as we’d like them to be, and unfortunately we are susceptible to those criticisms.
So when Reddit user bodyhair077 tried to delicately approach her sister to have a discussion about this vulnerable topic, she was rebuked. However, she did not necessarily think she was in the wrong.
She called in objective observers from the popular subReddit “Am I The A**hole?” or “AITA” for feedback.
“AITA for telling my sister her body hair is ruining her dates?”
Our original poster, or OP, talked about the condition that runs in her family at the root of the problem:
“Bad title, hear me out.”
“My sister (22F[emale]) and I (26F) both have PCOS [Polycystic ovary syndrome]. As a result we have very thick, dark body hair and facial hair that can honestly rival some men’s. I personally choose to shave regularly because I can’t stand how it looks and feels.”
“My sister used to shave but about a year ago decided she wanted to stop. Of course I support her 100% and think she’s beautiful! What she does with her body is her business.”
Now that OP’s sister is dating, she hasn’t updated her photos.
“However, there is an issue. My sister uses old pictures of herself back when she was shaving on dating apps. This has led to a lot of problems in her romantic life.”
“She often complains she never gets a second date and sometimes people even leave mid-date. I think this is kind of her fault because she’s being disingenuous about her appearance which is a sh*tty thing to do.”
“I have always bit my tongue and just supported her about this topic until recently.”
And OP decided to tell her the truth about what she thought was wrong.
“The other day she was venting again about another failed date. She asked me why this keeps happening to her. I told her she should consider updating her profile pictures.”
“She got defensive and asked why she would need to do that. I told her that it would probably help so people know what she looks like since she looks a lot different than when they were taken.”
“She started getting extremely angry and said that ‘a little body hair doesn’t make that much of a difference’ and ‘the right person won’t mind a little hair.’”
“Again, our body and facial hair is very thick and dark, and (imo) definitely makes a difference. When I don’t shave, I get a full mustache and beard, and my sister is the same.”
OP was trying to get her to be a little more honest.
“The people she’s going on dates with aren’t expecting her to show up with a full mustache and beard because her pictures show her clean-shaven.”
“I told her that she’s beautiful but she’s giving people false expectations which is why she’s having bad luck dating. She should just be honest from the start and the right one will come along!”
“But she was infuriated and said I was being unsupportive and misogynistic. She has refused to talk to me since and my family is now calling me an a**hole too because they think I was shaming her.”
“My sister even posted on social media that ‘body hair is beautiful, the stigma attached to it is misogynistic, it sucks when your own family won’t support you.’”
But now she doesn’t know if she truly did something wrong.
“Did I go wrong somewhere here? I love my sister and don’t think body and facial hair is a bad thing at all!”
“But I don’t think it’s right to basically catfish people and then blame them for not being interested, and treating them like they’re horrible people when you misled them…AITA?”
Anonymous strangers weighed in by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
- NAH – No A**holes Here
Reddit agreed with OP’s assessment: she was only trying to help.
“NTA. She’s lying to those who look at her profile. And if body hair is natural and she’s ok with it, why won’t she update her picture?”
“She’s ok with her hair, proud of it, so why?”
“Because she knows she wouldn’t get as many first dates if she did update it, is what I think. But it would solve the issue of people leaving in the middle of the date because they were lied to.”~yukidaviji
“Her statement of ‘the right person wouldn’t mind a bit of body hair’ contradicts the fact she has an old pre-hair profile picture.”
“Because she is not attracting the right person, she’s attracting the wrong ones and going on dates with the wrong ones.”
“She has to decide whether she wants lots of first dates or if she wants to really put herself out there with a new picture and try to find someone who will actually connect with her.”
“NTA OP. You were honest but gentle about the whole thing.”~DeviousCheesecake
“Also you can wash your face and the makeup comes off. Then you can throw it back on at choice, which might take 20 minutes, or three hours.”
“Body hair at the fastest you gotta shave off. Then wait for days to let it get back to full length.”
“So by wanting to have her beautiful hair unmodified, she is making more of a commitment to having hair than most people ever make to wearing makeup. (Tattoo makeup excluded of course)”
“If she wants hair, she should freely do that. But she’s asking a potential SO to make the same commitment to her facial hair that she has.”
“After she washes her face, the hair is still there. And that’s great for her, but might not be everyone’s cup of tea. NTA.”~Jesterbomb
“NTA. I have PCOS and the honest answer is if you choose to embrace the body hair issue EMBRACE IT.”
“But if she is claiming to embrace it then not backing it up with being proud about it, then that’s a huge issue.”~Glittering_Living693
After all, her sister is doing something that basically amounts to catfishing.
“NTA – wow you sister loves being the victim doesn’t she?”
“No offense if I see a guy clean shaved then I meet him in person with a beard I’d straight up call him what he is, Catfisher.”
“Body hair or not if it’s something she knows will make people swipe left she should put it up there. Doesn’t matter if she has extra weight, shorter hair, or a facial scar.”
“Changing pictures you know will make people swipe left and meeting with them regardless is catfishing and even if ‘right guy’ show up he would leave after being deceived.”
“She loves complaining about them not staying when she’s the one who catfished and wasted their time, then blamed you when she asked for your opinion and got defensive, the fact that she also made a post doesn’t help either.”
“She loves being the victim and it’s on her not you.”~PrettyCuteBunny
“NTA. You do support her! You didn’t tell her that she needs to shave to be beautiful or get dates, you called her out for being disingenuous on dating apps.”
“Even I’m picky about dude’s facial hair, I like clean shaven. If their photos show them clean shaven but they actually have a beard, I’m going to be disappointed.”
“People like what they like, and your sister needs to show them what they would be getting.”~queenbeancookie
“NTA The issue here isn’t that you have a problem with her body hair its the fact that the appearance she has now is different than the one she’s showing to these dates.”
“I am all for women growing out their body hair if they want but some people prefer hairless women and thats what she’s displaying herself as.”
“These dates are a**holes for leaving halfway thats pretty sh*tty but she asked why and you gave her the reason why.”~[username deleted]
“She’s right. The right person wouldn’t care. They’d see a current pic, ask her out, have a great time, and ask her out again. All of this other BS and heartbreak could be avoided.”
“She asked you why she wasn’t getting second dates, and you told her the reason. NTA”
“It might be worth it to ask why she uses the old pics.”~Check3_4
And while both her insecurity and her sadness at being rejected are understandable, updating the pictures could eliminate the date drama.
“NTA – It’s very of putting to go on a date with someone and find out they don’t look the way you expected them to.”
“Your sister is right that the right person won’t mind, but she could certainly weed out the ones who do mind but updating her photo.”
“Because the problem may not be so much that she has hair, but more so that her date feels like they’ve been deceived.”
“And while your sister says she doesn’t think it’s an issue, she obviously does to some extent, or she wouldn’t feel the need to hide it by using old photos.”
“This seems to be a problem that goes much deeper than her inability to get a second date. It seems like she’s having problems with her own self confidence and then lying to herself about it.”
“But I think the sooner she recognizes that and works on that, the sooner she’ll find happiness, with or without that second date.”~Slurav
“Nta. If she really thought body hair that was that visible was truly beautiful, she’d absolutely have ‘updated’ and fully accurate pics up on her profiles.”
“We have certain cultural beauty standards. She can call them misogynistic if she really want to, but in all reality, some of these have been passed down from generation to generation from mother to daughter.”
“We all have our right to dismantle or embrace certain beauty practices, but she’s purposely tricking people into believing they’re dating someone that’s basically not showing up in real life.”
“I a sexually fluid bi woman, and i’m into feminine women.”
“If ppl are leaving mid date, and her facial hair is that super thick, then she needs to accept it’s a major turn off. She needs to use proper accurate pics.”~Cheesecakeblue
“NTA. There is nothing wrong with her having body hair, there is something wrong with catfishing. This is no different than a guy using a picture before going bald.”
“False advertising with a dash of paranoia because if someone did this I wouldn’t be able to stop thinking ‘what else did they misrepresent about themselves?'”~APotatoPancake
“NTA. I also have PCOS; my weight fluctuates a lot, and I also deal with facial hair issues. I keep my photos current on any dating website; I’m not ashamed of how I look, and I don’t want men matching with me who would then feel surprised when they meet me.”
“Your sister is deliberately misleading these guys on how she looks right now. And yeah, it does suck that we are all so caught up on how our dates physically appear, but hey, welcome to online dating.”
“We have to measure up on looks first before we give each other the chance to see personalities.”
“Most importantly, she wanted to know why her dates keep going badly, you gave her the truth.”
“Judging by her reaction, deep down she knew that was the reason, she just wanted someone to tell her it wasn’t.”~krm1437
Though OP’s words may have contained harsh truth, they were most definitely still compassionate truth.
Hopefully OP’s sister hears her sooner rather than later.