Why male attention quenches my thirst; A deep dive into my attention whore ways

Fei Thompson







I pride myself in being the kind of feminist that enrages toxic masculinity, the type to boil Trump’s blood, the sort of female to reject Mr William Collins’ (Pride and Prejudice) generous proposal. In the same breath I must also admit, when I am feeling particularly attractive and do not receive the male populations nod of approval, I strut away feeling rather insecure. My clothes become tacky, my hair is too dishevelled and men like natural beauty, my foundations like fondant weighing my sex appeal down.


Charlotte Tilbury flawless filter, Fenty clear gloss, Mac translucent powder…


I just spent 100 pounds and 20 minutes to make it seem like I’m not wearing makeup. Because these minimal, well marketed products somehow turn me from a 6 to a 10.


The recent TikTok trend ‘it’s probably not me’ involves girls highlighting why men would perceive their companions as more attractive as them struck a nerve with me. I will be the first to admit, I am not the girl you read about in romance novels, the one with the dedicated song, or the lead of a comfort but entirely predictable film (excluding Bridget Jones’ diary, it’s terrifyingly close to looking in the mirror). But my friends are. And this is not their fault. It’s my ancestors for cursing me with an olive complexion and midnight features. Serena gets the men not Blair. Gentlemen prefer blondes.





Whether or not my outfit is acceptable depends entirely on how many drinks are offered to me, how much attention my Instagram receives, if equally as insecure women give me dirty looks as I walk by. My life is lead by aesthetic. I drank iced lattes for 8 years before realizing I prefer hot drinks in a cold climate. I don’t like high heels. But I would rather limp like a three legged horse than be caught wearing flats in the background of my barbie doll friends Saturday night Instagram premiere. It is not being In the background that phases me. I am not afraid to admit I’m shallow. I am simply tired of being shallow. I am a self-proclaimed clout chasing fraud.


I don’t parade the Sunday morning ritual of being bent over the bathroom sink, tears welling in my eyes as the vomit stings the back of my throat. The acidy pool of regrets flowing out of me like an exorcism. The daily struggle I have between binging, restricting and purging. No. You don’t see that. You see airbrushed Instagram pictures, perfect pouts and seamless fake tan. You let yourself become insecure from seeing my highlights. And that is your problem. Not mine.


Or is it?


Here’s the sad part – it truly isn’t anyone else’s fault. The pressure to be perfect will wear the red soles under your pumps. The same pumps you sacrificed food and leisure for, all for the promise of someone to recognise the prestige and for a compliment to slip their lips. This ‘hot girl manual’ we all seem to be chasing lead to a perfect Instagram shielding the opportunity cost of being truly happy.


I sit equal the majority of young women. In the range of I’m pretty in my own way yet overlooked as soon as conventionally attractive women are nearby. My weapon of choice is my emotional intelligence. I love how I am not afraid to answer a question from the back of a lecture hall, am able to balance a social life, good grades and the gym. Yet why do I feel inferior when standing next to a 6ft blonde bombshell with nothing but a birth certificate to her name? I once let a finance major explain how taxation worked to me as I batted my eyes at him. Long press on nails circling the rim of my espresso martini because I read somewhere that men find that sexy.


This is not to criticise or project my insecurities onto every attractive woman I have not befriended. But to enlighten you, my few readers, to the new gender roles we have embodied and somehow welcomed with opening arms.


The only social pressure we are subject to is being or becoming attractive. The infamous glow up. We are told to endure the tragedies of adolescent, the pre-pubescent ugly swans we are, to accept bullying and name calling. Because when we see light at the end of puberty’s tunnel, we will be lucky enough for men to view us as sexual beings. And if you never gain acne or puppy-fat, you are a born beauty queen, but only until the other half of us inevitably reach our maintenance weight and develop curves and tits, then it’s the thin girls cue to be insecure.


There has been a statistical increase of 1 in 7 couples who cannot conceive. In 1971, just 18% of 30-year-olds in the UK had no children – today the figure has risen to 50%. Perhaps if we shed the gender stereotype that half of us are burdened to carry on the human race, we could achieve evolution rather than expansion.



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