Being short is a way of life because if you are blessed with a short stature it’s your for life. It is vital that you recognize this fact and the sooner you do the better for your peace of mind. The bottom line is that most of the world is not designed for short people or very tall people, so there are constant reminders of height. Also, it is not uncommon for those kids to be bullied for being short at school and to experience other types of issues. It is important to understand and embrace the stature you have and to think of it as great.
When kids are young and they are learning their place in the world, many young kids point out differences in others and find they get attention for doing this. So if a kid in their class is short then likely this will be publicly raised by other kids. The same is true if there is a fat kid, tall kid, or any other follow student that has a different feature. Children do not fully comprehend that their actions and words have an effect on others. Although the short child might laugh at the joke or add to the insults, undoubtedly they feel hurt by others pointing out something that cannot be changed.
Short kids learn at an early age that most items are out of reach, sports can be more challenging, and clothing just doesn’t fit as it should. This leads these children to require more assistance and everyone knows that as kids grow up they pride themselves on doing things on their own – some even insist on it. Although a short child might feel the same way; however, conquering tasks by themselves might not be possible. This is a difficult reality to digest as others are excelling by themselves the short child still needs a supervisor to assist them in reaching things and maybe in other areas too.
As kids get older there are other social realities that become apparent that revolve around dating. It is true the beauty is in the eyes of the beholder; however, there are certain stigmas that exist around short men dating women taller than them. This is because many women enjoy the feeling of a man their size or larger that feels more like a protector – this is likely a very primal emotion that goes back to the cave man days. A woman walking alongside a shorter guy is just not seen in the same light as a tall guy with a short girl. Short girls have it easier when it comes to dating; many men like shorter women and do not feel as intimidated by shorter girls as they do taller women. Guys do not like to feel rejected and since most taller when want taller men, most guys will be hesitant to interact. In this respect short girls have it easier when it comes to relationships – they are approached by short guys, regular sized guys, and taller men.
During this time in life when boys and girls are coming into their maturing bodies, the height factor becomes more important. It is crucial to building and maintaining a healthy self esteem that boy or girls who are short or extremely tall understand their individual value independent of height. There are many activities and areas to excel which do not have a stature definition as part of their conditions. Young adults begin to recognize this quickly but this does not deny the bullying and difficulty faced by being short. This is a life lesson that does not necessarily start and end with being short.
Learning the skills to handle diversity and embracing one’s own difference is vital to moving forward in life. Some individuals juggle issues that are more visible then others; however, you can be sure that everyone, tall, short, rich, poor, black, white, Jew, Muslim, battles personal struggles when faced with prejudice for an aspect of their person. The problem with being short is that everyone can see this fact and at a young age it is almost like a physical disability, even if the short stature is not classified as a height disorder. Also, there are many short jokes and nicknames that start at a young age with being short quotes.
The names can be innocent but can have damaging effects on the kids. For example, a short boy that is always called cutie and people are thinking he is much younger than the actual is can cause a lot of frustration. For example a six years old boy that looks three years old will undoubtedly begin to be annoyed when his parents say, “how cute your son is, are you three years old?” Only to have the child or parent say he is six and then furthers that statement with the fact that he happens to be short for his age. Although these comments seem innocent and not mean, they do have negative affects and can develop personalities to be always on guard for a comment about their height. It is in the hands of parents to maintain a positive attitude and explain their height and comments by others in a positive light.
The same type of seemingly innocent comments occurs at school. It could be things said by the coach which point out the height of the child, girl or boy. This is especially frustrating to young child because there is such a heavy emphasis on competitive sports. The bombardment of these comments and reaction by definitely cause the child to be hyper aware of their shortness. In some adults a complex forms which is present in many of their behaviors and approaches to the world around them. In men it has been labeled as, Short Man Complex. This is a typical feature of men that are overalls aggressive and are always trying to be the center of attention for things they can dominant. Obviously not NBA basketball; however, many short guys mention Spud Webb who was just over 5 feet and could dunk the basketball – for that sport it is a short height. Public figures that are short and excel at a tall man’s game are great for younger kids to be exposed to because they see that height is a factor but not everything – even in a sport dominated by tall players.
It is important for young adults to build a balanced personality as it relates to their height. When being a victim of bullying is at play, these kids must be supported to grow past those remarks and any abusive behaviors directed at them. The support of teachers, family and friends is crucial. Therefore solving the problem of bullying for being short is not just a matter of the victim learning to absorb it in a positive light, but requires others to educate and prevent negative behavior from occurring. The reason for preventing and raising awareness about the bullying is not soles to benefit the victim, rather to help the aggressor from their own shortcoming of being a bully. Many adults that were bullies grow up to be filled with regret and embarrassment about the things they said or did at a younger age. There is an overall benefit for both the victim and the bully when the external support circle gets involved.
Being short is a physical feature that cannot be altered; therefore short individuals must understand this and learn to embrace their stature. The quicker this is understood the sooner positive feelings can grow and the shorter individual can learn to handle bullying if it is present in their lives. Also, these innocent comments can be better understood rather than cause frustration. Being short is s good thing and is a defining trait that should be embraced for its positive qualities rather than focusing on negative issues it can create in life.