How Important is Beauty?


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Sex and the Psychological City; A Relationship Blog on Commitment, Friendship and Love

Welcome back to Sex and the Psychological City; A Weekly Blog on Relationships, Commitment, Friendship and Love.

If you have read earlier posts, you are familiar with my confession that I was a hipper psychotherapist when my go-to girlfriends -- Carrie, Miranda, Charlotte and Samantha were on the air, with fresh new material on everything from masturbation to marriage. Granted, their wardrobes and lifestyles were totally unrealistic, but the fashion and fabulousness worked well as a delivery platform for groundbreaking discussions about sex, commitment, friendship and love.

Since I specialize in relationships and intimacy, the show became an ideal co-therapist that I brought into the therapy session whenever appropriate.

I recently began re-watching season one and was struck by how much the dating world has changed. Can you imagine a world without blackberries, texting, Facebook, or Twitter?  At the same time, it is surprising how much remains the same. So much has evolved technologically, and yet the very first episode asks the current, ever-relevant question, "Can Women Have Sex Like Men?" Episode two asks the equally current question, "How Important is Beauty?"

These appealing and psychologically interesting questions are as relevant today as they were when the first SATC episode aired. Since I am missing my co-therapist more than ever, I'm taking a trip down Memory Lane by considering each first season episode, from a psychological perspective. So, what do you think? "How Important is Beauty?"

Miranda is horrified and disappointed when she realizes that a guy she thinks is genuinely interested in her turns out to be a "modelizer"! A modelizer, in the SATC lingo, is a man who dates only models. Miranda's date has invited Miranda to meet his inner circle of friends at a dinner party. Miranda views her introduction to his friends as a reflection of his genuine interest, but it turns out that it is nothing more than a ploy. The invitation is merely a response to an anti-model intervention. It turns out that his friends are tired of hanging around with his gorgeous but shallow escorts, and so they insist that he begin dating a non-model. Enter Miranda.

Later, my go-to girlfriends dine in with take-out and attempt to make sense of the mentalities of modelizers and models and they ask each other the ever-relevant question: "How Important is Beauty?"

Clients in therapy touch on the question of beauty and its significance through multiple angles in their quest to find suitable dating partners and romantic love. Obviously, looks are the first thing we see, but how much do they really matter at the end of the day?

In addition to modelizers, whose insistence on dating models is obviously extreme, many people apply physical filters to their search for potential partners. Some men will only date blondes. Some women will only date men over six feet. These criteria raise the question whether people are unnecessarily restricting their access to suitable partners.

Article contributed by
Advanced Member

Elisabeth LaMotte


Social worker, psychotherapist, blogger and author of "Overcoming Your Parents' Divorce"

Location: Washington, DC
Credentials: LICSW, MFT, MSW
Specialties: Communication Problems, Dating/Being Single Support, Divorce/Divorce Prevention
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