beautiful penpal
June 1, 2005 11:47 AM   Subscribe

Someone I like but don't know that well asked for permission to give my email to a friend/colleague, thinking we would have stuff in common.

Her friend emailed me a few weeks ago and we have been exchanging enjoyable emails every few days since. Having done a little internet dating, I wanted to get a reality check and to see what was there, so unprompted I sent her my picture. After a longer than usual wait, she sent me a picture of her... she is really beautiful.. to the point where I am not sure if I am in her league.. and thats the question really. I realize that this particular situation could go in many ways, and part of me is sufficiently intimdated to think that it wont go well and preempt the rejection. However, this seems like a great opportunity to grow. The question is how do you deal with feeling "out of your league"? In this case because of looks... but it could be other leagues.. it seems unfortunate to throw opportunities away.. especially because they might seem too good.
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (33 answers total)
In short? Don't think she's out of your league. You shouldn't let her appearance change the way you act towards her in any way. She's used to that, and it'll only make her roll her eyes and move on.
posted by SpecialK at 11:51 AM on June 1, 2005

Let her decide who's in her league. All you have to do is grow a pair and ask her out if you want to.
posted by anapestic at 11:53 AM on June 1, 2005

Response by poster: Dang, man, go for it. If both of you are enjoying yourselves don't let good fortune get in your way. And did ya think it's possible maybe she doesn't place a high emphasis on physical appearance? Meet her for coffee or something.

If she's showing interest, be confident that you have qualities she likes and therefore she is not out of your league.
posted by Anonymous at 11:56 AM on June 1, 2005

Why did the friend want to give her your email? Was it because the friend had some reason to think she would like you?
posted by Carbolic at 11:57 AM on June 1, 2005

Ah, the good ol' out-of-your-league girl. I've found that it's just an easy excuse to knock yourself down. Don't be modest man, things are going well because there's some level of chemistry here.

Heck, hot girls get with intelligent, great guys that aren't anywhere near the same level of attractiveness. It seems unnatural, but both parties truly earned their catches.

Feel comfortable in your own skin, and know that this will be the first of many attractive girls in your conquest of the female of the species.
posted by bennymoto at 11:59 AM on June 1, 2005

There are no leagues.
posted by bondcliff at 12:02 PM on June 1, 2005

I married a guy that I still consider to be way out of my league. The first time I met my (now) husband for coffee, I thought I was going to throw up from being nervous. I canned it and somehow ended up married to a hot, geeky, genius.

I don't have any idea why he thinks I'm attractive, and I don't care.

Go for it. You only live once.
posted by Medieval Maven at 12:19 PM on June 1, 2005

I've heard some very attractive women complain that they never get dates or bf's because so many men have your reaction, Anonymous. Give it a try, man. Maybe your first facetime date should be a movie--that way you can sit in the dark and not have to look at each other.
posted by scratch at 12:22 PM on June 1, 2005

Well, if you sent her a picture already and she replied in kind, I don't see any problem here. She's obviously not horrified or repelled so I'd say keep it up.

You dawg you.
posted by xmutex at 12:26 PM on June 1, 2005

You'll only regret it if you don't take action. Do it, but do it cool and with confidence. If she's not interested you can just accept that you tried and move on.
posted by FlamingBore at 12:28 PM on June 1, 2005

For all relationships it's a good idea to let the other person take care of thier feelings, and let have you take care of your own.
posted by OmieWise at 12:36 PM on June 1, 2005

You could also lighten the situation a bit and feel her out. Reply back and say something like "Wow. I your picture was stunning. I'm embarassed now that I sent you such an unattractive picture of myself. Attached please find a better one."

Attach a picture of David Hasslehoff.

She'll probably appreciate the joke and tell you your first picture was just fine.
posted by bondcliff at 12:42 PM on June 1, 2005

So what you stand to lose if she rejects you is some pride, and what you stand to win is a romantic involvement with a beautiful intelligent woman? This one seems to answer itself...
posted by nicwolff at 12:54 PM on June 1, 2005

bondcliff, that's fantastic...
posted by NotMyselfRightNow at 1:01 PM on June 1, 2005

For all relationships it's a good idea to let the other person take care of thier feelings, and let you take care of your own. (

posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 1:19 PM on June 1, 2005 [1 favorite]

Agreement with all the preceding folk UNLESS you're going to forever have issues with the idea that this person is out of 'your league.' In which case, do her a favor and stay away.

Nobody needs a partner who is forever suspicious they are going to be replaced, down on themselves and certain that they are being cheated on because they have invented a standard for their SigOth that they don't measure up to.

Embrace capitalism! You are worth what someone will 'pay' for you and if she's supermodel hot and you look like Sergeant Schlock but she wants to be with you.... then that's what you warrant.
posted by phearlez at 1:31 PM on June 1, 2005

how do you deal with feeling "out of your league"?

- assume the picture of her is fake until you meet her.
- assume the picture of her conceals her terrible flaw until you meet her.
- assume you are giving yourself the short shrift and may be more of a looker than you suspect.

I would stop thinking about this this very instant, take OmieWise's sage advice to heart and, if it's really giving you the fidgets, go meet this girl and then you'll most likely be over it. She will have seen you, you will have seen her and if neither one of you runs screaming, you can move forward from there.
posted by jessamyn at 1:35 PM on June 1, 2005

One thing worth keeping in mind is (WARNING: massive gender stereotype follows) that women are not generally as hung up on looks as men. So, while she may be attractive as hell, that doesn't mean she thinks she's in any particular league because of it. It also doesn't mean she'd look at your picture and think much at all about what league it put you in. She obviously likes you well enough based on your personality, more than anything else, she'll be assessing you based on that. Do her the same courtesy.
posted by jacquilynne at 1:54 PM on June 1, 2005

TIC: Are you sure that she sent you *her* picture?

More seriously: The advantage that you (both) have is that you have been able to "talk" using e-mail and get to know each other before you saw what you look like.

Perhaps if you had seen her at a party, you would have hesitated because she might seem unapproachable. But you have already had the approach. You have seen some of her inside stuff, and she's seen yours. If she still wants to talk with you, you've got nothing to be concerned about.
posted by yclipse at 2:26 PM on June 1, 2005

I'll chime in and also say, "Dude, go for it!"
You didn't say how old you are, but I'm going to assume you're in college or older for simplicity sake. If so, you have a chance...I was/am definitely one of those kids where in high school and beyond, most chicks could be considered out of my league. Once we got passed high school, I found myself hanging out with the "cool" kids and even dated the "popular" girl this semester via a random hookup. It is very possible for things to go well and in fact, some of the people I have the fondest memories of are those I could have easily considered out of my league and given up.
posted by jmd82 at 2:31 PM on June 1, 2005

I'm a girl and I shy away from men who are too good-looking. I am attracted to sensitive, intelligent, well-travelled men who can converse about a very broad range of topics -- and I am not attracted at all to metros. Perhaps she's that way too?

As for looks, so what if you don't look like Brad Pitt (or whoever is cute-du-jour). Through your penpalship you've discovered that you have many things in common, that transcend mere looks. Go for it, don't sell yourself short!
posted by seawallrunner at 3:48 PM on June 1, 2005

You've already been pre-screened by the person who gave her your e-mail. Go for it. She's pretty enough for both of you.
posted by BoscosMom at 3:55 PM on June 1, 2005

When I first met my wife, I had the same reaction. Way out of my league. But it worked out. She liked me for my personality, which to her made me attractive physically.
posted by Quartermass at 4:19 PM on June 1, 2005

Ok, CLEARLY we're going to have to see the pictures so we can judge ourselves.

Kidding. I joke 'cause I love.

My wife is unbelievably out of my league. And then she opens her mouth, and it turns out she's as much of a nerd and a dork as I am. Really. Hot chicks can also be goofy and dorky, and the way she tells it, all the guys she dated before thought she was too much of a dweeb. Suckers!
posted by incessant at 4:22 PM on June 1, 2005

My ex was way out of my league. Seriously. The boy is stunning, heads-turning gorgeous.

But I turned him on. Still do, apparently.

Moral: as said above, there are no leagues. If she thinks you're cute, then for God's sake man, she thinks you're cute!

Ask her out.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 6:46 PM on June 1, 2005

...and if you follow all this good advice and end up getting something going with her, for god's sake, don't talk about feeling out of your league, which would be one of the most singularly unattractive things you could do.
posted by Zed_Lopez at 9:15 PM on June 1, 2005

"Out of your league" is a lot easier to deal with if it's physical attractiveness and not intelligence, "coolness" or some other thing you can't but might try to fake. What will impress a beautiful woman the most is comfort around her -- she's likely been around a thousand jumpy guys. So relax - or pretend to be relaxed. DON'T confess to her that, gawd, she's SO good looking and you're nervous as a result. Be comfortable or pretend to be comfortable and then just get back to getting to know her until you actually are. Unless, as said above, this perceived difference in attractiveness is something you can't drop.
posted by dreamsign at 9:23 PM on June 1, 2005

Looks is a fascinating issue. For some, its about what they like. For others, less picky (in a way) its more about what they don't like. eg, person A only chases blonds. Person B chases anyone BUT redheads. Person B probably is more interested in personality, but that doesn't have to be the case. Stated another way, person A seeks a specific appearance. Person B can't stand redheads, but otherwise, any non-repulsive person that is sweet, is hot.

Apart from the arbitrary hair color thing, I am person B. There are things I can't stand in looks, otherwise, personality is all. Yea, there are certain kinds of looks I especially like, but in practice, that matters little. (Except my partner has it all. I'm still trying to figure out how I managed that)
posted by Goofyy at 1:01 AM on June 2, 2005

While your apprehension is totally human, there's a basic fact that you're (apparently) ignoring...she sent you a picture of herself--an attractive one--after you sent her your picture.

That means that she knows what you look like, and she's already had the chance to decide whether or not you two are "in the same league". If she wasn't inclined to move things forward a little bit, she would have either sent over a less-flattering picture, or none at all. (Either that, or she's very vain, but you'll have to trust your judgement of what you already know about her on that one.)
posted by LairBob at 4:57 AM on June 2, 2005

How do you know what "her league" is? I ask this because I know someone who is a tall & skinny guy. One might assume that he prefers thin girls. As it is, he prefers girls with "reubenesque" figures. Girls that fit the traditional definitions of beautiful (i.e., thin) are actually rather unattractive to him.
posted by Doohickie at 5:31 AM on June 2, 2005

Wait until you meet here until you make judgements about who's in what league. Maybe she has a funny voice or weird mannerisms in person that don't come through over e-mail and you'll find her just unbearable. Or the reverse could be true.

Many years back, I met a really great guy online and had a number awesome conversations. He was smart, we had a number of things in common and he was a great writer. He was good looking, too. Then we met in person. He smoked and talked like a gangsta. I dunno what his problems were with me. Anyhow, neither of us ever called or e-mailed the other again.
posted by croutonsupafreak at 6:05 AM on June 2, 2005

Don't let yourself get all worked up over one picture. Consider that she may have hundreds of pictures of herself and she chose the one that makes her look super-model gorgeous. Of course, I hope she is and falls madly for you. Regardless, you have to step up the the plate and swing to ever hit the ball. Sit in the bleachers and you will regret missing a chance. Make it a homerun!
posted by juggler at 8:47 AM on June 2, 2005

Am I the only one who totally wants to know how this turns out? And unlike incessant I really -do- want to see those two pictures :)
posted by phearlez at 2:40 PM on June 2, 2005

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