Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Is your Mommy there? Umm, ma'am, I'm 23...

This is Ali. You might know her from The Bachelorette. Ali is 25. You have no trouble believing that, do you?

This is Danielle (me). Danielle is 23.

Question: Why does Danielle not look like she is in fact 23?

Now, I implore you not to become the person saying "It's great that you don't look like you're 23! It will be so wonderful when you're old for people to think that you are younger!"
Yes. It will be nice. When I am actually old.

You might also be saying "She looks like she's 23, what is she complaining about?" I did myself a favor and posted a picture in which I *hopefully* look slightly older. In person, however, I am very, very rarely (read: never) thought to be 23.

Example: Last week at work I asked a co-worker to come in a few minutes early for me. I changed into a dress and heels in the bathroom and was running out of the store. I shouted a thanks to my co-worker who called "Where are you going?" to which I replied "Name of High School's Graduation!" A woman who is a regular and with whom I am on friendly terms was sitting with her own teenaged son and said to me "Congratulations! You go, girl!" I was in a rush, quite shocked by her comment, and too nice to correct her so I nodded and said "Thanks!" and continued on my merry way to watch my friend graduate high school. It reminded me of my own high school graduation, which happened five years ago.

In addition, my best friend is not 20 yet, and people think she's older than me.'s kind of fun to tease her about that.

Anyway, I understand that I shouldn't be complaining about this, and most of the time, I don't really care. I work in a smoothie place, I really don't mind when people think I'm in high school. I almost prefer that they did rather than know that I'm 23 and work in a smoothie shop while I write books. Except. I think that people take me less seriously. I honestly believe that I lost out on management positions (which I was fully qualified for and after making it to the last round of interviews) because of how young I look. I don't think that most adults I encounter take me seriously or speak to me as their equal. I bet that never happens to Ali!

Side note: I read in Cosmo this month that people who have sex three times a week were judged to be several years younger than they actually were. Hmm....


Janet Johnson said...

I had a friend who went to pick up her kids at middle school (she also had a daughter who was a Senior that year), and a teacher chewed her out for skipping class.

Yeah, looking too young is all its cracked up to be. But I'll say you look at least 20 in that picture. :)

Lindsay (a.k.a Isabella) said...

I share your pain. I've suffered with this for years as well. My friend who is the same age as me looks older. I tease her too. She was born two months before me. :)

Lydia Kang said...

Hey, the older you get, the more you'll love being mistaken for a younger person.

I'm (ahem) nearing forty in the next couple of years, and sometimes at work people think I'm a med student (they're usually in their early to mid-twenties)

Usually I reply with a huge smile and say, "THANKS!"

DaniSue said...

Janet - I guess I should consider myself lucky I've never been mistaken for a middle schooler! 20's not bad, thanks!

Lindsay - Glad I'm not the only one :)

Lydia - I have to say based on what I can tell from your picture, I would mistake you for being in your mid twenties too!