Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Attraction: Only about Body Parts?

Romance Vs. Character in Liturature and Real Life

Is attraction only about body parts?

When I recently wrote a romance story for a women's magazine, I knew I needed to show attraction between the man and woman. But I had an issue with that idea.

Our society focuses far too much on image instead of character. The huge city my husband and I lived in most of our adult lives had a gym on every corner and healthy foods in the restaurants, but for the wrong reasons. Everyone wanted to have a skinny, buff body so they could look like a movie star. Not to live longer so their spouses wouldn't be left alone, or so they could contribute their gifts to the world around them. But to look good. To create an image instead of building a character.

That's just wrong. We are more than bodies with parts to look at. We are sprits and souls, minds and hearts, dreams and plans and fears and hopes. So I decided to fight against the focus on image when I wrote my romance story.

My loyal, kind husband reading to our grand kids--this attracts me!

I mentioned lovely blue eyes flecked with amber, and a smile that turned knees to jello. But I also focused on character qualities like loyalty to family, wisdom, and a sense of humor. 

Character should count more than image. In real life, it does. I'd rather have a fat, kind friend than a pretty, gossipy one. Or a faithful, plain-looking spouse than a buff philanderer. Even a C student child with an obedient spirit trumps a smart, sassy pants.

Because God looks on the heart, not the outward appear ace. And His love is the greatest romance of all time.

Have you noticed  a shift away from character to image in our society? How about in the books you read? What character quality most attracts you to a person?


  1. Jeanette: This shift seems to have started about the time I graduated from high school, that's 55 years ago. Maybe it was going on before but I never noticed it. Most of the guys I dated were average looking by today's standards. I don't watch a lot of the new movies because of all the emphasis on outward beauty. I believe that Ingrid Bergman had a classic beauty about herself. So did Lauren Bacall. Humphrey Bogart has his own attractive qualities. James Stewart does also. Yes, that makes me old. Sometimes, I wonder if I was born too late. Peace and blessings.

  2. Great post, Jeanette. It makes me think of Dr. ML King's quote about judging people by content of character and not color of skin.


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