The Curse Of Being A Woman With A Baby Face

The Curse Of Being A Woman With A Baby Face ©iStock/keira01

My face makes me look a whole lot younger than I am, which is a bit of a problem for a 30-year-old woman. I’ve always looked younger, but I naively thought that as soon as I turned 30, the problem would disappear. It hasn’t. Here are the struggles of having a baby face:

  1. You can’t even buy lottery tickets without ID, never mind alcohol. Most women in their 20s know that you have to bring ID each time you want to buy alcohol, just in case the cashier asks. However, with a baby face, it’s not just alcohol you have to consider — things like lottery tickets and cigarette lighters all have age restrictions, too. You know you have a baby face if you’ve ever been asked to show ID when buying a set of nail clippers.
  2. People talk to you as though you’re a child. Women with baby faces have a million different examples of times at work when a customer asked if they were a student on work placement, or when you were brought the children’s menu in a restaurant. You find it so cringe-worthy having to explain that you’re actually an adult, but your friends will think it’s hilarious!
  3. Nobody respects your opinion or takes you seriously. Easily the worst part of having a baby face is that in group situations, people will dismiss your opinions or talk over the top of you because they just assume you’re too young to know what you’re talking about. It happens ALL THE TIME, both in social situations and in the workplace. Especially for those of us with introverted personalities, this can really wear you down over time and reduce your confidence.
  4. Bosses overlook you. One of the disadvantages of looking younger is that it can affect your career progression, especially if your boss doesn’t really know you well. Even if your boss is a douchebag, it’s really up to you in this situation to make sure they know who you are and what you’re capable of. I was once passed over for a promotion, and when I asked for feedback, my manager told me it was because Claire was older and had more experience. I was older than Claire!
  5. You’re approached by all the wrong types of men. Looking really young means you attract two types of guys. There are the guys who are really young — teenagers still wearing their dad’s aftershave —and creepy older guys who are into young girls. Just ew.
  6. People assume you’re lying and laugh at you. When people aren’t ignoring you, they’re laughing at you. For some reason, people find it hilarious when you say, “I’ve been driving for 12 years,” or, “Before I started here, I worked in marketing for 8 years.” Basically, life is just one big dose of social awkwardness.
  7. People judge you for having kids. When you’re a baby-faced mother, then you’ll know all about the disapproving stares and comments behind your back. Even if you don’t have children and happen to be walking next to your niece or little brother, then the reaction from people makes you feel like some sort of teen mom.
  8. Every day is a wardrobe dilemma. If you wear a pencil skirt and heels, people will assume you’re playing dress-up with your mom’s work clothes. You also have to avoid anything pink and glittery, as it makes you look like a Barbie princess.
  9. You’re often asked, “Is that your mom / dad?” When really it’s your younger sister or your boyfriend.
  10. Salesmen ask you if your parents are home. So do charity collectors, insurance guys, window cleaners, and religious nuts. Actually, this is one of the good things about looking younger!
  11. Of course, there are a few advantages to looking younger than your years. You don’t have to spend lots of money on anti-aging products (yet), for one — a few of my friends have already started on Botox, which I could never afford! Also, you can still get a few sneaky discounts on shopping and entertainment by asking for child prices or student deals.
Ailie is a freelance and creative writer living in Scotland. When she is not busy writing, she will likely be found taking part in political protests, competing in muddy obstacle courses, and climbing mountains.