Age before beauty? When a newborn is not easy on the eyes

July 2, 2018

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder—and you usually can count on new moms and dads to think that their babies are pleasing to the eye. In fact, 82% say it’s love at first sight. But there’s another side to the “big reveal” that a good number of parents find embarrassing and don’t want to admit: The truth is that fully 18% of parents secretly believe that their wee one is a bit on the plain side (if not downright ugly), based on the findings of a study of 1,000 U.K. adults conducted in 2013 by Promotional Codes and posted on The Daily Mail.

Maybe the newborn has daddy’s nose and grandma’s mouth—and that’s not necessarily a good thing. Or maybe his or her face got “squished” coming out of the birth canal. Of the nearly one-fifth who admitted to being disappointed by the looks of their baby, more than half had discussed their feelings with their partners but only 8% said they had spoken to anyone else about it. Instead it seems the vast majority suffer their disappointment in silence, choosing to put on the brave face society expects.

One father of two who asked to remain anonymous told the news outlet: “There is a lot of pressure on new parents in all kinds of ways and this is something that remains taboo and just isn’t talked about.

“My daughter is three now and she is gorgeous,” he said, “but when she arrived she was the most disgusting little thing I’d ever seen. She had a face only a mother could love, but even my wife admitted she was ugly.

“She was our second child and we knew we were being objective because when our eldest girl was born we had been convinced she was beautiful. When number two arrived we both felt very differently.

“It doesn’t mean you love them any less of course. In fact it brings out some very intense feelings of protection. You really feel you have to root for them in life because they aren’t as good-looking.

He also admitted that the truth is not an option for friends and family, either. “You do get offended if anyone ever dares to suggest your baby isn’t beautiful.’

A spokesman for Promotional Codes, which fielded the research, commented,”’As human beings we are wired to love our babies and the poll overwhelmingly supports the theory that we all fall in love with our offspring at first sight.’But interestingly loving your baby doesn’t have to mean that you think it is beautiful. It seems that every parent feels a pressure to say their new baby is—but only four out of five actually believe it.

“Yet the remaining fifth who secretly feel their baby is ugly don’t love them any less and may even feel the need to spoil them more than they would a good-looking baby.”

Research contact: darren@promotionalcodes.org.uk

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