What to do when your boyfriend doesn’t want you to wear heels because you are tall

This is usually an all-or-nothing problem. Maybe your man feels short and it hurts his pride, or maybe he just doesn’t want to reach to kiss you. Either way, if your boyfriend doesn’t want you wearing heels because you’re tall, it’s usually something that will always bother him, and any time you wear them.

To deal with this, you have a few choices. One, you can try to get at the “why” by asking him lots of questions. Does it make him feel like less of a man? Does he think you look bigger than he does? Are you really that much taller than him in your heels, or just bigger than the buck-twenty down the street?

Unless you’re a licensed therapist, this angle might get messy. And even if you do get at the heart of the matter, knowing why he doesn’t like it won’t give you any real solutions. If you really want to figure the thing out before it turns into resentment or a blow-out fight, decide which of these other options looks best:

1) Appease him.

Maybe it’s just not that big a deal to you. If heels aren’t your way of life, you can give him the win, and pawn your stash off to your girlfriends. Or, if you do feel a tug at the heart strings giving those stilettos up, see what you can get out of the bargain from your beau for playing nice.

Will he go shopping with you for some fancy new flats? Will he treat you to some regular pedicures to keep you feeling sexy all the way down to your feet? He might even like pampering you, especially after you’ve made this sacrifice without calling him out on how overly sensitive he’s being.

If you think your guy is being unfair, be careful here. Don’t appease him if you’ll end up resenting him later.

But when it comes to resentment, it might be you who’s overly sensitive. Be honest with yourself about whether your boyfriend is more important than your shoe collection. That said…if he is more important than your haircut, would you chop of your locks? Would you wear less makeup? Or more? Be sure to know how far you’re willing to go.

Another angle to pitch is that maybe you won’t slip on killer heels when you go out with him. But if you can still powerwalk in pumps at work, or dance those long legs off when you’re out with the girls, it could be a win-win for everyone.

2) Be bold: wear what you want and convince him it’s what he wants, too.

Is it fair for him to target your shoe stash? Is he being over-sensitive? It might not be the best tactic to call him out on it, but there are other ways to help him see the light.

If your boyfriend doesn’t like you wearing heels because of some deep-seated machismo, or a wounded sense of pride, he’s going to be a hard sell that your heels are actually hot. Try to soften him up with some things you know he’ll say yes to.

Do you think I’m beautiful, honey?

I feel so confident in these shoes. Boo, don’t you want me to feel confident?

Once you’ve gotten those knee-jerk “yes” answers, ask him about shorter heels. Or pull out your favorite pumps and tell him why you love them. His “I just don’t like it” attitude will pale in comparison to your sale of beauty, confidence and candor.

If your relationship is based on a “deal with it” premise of personal responsibility, there’s another way to go about this. Be sure to recognize how he feels, and tell him that you understand, but put your foot down afterward and tell him that your wardrobe was not curated to his preference.

Even if you come at him with this tactic, you can still try to get him on board. Use some of your sexiest heels in activities where he’s bound to have a good time—ahem, perhaps in the bedroom—and he’ll start to see them differently. This employs basic psychology. Just give it some time, and someday he will drool when he sees those shoes slip on.

Get your priorities figured out, make a choice, and do it.

Figure out what angle works for you, and don’t look back. If you’re tall, that’s obviously not going to change. And if you have a beautiful, brag-worthy collection of heels, that might be just as unlikely to change!

You might be more committed to your boyfriend than you are to your heels, but if you give them up be sure to find other ways to feel sexy right down to your toes. You might even see your man foot the bill if it’s him you’re doing it for!