Social Question

Ranimi23's avatar

Why do you stare at other people?

Asked by Ranimi23 (1870 points ) October 15th, 2010

What is the main reason for you to stare at someone?

I have that feeling, and I was told by someone looking from the side, there is someone at my workplace, staring at me quite a bit. But when I turn my head, she immediately change direction so I will not see her doing that.

Interpretation of this behavior is not clear to me. Why stare? Why not just walk, talk, ask? The truth, that makes me feel not so good, maybe something wrong with me.

Staring is such behavior that is not successful in my opinion, especially that you can give it many interpretations. What is your main reason? I try to avoid this kind of thing.

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40 Answers

Foolaholic's avatar

Initially to make them feel uncomfortable, thereby making both of our days a little more interesting. In the long run, though, we make the best of friends.

weeveeship's avatar

Sometimes, I inadvertently stare when I’m bored and sleepy.

risingonashes's avatar

Sometimes I see people or things and I cannot help but stare, however in a work place environment where you see the same people everyday I am not sure. Maybe you should approach her and ask. I do not think she could take it as being any more rude than her staring you down constantly.

toaster's avatar

Lets face it, walking through NYC on any given day blows the doors off Animal Planet’s coverage of sperm whale migrations. Not downplaying the latter, just saying the expression of freedom in a liberal society provides many fascinating scenes.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

Guilty. I’ll be listening to someone talk or looking at an object, and then my mind wanders but my eyes don’t.

karemelia's avatar

I admit it, I sometimes stare at people. But only when there’s something so powerfully compelling about them it feels like my eyeballs are hooked and held tight so that I cannot look away! I do that thing you said, looking away as soon as the object of my rapt attention looks at me. But only for a second. The moment their glance at me ends, my gaze instantly rivets upon them again. I can’t help it! Trust me, if I had pics of the astonishing people who draw my stare, YOU also couldn’t keep from staring!

Just yesterday my eyeballs were hooked and reeled in by a twenty-something man with THE most amazing eyebrows! His entire face was incredible, like no face I have ever seen. His eyebrows were real, not drawn on, and were deeply, deeply arched, giving him a look of permanent surprise. I even tried to write about them, but words failed me. (A miracle, in itself.) His glowing amber eyes were HUGE, like headlights. Even without those crazy arched brows, his “made ya look” eyes and unique face would’ve made me stare.

I finally approached him with “I’m sorry about staring, but you have the MOST unusual eyes and eyebrows!! Well, I find your entire FACE so compelling I have trouble looking away.”

I told him he was stunning and beautiful, had a natural grace and elegance, and asked if he had considered modeling. Years ago, he said. Giving him the names of two well-known agencies, I encouraged him to find out if they might be interested in his memorable, attention-getting face.

I will not be surprised if I see him in a magazine one day….

Then there was the black teen-aged girl I saw on the bus. Spectacularly beautiful. She HAD to descend from royalty, this girl. Queenly carriage, swan neck. The set of her jaw and the way she held her head. Radiant, coppery skin, intense, glowing eyes. Full, authoritative mouth you could almost hear commanding her subjects. She must have felt my eyes upon her. She never even glanced at me. With her singular beauty she was probably accustomed to people staring….

mandybookworm's avatar

I find people generally interesting to watch, so being nosy I stare at them. Sometimes my mind wanders, sometimes I’m in awe of them, and sometimes they are JUST SO CUTE.

seazen's avatar

Breasts, mostly.

tifa's avatar

..usually when theres something shocking and no matter how gross it is… its usually so shocking i can’t turn away thats why i stare.

FutureMemory's avatar

Zenmaster speaks the truth, as usual.

seazen's avatar

@FutureMemory I can’t help it – they’re always on my mind. Luckily, my S/O’s are spectacular. In fact, I kid around a lot in writing – in real life I am practically glued to them – when away, I fantasize about them. Angie Jolie got nothing on ‘em. Truth.

FutureMemory's avatar

Dude I am so right there with you on this one. Three cheers for boobies! Hip hip hooray!

seazen's avatar

Hip hip hooray.

Rollalong's avatar

I am just generally interested in human beings, how we are all so diverse and we each have a uniqueness about us. People watching is one of my favorite things to do, I’d rather observe than act in a situation.

Cruiser's avatar

Locking eyes will most times cause one to look away….never quite understood this tendency. I find it interesting to look and watch this reaction happen almost every time.

palerider's avatar

i rarely stare at anyone. it’s impolite. but quite i often i feel like that 80’s song, maybe some of you know it…. I always feel like somebody’s watchin me, and I have no privacy, oh, OH, Oh.

woodcutter's avatar

its just another form of stimulation to the curious mind and perfectly natural. Its those who are in traffic ahead of me slowing to a stall staring at a wreck that cheese me off. Drive already!

cookieman's avatar

‘C-c-cuz they’re purrrty.

YARNLADY's avatar

I really try not to, and usually succeed. I only stare at things that seem out of the ordinary.

BarnacleBill's avatar

I usually am attracted by symmetry or lack thereof of someone’s face. I generally star if I think they look like they have character. But my mind is elsewhere.

Ranimi23's avatar

This is not the first time I get the stare thing from women. I get it also from girls once I wanted, but didn’t won’t me at all, so I didn’t stay in touch and hung up any kind of communication with them. This was my way of saying – don’t want you as JUST a friend, no way.

I may stare on a good looking girl, but she will never notice me doing it.

seazen's avatar

^ Is that with Google translate – cuz it doesn’t always work.

downtide's avatar

If I’m staring at someone it’s almost certainly accidental. I’m usually just trying to figure out if that dark blurry shape is actually a person or something else.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

I try not to and don’t like being caught but my eyesight these days is crap so if someone catches my eye it’s because I think they’re attractive or very unusual and I want to know what exactly I’m looking at.

ucme's avatar

As has already been mentioned, tits! I mean, dey so wuvely :¬)

NaturallyMe's avatar

Because i like what i’m looking at. Either a woman with beautiful hair (something i really want), or a woman with a cute/pretty figure, or a guy with nice longish hair, or someone wearing a cute outfit. Things like that.

Blackberry's avatar

I think they’re attractive (men and women), I think they’re clothes are nice or ugly etc. It’s just observation.

FutureMemory's avatar

@NaturallyMe or a guy with nice longish hair

My name is FM, come to this site often?

Nullo's avatar

Sometimes your eyes will catch a particularly interesting feature or set of features while the polite part of your brain is pondering work or dinner or something.

tigress3681's avatar

I dont normally stare (to me staring is when you space out looking at something), but I am sure to onlookers it may appear that way. Usually, I see something interesting about the person, that I want to understand better… say a skin issue like a burn or missing leg or something. I look for clues as to what may have happened and maybe the techniques used to cope with the thing I am looking at. Not the most sensitive but I do it out of curiosity not shock.

rovdog's avatar

I don’t find much wrong with staring at people. I’m kind of shocked that people find it so offensive. I look at interesting objects and people all the time. I also don’t find it weird if someone is looking at me, unless I suspect some kind of intent. I think we should be free to observe our environment. I don’t know maybe I’m inadvertently making people uncomfortable but I do think so.

busta21's avatar

i stare for no reason some times, other times I’m day dreaming, and also if I want to get on some one’s nerves.

Justice13's avatar

…I stare because I’m paranoid…

awacting's avatar

I stare because I like to create characters for random people that i will probably never see again in my life. But in the workplace? I stare to find out what they do when they think nobody is looking. Chew gum, bite their nails, pick their nose, zone out. I usually get some secrets out of this :)

Kayak8's avatar

I stare because I paint and draw people. There can be characteristics of a face that are compelling and I stare until I can take in why it is compelling—sometimes it is beauty, sometimes it is something more subtle (e.g., Prince Charles’ eyebrows after he has gotten some sun offer a great deal of contrast and texture but he is not handsome to me). It can be the way the light catches a person’s eyes or the way they hold their head.

There was a photo in the book “Alive!” about the soccer team in the Andes plane crash. I was about 12 or so when I first saw it, but this man has a halo of light colored curls, his lips are sunburnt and look like they hurt and the vacancy in his eyes was so haunting, I couldn’t look away from the photo. He appeared both angelic and completely lost all at the same time.

XxSHYxxGUYxX's avatar

She might fancy you! That’s the reason shes staring at you…

xjustxxclaudiax's avatar

I dont really like to stare, just because I feel its rude. I dont like it when people stare at me..and I get it alot..I have 3 facial piercings (septum and dimples) and natural dreadlocks, so people do tend to just stand there and stare..sometimes even lose track of their convos just to look at me…its funny at first, but when they follow you or start whispering behind your back, it gets a little annoying. I wish the world would be more open minded about different things…Im not hurting anybody, dont understand why people act so surprised…

lovespurple's avatar

There is a difference between the activity of “people watching” (which is actually quite fun in my opinion) and staring which I find just rude.

But as @weeveeship said, if I do stare it’s inadvertently when I’m bored and sleepy.

And if the person notices, and they are cute, well then I smile :)

HungryGuy's avatar

I usually am not even aware that I’m doing it. Usually (on the bus or something) I am just staring off into space and realize I’m looking at someone when I catch them glaring back at me.

Hibernate's avatar

Sometimes people tell me that I stare.
If I think about it I do not stare I just loose in my own thoughts. [ they used lighters to test my reaction and they saw i wasn’t paying attention to the flame ^^ ]

and like @HungryGuy said Sometimes I find myself looking nowhere ^^

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