General Question

Ltryptophan's avatar

If you could never look in the mirror again how would it change you?

Asked by Ltryptophan (10839points) May 28th, 2011

Mirrors are outlawed, or proscribed in some fashion that makes them rare enough that you will never see yourself again. Also looking at yourself in pictures is also taboo in this reality.

So now what? Does it change anything for you? Would it make you happy, sad, desperate. Would it change relationships?

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30 Answers

Ajulutsikael's avatar

It wouldn’t change me much since I generally don’t look in mirrors much anyways. I was the only girl in high school that didn’t carry a compact on me because I didn’t wear make up and didn’t care to. Didn’t want to always look at my face either. There is no point in it.

AshLeigh's avatar

It would be really weird…

Hibernate's avatar

It wouldn“t bother me .. though I had to look in the water for the shaving.

Porifera's avatar

I would be very distressed. I look at myself in the mirror several time throughout the day. I love makeup and check on it during the day. I also look at my face in the car mirror before I get out. Knowing I look good gives me more confidence to face the world and start my day.
If I were living in your virtual world, I would try to catch a glimpse of my face as reflected on a water pond. But most likely appearence and looks the way we know them would not be the same, so I’m sure makeup would not be a popular thing. Althouhg come to think of it, I’m sure a lot of tribes in Africa don’t have mirrors and they do pay a lot of attention to their face painting, etc. I’m sure they take the other members’ word that they look good.

Ltryptophan's avatar

One is not allowed to stare into reflective surfaces at all in this instance. Catching a glimpse of yourself in a reflective surface is no problem. Staring at said surface is absolutely forbidden. And you don’t feel bad about that in a way that would make you revolt. That is the rules. You can’t look in the mirror, but you are going to go on living, and not try to fight for a society where you can. You are just going to resign yourself to not seeing yourself anymore. So, you don’t have to worry about the hows and whys of what has made it where you can’t look in the mirror. Feel free to consider the good old days when you could see yourself. Even look at the old pictures of yourself, but no new ones.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

It would become a real challenge when driving a car.

Ltryptophan's avatar

@Pied_Pfeffer reflective surfaces are unavoidable. Somehow for this exercise you will have to limit yourself, and consider that if the situation were real you would successfully police yourself.

There are ways to avoid putting yourself in this situation no matter what. The exercise is going through life with no mirror to check your appearance. Now, I can see where anyone would want to devise any way they could to avoid that, but this question is about what it would be like if you actually faced it.

WillWorkForChocolate's avatar

Not possible unless one loses one’s eyesight.

Ltryptophan's avatar

Maybe if I constrain you to a time period, for one person that would help.

For one year you have decided not to look at yourself, particularly your face. How do you think that will affect you?

Then if you can handle that, just keep expanding the timeframe until you get to never again in your contemplation. Thanks…

YARNLADY's avatar

It wouldn’t change me a bit. I’m not much for looks.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

In that case, I would become reliant on others to provide feedback on my appearance, which in many cases, I already am. For example, if an undergarment is suddenly on public display, what does this bump on on the back of my neck look like, etc. The only thing that comes to mind that I would need another’s help with plucking a few stray hairs on my face.

I just don’t look in the mirror much. I gave up make-up, a hair dryer and curling iron, and contact lenses a couple of years ago. When the vanity mirror in the bathroom gets used, it is primarily because it is there, not out of necessity.

nailpolishfanatic's avatar

It would be so weird and difficult. My eyebrows would be scary if I could never look in a mirror again.

lloydbird's avatar

I’d have to shave by looking into a puddle. Same for combing my hair.

Porifera's avatar

@lloydbird It is against the rules to look at one’s self in water.
@nailpolishfanatic Gave you GA because it made me laugh :)

Sunny2's avatar

I’d stop spending time fussing with my hair. Any makeup I wore would probably be crooked or unevenly applied. I’d buy clothes for how they feel on my body. How they look on me wouldn’t be a factor. . . . . I’d have to find some reflecting surface. . . .maybe a still pond in the backyard. . . . with a high fence around it. I could disguise it as an outhouse with a quarter moon cut out and all. Oops, just read your rule against water. But they’ll never catch me!

mazingerz88's avatar

How can I find Snow White now?!

Seriously, I would like to try and experiment not seeing myself for a year. Only then would I be able to answer this question better.

nailpolishfanatic's avatar

@Porifera Thank you. I also gave you a GA for saying that.

rock4ever's avatar

There’s still puddles, glass, cell phone screens, and many other reflective objects. I would have to say though that it would make me feel a little sad because I love looking at my eyes in the mirror. As weird as that may be.

gondwanalon's avatar

I might forget just how ugly and old I look.

marinelife's avatar

Not at all.

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SavoirFaire's avatar

Shave my head or have my wife comb my hair for me. That’s all I use a mirror for.

Nullo's avatar

Shaving would be tricky at first. I have rebellious hair, too, and I use the mirror to target problem areas.
Really, it wouldn’t be that hard to track down a reflective surface if I needed one.

zenvelo's avatar

My mustache would be all uneven, and I would have gashes and hairy spots from wild shaving.

There are self love issues related to being able to really look at oneself in the mirror. For a long time it was very difficult for me to look in the mirror for much more than shaving and combing my hair.

downtide's avatar

I would be sad, because I’m just starting transition, and I’d never see myself as I really should be, in 3–5 years time.

_zen_'s avatar

I don’t need a mirror.

tomatrondroid's avatar

It wouldn’t change my life much at all – not for the worse, anyway. If this reality applied for everyone then it would make my life better; no one would be self-conscious, and everyone would be less concerned with their aesthetics.

Porifera's avatar

@tomatrondroid I think concerns for one’s aesthetics and ppearence are not directly related to mirrors and how we see ourselves, but rather to how others see us and for that you don’t need a mirror. African and indigenous cultures who don’t use mirrors take extreme pride in their appearence which carries a variety of symbols within their cultures—as it does in ours.

tomatrondroid's avatar

@Porifera I thought of that before I posted, and I suppose I should have clarified. It wouldn’t irradiate the problems of appearance related self-esteem problems; however I’m sure it would, in some scenarios, help. Sure; you couldn’t reassure yourself when insulted, but you would have less doubt when complimented. I’m sure people would still take pride in their appearance; It would just become less important. No photos or evidence would ever exist, so people would be more confident and outgoing. Just my two cents.

Porifera's avatar

@tomatrondroid I understand. Your 2 + my 2 = a wider view of the topic in hand, Not right or wrong answers.

Welcome to Fluther! :)

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