High heel dilemma: ‘If the shoe fits’ only applies to tiny-toed Barbies

Dear Editor:

As graduation looms, I have begun transforming myself from a roll-out-of-bed, hoodie-and-jeans-wearing student to a professional-looking woman.  At first, I had only the interview suit.

But this year, I’ve had to dress for internships. I have been practicing being an adult — getting up early, wearing business clothes and commuting to work.  But I have not been able to handle one aspect of this new adultwear — the shoes.

As a woman, I am supposed to love shoes and have a closet full of them.  But I don’t and here’s why.  I have a normal shaped foot.  I don’t have a Barbie foot.  If you look in men’s shoe stores, all of the shoes look pretty similar — flat, thinner at the heel and wider as you head toward the toe.

Women’s shoe stores, on the other hand, appear to be selling an item for a different body part.  The women’s shoe store is a colorful parade of stilts.  I don’t know about other women, but my heels are not naturally 5 inches higher than my toes.  And I have five toes all in a row that do not form a point.

I tried on a pair of the popular platform heels, and while I expected my toes to be pinched and to lose my balance from the height, I was surprised by an even greater torture.  The heels were so high that my feet and calf muscles were completely flexed and could not relax until the shoes were removed.  Who can walk around like that?  Look, I know some women have no problem wearing these kinds of devices, but there must be other women like me out there, right?

The problem is if you don’t want to wear these stilts, there are very few options.  There are flats that look like they were made for a second-grader with a very large foot, or there are mannish shoes that have no feminine aspect whatsoever.

Is there nothing in between?  I want to dress like a professional woman while at work, but are these my only choices for footwear?  Surely, as women, we can find a way to look attractive and still be able to walk around.


Angela Boley
graduate student in law from Desoto

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