There are many different words that can be used to express appreciation for a man’s looks. Men can be hot, sexy, hunky, beefy, handsome, or even dapper. For whatever reason though, there’s one vernacular compliment that seems to inadvertently put-down as many men as it flatters. What’s the term? Aren’t you cute... ;)

How did it feel? Are you blushing and thoroughly charmed? Or do you feel totally emasculated? Herein lies the polarizing nature of the term cute, and its tapping into something much deeper.

One criticism that can be volleyed against the gay community is that it places on unjust importance on being “masc”. I think most of us agree that the entire spectrum of gender identity should be celebrated equally. But for some guys who consider themselves hyper-masc, ultra-hard daddies, being called “cute” can feel like an insult. When your identity is based on being the opposite of cute, the word becomes anathema.

However, even the most cold-blooded, battle-scarred manly man should not object to be called cute. If someone finds you cute, it should be received as an extremely high compliment--not matter your identity. A sense of cuteness is one of the deepest human feelings. Evolutionary speaking, we find babies cute so that we’ll love them and care for them, and in turn the human species prospers. So if you manage to tap into someone’s sense of cuteness, they must REALLY like you.

If a guy finds you cute, then not only does he find you attractive, but even further he is charmed by your mannerisms, dress, disposition, habits, and ideas. He is so deeply into the idea of you that he just wants to snuggle you like a puppy and make you feel happy. What could be so bad about that?

So if you’ve read this and still think you're too much of a badass to be cute, well I can say is--awww, that’s adorable, babe. ;)