I always Photoshop pictures of my girlfriend before I put them on Facebook. I take an outline of her jaw and pull one or two points out of place, or smudge a rhubarb blotch onto her laundry-white skin. Sometimes I drag the mole above her lip into just the wrong place, other times I distort her stomach into a doughy pillow.
I tell her I do it to stop my friends wanting to take her away from me, and she laughs and calls me cute, but she never distorts any pictures of me.
It makes me pretty uncomfortable, having such a beautiful girlfriend. Each time I kiss her pixel-perfect lips I fear it’ll be the last. Sometimes I sit up at night and go through the doctored pictures on my phone, thinking things might be better if I had a girl like that, with frizzy hair and a crooked nose, a gap in her teeth or uneven breasts.
She comments on some of the pictures: ‘Do you think I look cute?’ One day she even posted a picture on my timeline, showing her looking as ugly as a normal person, and I gave it a like. When she came through the door looking exactly like the photo, I fainted. She said the surgery had cost thousands.
I take her out everywhere with me now, and all my friends think she’s totally average. Sometimes we spend the evening trying to Photoshop her new face back into her old one, but we always end up laughing too much to manage it. Then she strokes my hooked nose and my bald patch, and says they’re cute. I kiss her stubby chin and protruding ears. They could be cuter.