Thursday, February 7, 2013

Poly People Have Friends Too

Ever since I broke up with my longtime girlfriend in 2009, I've used OKCupid as a means for meeting people.  It's primarily a dating site, but includes options for platonic liaisons, friendships, 'activity partners,' and things like that.

In relocating to a new city, I've mainly been using it for the latter with the hope (but not requirement) that perhaps one of those friendships might turn out to be something more.  Unfortunately listing myself as polyamorous and in a relationship has been a major setback.

I can understand the fear with which people might approach someone of that nature, not knowing anything about them, or not fully understanding the terms they've attached to themselves.  That doesn't do much to curb my frustration when the only response I get in a message is something like "sorry, I'm not into couples."  This strikes at me twice, not just because I am poly, but because I am also LGBT.

You see, one of the key methods in which the religious right has used to denigrate LGBT people is to identify them solely by their sexual practices, and not as loving, committed partners, know...actual human beings.  I feel the same way when people visit my profile (and I list that I'm looking for friends at least six times (seriously) in the first paragraph) and only see me in terms of my sexuality.  I can't help but picture the homophobic athlete that's afraid of getting leered at by gays in the locker room.  Get over yourself.

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