Dating while in quarantine – what to say

posted 3 months ago in Relationships
Post # 46
Member
321 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2021

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cart :  Yes, thanks for bringing this back up. The reason I mentioned it in the first place (and stated in my original response also) was that I think you’d have at least SOME idea of these things about a person from a dating profile and, yes, from a video chat.

Post # 47
Member
321 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2021

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anonymousbee001 :  You assume I have preferences around body type?…

And are you saying that loving someone fat is “settling”? Ouch.

I’m not telling anyone to do anything. I’m questioning and discussing, on an internet discussion forum. (And maybe hitting some nerves). 

And I never said weight and health aren’t connected at all, no.

Post # 48
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931 posts
Busy bee

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soonzak :  

You’ve hyper-focused on weight (which I haven’t even mentioned in any of my posts), and this tells me a lot about your motives, and not answered my original question:

What is fair and unfair in dating? Unfair to whom?

What is the person being passed over (because of any characteristic they might possess) losing by not getting to go out with that person?

There are nearly 8 billion people on the planet. Why on earth would they be missing out by not getting to go on a date with a person whose criteria they do not meet?

And you’re right. There was a time when being plump was widely considered attractive. I can tell you for a fact that I know numerous men who still consider it so. I know numerous overweight women who are happily married to great guys.

So why are you so insistent about this? What is actually unfair about people having preferences?

Post # 49
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1388 posts
Bumble bee

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soonzak :   Please don’t miquote me. Weight and education levels were examples. 

You wrote the following: “Regarding education level or white/blue collar job and so on, yeah, I also think the same thing, that people should give people a chance IF they are checking all the other boxes.”

Saying someone else should consider a partner that doesn’t meet their specifications (whether it’s attractiveness, education, humor, etc) is suggesting that they settle (this hues closely to the definition of “settling” and shouldn’t be controversial). I agree with indigoobee, you seem fixated on weight. Maybe someone being passed over for a date because of their weight is unfair–so what?

Post # 50
Member
321 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2021

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indigobee :  Apologies for not keeping posts straight.

My motives? Ok, this is getting good. lol.

I think it is unfair for people’s dating preferences to be based on stereotypes, and on characteristics that people cannot change about themselves. This includes height, weight, race, hair color, etc.

Not sure how I can be plainer?

 

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anonymousbee001 :  The “so what?” for me comes back to the social justice issue. If you want me to say, “sure, I think it’s perfectly fine if people discriminate against other people because of their height, weight, race, hair color, etc.,” then sorry, you’re not going to get that from me.

Post # 51
Member
1388 posts
Bumble bee

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soonzak : Is it unfair that Leo Dicaprio only dates models? Probably. But then what is the policy prescription? Should we force people to date someone that is overweight, even if they don’t find  that body type attractive? If I hate when someone sings off-tune am I not allowed to discriminate against the tone-deaf when choosing a life partner? Of course people should not discriminate when considering job applicants (by the way, people are selected legally all of the time for employment based on characteristics they cannot control), but suggesting people are wrong to be discriminant when consider romantic partners is invasive.

Post # 52
Member
321 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2021

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anonymousbee001 :  Policy, like, are you asking if I think there should be laws ensuring people aren’t discriminated against for dates the same way there are laws protecting people from discrimination in employment?

I just… don’t see how that could be enforceable or how that is the end you’re getting out of what I’m saying. lol. There are also different connotations to being discriminate, as an adjective, and discriminating, as a verb.

There used to be miscegenation laws. Same-sex marriage used to be illegal. Do I think progress in those areas is a good thing? Yes. Do I think people should be forced to date someone of a different race or someone of a different gender than they prefer? No. Because that’s preposterous. People have free will. The changes in laws I mentioned have been towards providing *more* freedom for people to exercise their free will.

I think that *ideally* people should not discriminate based on height, weight, race, and so on, when it comes to romantic partners or otherwise. The only way I see to make progress when it comes to changing people’s beliefs and personal choices like this, however, is through speaking up and having conversations.

Post # 53
Member
1388 posts
Bumble bee

 

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soonzak :  Well, even such law were enforceable, it would still be problematic. If you aren’t willing to pro-offer a policy prescription, it sounds more like you have a hazy idea of how you think the world should operate, and you are making suggestions or recommendations based on your ideal rather than how the world does operate.

When you mean “ideally”, what are you optimizing? Are you optimizing the overall happiness of society? The dispersion in happiness? If it’s the former, I can envision a scenario where dating is costly and people are more likely to be compatible with those of similar education levels or activity levels; thus vetting dates by education level or weight would be optimal, because as a society it would result in more matches and better matches, and thus result in a happier society. Indeed, even if we were factoring in the latter, vetting on criteria such as education level and weight could be optimal.

Post # 54
Member
931 posts
Busy bee

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soonzak :  

Yes, I got that the first time you explained it.

What I want to know is what you mean by “unfair.” That’s what I’ve yet to see you explain. 

What is fairness when it comes to dating? A person dating a wide variety of people of different heights, body weights, etc.? Would that satisfy your notions of fairness?

Or would you prefer that people not consider characteristics of height or weight in a partner at all? Is that what you mean by fair?

And why is that fair? Why is that a good thing? That is what I would like you to answer, please.

Post # 55
Member
1609 posts
Bumble bee

This discussion is reminding me of a different thread from awhile back. There was a discussion about how bees would feel about dating a bisexual person. A lot of people said they wouldn’t do it because they’d always be wondering if the person was truly satisfied. Then other people said that’s discriminatory and based in harmful stereotypes about bisexual people (that they’re chronic cheaters/wanderers, always wondering if the grass is greener, etc.).

My kneejerk reaction was that people have every right to be discriminatory when it comes to dating! Don’t tell me who I can or can’t be attracted to or willing to date! If I’m not comfortable dating a bisexual person that is entirely my prerogative.

And I still feel that way – it IS entirely my prerogative. But at the same time, that thread forced me to confront some uncomfortable things about myself, and some stereotypes that I had been subconsciously subcribing to.

Point being, I agree with @soonzak that it’s good to have conversations about these things. If you’re attracted to specific qualities (whether it’s a physical quality like tallness or fitness, or something like race or sexuality) to the point that you would write someone off immediatey if they didn’t have that quality, I just don’t think it hurts to do some self reflection about that. Like, perhaps you really are just genetically wired to like tall, fit men. Or maybe you feel that way because society tells us that fat people are lazy and short men aren’t manly, and we have internalized those messages.

Post # 56
Member
90 posts
Worker bee

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emilyofnewmoon :  

I don’t think anyone is saying that people should feel, or be, forced to date someone they aren’t attracted to.

Rather, they should question if any of the things their attraction is based on are unfounded or really trivial. 

To take your example of bisexual people. Someone might rule out dating a bisexual person because they believe stereotypes they have heard. 

If they examine the basis of those beliefs, they might find that some of those beliefs lack truth, and that may change their opinion on dating bisexual people. Then, they would be able to evaluate how attractive a potential partner is to them more accurately. 

If someone finds taller people attractive, examining why this is the case may or may not change their opinion while dating. But I bet that most bees would say they wouldn’t leave their spouse if they somehow became a couple of inches shorter – because love and compatibility is based on a whole lot more that one aspect of someones body. If you let one aspect of “attractiveness” determine whether you date someone, you’ll probably miss out on some great people just because they’re 5’8″ not 6’0″.

Post # 57
Member
1609 posts
Bumble bee

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oatmilk :  I agree with you 100%. This is exactly the point I was trying to make…maybe I didn’t word it well lol. 

Of course no one should be “forced” to date anyone else, that’s ridiculous. But it’s still good to examine why we’re attracted (or repelled) by certain attributes, and to what extent those feelings are based in harmful stereotypes we’ve unconsciously internalized.

Post # 58
Member
90 posts
Worker bee

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emilyofnewmoon :  

I definitely didn’t think you were saying that. I started typing a general comment, and then saw your comment, so started talking about what you were saying. The two got kind of muddled together. I agree with you!

Post # 59
Member
321 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2021

Why do I feel like I’m being trolled?

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anonymousbee001 :  “it sounds more like you have a hazy idea of how you think the world should operate, and you are making suggestions or recommendations based on your ideal rather than how the world does operate” <– Yes, that is exactly what I’m doing. Trying to do what I can to create an “ideal” world, if you want to put it like that. “Ideal” = fair, equitable, just; a world where people aren’t judged on stereotypes or on qualities/appearance they can’t control.

Other people’s happiness is not something I have any control over, and making people happy isn’t actually an aim that entered my mind during this exchange.

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indigobee :  “What is fairness when it comes to dating? A person dating a wide variety of people of different heights, body weights, etc.? Would that satisfy your notions of fairness?”

Sure, I think that would be a great idea if people did that!

“Or would you prefer that people not consider characteristics of height or weight in a partner at all?”

Yeah, that would be even better!

“And why is that fair? Why is that a good thing?”

Because I believe it is wrong to judge people on things they cannot control and to dismiss people based on stereotypes. <3

 

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emilyofnewmoon :  As a bi woman, THANK YOU! 😀 That’s so awesome it sounds like you’ve found it worthwhile to think deeply about the source of some biases you might have absorbed unknowingly.

Post # 60
Member
1331 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: City, State

I think people should be more discerning when picking a partner, not less. 

Figuring out what your true preferences are, honoring them, and being transparent about your interest is much fairer to everyone than doing what I’ve seen some people do time and time again:  dating people who don’t have a certain religion/ ethnic or racial background/ education/ income/ weight for years… but never marrying them because ultimately, they want to be married to someone with XYZ123 characteristics. 

I don’t think @soonzak is advocating for that approach, but I will say that being open-minded to someone who doesn’t have the characteristics you find important is cruel.  If you don’t want to marry someone with a certain BMI, or you can’t picture yourself married to a Mormon, don’t date them.  If you know you don’t want to have sex with someone who is shorter than you, don’t date them. If you know you could never accept someone’s bisexuality, don’t date them.  Other people’s time and hearts are on the line. 

If anyone on the board is considering this, don’t. Nobody wants to be the person you date to prove to yourself you’re not a bigot. 

It’s not unlike interviewing people you know you won’t hire. It’s effed up.

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