How to approach conversations around racial injustice while dating
As the Black Lives Matter movement has continued to gain momentum across the United States in the wake of the police killings of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd, you’ve probably noticed that you’ve been engaging in a lot of conversations about racial injustice and police reform with friends and family.
These conversations are no doubt incredibly important to have, especially as people strive to create a more just and equitable society to live in. But these crucial conversations aren’t just reserved for those you’re close with. If you’re single and actively on the market, you can also talk about Black Lives Matter on dating apps. Why? This ensures your values align with those you’re interested in dating.
How can you broach the topic of BLM?
One option of creating space to discuss issues related to Black Lives Matter on dating apps is to attach a #BlackLivesMatter badge to your profile and look for others who have done the same. OkCupid, in particular, makes it easy to let potential matches know that you stand in solidarity with BLM. OkCupid has also updated its matching process with new questions to screen whether matches actively support the Black Lives Matter movement.
Starting conversations about anti-racism on dating apps
If you don’t have much experience starting conversations about anti-racism, it’s helpful to ask a match direct questions about BLM after asking the usual getting-to-know-you questions. A good strategy when initiating conversations is to first put something out there about yourself and then ask a question to find out more about the other person. For instance, you can say, “I went to a Black Lives Matter protest this past weekend. How have you been getting involved?”
When discussing issues of race, it’s crucial that you make honesty a priority. If you’ve just started on a journey toward cultivating allyship, mention it. By having these conversations with potential matches, you’ll learn more about BLM and reaffirm where you stand values-wise.
What if your match disagrees with you?
What do you say if a match says that “all lives matter”? Remember that it’s completely okay to have this conversation. Don’t let the fear of discomfort hold you back. If a match disagrees with your stance on social justice and Black Lives Matter, you can decide how you want to proceed. You could, for example, unmatch them or wish them well and keep swiping. You could also see if a match is willing to talk about why they don’t agree with BLM. It can be worthwhile to engage them and challenge their assumptions.
Remember that having the hard conversations and upholding your values, even on dating apps, is a step in the right direction.