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Huskies in Heat: Nonbinary Dating Tips

Huskies in heat graphic created by Carly Busfield.
Carly Busfield
Huskies in heat graphic created by Carly Busfield.

Let’s face it. Dating is a strange thing to navigate for anyone of any gender, race, sexuality, background, etc. No matter who you are, you are deserving of a healthy, fulfilling, safe, and loving relationship. These are a few helpful tips for people who are nonbinary (and folks who use neutral pronouns such as they/them, etc.) to stay safe, have a healthy relationship, and stay true to themselves. 

1.) Utilize displaying pronouns  (if you feel safe and comfortable enough to) on dating apps and ask pronouns once in the chat. 

It may feel awkward at first to ask pronouns or have them displayed in your bio but it may be necessary for someone to understand you better. If you aren’t out/or aren’t as comfortable displaying pronouns on your profile/bio– mention it in the chat once you do feel safe and comfortable to do so. And there’s absolutely no rush for it– but if you do feel comfortable, that can help whoever is trying to match with you get a better scope of how to properly address you. (Obviously, please do not do this if you aren’t out yet and you feel like you’d be in danger if you would come out!) 

2.) Be open and honest about your views about LGBT+ / Queer acceptance with your partner. 

If you have differing views, it may not be a good match in the long run if they cannot accept your identity and refuse to use your preferred name and pronouns. First and foremost, your safety and happiness comes first and you don’t have to conform to a certain standard or diminish your truest self in order for someone to love you. Where someone won’t (love you for who you are), someone else out there will. 

3.) Think about what YOU are looking for in a partner and what titles you may want to establish in a relationship. (partner, girlfriend, boyfriend, significant other, etc.) 

Think about your tastes and who your ideal partner is, what are they like? Are they funny? Artsy? Motivated? Intelligent? Think about what kind of a person that you’d want in vague terms. Additionally, Some nonbinary folks are totally okay with the terms “boyfriend” or “girlfriend” – heck, I’m even one of them! The term “Girlfriend” makes me feel totally comfortable, but so does “partner” and “significant other”. Now, just because I feel this way, doesn’t mean others do as well- everyone’s different in that regard but when in doubt: the neutral “partner” seems to always do the trick, but definitely ask and communicate, it’s much easier that way! 

4.) Safety is the ultimate priority.

The minute you see red flags, run. Red flags may look green at the start, but once things don’t feel right, you’ll know it. Trust yourself, trust your gut, trust the friends and family who love you if they also see signs that someone isn’t good for you or risking your safety. 

5.) Consider dating inside the LGBT+ community and branch out to safe allies. 

Maybe don’t completely rule out straight/cisgender folks, but do be safe and trust yourself if/when they may show clear signs of not being respectful. i.e: making fun of/bullying you for using they/them pronouns, being hateful towards you, they may want you to change your pronouns to suit THEIR needs– don’t. 

6.) Watch out for “chasers”. 

Yikes. This one I see a bit too often. A “chaser” in this case, is someone who goes after nonbinary or other LGBT+ folks because they fetishize them and overly sexualize them and are just dating them for the “fantasy” rather than genuine human connection. These people may seem sweet at first, but they may talk about your identity (at you) 24/7, talk about nonbinary memes or stereotypes a lot, talk about how “hot” you are based on your identity, etc. It comes in many forms but please try to avoid chasers. 

7.) Be honest with your partner about your needs. 

Communicate! Communicate! Communicate! 

That’s all there is to it. Communication is hard but so are relationships. If you want a relationship to work, you need to TALK. It’s difficult and sometimes uncomfortable, but it needs to be done. 

Asking questions doesn’t make you seem ignorant, it makes you come off as caring and communicative. Setting boundaries aren’t “mean” they’re crucial. End of story. 

8.) Be unapologetically you. 

At the end of the day, you know yourself best. Never settle for anyone who won’t give you the love you deserve, and you may be heartbroken a few times, and you may fail- and sometimes others may break your heart but you deserve a love that will leave you happy and fulfilled at the end of a long day, and you deserve someone that you can be your true self around, without holding anything back. Love will come and love will go, but when it’s right, you’ll know it! 

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About the Contributors
Kenna DeValor, Multimedia Journalist
Carly Busfield, Co-Editor-in-Chief

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