Should you state your political views in your online dating profile?

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Politics are a sensitive issue, obviously. So when you’re trying to land yourself a date, a marriage or a relationship, should you talk about yours openly in your personal description or dating profile? Dating sites vary in their offerings when it comes to giving you the choice of listing your political leanings alongside things such as favourite music or whether or not you smoke or drink. It would seem that this is because the vast majority of people choose not to disclose their political views when dating online. In fact, recent research quoted in The Big Think has found that only 14% of online daters disclose their political views in their profiles. But considering the fact that most married couples share political views, you have to wonder why more people don’t put this in their profile. Even people who don’t see politics as an important activity (i.e. don’t particularly like debating politics with their partner) prefer to be with someone who shares their overall political views, so why don’t more people state theirs? The answer seems to lie in the fact that people are keen (desperate?) to find a partner and want to attract as big an audience as possible to their dating profile without forcing any difficult issues. Apparently, the less desperate you are to find someone, the more likely you are to express your political views. Older people are also more likely to express these views openly.

The Big Think article compares this to the fact that most people won’t state in their profile that they want to meet someone of their own race, but end up with people of their own race anyway. No one wants to come across like a racist, which is why people leave this information out of their profiles, while secretly only messaging people who fit the bill.

While mentioning your politics is not likely to make you come across as a bigot (unless your political leanings include bigotry), it would make you come across as actively political, which may well not be the case. Most people are not activists, though most do harbour opinions about the world. If you take the time to write about your views in your personal description (as opposed to or alongside things like hobbies, likes and dislikes) it sends a clear message of the role of politics in your life.

On the other hand, if your dating site allows you tick boxes, pull down menus or compatibility tests where you can quietly state your beliefs without making too much of a big deal out of it (such as on eHarmony), then I suggest you make use of it, unless you’re looking for a casual relationship or sex, or unless, of course, you genuinely don’t mind what your long-term partner’s political leanings might be.

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