Attraction is about sex, or vice versa. And lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual and pansexual are just some of the terms we use to describe our sexual orientation so we can navigate relationships more readily.
But now, to add confusion to chaos, there is new nomenclature for those who find intelligence attractive: sapiosexuality.
A bona fide sapiosexual sees a person’s intelligence as their single most important trait.
Though the term was traced back to 2002 in a Livejournal blog post by a user named Wolfieboy, it first rose to prominence in 2014 when the dating site OKCupid augmented its standard list of sexual orientation offerings users could identify with to include those like asexual, demisexual, heteroflexible, homoflexible, pansexual, queer, questioning and — last but not least — sapiosexual.
The Sapio: Intelligent Dating app, which was launched less than two months ago to cater to such a crowd and put out a teaser on AppStore: “Sick of superficial hookup apps? True matches are also an attraction to how someone thinks, how they behave, and who they are at deeper levels,” describes itself as “an evolution in dating apps, where physical and intellectual attraction are put on an equal level.”
Interestingly, sapiosexuality has acquired a formidable following, with some 9,000 OKCupid users identifying as sapiosexuals since 2014 and over 12,500 likes on a dedicated Facebook page featuring a picture of Albert Einstein — which is not too bad for a sexual orientation that some of us may not have ever been aware existed.
Still, some argue that being attracted to intelligence doesn’t qualify as a sexual orientation, and claim that it is just one more way to exclude or discriminate against individuals based on their class and mental abilities.
Beneath one Buzzfeed personality quiz entitled “Are you a sapiosexual?” a Facebook user wrote: “Sapiosexual: I’m an entitled, classist, elitist rebranded as a lover of intellect!” while another wrote: “No. Wanting to be with someone who’s intelligent or educated, or just being attracted to intelligence, is not a sexual orientation. It’s called having personal preferences.”