What Is Sapiosexuality? Is It A Real Sexual Orientation?
Some people may use the word "sapiosexuality" to explain how they feel attracted to others. These individuals may feel most attracted to another person when they perceive them as smart instead of basing attractions on looks. Although not a sexuality and not part of the LGBTQIA+ community, some people may use this term to better understand themselves and their attraction.
What Is The Definition Of Sapiosexuality?
The Merriam-Webster dictionary added the term "sapiosexual" to its directory in September 2020. "Sapio" is based on the Latin verb "sapere," which means "to be wise" or "to have sense." Sometimes referred to as "sapiophile," sapiosexuality means being sexually attracted to a person's intelligence.
A sapiosexual is aroused by how smart another person is. These individuals may not focus on looks or social norms as much as they focus on what a person thinks, says, and believes and whether these ideas are considered intelligent to them.
Some controversies surround sapiosexuality, as it is not a part of the LGBTQIA+ community and could be considered a natural human experience. In addition, the term can come with ableism, as there are many forms of intelligence, and some people living with cognitive or learning disabilities can be smart in unique ways. Intelligence is subjective, so sapiosexuality may be a personal preference instead of a sexuality.
What Does Research Say About Sapiosexuality?
The term "sapiosexual" is modern and surrounded by controversy. However, there have been several studies on this "sexuality."
One of the most extensive studies on sapiosexuality was conducted by Gilles Gignac, a researcher at the University of Western Australia, who created and conducted a survey for undergraduate students asking questions about attraction toward intelligence. The study revealed that most people did not consider intelligence the most critical factor in attraction, with other characteristics, like kindness and openness, being more attractive.
However, for 8% of the study's participants, "the perception of high levels of intelligence in another person was so substantial that it induced sexual arousal, more so than any other attribute." These people, according to the study, would be considered sapiosexuals.
The study found that attraction was not based on the highest IQ. Instead, people attracted to intelligence found IQs of around 120 (the 90th percentile) more attractive than 135 or higher.
How Do You Know If You're Attracted To Intelligence?
A few ways you might know you're attracted to the intelligence of others above other aspects can include the following:
- Intellectual debates sexually arouse you
- Deep conversations are more arousing than sexual foreplay for you
- You aren't attracted to individuals who aren't intellectually stimulating
- You are sexually attracted to intelligence, even if there's no physical or emotional connection
- You struggle to get sexually aroused unless your partner can carry on a conversation
Is Sapiosexuality A Sexual Orientation?
Because of the newness of sapiosexuality, there may be questions about its origins. Research has found that sapiosexuality is not a biological identity but a social one. Many sources believe it's more of a sexual preference than a sexual identity. Others consider it a subset of a sexual identity, a label that can be added to a primary sexuality. However, others believe it is a fetish, as it is often focused on an attribute that incites sexual attraction and arousal, a common trait of fetishes. Some dating apps include sapiosexual as an option, and one such app, Sapio, is specifically for sapiosexuals to find partners.
Why Is Calling Yourself Sapiosexual Controversial?
While finding intelligence sexy and arousing is healthy, some people feel that to declare oneself a sapiosexual comes across as pretentious or insulting to those who may experience a learning disability or challenges with traditional "intelligence." Others believe that being sapiosexual is more of a reference than a sexuality.
For some people who identify as sapiosexual, having a label brings relief. They may have gone their entire lives wondering why they don't feel the same level of attraction to people who are "conventionally attractive." Although not an oppressed or marginalized identity, it may differ from the experiences of the rest of society.
Understanding that there are multiple types of intelligence can be beneficial if you identify as sapiosexual. Some people may value art and creativity over mathematics or science. Some people may have high levels of emotional intelligence, which differs from what might be considered conventional intelligence.
Relationship Support Options
If you're looking for support with understanding your sexuality, relationship patterns, or preferences, it may be beneficial to look into therapy. Therapy is not just for those living with a mental illness. You can talk to a therapist about any topic at any time. In addition, if you try online therapy through a platform like BetterHelp, you can connect with a therapist from home.
Online therapy can offer a more extensive pool of professional therapists from which to choose and the convenience of working with a licensed counselor from the comfort of your home. In addition, for those with needs, online therapy offers you the chance to avoid commuting or working with inaccessible buildings and providers.
Studies also back up the effectiveness of online therapy. One study found that 71% of participants found online therapy more effective than in-person options, with 100% of them finding it more convenient for their schedules and lifestyles.
What does the term “sapiosexual person” mean?
A "sapiosexual" person is someone who is attracted sexually and romantically to intelligence in others and finds intellectual and cognitive qualities to be the most appealing or arousing aspects in a potential romantic or sexual partner. This term may be used to describe individuals who are primarily drawn to intellectual conversation, stimulating ideas, and a person's ability to engage in thoughtful, intelligent discussions. While physical attraction may also play a role in their relationships, sapiosexual people may prioritize mental and emotional connection over purely physical attraction when seeking romantic or sexual partners. The use of this term is somewhat subjective, and attraction can be a complex combination of physical, intellectual, emotional, and other factors.
What are the signs of sapiosexual?
Like other sexual orientations, signs of a sapiosexual individual can vary, but they often include a strong preference for intellectual and cognitive attributes in a potential partner. Here are some signs that someone may be sapiosexual:
- Intellectual Conversation: A sapiosexual person may have a strong intellectual curiosity and may value deep, meaningful conversations. They may often find intelligent discussions to be highly engaging and attractive.
- Interest in Learning: They are naturally curious and have a passion for acquiring knowledge and learning from others through mentally engaging activities.
- Emphasis on Wit and Humor: A witty and intellectually stimulating sense of humor can be very appealing to a sapiosexual individual.
- Appreciation for Intelligence: They are attracted to people who are knowledgeable, intelligent, and possess a wide range of intellectual interests and above-average intelligence.
- Desire for Mental Stimulation: A sapiosexual person may prioritize mental and emotional connection over purely physical attraction in their relationships.
- Deep Emotional Connection: They often seek partners with whom they can form an intellectual and emotional bond.
- Preference for Thoughtfulness: Thoughtfulness, introspection, and self-awareness are some typical mate preferences for sapiosexuals.
- Open-Mindedness: They tend to be open to diverse perspectives and ideas and appreciate partners who are open-minded and capable of critical thinking.
- Compatibility in Values and Beliefs: Mutual values, ethics, and intellectual compatibility, along with similar interests, are essential factors in their romantic and sexual attraction.
Attraction is highly subjective, and people may be drawn to a combination of physical, intellectual, emotional, and other qualities in their partners. Being sapiosexual is just one aspect of a person's overall preferences and attractions in relationships.
How does a sapiosexual fall in love?
A sapiosexual person's experience of falling in love is likely to be influenced by their strong attraction to intelligence and intellectual qualities. Sapiosexuals may prefer to date smart people or like-minded individuals. Here are some ways in which a sapiosexual individual might fall in love:
- Intellectual Connection: For a sapiosexual, an intellectual connection is often the foundation of love. They may be drawn to someone who stimulates their mind, engages in deep conversations, and expresses their intellectual interests and passions.
- Mutual Interests: Falling in love with a sapiosexual may involve finding a partner who expresses their interests and values, especially in the realm of knowledge and learning. Having common intellectual pursuits can deepen the bond.
- Emotional Connection: While intelligence and intellectual compatibility are important, an emotional connection is still essential for love. A sapiosexual individual is likely to experience love when they connect with someone on an emotional level as well, expressing feelings and experiences.
- Mutual Respect: A strong intellectual attraction often goes hand in hand with respect. A sapiosexual person may fall in love when they deeply respect their partner's intelligence, wisdom, and the way they approach intellectual challenges.
- Mutual Growth: Falling in love with a sapiosexual may involve the belief that their partner helps them grow intellectually and emotionally. They may appreciate a partner who challenges and inspires them to be the best version of themselves.
- Stimulating Conversations: Engaging in intellectually stimulating conversations can be a source of intimacy and attraction. A sapiosexual individual may experience a deepening of love as they continue to converse and exchange ideas with their partner.
- Long-Term Compatibility: Love may grow as a sapiosexual person recognizes that their partner is not only intellectually attractive but also someone they can envision a long-term future.
How do Sapiosexuals flirt?
Sapiosexuals, like anyone else, can employ a variety of flirting techniques, but their approach to flirting and dating life may emphasize intellectual engagement and stimulating conversation. Here are some ways in which sapiosexuals may flirt either in-person or through online dating:
- Engaging Conversations: Sapiosexuals are likely to initiate or respond to conversations that delve into deep and thought-provoking topics. They may use questions, comments, or other forms of interaction that encourage their potential partner to express their thoughts, ideas, and knowledge.
- Compliments on Intelligence: A sapiosexual might give compliments related to their potential partner's intellect or insight. For example, they might say, "I'm really impressed by your analysis of that topic" or "Your perspective on this is fascinating."
- Expressing Interests: They may express a keen interest in topics or hobbies that align with the interests of the person they're flirting with. Discussing mutual intellectual pursuits can be a bonding experience.
- Humor and Wit: Sapiosexuals often appreciate humor that is witty and intellectually stimulating. They may use clever humor in their flirting to engage their potential partner's mind.
- Debate and Challenge: Playful debates and intellectual challenges can be a form of flirtation for sapiosexuals. They may enjoy engaging in friendly arguments to spark intellectual chemistry.
- Interest in Learning: Expressing a desire to learn from the person they're flirting with can be a flattering approach. Sapiosexuals may say things like, "I find your perspective really enlightening, and I'd love to learn more from you."
- Active Listening: Sapiosexuals tend to be good listeners, so they may show their interest by actively listening to their potential partner's ideas and asking follow-up questions.
- Open-Mindedness: Demonstrating open-mindedness and a willingness to consider different viewpoints can be attractive to sapiosexuals. They may express their respect for diverse opinions during a conversation.
- Curiosity: Expressing curiosity about the person's thoughts, experiences, and ideas is a way to engage a sapiosexual's interest. Questions like, "What's your perspective on this?" or "Tell me more about your research" can be effective.
Is sapiosexual good?
Whether being sapiosexual or having a strong attraction to intelligence and intellectual qualities, is "good" or not is a matter of personal preference and individual values. It's important to recognize that attraction and preferences in romantic and sexual partners vary widely from person to person. Here are some points to consider:
- Subjectivity: Attraction is highly subjective. What one person finds attractive or fulfilling in a partner, another person may not. What matters most is that the attraction aligns with the individual's own values and leads to a satisfying and healthy relationship.
- Compatibility: Being sapiosexual can be a positive aspect of one's identity if it leads to compatible and fulfilling relationships. If someone values intellectual connection and finds a partner who expresses those values, it can contribute to a harmonious and intellectually stimulating relationship.
- Respect: A preference for intelligence and intellectual qualities does not inherently imply a lack of respect for other attributes or qualities in a partner. Many people who identify as sapiosexual also appreciate emotional connection, physical attraction, and other aspects of a well-rounded relationship.
- Communication: Open and honest communication about one's preferences and values in a relationship is important. It may be important for individuals to understand and respect their partner's desires and needs while also expressing their own.
- Diversity of Attraction: People have diverse attractions and preferences. While some are attracted to physical appearance, others prioritize emotional or intellectual qualities. What's most important is finding someone who appreciates and reciprocates the attraction in a healthy and consensual manner.
Is it okay to be sapiosexual?
Yes, it is absolutely okay to be sapiosexual or to have a strong attraction to intelligence and intellectual qualities in potential partners. People have diverse preferences and attractions when it comes to romantic and sexual relationships, and there is no one "right" or "wrong" way to be attracted to others.
It can be important to embrace and accept your own attractions and preferences, as long as they lead to healthy, respectful, and consensual relationships. What matters most in any relationship is mutual respect, open communication, and the development of a connection that brings happiness and fulfillment to both partners. Being sapiosexual is just one facet of an individual's overall preferences and attractions, and it is entirely valid.
How rare are individuals who identify as sapiosexual?
The prevalence of sapiosexuality, or having a strong attraction to intelligence and intellectual qualities in potential partners, is not well-documented in scientific research, and there is no specific information available to quantify its rarity. Sexual orientation and attraction can be complex and highly individualized, and they may not fit neatly into predefined categories.
It's important to understand that attraction varies widely among individuals, and people may have diverse preferences and attractions when it comes to romantic and sexual partners. While some individuals may prioritize physical appearance, others may place a strong emphasis on intelligence and intellectual compatibility.
Which celebrity is sapiosexual?
The concept of sapiosexuality, or having a strong attraction to intelligence and intellectual qualities, is a matter of personal preference and attraction, and it can apply to individuals from all walks of life, including celebrities. However, it's important to note that people's sexual preferences are often exclusive, and celebrities may not openly identify as sapiosexual or discuss their specific attractions in public.
That said, some public figures and celebrities have expressed a preference for intellectual stimulation and meaningful conversation in their relationships, but whether they identify as sapiosexual or not is a matter of personal choice and self-identification.
Is there a sapiosexual flag?
There is a sapiosexual flag. The original sapiosexual flag consists of three colored bars with green on top, brown in the middle, and dark blue on the bottom.
How to impress a sapiosexual guy?
Impressing a sapiosexual person involves engaging their intellectual interests and connecting with them on an intellectual level. Impressing or flirting with a person may be done in different ways based on culture, societal norms, and personality. Here are 10 tips on how to impress a sapiosexual person:
- Engage in Intellectual Conversations: Show your intelligence and knowledge by engaging in thoughtful, meaningful, and stimulating conversations. Discuss a wide range of topics, give your insights, and express curiosity about his thoughts and ideas.
- Express Your Passions: Talk about your intellectual interests and passions. Whether it's literature, science, philosophy, or any other area, discussing your genuine enthusiasm for a subject can be attractive.
- Stay Informed: Keep yourself informed about current events and various subjects of interest. Being well-informed allows you to participate in informed discussions and give your perspectives.
- Ask Thoughtful Questions: Ask questions that demonstrate your curiosity and interest in his opinions and experiences. Thoughtful questions can lead to deep and engaging conversations.
- Appreciate His Knowledge: Show respect for his intellect and the knowledge he brings to the table. Let him know that you value his insights and perspective.
- Give Interesting Reads: Recommend books, articles, or documentaries that you find intellectually stimulating. This can lead to common interests and discussions.
- Attend Intellectual Events: If possible, attend lectures, seminars, or cultural events related to topics of mutual interest. It can be an opportunity to engage in stimulating conversations.
- Stay Open-Minded: Be open to different viewpoints and ideas, even if you have differing opinions. An open-minded approach to intellectual discussions can be appealing.
- Intellectual Challenges: Engage in friendly debates or intellectual challenges. Respectfully presenting counterarguments can lead to engaging discussions.
- Be Yourself: Authenticity is key. Be true to your own interests and values. While you may aim to impress, it's important that the connection is genuine and based on common interests and compatibility.
- Previous Article
- Next Article