Brains? I’ve Got Some Thoughts On Them
- on Jan 07, 2023
There’s something I really want to write about and I’m sure it’s going to offend someone, so I’m just going to say ‘it’s just my opinion, my bugbear and you crack on and do you regardless’ but I have to say the term sapiosexual and the tone surrounding it when it’s used really winds me up.
Almost every person I’ve ever met wants a partner that mentally stimulates them in some way. I feel like that’s a bit of a given and to me harping on about being sapiosexual usually makes people seem a bit pretentious and also a bit ableist.
At least two of my serious relationships were with people who couldn’t spell for shit, never got the right there/their or they’re or the right your/you’re. In one case they never really read any books, because dyslexia makes that tricky for some folks, yet in both cases they were smarter than me in many subjects.
When I see people talking about intelligence and ‘no brain, no game’ or how a spelling mistake in a text will turn you right off, I’m honestly baffled more than anything else. I can spell and I would say I’m a fairly intelligent person. I can converse with all kinds of people about all kinds of things, but if I’d narrowed my dating pool to people who could spell well I’d have missed out on some amazing people.
Also how do people measure this ultra sexy intelligence that turns them on because if its academic and professional success? I feel like that could backfire often. This is not a generalisation at all, but I’ve definitely met high achievers in both education and work who were not mentally stimulating to talk to in the slightest.
I think there’s also a lot of people who are made to feel like they’re not intelligent, for example I have a kiddo who’s dyslexic and convincing him that he’s not ‘stupid’ is the hardest part of helping him navigate his dyslexia. Lots of people have barriers to learning and there are definitely people I know who if I explained sapiosexual to them they’d say ‘oh that counts me out then’ even though they are hella smart but have had to learn in a different way or at different pace offered up by standard education (which FYI I think is totally outdated, but that’s a post for another day).
I’m not against having preferences you’d like to see in a partner. For example, I personally find people who make me laugh incredibly attractive, but I think putting it out there that I like highly comedic talents would make a lot of people feel like they weren’t funny enough. Loads of people are funny to me though because funny comes in all kinds of forms. Just like intelligence does.
Which I think is what gets me about the term sapiosexual. If by saying that people mean someone who is a good intellectual match for you, someone who’s conversation stimulates you, someone who talks with passion and knowledge about a subject/various subjects and once that happens you are more inclined to be attracted them, then why use sapiosexual which by definition refers to highly intelligent people, the parameters for which vary greatly.
The whole thing reads to me like saying ‘I don’t like stupid people’ and the word stupid isn’t allowed in my house, neither is dumb or thick or any word that implies you’re lesser than for simply not knowing something, making a mistake or struggling to grasp a certain concept or subject matter.
I feel the same about gatekeeping who should and shouldn’t blog based on spelling and grammatical abilities. Yes, I know spell check exists and in theory everyone can get it right, but in reality it isn’t that simple and I think everyone should be able to express themselves with a blog even if they use the wrong grammar and say there instead of their. If folks are as intelligent as they seem to think they can probably make sense of things regardless of a few errors.
I find it really strange that we spend so much time, and rightly so, trying to encourage positive language and attitudes about all body types, not just those that are presented to us as ‘ideal’ by media outlets. Yet we still seem to be happy to reinforce what is an ideal brain type when brains come in a wide variety of presentations, all of which are totally valid.
I think perhaps I have a bit of a bee in my bonnet about how we approach brain health and brain development. There’s still so much judgment around anything that isn’t neurotypical and not enough access to support or widespread understanding for folks who are neurodivergent. I’m probably wrong, but to me the whole notion of sapiosexual seems to be going in the wrong direction when it comes to embracing brains in all their variants.