A Guide to Inclusive Dating in a Modern World

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Love and relationships can take many forms. Love and dating are as diverse as the people who experience them. The days of a single model of relationship type are mostly gone. Today, we find ourselves among many types of relationship styles which amounts to a vibrant spectrum of love.

Let’s explore the essence of inclusive dating and celebrate the diverse ways that people connect romantically.

At Open Relationship, we serve as a centerpiece in many dating types and styles. In fact, our website’s growing popularity centers around our inclusive take on dating.

Inclusive dating is a shift in perspective.

It’s not only about who we date, but how date. Inclusive dating is a departure from rigid, one-size-fits-all dating towards a more fluid perspective. It’s about respecting each individuals journey in finding connection. Companionship comes in many beautiful forms.

No matter how traditional media portrays dating and love, there is no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ way to date or love. The shift towards inclusive dating requires an open mind and heart and you get there by way of a willingness to learn and grow.

As a culture, the good news is we are embarking on better times. Inclusive dating surrounds us even when we don’t always notice it.

The Core of Inclusive Dating

At the heard to inclusive dating we find empathy, respect, and an openness to many forms of love. In other words, we believe that many relationships have a place in our culture.

Inclusive dating isn’t about tolerating other relationships, it’s about celebrating them. Consensual, respectful and nurturing relationships of all types should be appreciated.

The Many Forms of Love

Love comes in all types.

Casual Dating

Casual dating emphasizes flexibility in a relationship that relaxes the approach to romance. In essence, there’s no pressure for a longer-term commitment. Casual dating helps partners focus on the relationship without societal pressures collapsing over them.

Casual dating gives partners the freedom to discover what each partner wants before the relationship gets too serious and too complex. Staying casual means you don’t stop your life or put your ambitions on hold.

There’s a bit of a myth that casual dating never leads to a long-term relationship. This myth tends to cause people to second-guess their decision to keep things ‘lax. Friends or family may pressure a partner in a casual relationship and make them feel as if the other partner doesn’t value them which gives rise to a sense of insecurity.

But one might argue that casual dating should act as the initial phase of most forms of love. Let’s be honest, rarely do good things come out of rushed relationships. Humans are complex beings which means the good and bad of a relationship tends to show when things get more serious.

Long Distance Relationships

The long distance relationship is a popular Hallmark movie and cinema storyline trajectory. We know it well.

The most famous long distance dating movie is undoubtedly 1993’s Sleepless in Seattle starring Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan. If that’s too old for you, we’ll try 2010’s Going the Distance which stars Justin Long and Drew Barrymore.

The long distance relationship can be a byproduct of happenings, such as meeting someone at a conference who happens to live somewhere else. But some people pursue long distance relationships for a variety of personal reasons. One obvious reason is that the world is a big place, long distance dating opens you up to a whole lot more options.

Open Relationships

Open relationships are a step up from casual dating. The open relationship often incorporates parts of casual dating and long distance dating in one experience. The open relationship may center around a couple with long term dating as their foundation, but their intimacy experiences may be more casual.

In this way, open relationships tend to involve more than two people making it a distinct departure from traditional dating.

Platonic Relationships

Not everyone wants the deep, romantic experience. Platonic relationship types challenge dating’s status quo by offering non-romantic vibes. In a platonic relationship, the friend zone is embraced.

LGBTQ+ Relationships

Open relationships means embracing the unique dating experiences in the LGBTQ+ community. There are many types of LGBTQ+ relationships.

Intercultural and Interracial Relationships

These relationships celebrate a rich tapestry of unique, vibrant cultures and racial backgrounds coming together in a wide array or inclusive relationship types.


Diversity in relationship types is a core capacity of our open relationship dating and connection community. There’s a wide variety of relationship types that embrace values such as mutual respect, complexities, and emotional depth. Every person’s romantic and platonic journey is unique. There’s no one way to date. We should celebrate our differences.