This article was published on September 16th, 2020
As COVID-19 continues to affect the entire world, finding ways to socialize and meet people presents with unique challenges that many of us are still dealing with. As quarantine and lockdown measures continue across many countries, HomoCulture provides the latest rules of engagement on how to meet up as safely as possible once the fall season approaches.
Rule #1: Assume Nothing
Do not assume that because you are at a heightened level of comfort that your date or partner is. While there are many people that are content to video chat until the quarantine has been lifted, there are others that are looking to meet in person at a respectful social distance. For those that are unsure, a great suggestion is to ask potential dates what their definition of social distancing is. Once the parameters have been laid out, it is easier to proceed and apply the appropriate safety measures.
Quarantining with Your Partner(s)
Many couples have been debating whether or not to live together temporarily during the quarantine. Since there is no deadline on when the pandemic is ending, it is important to have effective communication with your partner if you have any fears about living with someone during COVID-19. For non-monogamous or polyamorous couples, it is even more important to set up boundaries to ensure that exposure to COVID-19 is lowered. At the end of the day, your personal health should be the first priority. For newer relationships, it might be better to quarantine separately and possibly include one another within your social circle bubble until the crisis ends.
Another great option to socialize is through phone sex, one of the safest options around that allows you to explore your desires without worrying about spreading the virus. Living out your fantasies over the phone with a significant other can add a new layer of sexuality to a relationship, and for those that veer towards the more visual, there are video conferencing options available.
Zoom It Up!
Video conferencing has been a hit during the global pandemic, with Zoom becoming one of the most popular ways for people to socialize safely as COVID-19 continues to affect the entire world. Many people are using their Zoom time to screen potential suitors for after the crisis ends and conventional dating can be done.
Netflix & Chill, Remixed
The catch phrase has taken a slight turn of late, with many couples opting to stay in and stream as opposed to venturing outside and risking contact with strangers. The remix to Netflix during COVID-19 comes with caveats that include invitations inside but at a socially safe distance.
If you are already dating someone, Netflix and chill nights are going to be popular, as weekend getaways and going out to theatre shows, and many activities are going to be off-limits. Suggest some other COVID-safe date ideas, like going to an orchard to pick apples, an afternoon hike, carve pumpkins, home DIY.
Mask and You Shall Receive
In an ideal world, everyone would be wearing a mask and helping to reduce the cases of COVID-19, but not everyone is in favor of covering up. As such, it is up to each person to make the decision and conversely who to meet up with. Being upfront about what you expect from a potential date is critical to reducing the risk and includes basic questions about how to proceed before getting physical. Once the boundaries have been set, the next step is deciding how to spend your time and where meeting up to hang out for drinks or at a park are just a couple of ways in which dates are possible without significantly increasing the risk of infection.
Get Out There
No matter who you are going to meet up with and possibly date, know that COVID-19 times means that you are not likely to see as many people as before, so it is even more important to vet and know your prospective partners. With the fall season closing in and COVID-19 still a serious threat, HomoCulture advises everyone to be safe, act responsibly, and find joy during these times.