#open: a NEW WAY TO CONNECT
THE MODERN ERA
Young, non-monogamous, and ready to play- sounds easy right? I have stepped into the non-monogamous space for the past year of my life, and realized quickly I have been missing out on the world’s wonders. Under the blanket of monogamy, you may feel the need to mold to one partner’s needs- when in reality, you could have a variety of partners that each have wonderful things to offer. To expect one person to fulfill every need is a bit… tasking.
My partners and I have amazing, open communication that has no bounds. We see other people, and congratulate each other for milestones we may hit with other partners. I feel very free, and able to be who I am- something that used to be hidden in my past monogamous life. I have been fortunate enough to have plenty of partners, who have all been sourced from my local circle of friends and new friends I make along the way. But dating? Well, I have only been on one date in the past 5 years. One night stand or casual one time hookup? I’ve had one in my life.
The Dating Scene Can Be Daunting
It’s 2019- a good and a bad thing. Good, because expressing my sexuality and preferences is becoming much more open, but bad because I don’t always have the quick resources for it. While my partners are usually my friends, I have found that even my shy self would like to venture out for a bit of casual fun. As someone who constantly travels and has very specific sexual requirements, I see most “dating” resources as inconvenient and incredibly daunting.
My first night in Barcelona, I created a Tinder and Bumble in hopes of finding casual fun or excitement, but was met with incredible disappointment. The experience was astoundingly underwhelming and frustrating. You really can’t tell anything about someone when seeing one photo of them on a screen, and the conversations to initiate any contact felt like pulling teeth. Since I am kinky, I think it’s also important to try to vet potential partners for your safety and hopefully have the best experience. Open communication to try and vet your potential partner? Forget about it. It felt like a lost cause, and I quickly gave up after one night.
Connection on the most basic level is necessary to be able to communicate your intentions and boundaries even for string-free fun.
Finding myself running through a sea of people at the Brooklyn Sex Expo, my dear friend Jean from SDC was taking me around to meet innovative and like-minded folks. When we stopped at #open’s booth, I was a bit star struck to see one of the industries best sex educators, Dirty Lola, greeting with a bright smile. I hadn’t heard of #open, and was quick to meet one of the co-founders, Amanda Wilson, who explained the mission behind this new platform. Amanda described the need for connection, inclusivity, and communication when it came to meeting new people online. A safer place to be yourself, express your identity, and openly show your intentions. After our conversation, I was intrigued.
Who is #open?
Far from the traditional idea of what a “dating” app is, #open is an app-based community that helps its members foster genuine connections. #open’s unique values encourage you to build relationships on a solid foundation. What do I mean by this? In a nutshell, this is a platform where you can be who you want to be, correctly identify yourself, express what you want, and clearly express what you don’t want. A place where all genders are safer, all sexual orientations are welcome, and you can speak freely about your intentions and what types of connections you hope to make.
Traditional social apps are the complete opposite of inclusivity. In fact, they are stifling to your individuality and your experiences- there is no room to embody yourself. Your only option is to be classified, put in a box that doesn’t truly describe who you are, or what you want. There is very little room for incredible, fun, and hot connections when the only two deciders are if you are male or female, and if you are seeking male or female. How boring, right?
As a non monogamous, kinky gal who isn’t completely straight, I was mesmerized. Could I really, openly, be me? Could I really have the opportunity to be upfront about my needs, and actually connect with those who share the same ones? Let’s take this for a spin.
When signing up for the platform, you are lead through a variety of steps which I will outline below. First, I think it is important to highlight #open’s “Rules of the Game"
As a self regulating community, #open takes reports of misconduct seriously to help protect its members.