Ask MR: Can I Hook Up With a Trump Supporter?

Hello and welcome to our advice column, “Ask MR,” where we answer your burning questions in the hopes of being the ointment to your life rash. Ask us questions by emailing with the subject line “ASK MR A QUESTION,” or leave yours in the comments.

Hi MR,

I just started hooking up with this guy who I met on a dating app (no mutual friends or anything like that). It’s really casual and has been fun so far, but a few days ago, he told me that he voted for Donald Trump. I am VERY liberal. I didn’t want to get in a fight with this guy so I got kind of quiet and haven’t seen him since. He’s texted me a ton; I can tell he’s worried that I think differently about him now (he said he doesn’t side with “a lot of what Trump believes in”). I do think differently about him now. We have a good time, but can I keep hooking up with him now that I know this?

You can do whatever the hell you want, is the first answer. If you enjoy having sex with this person (I’m going to assume that’s what you mean by hooking up here) and you want to continue seeing him because your interactions bring you pleasure, then I’m certainly not here to tell you otherwise.

It’s a loaded question without a perfect answer, one made even more complicated when the couple in question are further along in their relationship, when they are married or life partners or heading toward that journey. The stakes are higher and it’s more complicated. That’s a question I wouldn’t begin to touch, nor would I if this were about family members or dear friends with similarly polarizing political views. You’re linked by love and blood in these complicated cases. I’m not qualified for that.

But you said it’s casual. That changes things. You are not invested and you do not have to be. You’re the only one who can answer your own question in this case. You’re the only one who will participate in your decision besides this guy. In the meantime, let me give you some things to consider so you make what you feel is the best decision.

1. Can you actually keep it casual? Is this purely sex, and foreseeably purely sex, or have there been any internal indications that you might, at some point, begin to really like this person? Because if a relationship forms (and by the way, a consistent hook up — even in all its ambiguity — is a relationship, albeit not a serious or defined one), conflicting values WILL clash. Hard. You will have to defend your own stances regularly, you will challenge and question his. This isn’t your standard Democrat meets Republican, falls in lust and agrees to disagree/not discuss politics. The arguments between those who did and did not vote for Trump transcend politics. It’s not so simple as not talking about it at the dinner table.

2. Do you trust your body with him? Sex is a mutual dance, one that is just as much about your pleasure as his. But sex is also vulnerability, allowing someone else into your most intimate space. Do you feel comfortable letting him in? Do you feel comfortable splitting the responsibility of every risk and repercussion that comes with sex with him, knowing that he very well might feel differently about reproductive rights, women’s rights and sexual health than you do? If he is on the same page as you here — if he voted for Trump because of other issues and ignored these ones for the sake of other agendas, are you comfortable with that, too? Are you okay entrusting your body with a man who may not put it first? If I sound patronizing, I don’t mean to. These are the things I asked my friend because I know what she stands for. I wanted to remind her of her priorities, ones that we may not usually consider when “it’s casual.” If you’re already concerned and asking this though, it’s not casual. Something is setting off the alarm part of your brain that causes you to seek advice outside of your gut and conscience. And so we have to ask these questions.

3. Do you trust him among your friends, family (I know it’s “just sex,” but your family is tied to you) and your community? Do you like sex with him enough to ignore that he may have radically different views from you on minority groups of all varieties? That he may support the very thing you and your friends and community protest? That, again, even if he shares your views here, or doesn’t disagree with your views here, these people and your people were not a priority to him?

4. Are you ready to defend him and all of the above?

5. Is all of that worth it for a casual hook up? Is it? I don’t know. I really am asking you.

I cannot make this decision. As an independent woman with full agency over her body, thoughts and voice, this is 100% your choice to make. You’re a smart woman. You will do what you believe is right.

Illustration by Maria Jia Ling Pitt.

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  • Sophie

    so tough and i think most of us have been there, for me being from berlin not necessarily in a trump voter but similar.
    last summer, i really liked this guy and we’ve been out a few times and i knew he was liberal and open minded, but one evening there was a man dressed in women’s clothes who passed by us and my date just murmured “ughm, that was weird”, and it really put me off. another guy i dated was against the right for same sex couples to adopt (which is still illegal in germany), and it’s really difficult for me to go out with someone who believes that.
    but if i really liked someone i would continue dating them, but make it a concious decision that i disagree on that point but like the person more than disliking them for it. i think for me that’s important, to make the decision a concious one, and not just go along with it and drag it out, feel annoyed by it and not clear my mind about my approach.

    and i do think a trump voter is such a turn off, no matter the person’s reasoning behind that vote, and you clearly agree as shown by your asking the question. my friend’s american boyfriend didn’t vote at all and even that (given that a non-vote is one for trump, helping his win, and also feeling like; how is that a hard choice that leaves one not being able to decide who to vote for) really bothered her.

    what would you think if you knew from the start? would you go on the first date, second, so on? maybe that helps you decide.
    i do think it makes a difference if you know the person for long as opposed to meeting them, because you have nothing invested and can easily distance yourself…

    i wish you all the best! either way, either decisions will be good, and doesn’t have to be permanent 🙂

  • Adrianna

    I would have a tough time maintaining a sexual relationship with someone who listened to the Billy Bush tape and was okay with it enough to support Trump.

    • Gabby

      YES 🙏🏻

  • Kay

    i was with a republican and we argued about politics constantly and the key was, he was extremely respectful of me as a person and of the seriousness of my views. it ended up being a deep relationship and a political education for both of us, but if the respect hadn’t been there both personally and politically it wouldn’t have been a good experience. If you end up trying it, my advice is stay away from personal attacks, don’t make them, don’t take them. Look for him going out of his way to be respectful and then do that back.

    • Kay

      P.s!!!!!! Know how he feels about abortion!!!!!!! Specifically yours and his!!!!

      • Mary

        Also agree here–people aren’t one thing!! Moral absolutism is a pitfall; you can be a republican who is pro-choice and an active participant in that movement.

    • Mary

      I’m in the same boat. Being totally shut off or exclusionary to any particular set of humans is not what we need to practice these days. Agreed 100% on a foundation of respect and eagerness to learn and the omission of personal attacks (especially those that include “you always” or “you never” etc). If it’s a total roadblock for you then do what’s best, but it’s not impossible.

    • BarbieBush

      definitely! If you have like basic human respect for other people, political beliefs aren’t an issue. My partner is conservative.. doesn’t support trump though..and we go back and forth but never personal and honestly feel enriched from the conversations. I think our relationship gets better when we spar and we both come out of it remembering why we love each other–we are different yet the same.

      That being said..he doesn’t fuck with trump and I personally wouldn’t date (or honestly be friends with) anyone who supports someone I feel actually attacked by every day.. but it doesn’t HAVE to be a reflection of you at all. You seem completely aware and wonderful so I am confident you will monitor the situation and do what is best for you.

      Agree with the other commentators and the article though..there are sometimes dangerous connotations with repubs and if it develops at all you have to know what side he will be on in the case of knowing anyone at all who isn’t white..? Or an unexpected pregnancy?

  • Caro A


  • tmm16

    It’s interesting because I’m on Bumble and Tinder and often wonder, “Did he vote for Trump?” I like to think it wouldn’t influence my decision to date someone or not, but I just don’t know. It would depend on the guy. My friends and I discussed this idea and agreed this whole political climate has changed dating. I casually dated a Republican last year (like 4-5 dates) and his actions and last words to me showed he wasn’t as pro-women/gender equality as he said he was. I’m not saying that Republican men are all like this, but for him, he was all talk.

    I think I could as long as his social views were a little more liberal (Supported woman’s right to abortion and contraception, marriage equality, women’s rights, etc.)

  • m-i-o

    I’m a long-time reader who has been moved to post!

    Short answer: It’s your body and your time so you get to do whatever you want, Lady Jane.

    Long answer: My soon-to-be (2 months!) husband voted for Trump–who was still pretty much a punchline when we met–and his sympathies didn’t surface until Trump got the nomination, after we’d decided to marry.

    I’d never dated a Republican voter before and I never dreamed I’d marry one. And it’s caused friction, of course. It’s also made us examine our political selves and our motivations more carefully than we might have had the Trump presidency not befallen the United States. My fiance’s never been a bigot in practice (he wouldn’t be able to enter my family/friends circle were he one–or marry me for that matter), but the ongoing exchange is making him more consciously progressive. It’s also making me more conscious of my own education and caste privilege, which is part of what led me to reject Trump’s rhetoric wholesale and judge my fiance for considering it at face value. (Clearly, I have further to go…)

    So, enjoy. And if it stops being casual, do as you would with anyone else and get direct answers about his practices and beliefs rather than making assumptions, however tempting it might be to do so. Have fun!

  • snakehissken

    This random, and attractive, guy started chatting with me the other day and I allowed it because he was walking in the same direction as me and was pretty funny… until he told me his views on how “you don’t mess with cops and you get what you deserve if you do.”

    I was happy to get away from him very quickly after he said that, but a younger me might have brushed it off just because I was insecure and afraid of confrontation and I had a very high sex drive. All I’m saying is… REALLY listen to your heart and examine what you want and why you want it carefully.

  • Cara

    Nah, I only sleep with people I respect.

    • CM

      Same. I think this is healthy??

  • Lucinda

    Trump started his run by saying Mexicans were rapists and then supporting a Muslim ban, anyone who thinks that is okay is never going to be someone I would consider dating or hooking up with. I’m a Latina, so I take it personally when anyone supports Trump, even if someone doesn’t explicitly support those statements they are supporting the man who said them and who can make the lives of POC much harder than they should be. I don’t want that anywhere near my body.

  • Sabrina Zeloof

    Just because someone voted for Trump it doesn’t mean he must be automatically associated with everything about Trump. Remember that there were only 2 viable candidates in the election and many people voted for Trump because they couldn’t bring themselves to vote for Clinton. That doesn’t mean that they agree with his stance on x,y,z. If as a liberal, you would have a problem dating a republican then its safe to assume that the same problem will exist here. But if your problem is specifically that he voted for Trump then perhaps try dropping the stereotypes and you might be surprised. Political opinions don’t have to be offensive, they are something to be proud of!

  • Esmee Phillips

    In the election Trump voters included half of all single men, half of all men making $50K or more and half of white college graduates.

    Liberal women: you can have the other half, the SJW beta males, for your dating pool. We’ll take the rest.


  • pamb

    lol. NO. Unless you’re willing to parse exactly which of Trump’s qualities this dude this is a-ok with, it’s really a hate f*ck, isn’t it? That’s fine, I suppose, but call it what it is.

    Is he OK with Trump’s immigrant policy, but not the pussy grabbing? Is he OK with ‘drain the swamp’ but does he now realize Trump is in fact filling the swamp with all the bankers he criticized Hillary about? I could go on, but you get the drift.