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About running.tally

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  • Birthday 12/26/1995

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    Doesn't matter, use whatever helps you point to me as the referent
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  1. So glad that what we've said helped you even a little, @maor! Figuring out identity and then coming to terms with it is such a whirlwind sometimes, and again you're honestly doing great by reaching out and letting us ramble with you about these things. They deserve a good rambling because the ultimate goal is for you to feel content with yourself. I think you definitely said it well yourself. You seem to have some ideas about what your attraction is like, but you're having a hard time accepting it and you're not entirely sure why (though you've pointed to a few things like traditional upbringing, self-esteem, and expectations you have as possible factors). Talking things over with a specialist will definitely help narrow things down, and I'm glad you're looking into that! I totally get wanting to be alone. I hate roommates. But for me, I know I'm this way because everyone I've lived with has been sort of crappy in some way. I think that it is possible to live with someone and raise a family and still set up boundaries for alone time that are healthy. I know some couples that sleep separately and are perfectly happy, for example, whether to help unwind with alone time or to accommodate differing sleep schedules. There are tonnes of options and I want to reiterate that you can have a successful relationship apart from the standard marriage model. I even know some aros who are in relationships with romantic people, even married and cohabiting, and their romantic partners don't mind that their orientation is the way it is. You've pointed this out as well: it sounds like what you are struggling with is internal and self-directed, like feeling anxious and guilty that you might be different from the traditional mould, even if your close others don't mind. Cultivating patience and compassion/kindness for yourself is difficult (I don't pretend I'm an expert at that either, hahaha), but that may be a good step to take to being more comfortable with yourself and finding a person or people with which you can be happy.
  2. Hi all, I've been having some gender identity trouble lately because of some misunderstanding and confusion over some of the concepts associated with gender. In sum (TL;DR), I can't think of examples of how gender identity can be expressed outside of presentation and would love input. I identify with many experiences of females because I have presented as a female from birth. However, I do not feel intrinsically connected to the female identity or to females in general. I connect to personalities. I won't feel connected to a woman just because she is a woman (supposedly "like me"). I will feel connected to her if she shares some of my interests, though, or experiences and history. So, great, I don't identify with womanhood. But, I really enjoy a lot of traditionally feminine things, including many so-called 'girly' fashions. To me, they're just cool or pretty, and I don't have an interest in them because I want to express a female gender identity. But I'm not sure if women in general think about explicitly expressing their womanhood when doing these things either. Furthermore, many people who identify as female don't even engage in these things and can be more butch. I look like a traditional cis female and have their privilege, especially because I am impartial to pronoun use for me (if people assume I'm female and use "she" to refer to me in conversation, I likely won't mind). But if someone were to come up to me and explicitly say, "You identify with women and the female gender, and you feel a part of the female gender coalition" or something to that effect, I feel like that description would be inaccurate for me. Pronouns and presentation can be very important for some people. I think that knowing this makes it difficult for me to reconcile my ??? gender identity and highly feminine presentation, even though I /know/ they are completely separate. I guess I'm looking for a bit about everyone's experiences with gender identity and how they express it (through presentation but, perhaps more relevant to my dilemma, through other ways).
  3. It's ok to be confused. Hell knows we've all been there at some point - frustrated and angry at ourselves and the world for not "just picking a box!." I might be saying things you already know, but I do want to remind you that people and identities can be complex and can even change over time and circumstances. You will figure this out, and try not to be too hard on yourself along the journey. With regards to romantic attraction, now that's an enigma. @Eklinaar said it well. We may not be the best people to understand it. But I do know that one thing I've found common in a lot of our advice is Communication. Building relationships takes time and effort, and sometimes our expectations of what something will be like will be shattered, making us feel empty or wrong. That doesn't mean your relationships are doomed to fail, or that you don't actually have attraction for someone necessarily, but it does mean that you need to work with the other person to define your relationship as you want it. You might not fit the 'traditional movie mould,' but I've found that a lot of people don't. It's ok if you don't like some parts of what is traditionally viewed as part of romance (e.g., kissing). It's ok to not feel a 'spark' and be instantly in love or romantically attracted to someone but still marry them and raise a family. The cool thing about life is that you get to define what your behaviours mean and what your labels are. If you're finding that you don't quite fit anywhere, maybe you haven't found the right description yet. That can be incredibly frustrating but you are under no time constraints, I assure you. If you communicate openly with your partner (e.g., "I'm not really sure about this whole romantic orientation thing but I do know I want to do x, y, and z with you") I think that you can have the space to think on things while still enjoying benefits of a relationship or multiple relationships. Your identity is yours and doesn't necessarily dictate your behaviour. Your behaviour is what other people are most concerned about, so as long as you know what you want in that domain, you can have successful relationships. Thank you for coming by and sharing with us, even when you're confused and in crisis. Vulnerability is hard, and you're awesome for talking to us about it. I know that the internet has things like masterlists of romantic orientations (we do as well, in the Welcome section of these forums). I have found that those are sometimes a good place to start, because they include subtleties you might not get in the bigger umbrella terms. Maybe there is something there close to your experience, or something that can point you to what part of your experience is the most significant factor to you and your identity. And feel free to talk more with us or with a counsellor to bounce off ideas and find out what makes all of your past experiences and feelings similar. What's in common, you know? I wish you luck and send enormous virtual hugs and comfort. Please take care.
  4. physical 'symptoms' of romance repulsion

    You're definitely not alone in sometimes physically reacting when you feel discomfort around displays of romance/affection! For me, I'll sometimes actually get nauseous (giving a whole new meaning to "I find romance nauseating" haha), or have other anxious symptoms like (cold) sweat. It doesn't happen all the time, but I find that I pretty reliably experience physical repulsion when it interrupts something I'm doing/saying in a noticeable way. E.g., when I'm telling a story to a couple and they randomly peck each other, or when I'm lost in thought about something and am interrupted by loud kissing noises or flirting or something like that. In situations like those, I think I react so anxiously because I'm confused about why people would find their actions socially acceptable (and, therefore, why I think they're not socially acceptable - and if I'm actually the weird one for finding something wrong with what they're doing). I don't know what to do, but think that I should do something, so my brain just goes "!!!!!." There's usually a threshold people have to cross to trigger repulsion for me, but the threshold varies day by day. Sometimes even the slightest flirtiness in a movie will do it, and sometimes I'll think that that same thing is cute.
  5. What is your definition of a QPR/squish?

    I've never been in or desired a QPR myself but I always thought of it as a sort of unscripted mutual committed relationship between people, where the people involved are platonically attracted to each other. There are certain behaviours I associate with platonic relationships and certain behaviours I associate with romantic and sexual relationships. QPRs, to me, may take some cues from all or some of those behaviours, making them impossible to put neatly in any one of those relationship boxes. This way, a QPR can be defined differently between different people. As for squishes, for me they're a particularly strong desire to befriend someone.
  6. Seeking help and thoughts

    We can provide guesses and advice but make sure your partner knows that only he can figure it out completely and label himself. (You probably already know that but it's a good disclaimer!) Thank you for coming by and sharing. Your relationship sounds like it has been very respectful and mutual, so kudos to that. You guys are talking things through and trying things out, and that's very healthy. If you want to continue your relationship as you guys figure things out, I don't think it's necessarily doomed to failure. As long as you both know that you are taking it one day at a time, I think you can do it. You sound like you are very close and would be able to talk things through in case things go awry. Just keep that communication open until you decide on what kind of relationship and label you want to use. As for the question of romantic orientation, if your partner is on the aro spectrum, he may be aroflux or arospike. These orientations flip-flop between different parts of the aro spectrum at different times. Arospike, especially, is typically characterized by usually not feeling romantic attraction and then suddenly having intense feelings of attraction (like short bursts of intense attraction), which can then fade. I'm feeling arospike vibes from your partner, but it is also possible that they are a romantic person who is undergoing uncertainty or fear because they really like being in a relationship with you (i.e., feeling scared of losing it so acting very attached or possessive). Alternatively, they may have always been aro to some degree but you are the exception. Maybe even grey or some other orientation would fit better. Maybe they are aro and just because their actions don't seem to fit doesn't mean what they say is invalid; feelings/orientation and behaviour are different things, so whatever he decides on is likely the truth. Here is a list of orientations that may help! You mentioned past relationships. Were the relationships he had romantic, and did he feel romantic attraction then? That may help narrow in on what is going on re: his feelings. As for you, you're awesome for being patient and coming by to ask for help figuring things out. Attraction and relationships are always so finicky and they differ for each person. Hope this helps a bit and it's completely natural for you to feel hurt. You're not a bad person for having negative feelings. EDIT: Looks like you posted this dilemma as another identical thread as well, so I hope the answers there can be helpful as well.
  7. Hello? Am I supposed to introduce myself?

    Welcome! You're awesome for coming over here to post even though you're shy. Whether you're more lurker or poster in the future, I think we're all happy to have you. Here's some aro ice cream for a proper welcome gift:
  8. Late and End of Life for Single Aros

    Good to hear from someone who has lived it. I didn't even realize you can pre-pay your own funeral and arrange these sorts of things, but now that you've said it I'm only slapping my forehead going, "Duh!" Sometimes a simple statement will knock away my embarrasing naïveté, so thank you for that. I think that your death may be low on the list of people's current priorities, and I definitely agree that other people have lives to lead as well and stresses to cope with. However, I have seen people come together at a moment's notice to grieve and celebrate a passed loved one's life. When it comes down to it, I've found that people will notice. Realism is healthy and there is for sure a depressing quality to knowing that people may not appreciate you while you're alive and only re-prioritize when something major happens, but I don't believe we die alone. Our connections make efforts to ease our passing, even if they don't do it explicitly. Being a friend, calling for a quick chat, and the little things that make life life are not helping plan and pay for end of life care and funerals, sure, but they probably help when we take that stuff on. Hope that made sense, I may be rambling again. A person is responsible so long as they're motivated to be. People motivate people pretty well, I find, so we tend not to live and die alone.
  9. Late and End of Life for Single Aros

    That is a very good point! Losing a life partner is losing family. Singles may naturally form a network of support so if they lose someone important they can have others to lean on. I think that married people can still have that (especially poly people), but you may be right in that some would lose that important relationship and not be able to fill that hole. We're not so different after all, which is nice to know. We can all support each other.
  10. Late and End of Life for Single Aros

    Thank you all for your great responses! This issue definitely isn't something specific to aromantics, but I guess that sometimes I get bogged down by my label and start believing the "forever alone" stereotypes. Thank you for the encouragement and reminders that this isn't true. Friends and acquaintances and even godchildren or caretakers are a great resource that I always seem to forget about. Our relationships are more plentiful than I give us credit for. And emergency contacts don't have to be reserved for very very close people, and I have more power in determining what happens in those cases than I thought I did, it seems, so that is helpful.
  11. The title sounds a bit ominous but it is something I was thinking of lately. Perhaps some older members can pitch in on this. I worry often that since I am aromantic and not particularly wanting of a permanent or live-in partner, when my parents inevitably pass and my good friends become attached I will not have anyone I can consider an emergency contact or who can help me when I am in need. As well, I do not intend on having children whom I can rely upon in any capacity. This issue is likely also something non-aro singles (who do not have children) face. I am wondering how one might go about choosing emergency contacts or people they can rely on at a later age, apart from marriage or partnership or children. Alternatively, are there ways to live as a single without such close people (i.e., through community programs or the like)? What are your ideas (or strategies, if you have encountered and solved this issue yourself)?
  12. Hello everyone

    Welcome! This is such a spirited greeting, it's lovely. I think you'll find some great people here
  13. Dunno if I'm aromantic or just an asshole.

    You might be romantic, but dislike traditional relationships, and you are having trouble getting a grip on the ropes. Or you might be romantic but because you don't have romantic feelings for this person at the moment, you do not feel like you should be in a romantic relationship. On the other hand, you might be somewhere on the aromantic spectrum depending on how your attraction works. You are ultimately in charge of your labels and know how you feel best, so I would recommend looking at the masterlist of orientations and asking around to figure that part out (here is a helpful masterlist). As an aroflux person, I can also point out that sometimes our attractions can fluctuate and we can fall on different parts of the aro spectrum depending on what our brains decide to do, so keep that in mind. Also, having experienced romantic attraction before doesn't mean you can't be aro now. Orientation can be fluid. It's always a personal thing to address. You know yourself best. Aside from orientation, you may be uncomfortable with being in a relationship for some reason. Whether this be because of something else like anxiety or self-esteem issues or just differing or unclear expectations, you might love the idea of romance but when put into practice with you, there is something uncomfortable about it. Perhaps your experience could be attributable to just that person you're talking about. Maybe not all the cards are falling together properly in this case. Alternatively, you might be worried about not having a relationship like the traditional ones you've seen. Those are the possibilities I can think of at the moment. Pinpointing what your worries are exactly will definitely help. There's nothing wrong with you. People are very complex (as a trained cognitive scientist, I know this all too well, hahaha), and it's completely natural to be confused or frustrated. Research all you can, and keep asking us questions. For you, the answer may be an orientation thing or another personal thing, or a combination of many. We're glad to help so do update us if you feel the need.
  14. hello my name is

    Cześć! I witam! Fellow Polish person here. Although I am way over in Canada... Just as the others have said, finding out that you are aro and having the courage to accept this and come forward when you have is really amazing. I hope everything goes ok for you, and that this place can give you some good resources.
  15. What made you happy today?

    This is such a cute thread. I'm going to add that I took my senior dog for a walk today and she was so happy to be out with me she started trotting along and trying to get me to chase her like she used to do when she was a puppy. It was so cute and it made me happy. Dogs are so pure.