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Arivin

Cupioromantic or Internalised Arophobia?

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I need help with finding out where I am on the aro spectrum... At first I thought I was aegoromantic because I do enjoy romance in fiction but now I'm beginning to think I might be cupioromantic (honestly I'm kind of surprised I didn't think I was cupioromantic first).

 

I'm not sure if you're aware of the term "maladaptive daydreaming". I'm really bad at explaining but you can read about it here. I am a maladaptive daydreamer, and ever since I was a kid my daydreams have included significant others. When I first found that you can be aromantic despite having lovers in your daydreams, I just assumed that my daydreams were exceptions and it was less of me having a lover and more of the person-I-daydream-as having a lover. However, recently I've started to feel lonely and the thought of a lack of an intimate relationship with someone is depressing me. I used to feel this way when I first found out I was aromantic, too, and realised that it was connected to internalised arophobia.

 

I was certain that I was aegoromantic until recently when I had a "tube-light moment" and realised I might be cupioromantic. The thing is, I really do not want to date anyone. I like the idea of dating and intimacy and stuff I guess, but the second I imagine actually dating someone in real life - anyone. Not just people I know. Just imagining dating anyone at any point in real life - I cringe and yeet that idea out of my head. Is that what it means to be cupioromantic? Or am I just aegoromantic with a side of internalise arophobia?

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That sounds an awful lot like internalised arophobia to be honest, though that's just my personal opinion. I think a lot of us daydreamed of weddings and significant others, though not necessarily at a maladaptive level, which I imagine complicates things. It can be very hard to accept that you won't have the future you expected, and for me personally it was difficult to reconcile my desire for a relationship with the fact that in reality relationships are not good for me. That said you could still be cupioromantic, I'm not you so I can't decide for you. And it wouldn't be wrong to keep identifying that way to convey the loss you feel. Whatever happens, good luck.

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5 hours ago, arokaladin said:

That sounds an awful lot like internalised arophobia to be honest, though that's just my personal opinion. I think a lot of us daydreamed of weddings and significant others, though not necessarily at a maladaptive level, which I imagine complicates things. It can be very hard to accept that you won't have the future you expected, and for me personally it was difficult to reconcile my desire for a relationship with the fact that in reality relationships are not good for me. That said you could still be cupioromantic, I'm not you so I can't decide for you. And it wouldn't be wrong to keep identifying that way to convey the loss you feel. Whatever happens, good luck.

 

Thank you so much for the advice! I'm still sorta torn between the two what you said does help! :D

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Actually, to me it sounds more like cupioromanticism. I've never been able to really, successfully envision myself in a romantic relationship, it's extremely uncomfortable even to imagine, and pretty much always has been.

In the end, you're the only one who can really understand your own feelings, and how you identify is up to you.

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I'm so glad you brought this up. I've been having the same questions. Especially because this:

 

16 hours ago, Arivin said:

I like the idea of dating and intimacy and stuff I guess, but the second I imagine actually dating someone in real life - anyone. Not just people I know. Just imagining dating anyone at any point in real life - I cringe and yeet that idea out of my head.

 

is me. In my mind, I want to go out to dinner with someone or lay my head on their shoulder or something, within a romantic context. But as soon as I'm actually sitting next to the person, thinking these things... I freeze. It's just too much. I slow danced with someone, once, and that experience was repulsive enough. Not the person, just the experience. Actually, we're still friends, and I occasionally long to become the adorable couple we would be if I could handle such attention. He doesn't pressure me though; he didn't even before I had a word to justify my discomfort.

I suppose it all depends on how you interpret the definition of cupioromantic. You can interpret it as meaning someone who likes the idea of a romantic relationship, or you can interpret it as someone who wants and seeks romantic relationships. From what I can tell, the amount of research on aromanticism isn't vast. Maybe this thing we're talking about is an unnamed aro-spec identity. Who knows? Although I do find that, when I'm in a good mood, I admire the idea of a close platonic relationship, and when I'm in a bad mood, I admire romantic relationships more (which sounds like arophobia to me). And then sometimes I'm like, maybe I'm quoiro? Maybe I'm aroflux?

I suppose what I'm getting at is, I think a lot of us wonder what the hell we are. Maybe that can be as reassuring as having a name for what you're feeling. 

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On 5/6/2018 at 11:31 AM, Arivin said:

However, recently I've started to feel lonely and the thought of a lack of an intimate relationship with someone is depressing me. I used to feel this way when I first found out I was aromantic, too, and realised that it was connected to internalised arophobia.

I'm 150% aromantic but that still happens, and it's also connected with loneliness and “neglect” (probably too strong a word) by friends. Funny how vague the daydreaming is, though. Because if I go into the details I reach “how should that work out?” or “do not actually want” level very soon. I would vote “internalised arophobia”, but that's only my personal opinion.

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I got the same vibes from this thread as @DeltaV did, I think.

 

The longing for a close intimate relationship is something I have struggled with, too. At first I had the same confusion as you have right now, @Arivin: I was trying to figure out whether I really /did/ want a romantic relationship even though I don't feel romantic attraction, or whether I was responding to my aromanticism with the amatonormativity I've been so conditioned with all my life. I couldn't figure out whether it was internalized arophobia or not until I sat down to think about my relationships. I realized that I felt neglected by my friends sometimes and therefore not getting enough of the type of socialization and intimacy from my non-romantic relationships that I need (same goes for my family). So, for me, my feelings of wanting a 'partner' were actually just feelings of wanting intimacy - with anyone and everyone. It may help to think about exactly what you think you're missing in your current relationships and what you daydream about to figure out whether you have what you need in your current relationships.

 

After that, I think that arophobia would be distinct from cupioromanticism in the way your fears and anxiety about relationships present themselves. Arophobia might include you wishing you could be like romantic people and being repulsed your not feeling romantic attraction. I feel like cupioromanticism would present itself more like anxieties specifically regarding being in actual relationships, like you mentioned, and you otherwise being fine with not feeling romantic attraction. Hope that helps some.

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