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DancingArrow

Advice for new aros!

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I've only just joined so this may already be a thing but

I just wanted an area full of hints and tips for newly come out aros from experienced aros! I'm a pretty young aro myself and it's always been difficult navigating life when you're following a wildly different path to the people around you, so some advice from 'established aros' would be cool : ) I thought it might also help out others, so I made it a whole forum as opposed to just a status update or something

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One of the hardest parts of coming out is trying to put your experiences into words romantic people can understand. Everyone comes out in their own way, but I'd like to share some things that have and have not worked for me.

 

"Aromantics don't experience romantic attraction, ie. they don't get crushes, they don't fall in love, that sort of thing." ---> Response: "That sounds like a psychopath!"

...It turned out she confused falling in love with loving in general. She was much more accepting once I set her straight. 

 

"I don't think I want a boyfriend." --->  Response from my admirer: "Oh, you're not looking for a boyfriend right now. That's okay."

Some people mix up aromanticism with temporary singledom.

 

Explaining why I identify as aromantic: "I was in a relationship where we were mostly friends, but he liked me as more than that, and so I tried to make it work that way. And he would do things like look at me all sweetly and romantically, and I just felt so uncomfortable. But it wasn't because I didn't like him." ---> Coworker: "You know that's normal, right?"

Apparently romance repulsion sounds a lot like butterflies when you explain it out loud; I've found people are a lot more understanding when you emphasize the distinction.

 

"I'm asexual, which means this. I'm also aromantic, which means this. They sort of go together for me, but not for everybody." ----> Response: "I don't think you need to box yourself up in labels like this."

People are usually more accepting if you introduce the concept before the vocabulary.

 

Explaining it to children: "Did you guys know some people never get a crush in their whole lives?" ---> Response: "What?! I didn't know that!"

I like to use this "fun fact" as a way of introducing the concept to pretty much anyone. Depending on the response, I'll usually add, "Btw I'm one of those people." 

 

Wearing aromantic pride flair sometimes garners questions, at which point a mini-lesson on aromanticism is usually welcome. I've had several people thank me for introducing them to the topic for different reasons.

 

Some people just won't get it, and that's okay. Some people won't have any idea how to respond, and so they'll change the subject. That's okay too. So long as you don't let these people's views on aromanticism drag you down. You're not crazy and you're not the only one. But you know that already because you're here. ☺️

 

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Drawing from some of my current experiences: don't let others claim to know more about your feelings than you do. The strength of a bond does not dictate the type, and I found that my best platonic bonds have come from situations where both myself and my friend could 100% mutually trust that the bond wasn't romantic.

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I wonder when i will ever get to a point in life where i will accept being Aromantic and be proud..I still hate this & very high key denial :(

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Yeh, I kinda denied my aromaticism for like a whole year and forgot about it. I remembered it because of conversations at school and now I have been exploring the community, terms, and just aromantic stuff in general. After reading about how other people feel and listening to music, like “never been in love” I have become really happy to have figured out that I am aromatic so early in life and it has honestly made my life less stressful. I even made an aroace bracelet that I wear everyday to support myself, because sometimes when I notice a couple I get kinda sad, so I just look at my bracelet as a little reminder that I’m okay. Somedays I am not proud of being aroace, and other days I am ecstatic to be aroace, but just a little reminder that I am okay helps me on days were I am not proud. However it took a lot of effort just to make that reminder and I am still putting in a ton of effort into accepting myself so I can always be proud. 

 

Sidenote,  I mentioned ace because I figured out that I was ace by exploring the community! 

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