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Holmbo

To be defined by an absence

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I was just thinking about how weird the identity of aromanticism is really. Something that is defined by an absence. If you were forced to describe it in terms  of pressence rather than absence, what words would you use?

 

Personally I think I'd would describe it as a different focus in life. I'm very concerned with my role in society at large rather than just my relationship to one other person.

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How about "I defy amatonormativity"? ;) 

But that's a bit vague...

 

"I have a different point of view of relationships". 

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“I defy amatonormativity” is probably the closest we can get, but it’s still a sort of absence/negative in spirit. I don’t think we can get much closer, because (at least to me) a large part of my aromanticism is a sort-of negation or lack of fitting into alloromanticism, alloronormativity, and amatonormativity. 

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12 minutes ago, raavenb2619 said:

“I defy amatonormativity” is probably the closest we can get, but it’s still a sort of absence/negative in spirit. I don’t think we can get much closer, because (at least to me) a large part of my aromanticism is a sort-of negation or lack of fitting into alloromanticism, alloronormativity, and amatonormativity. 

 

Yeah. Make sense.

 

Right now, I can't think of anything else.

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I think there's also a lot of individual variation to that. Where all aromantics lack romantic attraction, I think most of us can say "I prioritize x over romance" or "My long term plans involve x rather than romance". What x is will be different to different people, and can be friendship, a successful career, learning to play the cello, etc. (also I'm now imagining the hilarity of the expressions of alloromantics if you tell them that cello playing is more important to you than marriage🤣)

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9 hours ago, Holmbo said:

Personally I think I'd would describe it as a different focus in life. I'm very concerned with my role in society at large rather than just my relationship to one other person.

I feel similarly. I think that's a nice and positive way to relate to the orientation :)

 

Without meaning to sound too grandiose here (hah) I've personally always been rather preoccupied with thoughts on the direction society as a whole is heading in, the incalculable debt we owe to our ancestors in bringing us this far (to our present understanding of the universe) and what sort of positive (albeit slight) role I can play in shaping our collective future as a species. I generally find others less preoccupied by this stuff than I am (I struggle to have IRL conversations about it; sometimes when I've tried in the past it has been shied away from and characterised as 'too intense').

 

I wonder if this is something aros tend to dwell on more than most people? Do we anchor our happiness and self-identity more in positive contributions towards the wholesome evolution of our societies and less in our inter-personal relationships? I don't know if there are any pschometric ways to asses it? Any tests people here could take? I'd be intetested in the results.

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4 hours ago, Cristal Gris said:

How about "I defy amatonormativity"? ;) 

But that's a bit vague...

But it can fit polyamory too, isn't it?

Something like "my goal in life is my personal fulfilment" sounds good to me, though this has the same problem to not be specific to aromantic people.

 

The thing is: I think aromanticism is a lack of something. But it doesn't matter, if we don't miss it. Plus, this lack is replacd by other things and desires. So I am fine with it.

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10 minutes ago, nonmerci said:

The thing is: I think aromanticism is a lack of something. But it doesn't matter, if we don't miss it. Plus, this lack is replacd by other things and desires. So I am fine with it.

 

Yeah. The "hole" is filled with something else. That's how i see it anyway.

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11 hours ago, raavenb2619 said:

“I defy amatonormativity” is probably the closest we can get, but it’s still a sort of absence/negative in spirit. I don’t think we can get much closer, because (at least to me) a large part of my aromanticism is a sort-of negation or lack of fitting into alloromanticism, alloronormativity, and amatonormativity. 

What's the opposite of amatonormativity? Relationship anarchy? I embrace relationship anarchy

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On 6/23/2019 at 9:49 AM, Holmbo said:

I was just thinking about how weird the identity of aromanticism is really. Something that is defined by an absence. If you were forced to describe it in terms  of pressence rather than absence, what words would you use?

 

Personally I think I'd would describe it as a different focus in life. I'm very concerned with my role in society at large rather than just my relationship to one other person.

This "different focus" is going to be very diverse.
Any attempt to narrow it down to anything specific leading to the likes of Common Misconceptions About ArosCan you be Aro and not/never have squishes?, etc.

 

I can understand that being able to say "This is Y" is preferable to "This is NOT(X)" there is no meaningful or useful Y here.

 

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7 hours ago, Mark said:

This "different focus" is going to be very diverse.
Any attempt to narrow it down to anything specific leading to the likes of Common Misconceptions About ArosCan you be Aro and not/never have squishes?, etc.

 

I can understand that being able to say "This is Y" is preferable to "This is NOT(X)" there is no meaningful or useful Y here.

 

Going off of that, I think there’s a desire not to think of aromanticism as a lack of something because “defining against” is something that’s looked down on. It’s a bad thing when you’re speaking about politics or culture/ethnocentrism etc. But there’s no harm in saying aromanticism is a lack of romantic attraction just like it makes sense to say a blind person lacks eyesight. A blind person might also argue that their sense of hearing is heightened, but that’s a personal identification in addition to the basic definition of blindness. So you can go ahead and say being aromantic makes you more focused on your friends or your career, but I think that’s a very individual choice.

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On 6/24/2019 at 11:34 AM, Mark said:

This "different focus" is going to be very diverse.
Any attempt to narrow it down to anything specific leading to the likes of Common Misconceptions About ArosCan you be Aro and not/never have squishes?, etc.

 

 

Yeah I'm not arguing for replacing the definition or anything like that. The one thing we in this forum have in common is this lack. I was just curious how people personally would describe it in another way. It's gonna differ for everyone. I think it's important to explore differences between aros to though, exactly for that reason of common misconceptions.

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It's hardly unique. Vegans don't eat meat. Atheists don't believe in gods. Healthy people are defined by absence of disease.

 

Though there is always something more to it. Vegans are usually concerned about animal welfare. Atheists promote systems of morality based on nature rather than obedience to a supernatural being. There is also a rationalist streak to the atheist community, you'd be hard pressed to find one who believes in ESP, astrology, etc.

 

I've noticed what all aromantics share, whether sex-positive or asexual, is a celebration of friendship. We could call ourselves Amicitians, after Amicitia the Roman personification of friendship

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On 6/30/2019 at 12:58 PM, Spacenik86 said:

I've noticed what all aromantics share, whether sex-positive or asexual, is a celebration of friendship. We could call ourselves Amicitians, after Amicitia the Roman personification of friendship

That is mostly true I think but I have seen some aromantics on reddit post about how they don't experience feelings of any kind of bond, not even friendship.

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20 hours ago, Holmbo said:

That is mostly true I think but I have seen some aromantics on reddit post about how they don't experience feelings of any kind of bond, not even friendship.

 

Sounds like schizoid personality disorder.

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On 7/3/2019 at 12:44 PM, Spacenik86 said:

 

Sounds like schizoid personality disorder.

I would refrain from this kind of armchair psychology. 

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In my case I'd say, "I experience love as a single coherent emotion, which I feel in varying degrees towards different people in my life, but which is qualitatively the same emotion whether it's for friends, family, or anyone else."

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