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  1. Hikikomori is a behavior that is as extreme as it gets... truly hard-core. An obviously "problematic" one because Hikikomoris need providers. So a society of Hikikomoris could obviously not ever work. A stable society of aros would in principle work. A bit difficult with getting and raising children, but that issue could be figured out probably.
  2. Sure, the "between a man and a woman" part is unacceptable for any definition, and also to claim that sexual attachment is a necessary component of romantic love. It's a definition strictly for straight allosexual people and excludes everyone else. But in the end, if the definition of "romantic" has any content or substance at all, it's going to be exclusionary to someone. That's just the natural logical consequence. I don't like it to be exclusionary, but I also really like the definition to have some substance.
  3. Well, since you're operating with a basically content-free concept there can be no discussion. It's not like a normal question anymore where we have a word that designates a concept with independent meaning, which in turn refers to something in reality (in the broadest sense). So that if we agree on the meaning can ask what is true or false about it (irrespective of the word we use). Normal questions are not about mere words. They are not verbal disputes. Instead some way down the line they have a meaning that connects to factual issues, no matter how vague or ambiguous. But you've made it fully self-referentially about words. With no independent meaning involved: A relationship is "romantic" if self-identified that way. And the same way for "platonic". Of course we could perhaps at least look at tendencies how the relationships differ, which are self-identified as "romantic" or "platonic". But this isn't a thing anyway, this internal identification. Couples do a lot of things, but don't explicitly identify their relationship as "romantic". And the word "platonic" outside of aro spaces is very different beast anyway. I'm open for suggestions. Except for emptying the concepts completely of distinct, word-independent meaning. That would be the most ridiculous way to handle it.
  4. I just think they're common features (toxic is too strong, btw. I just regard them as strange / odd). That doesn't mean that they're directly caused by amatonormativity in the strong way -- that there are explicit popular social norms that we should romantically love in a certain way. Ok, there are but I would certainly want to disregard them in any description. Therefore I put "usually / often" before that bullet point list. The problem is not so simple, of course: It's possible to exert social power by the usage of words. "That's not romantic love" is not just a dispassionate assessment by looking at the general meaning. Choice of words matters rhetorically. And many words have normative connotations with practical relevance: how we label something can make a strong difference to our attitudes towards it. Certainly that's true for "romantic love". Like it is for "torture", "terrorism", "mental illness", etc. And in that way it's unavoidable that amatonormativity creeps into any real description. "Romantic love" gets its meaning from common features, and in a roundabout way, because the word has normative connotations, what is common becomes normative. If you want to avoid that problem, you must accept there is no distinct concept behind "romantic love". Sure, "romantic love" would still not be 100% free of content ... yet the remaining content would be most uninteresting (like that you cannot romantically love a tea pot). But there would not even be a vague way to distinguish it from other forms of love. Not blurry lines, but no lines at all. I think that's clearly the worse option. You're correct that this is similar to gender, but I can accept gender as a word which, with some scrutiny applied, turns out to have no distinct concept behind it (there is no way to distinguish gender from other social grouping systems). If "romantic love" goes down the route of "gender", then so does "aromanticism". Don't like that. I'm not aro because I don't like the sound of the word "romantic". I am because the concept behind "romantic" has some (even if vague) real meaning. Didn't say that directly so, it applied to certain aspects. Also "unrealistic", "obsessive" and "social status" sounded worse than I meant it. It's well proven that humans are physiologically unrealistic in their assessment of their aptitudes. . In a depressed state we become actually more realistic. Overestimating ourselves is positive because the cost of inaction is greater than that of failure. Even in the extreme, "Moonshot thinking", being unrealistic may not always be bad. "obsessive" can also be positive. Like Edison who tested thousands of materials until he got a working light bulb. He surely was obsessed, but with something good. And social status (if earned by exceptional qualities) or physical beauty... that goes back to Plato's conception of love as the pull the Form of Beauty exerts as instantiated in a human's beautiful body or soul. It's not really a harmful thing. The reason was that "correct" sounded a bit odd because it normally applies to something objective. But here "correct" is actually a subjective preference. I didn't give a definition of romantic love. Instead a list which serves as a rough description: the more points on that list apply, the more stereotypically romantic it is. A polyamorous panromantic as characterized would be on the edge of that description. That's just the common usage of that word. The reason I did that was to say something contentful. While still respecting that romantic love is obviously vague and multifaceted, without any single defining quality. The alternative is to fully empty the concept of any distinguishable, interesting content. In that case, there simply would be no conversation. And I would have no interest at all to exclude people from equal ownership of the word "romantic". Anyone who likes it should go ahead and use it. It would be content-less anyway: people who experience romantic love are those who decided to call their love "romantic". Yeah, I tried to make my point a little too strong. I could reword in a nicer manner but it would not change the basic message. I'll skip that, though there were some serious misunderstandings. The most important problem is that you also missed "often / usually" at the start. Lacking a few points of the list => it would still be widely regarded as romantic. Commitment is not enough to even vaguely distinguish it from friendship. And the internal identification is content-less.
  5. Romantic love often/usually is based on a gendered attraction (the romantic interest must have the "correct" gender) is exclusionary (which can lead to jealousy) is strongly influenced by physical beauty or social status starts with an unrealistic idolization of the romantic interest comes with an unrealistic aspiration of happiness from the prospect of being together makes people, in the beginning, be quite guarded and less truthful towards the romantic interest starts with overthinking and nearly obsessive behavior, which in other contexts would be considered age-inappropriate entails showing off "commitment" with nonsensical, costly and hard-to-fake practices (from waiting hours for the romantic interest to show up ... to buying an expensive engagement ring) does not develop in a continuous manner but with certain "escalation" peaks (e.g. first kiss, first "I love you") develops in a straw fire manner at first: it becomes strong very fast but is fragile and can easily go out completely Now of course none of those aspects are strictly necessary for it to be romantic love; in fact usually some points are missing. Still most of them are present and they will be expressed by behavior. So spending time with a friend and going out with them is generally very different from romantic dates. Now could romantic love miss nearly all of those aspects mentioned? Maybe... And probably for aros the romantic love expressed in a very cool and levelheaded, honest and straightforward manner by a polyamorous panromantic, who likes commitment to develop reasonably (not by "showing off" just because but when it actually matters), is way more palatable than usual romantic love. But this kind of "romantic love" is so off, it probably wouldn't be even regarded as romantic love but as something suspect and strange by most people.
  6. Though that can happen in the course of a normal life as well. Probably I would be too afraid of agreeing. But there is so much cultural baggage. Desiring immortality in an earthly, physical fashion is generally considered a very unhealthy and dark desire. It's understandable that humans thought that way in earlier times. They also had a way more relaxed attitude about their lives and safety. But nowadays we have "public health" which operates on the strange ethics: "Nothing is worth a reduction of your life span". If someone simply prefers living with unhealthy habits (e.g. lack of exercise, overeating) and is ok risking a shorter life, it's framed by "public health" that this could not ever be a valid, reasonable choice. In my opinion this is more a result of someone's life lacking new experiences and not age directly. There were monotonous periods of my life in which time seemed to run fast but I was younger. Of course for a younger person new experiences are generally more likely. What I find surprising is that while we can't imagine eternity (= form a mental image that corresponds to it), we can still conceptualize it (infinity or eternity). I mean, our grasp of infinity is so precise it entails more than just infinity being the negation of finiteness. E. g. we can recognize that there are different types of infinity, like countable and uncountable infinity. It's what I find most peculiar about humans that though all their activities, experiences and imaginations are finite in nature (like counting things or imagining a certain number of things), their reason can break those boundaries, fully generalize and stretch to infinity (e. g. arrive at the insight that every number has a successor). That puts us in a bad spot to regarding the question of immortality. It's a question we can understand, but it's not like a mathematical theorem (something without emotional involvement), and our imagination completely fails.
  7. Finding out your gender can probably be procrastinated without problems. 😺
  8. Duplication of Y doesn't seem to really matter. But only having an X, missing a further sex chromosome (an X or an Y) causes Turner Syndrome. For XX one X gets randomly inactivated for each cell. So it should not matter having only one X. But then the inactivation is not complete, and those genes are supplied by either another X or a Y.
  9. Apropos islands and shipping: In December there was this story of the Jet Ski Romeo, a 28-year old from the UK. He bought a jet ski, towed it 70 miles to the Scottish coast and traveled four hours across the rough Irish Sea to the Isle of Man.... to get around coronavirus restrictions and see his girlfriend there. I thought this was a behavior that was even for romantic standards extraordinarily bizarre. Aromantic moment: in my naivity I told this story a few people as an example of utter craziness but the attitude was "But noooo, that's not wrong", "She should marry him", "Awww that's so romantic ❀️". πŸ™„
  10. This parrot from Madagascar, who is colored like the aromantic flag, is unfortunately named Grey-headed lovebird.
  11. @Blake I don't think this can be completely right. While sexual attraction does not need to lead to physical arousal, it's more than just "wanting sex" for any reason. After all, sex is the normal way to get pregnant, which is a common goal. To engage in sex purely for that reason is also wanting sex. At least this kind of "wanting" is something virtually no one would describe as sexual attraction. @Holmbo We're arguing about words here – what a quite fuzzy term means. It's not really a factual question. The idea that there can be subconscious sexual attraction is probably common. I mean, Freud made a career out of it.
  12. A whole basket of tropes in anime (or Japanese video games) are those long, extremely drawn out "romance does never happen but is strongly suggested" dramas. Boy(s) and girl(s) get really, really, REALLY close together but a romantic relationship never evolves. Either this is a well-known trope like "Clueless Chick Magnet", or it is: Nothing happens between the boy(s) and girl(s), they seem like a match made in heaven, but stay "just" besties for ten seasons. I was so baffled at this as a young teen. I sensed they wanted to evoke a strong emotional reaction here, but didn't understand what they were up to precisely. Like constantly hinting that something weird or abnormal was going on but I was just "What is it? Just damn spill it out!". Honestly, I still don't really understand (grasp the appeal of that). Now with some more life experience, I know how easily allos develop romantic desires and how easily emotional conflicts arise or even resentment builds up when a romantic relationship simply does not develop. I dislike those tropes more than a lame romantic plot. If you use those tropes, you just have to supply a damn good explanation. Make them have incompatible attractions... or explicitly aro. That would be great. I mean I could perhaps excuse it if they aimed at a G rating (yeah, not really... "decent" romance is always regarded as "safe for all ages"). Yet even some extremely violent anime engage in those antics.
  13. I'm sorry that you had to deal with something like this. Never expected someone would use "deviancy" (!?) for aromanticism-asexuality -- perhaps "abnormality" at worst.
  14. Of course it's mainly because they travel with their partners. But it also a bit of a norm, it's regarded as weird after a certain age (around 30). Ok, traveling (esp. long-distance) is a very damaging habit anyway. At least I have a clean consciousness. πŸ˜€
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