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Eklinaar's Achievements


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  1. It does kind of sound like she's hinting that she's interested in one. I'd suggest asking her to be explicit about how she feels and what she wants. And then if you decide to start a QPR with each other, make sure you discuss in detail what you both want that to look like, what kind of assumptions and expectations you have about it, how you feel about each other, what boundaries you want to have, and so on. If you're concerned about her lack of understanding of queer theory and identities and all that, maybe talk about that, too, and why it's important to you that she understand those things. Just be honest and nurturing and make it clear that you want to work all this out and be close (assuming that is what you want).
  2. You don't have to feel romantic attraction to be in a romantic relationship, but honesty is important in intimate relationships. Hopefully she'll understand that you don't want the relationship to change, you just want to be clear about your feelings, and she'll appreciate that.
  3. Yeah, alterous is a term that refers to an experience of attraction or a relationship that is neither primarily romantic nor platonic, and what I'm trying to come up with is a term that means aros who have a strong preference or need for deep intimacy, because I feel like that need shapes being aromantic in a particular way.
  4. You're definitely not the only one. I've heard plenty of other aros feel a kind of heartbreak at realizing their friends feel very differently about them compared to how they feel about their friends. It's easy to assume that aros don't experience heartbreak, but many of us do.
  5. I can relate to some of this, since I have also been questioning whether or not I'm demisexual or allosexual. I don't fully fit the definition of demisexual because I am sexually attracted to strangers, but everything else about demisexuality sounds like me. It's like, if the base potential for sexual attraction for demisexual people starts at 0 and then slowly increases to 10 as they form an emotional connection, mine starts at 2 and slowly increases to 10 as I form an emotional connection. I think you have to decide what you are for yourself unfortunately.
  6. I feel like a core part of my aromantic identity is that I'm very affectionate, I want lots of affection in all my close relationships, and the way I experience affection is fundamentally different from allos. My desire for affection in general and affection within my established relationships is a core part of my identity. A lot of the affection I enjoy is culturally coded as romantic, but I experience intimate affection as neither romantic nor platonic. My friendships that don't feature hugging, kissing, cuddling, and other kinds of intimacy feel "incomplete" to me, and the boundaries that allos set between romance and platonic friendship seem bizarre and arbitrary to me. My affinity for affection also sets me apart in some ways from other aros who are disinterested in affection, so that we have very different experiences of being aromantic, but I still feel far more kinship with them than I do with allos, even affectionate allos. I'd like to coin a term for this since I've met several other aros who feel similarly. I started with the term "amorous aromantic" but folks in our Discord server pointed out that using "amorous" as an identity label conflicts with the established usage of "nonamorous" as a relationship model, and they mean different things. So, anyone have any ideas for words or roots that could mean "aromantic people who have a strong affinity for affection" as an identity label?
  7. It took me a while to realize this, but part of the reason why my hair and beard are so unkempt is because I don't want people to find me conventionally attractive. I feel like they don't really appreciate me for who I am as soon as they put me in the box of "potential romantic/sexual partner". But much more than that, I don't want to be seen as conventionally attractive in a masculine way, because I'm nonbinary and that makes me very dysphoric.
  8. This is, as the kids say, a big mood. I was in a similar situation a few years ago. I was living with my closest friend, and she had been looking for a new boyfriend, and I offered for us to just keep living together indefinitely and take care of each other, and that I'd be fine with her also pursuing romantic relationships with other people in that situation, but she turned me down. She made it clear that she loves me and that our friendship is important, but still, it was very hard knowing that she didn't see our relationship the way I did, or return my feelings of it being something besides the socially acceptable version of friendship. I had to let myself grieve for a while, because what I was experiencing was basically the aromantic version of heartbreak. I've tried to just focus on the parts of our relationship that work for both of us, but it's still hard sometimes. I don't really have any advice besides let yourself grieve if you need to grieve, and try to focus on what works well in your relationship. Reaching out to communities of a-spec people who will understand your feelings can also be very helpful.
  9. I don't experience a distinction between platonic and romantic love at all, which is the core of my aro experience. So, I guess I'm saying, the fact that I can't answer your question is what makes me aro. Maybe that helps? Maybe not. Hopefully other people have different answers.
  10. No, you're definitely not the only one. Once again I can strongly relate to what you have to say. That kind of relationship seems incredibly unhealthy to me. Friendships are important and people shouldn't ignore them just because they have a romantic partner. I feel so betrayed by my friends who stopped spending time with me after they got married.
  11. Whew, you may not realize it, but you've stumbled into a hot topic. I haven't seen it discussed much on this forum, but I have seen it discussed on Tumblr. If I find any particularly relevant blog posts, I'll share them here. The short answer is no, you're not being over-sensitive. And yes, there are people who criticize us as a "lesser" or "less oppressed" orientation and ask us to speak less so that "more important" queer people can speak more. Those people are wrong and their attempts to silence us are a kind of anti-queer oppression, coming from queer people who should be supporting us. We call them exclusionists, because they want to exclude anyone who doesn't fit their narrow definitions of queer from queer communities. They also usually say "queer is a slur so don't say it" which is also wrong. Aromantic people belong in queer communities just as much as anyone else, and we deserve the support of queer communities just as much as anyone else. Aromantic is a queer identity. Regarding how your friends responded to you, yes, a lot of us have experienced that kind of thing. People who love us don't understand what aromantic is, so they just say nothing. No support, no criticism, no excitement, no questions, just nothing at all. It happens quite a lot. It's very frustrating. But it doesn't necessarily mean that they don't want to support you. You might need to have some more conversations about your experience of being aromantic, or maybe even outline ways they could show support for you. Maybe send them articles or blog posts that you might find particularly relevant. It sucks that we sometimes have to train our friends how to be good allies, but sometimes they really are willing to learn. Also, plenty of people can probably relate to your story. I know I can. I eventually left a friend group I'd been a part of for 10 years because of their utter silence regarding my identity when I came out as nonbinary. A lot of aro blogs on Tumblr frequently talk about how little support we get from other queer communities, so you can find plenty of solidarity there if that's what you want. We're here for you, and there are plenty of people here who will share your excitement about discovering your identity. Hopefully your friends will come around, too.
  12. Yes, we met in an online aro community, and learned we live near each other, and then met in person. It was really great to chat with someone who has that shared experience of being aro. I don't know if I'd write a book about it since it can be rather personal and some people might not be comfortable with those experiences being shared publicly. I just want to form relationships that don't require hours of defining basic terminology, and the local queer communities aren't really cutting it in that regard.
  13. I've never heard of specifically aro groups anywhere in the world, but there are several ace and aro groups in a few places, if you're lucky enough to live there. I hear there's one in Germany that's very good. You can certainly try finding aros IRL where you live, but just be prepared to come up empty-handed. We seem to be very rare. I've been involved in queer communities for several years, with mixed results, but even the best groups mainly just support my other queer identities, not my aro identity. I've never met an aro person at the LGBT centers where I live. People from the more marginalized queer identities tend to be supportive of aro people, but most more mainstream queer people I meet don't know what aromantic means. The only aro communities I've ever been involved in are online communities. There are a lot of aro bloggers on Tumblr, and several aro chat servers on Discord. Participating in some of those has been very satisfying for me, and I've made some long-distance friends that way. I did recently meet up for coffee with an aro person who lived in a nearby city, which was nice. My long-term goal is to save money to travel and spend more time with aros I've met online. I'm close to your age if you wanna try chatting with me? There are a few of us in our mid-30s here. Reading through people's old posts can give you a good idea of what they're like and if you might enjoy talking with them. My inbox is always open. I hope you find the kind of community and support you're looking for.
  14. I'd say that if you were going strictly by the definition of aromantic, then no, aromantic people can't fall in love, because that phrase means romantic love. However, that's a prescriptive answer to your question, not a descriptive answer, and I'm making it just so I can follow up with what I'm saying next. So even with a prescriptive answer, it doesn't mean that an aromantic person's love is incompatible with someone who does feel romantic love, or less valid. I have deeply loved some of my romantic partners, but my love was not romantic. But I don't care for prescriptive labels. Labels are just tools, and are often imprecise or inaccurate, both in terms of not always being perfect labels for an individual, and that actual lived experience is often far messier than our labels on their own would indicate. So I would answer, yes, an aromantic can fall in love, because people aren't labels and labels are imprecise. But the label is intended largely to represent people who do not fall in love, and by being so do not follow the normative models of our society, so focusing on "yes aromantic people can fall in love" is undermining the label. But, both of those points considered, your individual experience matters, so go with what works for you. If you are an aromantic who can fall in love, fine, you do you. If you are an aromantic who can't fall in love, same.
  15. Welcome! Have you looked around the rest of the forums? Your story is not dissimilar from many other aromantic experiences. Maybe reading about other people's experiences would help you pinpoint how you feel. This in particular is something I think a lot of people here can relate to. This is really common for aros. I have a very hard time noticing when someone is attracted to me, even though I read people's emotions pretty keenly most of the time. Yes! I have a hard time relating to this kind of thing. The things most people want from romance sound so miserable to me. I can relate. I'm in my mid-30s and I'm staunchly opposed to ever marrying or having kids. My parents only recently got over this. You said you don't feel sex-repulsed, but do you want sex? Most people who enjoy sex want it, but of course, this is a land of uncommon experiences. It's certainly possible to enjoy sex without particularly desiring it, but I have no idea how one would discover that about oneself. In my experience, masturbation and sex are very different things and aren't good indicators of each other. What you described doesn't sound like touch starvation. Usually touch starvation is accompanied by wanting touch. But again, this is a land of uncommon experiences, so it's entirely possible that you are touch starved but don't feel any particularly strong desire for it, and that you would feel better if you were touched. However, experimenting with that can be very unpleasant for some people. Maybe there's some other kind of intimacy you want? Do you just want to be emotionally affectionate, not physically? Do you want someone who you spend time with, but with few expectations and no pressure? Is there anything you fantasize about? Any relationships or experiences that you daydream about and can say "Yeah, I'd like to do that!"? I don't really know what more advice to give you. You sound like you've got your own feelings figured out pretty well to me. You seem pretty happy with friendship, with just having your friends around, like when your roommates are around. Is that what you want? Or do you think there are other kinds of intimacy you would like? I've heard a lot of people here say that they are able to explore what might or might not work for them by daydreaming about it and watching to see how they respond emotionally. Maybe some people will chime in with some tips about how to explore all this. I wouldn't recommend exploring the way I did, which was "be in denial for the entirety of my 20s and date anyway even though I was miserable and then wonder why I was starting to develop trauma responses".
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