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Chloé

I feel lonely

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If this isn't the right place for a post like this feel free to tell me and where I could post this. :D

 

So right now I feel really lonely. I've never felt lonely because I was alone before; in fact, I enjoy being alone (I'm an introvert).

 

But ever since I've discovered that my sexuality, romantic orientation, and gender are the triple As, I feel more and more alone. I've talked to my two best friends about this, but either they don't really understand or they think I'll change or "get over the phase". I don't really blame them though. Being hetero and having an aro friend and being asked to understand what they're feeling is impossible.

 

 I am really not ready to talk to my family yet, and I have no one in my life that is in my city that I can see regularly that is aro ace and agender. No real life person that understands and can relate and give advice and joke about how romance movies are hilariously ridiculous, or anything like that. And since I've always had either Theo, Justine  or Chanel to talk to, I've never felt lonely. But now that I have feelings and thoughts that no one around me can relate to? I don't know if I can handle it. Plus it really doesn't help that I want to become close friends with this guy in my class (he is in love with jazz and music too) and that everyone just assumes I'm deeply in love with that guy... LIKE NO MAN I DON'T KNOW WHAT THIS "TRUE LOVE" OF YOURS IS AND I'VE NEVER FELT IT SO STAAAAAHHHP (aro moment :aropride:)

 

Basically I feel lonely, I have no aro real life person in my surroundings, and it feels like it's slowly eating me up inide, so if anyone has any tips or advice on how to cope with this PLEASE TELL ME!!!! LONELINESS IS THE MOST HORRIBLE FEELING 

 

Thank you for reading this uhhh...

...vomit of feelings and emotions.

 

Really appreciate anyone who cares about an internet stranger like me. :)

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Hmm, I felt like this before I discovered the aro/ace concepts, and just finding this site made me feel less alone. I also don't know of any aro/ace people IRL, at least not as far as I know. There is a Facebook group for ace people in my country, but even all 60 of those people (lol) are pretty far away, and it seems many of them are not aro either.

 

I do have some really weird IRL friends who can appreciate my unusual POV about a lot of things, so that helps, even if they don't really "get it". I would love to meet another aro/ace IRL though.

 

We're here for you though. :arolove:

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I am aromantic and asexual too. I feel extreme loneliness daily. I have zero friends in real life. It makes me really depressed. If you need someone to talk to you can message me. :):):) We can be friends if you want. 

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On 11/09/2017 at 0:36 PM, Chloé said:

I am really not ready to talk to my family yet

this is a perfectly legitimate pasttime! Pets need love and attention too :P

Being alone and being lonely are different things, sadly the loneliness you describe is the one you can feel while surrounded by people which is harder to tackle. 

Seeing as the a-community is fairly small, if you want people to relate to specific things I guess you will have to use the internet to connect and stop expecting your real life friends to relate when all they can probably do is understand and accept. I know there is a triple A on Aven who wears 3 thin black rings to feel continued connection to their online community when they are out and about in real life activities. 

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Unfortunately, I can relate to the feelings of loneliness. I don't really have advice on how to overcome the feeling though. But you're not alone? So that's a thing. Sorry for the rather uninteresting response.

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On 17/09/2017 at 10:23 AM, MandraSedai said:

Unfortunately, I can relate to the feelings of loneliness. I don't really have advice on how to overcome the feeling though. But you're not alone? So that's a thing. Sorry for the rather uninteresting response.

Thanks. Don't be sorry!!! Glad to know that I'll always have the internet. 

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On 9/10/2017 at 8:06 PM, Chloé said:

But ever since I've discovered that my sexuality, romantic orientation, and gender are the triple As, I feel more and more alone. I've talked to my two best friends about this, but either they don't really understand or they think I'll change or "get over the phase". I don't really blame them though. Being hetero and having an aro friend and being asked to understand what they're feeling is impossible.

I've found that talking specifically about pair-forming instincts makes it easier for people to understand. If you start with "I've never been in love," they subconsciously put up mental blocks. It's easy to discount someone else's feelings if you don't understand them. They'll have a much harder time if you make it sound like a scientific issue (which it absolutely is). 

 

Your A's are innate, permanent, epigenetic functions of neurochemsitry. The pair-forming, sex-having, gender-choosing circuitry that most people have in their brains literally, physically does not exist in your brain. If it did, it would be pretty damn obvious. Gender, sexuality, and romance are all easily tangible subjects.

 

Allo, hetero, and cis people are usually exposed to a more emotional, touchy-feely argument for accepting diversity, and have already developed barriers preventing them from understanding such things. However, science has an authority all its own, and borrowing that language is a good way to lend ethos to your argument.

 

That's my trick: make it literal. If you can ground your argument in concrete terms and absolute reality, your friends will have a much more difficult time convincing themselves to ignore it. Saying how you feel is all well and good, but sounding sure of the absolute reality and tangibility of your orientations is the most important step to making people believe you. They can ignore feelings. They can't ignore reality. 

 

As a scientist-in-training, I'd normally be opposed to the use of scientific language to force people to acknowledge a specific social viewpoint. However, your case, as well as the collective case of everyone on this forum, is far more important than that maintenance of academic neutrality. We deserve recognition, and I'm prepared to use all the tricks I know to get it. You deserve that recognition too.

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1 hour ago, James said:

Gender, sexuality, and romance are all easily tangible subjects.

 

Hmm. I personally find the concept of romance to be a lot less "tangible" than either sexual orientation or gender identity. But I wonder if that's just because I don't really experience romantic attraction, whereas I do very clearly experience my gender identity (male) and sexual attraction (to women) (hehe, I remember descibing the latter to @pastelprincess in her welcome thread and how she replied xD)

 

So how are you defining romance here? As feeling a strong urge towards engaging in long-term monogamous pair-bonding and life-merging behaviors? Please go right ahead and bombard us with the science behind this :D

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@NullVector Unfortunately, there is very little official scientific background on aromanticism. However, its properties suggest that it's epigenetic, much like sexual orientation. That means that it's inherent, but not necessarily heritable. Epigenetics is a catchall term for chemical control of genes without actually removing them. For example, you have the genes required to go through rapid growth spurts. You only need those genes when you're a kid, though, so your body silences them after a certain period. It does so by tacking a methyl group onto that growth regulatory gene. That methyl group makes the gene permanently inactive after that first use as a kid. You inherit the genes for the growth spurt, but it's a separate system that turns it off. It's already been substantiated that that's what governs sexual orientation. Some gene regulates it, but that gene doesn't get turned on until puberty (or never). By extension, aromantics probably have the genes to experience the romantic instinct, but it's permanently (or in some, partially or impermanently) silenced. Every cell in our body might have the gene, but it's literally inaccessible to the RNA polymerase enzymes because of that chemical suppression. We have it, but it doesn't do anything at all. The lack of a chemical stimulus might also allow our brain to fully develop without ever forming the neural circuits needed to process romance. There's a number of potential causes for it, but nothing is certain. I'd leave out that last bit.

 

When I talk about aromanticism to most people, I don't go that far in depth. I explain it clinically. Describe the symptoms. For example, I've never kissed anyone, and have literally resorted to physical force to stop it happening. It's an instinctive fear that has nothing to do with logical thought processes. When I say "use scientific language" I don't mean "cite everything." We unfortunately don't have any scientific papers to cite. I mean "be precise." Say what you've done. Say what you know. Don't use subjective language, because that encourages people to doubt you. 

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23 hours ago, James said:

Don't use subjective language, because that encourages people to doubt you. 

Thanks. This actually REAAAAALLY helped me today. 

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On 24/09/2017 at 10:13 PM, James said:

Unfortunately, there is very little official scientific background on aromanticism. However, its properties suggest that it's epigenetic, much like sexual orientation. That means that it's inherent, but not necessarily heritable.

I kind of wonder if you are looking at this backwards.
Given that romance and romanticism havn't been a big part of human society until very recently.

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On 9/24/2017 at 10:49 PM, NullVector said:

But I wonder if that's just because I don't really experience romantic attraction, whereas I do very clearly experience my gender identity (male) and sexual attraction (to women) 

You experience that you're male? Like subjectively, internally…? So how does that feel like?

 

For me it's rather like:

  1. In my ID card (English section) one can read “sex: male”
  2. I guess the only feature of my outwards appearance that is usually not associated with “male” is my long, thick hair, which I find very beautiful! :)
  3. ???
  4. ???
  5. so like my gender is male?
  6. well, okay then…

Never thought about the whole issue very much…

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1 hour ago, DeltaV said:

You experience that you're male? Like subjectively, internally…? So how does that feel like?

 

Hah, fair enough. I guess all I meant was that I don't experience any internal conflict between my male anatomy and my internal experience or conception of 'self' (which some people do and it might even motivate them to modify their sexual anatomy through surgery). So in that sense, I'm happy enough to accept the designation of 'male'. But, yeah, I don't really think about it much either!

 

Wonder what some of our trans or agender folks make of this? :eyebrow:

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8 hours ago, Mark said:

I kind of wonder if you are looking at this backwards.
Given that romance and romanticism havn't been a big part of human society until very recently.

I've been seeing the signs that I was aromantic since before I even knew I was attracted to female humans. I figure that's a good case for it being an independent, inherent trait. At least in me. It's possible that there are multiple potential causes.

 

Also, mate guarding and monogamous pair formation have been around a lot longer than humans have. It's a fairly common set of behaviors in many animal species. We may rationalize them as romance when we experience them, but It's not like we invented those behaviors. We just made words that describe them. 

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I feel this way all the time. You're not alone. It's difficult to watch everyone else in your life have what you can't - another person in their life, guarenteed not to leave them alone. To spend life with them, and share everything. I want that - just...without the romance. Does that make sense? But, what's enough for me never will be for romantic people. Instead, I get to watch the people I love the most find someone else they're rather spend it with. It sounds really selfish when I say it like that, but it's the raw, basic truth. 

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I'm currently feeling a lot like this. Sometimes I feel so disconnected from friends and family, and really want an aro soulmate type of person in my life. It seems unfair that you need to feel and show romantic/sexual attraction to connect with someone deeply (not that that's true, but sometimes it feels like it). I dunno, confusing things.

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I too have been feeling like this lately. It's easy to feel alienated, especially when you don't know any aro/ace people online or in real life who can relate to you! A couple of other users on here have said this as well but please feel free to message me (and that goes for anyone else reading this too)! I would love to talk with you guys anytime! This loneliness is difficult to deal with but what's the point of this forum if we don't also use it to help one another through things like this? The best way to combat loneliness is by connecting with one another and sharing our stories/thoughts!

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I totally get where you're coming from, but just try and remember we understand and you're not alone. If you need someone to talk to PM me, don't suffer in silence :)

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I came across this article on Queer loneliness and friendship.
Which whilst it does not, directly, mention aromanticism does mention issues which may be applicable.

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I feel lonely too. I have a few really good friends and they’re amazing, but I still feel like something is missing. Sometimes I still feel alone. And I don’t know if it’s because of any label. I’m grayro ace but I don’t think those are the things making me feel alone since I do have friends and so many aros are perfectly fulfilled with friendships. For me it’s personal. I don’t feel as connected with anyone as I need to be. I need something besides my existing friendships. It’s not that they aren’t good enough for me. I don’t think. Why do I feel so alone when I HAVE good, genuine friends?

 

part of me is worried that what I’m missing is a romantic relationship and I KNOW romance doesn’t make me human and people don’t NEED romance to be happy, but I’m worried that I’m the exception. What if romance is what I’m missing? What if I’m destined to be lonely forever because I can’t feel what I need to feel in order to access what I need to feel complete? 

 

Maybe that didnt make sense. If it did, can someone message me?

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19 hours ago, asexualpanda27 said:

part of me is worried that what I’m missing is a romantic relationship and I KNOW romance doesn’t make me human and people don’t NEED romance to be happy, but I’m worried that I’m the exception. What if romance is what I’m missing? What if I’m destined to be lonely forever because I can’t feel what I need to feel in order to access what I need to feel complete? 

Here's how I see it : what do you miss exactly? do you think it would be fixed by a romantic relationship? romantic feelings? what kind of emotional need do you lack exactly?

Don't know if I make sense, but strong human connections don't have to be romantic; it can also be platonic, queerplatonic… First you have to define what kind of emotional need you have, and then try to find them. I think some aros are in a romantic relationship even if they don't feel attraction or romantic feelings.

Also, is the label cupioromantic makes sense to you? An aro who still wants or needs romance?

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@nonmerci I don’t know what I’m missing. I’m missing a deep connection of any kind. It’s just that normal friends can’t or aren’t willing to have that deep bond that romantic partners are more willing to have. But romantic partners aren’t usually thrilled when someone says they can’t love them back romantically. I want a connection—it doesn’t matter what kind. I’m just worried no one will ever want to platonically have that bond and I won’t be able to contribute to a romantic one. 

 

I identify as aroflux because I can’t decide on just one micro label. I could call myself cupio or grey or Demi or some others. But being Demi and cupio at the same time really really sucks. I want a connection now but I can’t form one without time 

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From what you say, it seems you need a deep platonic bound, which can be fulfilled by a romantic relationship, but also by platonic or queerplatonic, if you had the chance to have friends that are willing to have a deep bond with you.

Now, I can't really help you with that as I personnaly don't feel this need; but maybe you can find some aro in a queerplatonic relationship to know how it worked? Also, don't lose hope : I'm sure deeper friendships exist over there.

2 hours ago, asexualpanda27 said:

But romantic partners aren’t usually thrilled when someone says they can’t love them back romantically.

I saw some topic here about that, but it was usually aro who were engaged in a romantic relationship before they knew about aromanticism and are now trying to make it work with their partner. It is possible in theory, but as you said very complicated.

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