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mika-mok

Whats the difference between platonic and romantic love?

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Whats the difference between platonic and romantic love? Not familial love vs romantic love, i get the jist of that. Im hoping that understanding the difference might help me understand my own orientation.

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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.

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I went through the same struggles and here is how I came to the decision that I am aro:

 

After reaaally thinking about it and asking my extremely straight and alloromantic friends some questions I came to a conclusion that all the "crushes" I had experienced were actually squishes and I am aro. That is because...

 

  • I don't really get jealous of the "crushes" (which are actually squishes, I think). I asked my friends and they all said they feel very sad and mad and jealous when the person they have a crush on likes another person or dates someone else. I, in contrast, don't really care as long as we still hang out and are close friends (close enough to share hugs).
  • Like mentioned above, I don't care if we're not dating as long as we are close friends. I don't really mind just being best friends with my "crushes". But my friends said they would be very sad if they were in that situation. Before, I thought I wanted to have, specifically, a romantic relationship with them since when I imagined myself dating them it seemed like an okay thing to do. But I feel like those images were sort of forced (if that makes any sense?) and it was more about me being open to that sort of relationship than me actually craving one.
  • I don't feel a necessity for kissing and relationships. I also asked my friends how they would feel if they found out they would never be able to kiss someone on the lips for the rest of their lives. Most of them said they would feel as if they were missing something in their lives. I wouldn't care if that happened, on the other hand. I also asked how they would feel if they found out they would never be able to date anyone in their lives, only have really close friends. ALL of them said they would be devastated. I would not care.
  • I think about romantic relationships differently. As I reflected on this topic, I realized that for me boyfriends/girlfriends were sort of like long-term best friends..? Dating in my mind was just going out with a really good friend like you normally would do. A relationship was just, really, a more intense friendship for me. In my mind, the only thing special about these romantic relationships were the title of girlfriend/boyfriend. And apparently that's not how everyone feels lol.
  • Experience. So, I was lucky (or unlucky) enough to experience a romantic relationship (though most of it was long-distance). I felt like a lot of the things I would do/say were really forced..? It felt like I was just copying what I saw in movies. Additionally, though in my head the thought of kissing did not seem like the worst idea, when it came to the moment where the guy was going to do it... I don't know what came upon me. At the very moment I knew I could never do it. I felt like I would cry if I kissed him. It just felt totally against my nature.
  • Also, the descriptions my friends gave of "crush symptoms" (lol) did not match mine. They said they felt butterflies and were constantly thinking about the person and fantasizing about holding hands and kissing them and what they'd look like together and they felt very nervous around them and had a deep yearning to see them and be around them constantly, etc. For me, I just feel really good around the person and want to hug them and (sometimes) kiss them (usually not in the lips, though). 

 

I think that is it so far. 

 

In summary, the reason why I thought I was alloromantic for such a long time was because the thought of dating didn't seem terrible at all! I actually really enjoyed the idea and wanted that for me because that is what I grew up with and saw constantly in the media.

But I was confusing romantic attraction with intense platonic attraction and thought I had crushes when they were actually squishes.

 

Hope that helped somehow :)

Good luck!

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