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Am I aro, ace, or just young?


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Hi everyone, 

So I'm 15 (almost 16) and I have never really experienced sexual attraction to anyone. I've never had a crush, never had a boy/girlfriend and never kissed or even held hands. All my friends at school are either attracted to others (celebrities and stuff) or sexually active, but I just... aren't? I don't want to kiss anyone and definitely don't want to have sex, and have never really thought anyone to be beautiful aside from the occasional objective "I can see why someone would be attracted to you". However, I don't know whether this is because I'm ace, aro, both or neither and just young. How old were you when you realised and what would you say if you were me?

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Hello! Honestly? I see young peoples being romanticaly atracted every day so… I don't think 16 is too young to know. Also, not wanting to kiss or have sex can be a hint!

 

and, between you and me? I realised (somewhat) when I was around 10, i just didn't have to word for it. 

 

Also, even if you're not aro ace (well, you could still be a-spec), it's okay. If you feel that aro/ace fit you right now, feel free to use it!

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I was 15 when I realized I was aroace and I'm almost 20 now and things haven't changed. That doesn't mean they won't change for you, but I also don't think you're too young to realize that about yourself. 

 

Remember it's okay to try on a label for a little bit and then decide it doesn't work for you. People and experiences change and it's not wrong to go through multiple labels in your lifetime  

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I am 16 now and discovered about asexuality and aromanticism about 6 months ago. After sharing the same reasons as you and realizing my past history of incomprehension with romance and sex (I remember an argument I got into about abortion because I couldn't for the life of me understand why people always said abstinence was impractical), I accepted the labels as they fit far better than straight etc.. ever would. It actually took a fair number of conversations (mostly with by bi and lesbian friends because no one else talked about this stuff) because I was reluctant to "constrain myself" and I had always imagined marrying (in a relatively platonic way) and having kids, but I think it would have been disingenuous for me to keep deceiving myself. 

So since you sound similar to me, I would hazard that there is a very good chance you are aroace but that is really up to you to decide

(Sorry for the convoluted sentence structure and parentheses everywhere I'm totally a concise and articulate person 😂)

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I was like 13 or 14 when I first heard the term aroace, and I sort of was like, "okay sure, sounds like me" and mostly forgot about it until later, when I was uncertain about it again and questioned it, leading me to do some research, and eventually to deciding I'm definitely aro (and ace, but I didn't really debate that). I kind of knew that I didn't get crushes when I was a young child and all my friends (well, one in particular) were ranting about all of their million different crushes that I could never keep track of.

I'm 16 now, so it hasn't really been that long, but I am fully convinced I'm aro (and ace too I guess) now and I will personally fight the world if anyone says I'm too young to be that.

 

My advice? Try it out. Try thinking of yourself as that, see if you like it after a while, and see if it fits you. This is all I can really say, as you know your thoughts and feelings the best, and only you can decide who you are. There's no harm in changing it if you realize new things and decide it doesn't fit anymore.

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I've known I wasn't like everyone else from the time I was about 10. I didn't know how to put this into words until I was 18, but I'm a week shy of 21 now and I still feel the same way. If you feel it, you feel it.

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Go with what you feel now. If later you renounce it, then that's fine. Life is about making those choices that make you happy, and these choices don't necessarily affect other people. If people say they do, they're also wrong. 

 

You're young, sure, but I ID'd as Aro when I was fifteen, and flopped on it later only to accept this part of me now. That may not be your story, or you  may not flop at all. Maybe it's your fit, but if you ignore these parts of yourself they'll only come out later.

 

Wishing you the best. c:

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  • 10 months later...

I'm somehow relieved that I'm not the only young person who thinks similar to that. I stumbled across the term "asexuell" a few months ago (because of a friend, still very thankful for that) and a few weeks ago I learned about aromantics. This all fits pretty well. I never had a crush on anybody and always thought a good friendship is worth more than a relationship build upon kisses and holding hands. I can understand why people like that, but simply do not feel the same. 

But I always thought: Hey, you are just 16, maybe it will develop eventually? 

I don't want sex or a relationship. I'm more than happy with what I got. Sometimes I think it's even easier to live without all this stuff, I think it can be really stressful??

I hope it will stay like this. Why shouldn't it? 

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My feeling is that labels aren't contracts. A label  describes how you feel when you give it to yourself. You're young. You may well change various labels many many times. Other labels you may never change. 

You're 16. It's a phase. But everything is a phase, and that doesn't mean that a given label doesn't describe how you are feeling right now. 

At the same time, if you change your mind next year, or in 15 or 30 years, no one is going to track you down and punish you for being "wrong"... (At least I hope not. That would be really rude)

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It seems like most people experience sexual and romantic by your age. I personally knew I was asexual by age 16. It took me a bit longer to realize I was aromantic but that's more because of denial than a lack of early signs. Most aromantic and asexual people can see early signs by puberty, sometimes even before. So if you feel comfortable calling yourself aromantic asexual, do it. Even if it changes in the future, thats okay. It doesn't change how you feel right now.

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  • 2 months later...

I found out when I was 17 so not much older than you now. My opinion is, yes it could change, you could suddenly be attracted to people, but you also might not. So, no matter how old you are, if you're comfortable with a label, use it, own it, and if it changes and you dont use it anymore, that is fine too. That's how you felt at the time and that's just as valid as how you feel now.

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