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Do I "just" hate romance?


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After searching and reading in the forums I started to wonder about this.
I'm pretty sure I'm aro but I'm not sure if I never felt romantic attraction at all.
Generally speaking it was always tough for me to tell romantic and platonic attraction apart.
Before getting to know about the aro(ace) community and their terminology I assumed I had crushes.
Those crushes were actually squishes. I never felt the desire to do things I (or society) consider(s) as romantic.
Mostly just wanted to get to know them and share my time.
I always felt strong for my friendships. But not like I'm in love.
I grew up in this society, surrounded by all the romance in our media and for some time as teen I started to like the idea of a romantic relationship.
Then I engaged in some and realized how much romantic actions are throwing me off the boat. It wasn't like anything I had imagined in my mind.
It didn't matter who I was with at the time - romantic actions and just the frame of a romo relationship made me feel uncomfortable, trapped and disgusted.
I did not want to admit it because I was very afraid of being lonely back then and thought I needed something like this in my life because that's just how it goes - and friends started to leave my side because of their own affaires. Looking back now, my "relationships" felt like being with a best friend - at least by my side.
There were two people I felt kinda strong for and where I seriously cannot tell if I loved them in a romantic way or not.
This is especially difficult to tell because I started to talk myself into having crushes/being in love in hope things would be easier and other people would leave me alone.

I wonder if one can still identify as aromantic, even if they may experienced romantic love or are able to experience it in theory but hate the feeling?
Would it count as gray-aro?
(since the definition is "person who experiences little to no romantic attraction").
I also wonder if I'm "only" aromantic because I cannot stand romance as portrayed by society (but deep down I'm a sucker for romance, huehueue *not serious*).
And the exclusiveness of a romantic relationship: No one is allowed to touch me but my gf/bf/whatever! Yikes.
Can't imagine (romantic) sceneries in which I would feel comfortable with all that lovey-dovey stuff and not like it's all just a huge act.
I always felt awful when someone showed romantic affection to me. The deep instinct to flee kicks off instantly inside of me (why I thought about commitment issues at first).
So romance looked kinda nice on paper but IRL it's horrible.
I do not feel like I'm traumatized due to my experiences, more like I'm...maybe born with this aversion. It's the main point why I started to ask myself Hey, maybe you're just aromantic?
A weight fell off my shoulders as I admitted those feelings and imagined a future in which I can be a happy single. In actuality, I don't want or crave a romantic relationship.
Instead, I hope for good friends in the future.
Honestly the more I let it sink in, the more I think I only dreamed of romance because of the sex tied to it (probably confused love with lust too), I had absolutely no idea aromanticism exists and is legitimate, because of the fear ending up lonely and because I didn't want to disappoint my parents.
I'm their only child and well they'll never have a daughter or son-in-law or grandchildren (never wanted to have children of my own).
Has someone experienced something similar? Feeling like you're trapped in expectations and social conventions so you suppress your true wants?

I'm glad about every response.

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If didn't already did it, it might help to look through the list of orientations and choose one that suits you. From what I've read on this forum, many people here have (had) some friendships they aren't sure if they are completely platonic or romantic. The problem with questions like this is that there isn't a clear definition what romantic attraction actually is , as even the alloromantic person I asked said "you just know when you're in love" which isn't really helpful. Regarding taliking oneself into "being in love" with someone: I've been told that if you make a conscious decision, you aren't in love, which eliminated basically all instances where I thought it might have been love, and the rest vanished when I thought about if I would be jealous if they took somebody else.

I hope I could help at least a little bit.

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I seriously had no idea there were so many romantic orientations. And I read through the topic about what romantic attraction is, definitely helped a little.

16 hours ago, Tagor said:

Regarding taliking oneself into "being in love" with someone: I've been told that if you make a conscious decision, you aren't in love, which eliminated basically all instances where I thought it might have been love, and the rest vanished when I thought about if I would be jealous if they took somebody else.

That sentence of you gave me a good chunk to think about.
I can say I always told myself to "be in love" but it makes sense you wouldn't need to do that if you had these feelings for real.
I tried to convince myself I feel something besides platonic attraction and sympathy.
Romantic love seems stronger to many people, like an obsession over a person.
And it helped me to read that romantic love is more egoistical, like you wanna have someone only to yourself.
It's rather alien to me but I somehow get it.

You helped me to get a clearer picture of my emotions, thank you!

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