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Orientation Modeling

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[ an extension of this previous thread now that that one has gone so far off-topic ]

 

I'm trying to address, or at least describe in order to talk about, an intra- & intercommunity problem. In the ace & aro communities both, there's arisen a norm of talking about ourselves and each other in terms of "romantic orientation" and "sexual orientation" as discrete entities. This has been preferable for some people but not for others, and that's caused some conflict, which people have tried to address in a lot of different ways already (all with their own issues). What I'm trying to do, at the moment, is try to map all of those different relationships to different norms of orientation modeling. Here is the blog post where I explain more of why I'm bothering with this. You may want to go read that first if this post is confusing to you, but for those of you who already have the context, you can skip it.

 

So I'm working on the following loose descriptions right now (in the list below), and here's my questions for y'all: Do you feel like you fit anywhere among these? Is there any way I could change the wording to make more room for you to fit better? Is there anything else I left out? Should any others be added? Should any of the descriptions be subdivided into more? Are there any other norms or dynamics I should be taking into account?

 

Here's the descriptions I'm working with so far [work in progress, edited 3/28]:

 

  1. ORIENTATION LANGUAGE: This is the norm of using the word “orientation” as a part of how to talk and think about particular ways of desiring, connecting, and relating to other people. Not everyone uses or wants to use orientation language at all. And even among those who do, they don’t all use the same models, definitions, types, or categories; using orientation language for one thing or in one way doesn’t necessarily entail using it for every conceivable experience of interpersonal desire or attraction. The degree to which orientation language feels right or applicable to different people for different feelings will vary. And again, some people may prefer to stay away from using it at all. 
     

  2. COMPOSITE SEXUAL ORIENTATION: This is the Western composite norm of thinking of “orientation” in the singular, where “sexual orientation” is synonymous/interchangeable with “orientation” in general, where romance & sexuality are intertwined, and where one’s pool of romantic interests is integrated with one’s sexuality. One’s relationship to this norm can be thought of as a scale ranging from “convergent” to “divergent.” The more you prefer this way of modeling your orientation, the more you could say your relationship to this norm is more convergent. The more you feel alienated from this norm or want to distance yourself from it, the more you could say your relationship to this norm is more divergent. Those are just the extremes, though; think of this as a sliding scale.
     

  3. ROMANTIC ORIENTATION/SEXUAL ORIENTATION DYAD: This is the aro & ace communities’ norm of talking about “romantic orientation” and “sexual orientation” (RO SO) as two things that aros and aces have. In other words, we are expected to have a “romantic orientation” box and a “sexual orientation” box, and we are expected to apply labels to or some how fit our experiences into those boxes, making ourselves legible under this framework. The more you relate to this norm (RO SO) as an applicable and useful framework for yourself, the more you could describe your identity as “rosol.” The more you feel alienated from this norm or want to distance yourself from it, the more you could describe your identity as more out of alignment with this dyad, or “non-rosol.” Think of this as a sliding scale with plenty of room in between for those whose relationship to this norm is ambivalent or apathetic.
     

  4. ONLY ONE OR TWO TYPES OF ORIENTATION: This is the norm of thinking and speaking of “orientation” language as something that only, strictly pertains to either sex, romance, or both. One’s relationship to this norm is strong when you think of all your orientations as making reference to romance and/or sex in some fashion. One’s relationship to this norm is more alienated or distant the less you think of your orientation (or one of your orientational identities) as being “about” the canon categories (of sex or romance). With reference to this norm, we might think of romantic and sexual orientations as the more “orthodox” types, and we might think of other kinds of orientation (like sensual, aesthetic, affectionate, etc.) as more “unorthodox.”
     

  5. ORIENTATIONS BY AXIS: This is the norm especially prevalent in the ace & aro communities that all orientations must be specified along a specific axis, such as romanticism, sexuality, sensuality, platonism, alterity, and so on. Under this norm we are expected to “map” every orientation label along a specific axis on a grid. One’s relationship to this norm is stronger the more that all of your orientations align with a specific axis (or bundle of axes) and the more you feel comfortable with this way of sorting and defining your orientational identities. These are identities that we might describe as more “axial.” One’s relationship to this norm is more alienated or more distant the more you do not subscribe to this framework. The less you bind or map your identity to this norm, the more you might describe that identity as “non-axial.” Again, think of this as a sliding scale.

 

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Those descriptions are kinda long, so I'm starting by trying to summarize/rephrase and make sure I'm understanding it correctly? I'm also including parallel examples to see if correctly understanding the nuanced differences in a more contextual way.

1. "convergent, cohesive pieces, singular composite orientation"

  • People want singular identity rather than separating romantic from sexual
  • Ex: aroace as a singular identity label without separation 

2. "Divergent pieces, multiple axis-specific orientations"

  • People who are comfortable with the current norm of labeling both romantic and sexual orientations
  • Ex: Aromantic Asexual who specifies both

3. "Divergent pieces, without multiple axis-specific orientations"

  • People who do specify romantic/sexual but who don't necessarily label both; labels might be more fluid for them
  • Ex: someone who identifies as aromantic who might technically also be asexual but does not consider that relevant/important

 

 

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19 minutes ago, Magni said:

Those descriptions are kinda long, so I'm starting by trying to summarize/rephrase and make sure I'm understanding it correctly? I'm also including parallel examples to see if correctly understanding the nuanced differences in a more contextual way.

 

That's fair.

 

19 minutes ago, Magni said:


1. "convergent, cohesive pieces, singular composite orientation"

  • People want singular identity rather than separating romantic from sexual
  • Ex: aroace as a singular identity label without separation 

2. "Divergent pieces, multiple axis-specific orientations"

  • People who are comfortable with the current norm of labeling both romantic and sexual orientations
  • Ex: Aromantic Asexual who specifies both

3. "Divergent pieces, without multiple axis-specific orientations"

  • People who do specify romantic/sexual but who don't necessarily label both; labels might be more fluid for them
  • Ex: someone who identifies as aromantic who might technically also be asexual but does not consider that relevant/important

 

Yes! ...or rather, yes and no, only because.... those do work as examples, but I don't want to imply that those are the only way to think of them, if that makes sense. So those are fine examples but not exact summaries, is I guess what I'm thinking. Essentially what I have in mind is less about people's specific choice of labels/label format and more about different relationships to (or resistance against) certain norms, like the composite sexual orientation norm and the dual romantic & sexual orientation norm.

 

I'd also like to avoid accepting the language that anyone can be "technically" asexual (or anything else). I think that'd represent, among other things, applying the same cookie cutter framework of romantic & sexual axes to people even when that's not what works for them, which is exactly what the third group may want to flag as inappropriate language for them. I can't tell if you meant they might self-describe as "technically asexual," but I wanted to acknowledge that just in case.

 

(Also, if somebody saw that I don't have a romantic orientation and decided to presume what I "technically" am, I'd blow a gasket.)

 

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Yeah, the examples weren't meant as a comprehensive list/summary, just as individual examples....and I used variations of aroace because it's different ways I perceive and might describe my own identity?  Honestly, I don't think I feel particularly attached to any of those models, but I kinda use all of them based on what feels best for the context?

 

So on one hand, I tend to use aromantic asexual separately to describe my identity when I'm aiming for clarity, such as if I'm trying to educate an allo queer person about a-spec stuff.  I find this useful because people tend to conflate the two and assume people must always be both, or they assume aromantic is a subset of asexual.  Part of what I like about the second model is its use for explaining things clearly when discussing stuff outside of the community(Model 2).

Other times, I use aroace as a singular term when trying to emphasize the intersection of the two.  I tend to do this more in relation to community discussions?  Like, my individual identity of being aro & ace can be separable as I can generally tell which things I feel because I'm aro and which things I feel because I'm ace.  But being aroace puts me at the intersection between the aro and ace communities and that's when it as a singular entity feels most relevant.  Though, I also use aroace for brevity sometimes when it seems relevant to mention both(Model 1)

Lastly, I am increasingly inclined to drop the ace part and just say I'm aro.  I feel like being aro more regularly affects my life since society expects romance, but since I'm not in a romantic relationship then me being ace doesn't really come up that much (aside I guess from the fact I'm sex-repulsed).  I feel much more closely tied with the aro community than the ace community.  If I say I'm aro and ace, people are generally inclined to refer to my ace-ness first whereas I'd rather center the fact I'm aro.  Therefore, I might only say that I'm aro, but if someone asked or it otherwise became relevant to mention, I wouldn't mind mentioning that I also happen to be ace(Model 3).

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@Magni

Gotcha... That's also a good anecdote for explaining how these things aren't necessarily set in stone. Got a question for you though. Would you say that the expectation that aros have to specify a sexual orientation... is a nuisance/obstacle/troublesome for how you want to describe yourself? Or are you saying more that, out of the two, aromanticism is the one that's more salient for you and that you want to put emphasis on? Asking because I'm trying to think about how I might adjust how I'm drawing the lines here.

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hmmm.....well for one, I think the expectation to specify both romantic and sexual orientations goes for both aros and aces?  Like, if someone says they're ace I'm generally curious what their romantic orientation is too, so I understand why people might be curious about sexual orientation if I just say I'm aro.  Generally, if someone only says they're bi, people assume both biromantic and bisexual unless otherwise stated.  Perhaps part of the problem is our abbreviated versions already incorporate which orientation axis it is, and we can't really abbreviate to just "a" and have it make sense, so an abbreviated form of "does not experience attraction" which doesn't specify type of attraction might be useful.

Getting to your actual question, I don't consider it an obstacle? In general, I like the ability to communicate clearly so I understand why people might be curious and I am comfortable answering.  It's mainly that I want to emphasize that I'm aro.

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...I have stared at this for days trying to figure out how to apply it to myself, lol. I think I just don't fit well in any of the groups you listed.

 

So, my problem with SAM isn't with the idea of multiple orientations. I have 2.5 - 3 distinct orientations (asexual, bi/pan/whatever, and ????grayromantic/aro-ish????).

 

What chafes is more the idea of "splitting" all of my various attractions. I would say that most of them are convergent, though not cohesive. But not all of them. There's a closely-connected group of attractions that for simplicity's sake, I've come to just consider various forms of sensual attraction (yes, my definition of that is very different from the most common one—EDIT: and for the curious, see here, here, and here), and it's sometimes easier to refer to all of it at once with just the top-level label without getting into a detailed explanation. Or talk about aesthetic attraction or tactile sensual attraction specifically, if those are the relevant parts. The distinguishable components of kind of look like this:

 

Sensual attraction =

  • Aesthetic
    • Visual
    • Aural or Sonic (sound)
    • Dynamic (movement, mannerisms)
    • Stylistic (fashion sense, similar taste in art etc.)
  • Tactile (wanting to touch, hug, cuddle, kiss, etc.)
  • Olfactory (scent)

...and there are other (less frequent) components or sub-categories in there that I'm not going to pick out for purposes of this post. But these all tend to co-occur in various combinations, fluidly, as kind of a big interconnected cloud. I'm not saying that every component will always occur at the same time. But what I'm saying is that there will often be multiple categories happening at the same time and it's rather difficult to distinguish each and every factor that is present in any given case. It's more of just a feeling of liking someone, but figuring out why I like them takes quite a lot of effort. I guess to borrow your fruit metaphor from before, it'd be like carefully dissecting a fruit to count and label all the seeds/parts or something. 

 

As you can probably tell, aesthetic attraction is the most common and easiest-to-distinguish part of this for me, but also keep in mind that I've had MANY MANY YEARS to think about this and gradually come up with this understanding. The process of figuring that out has been somewhat unpleasant, as it's counter to what I would naturally want to do. I'd rather just eat the fruit.

 

Complicating all of this, I also experience repulsion in every one of these categories! (To clarify, I mean repulsion as in very simply "the opposite of attraction"—imagine the way a magnet pushes away from another magnet's matching polarity—and most of the time it is a pretty mild "oh, no thank you" but it can sometimes be a lot stronger.) This is also very frequently co-occurring with any attraction I feel, creating a lot of conflict, very much a push-pull effect. So that is why I would not call my attractions "cohesive" in any way, even though they are strongly integrated. 

 

If I did experience sexual attraction, it would be melded in with all of this just as much as everything else, I'm pretty sure. I think this is why it took me a long time to figure out that there isn't a sexual component in there at all, although there was once a feeling kind of like "water with a tiny bit of soda in it" as an anonymous person once described what gray-asexuality can be like (I'm paraphrasing, see page 38 of The Invisible Orientation for the original quote). That feeling is gone now, though.

 

All of this is not even considering personality or emotional compatibility factors, which are a very much separate thing for me. And over the years I've realized that attraction is... just not how I would describe any of my experiences related to that at all. I'll write more on that later, in a blog post.

 

Sooo... I guess if you want to add another group, maybe Convergent pieces, multiple orientations?

 

I think "axis-specific" is unnecessarily wordy and confusing, tbh, so you could drop that.

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20 minutes ago, Magni said:

Getting to your actual question, I don't consider it an obstacle? In general, I like the ability to communicate clearly so I understand why people might be curious and I am comfortable answering.  It's mainly that I want to emphasize that I'm aro.

 

Okay. I think I get you. In that case, that sounds closer like a relationship to those norms that I meant for the second description to cover. Any suggestions for how to amend it?

 

9 minutes ago, Prismatangle said:

...I have stared at this for days trying to figure out how to apply it to myself, lol. I think I just don't fit well in any of the groups you listed.

 

That's good to know!

 

11 minutes ago, Prismatangle said:

I think this is why it took me a long time to figure out that there isn't a sexual component in there at all, although there was once a feeling kind of like "water with a tiny bit of soda in it" as an anonymous person once described what gray-asexuality can be like (I'm paraphrasing, see page 38 of The Invisible Orientation for the original quote).

 

Quote

But my case is like having a glass of water with a little bit of soda poured into it. When I taste it, I can't really tell what's off about it. It doesn't seem like just water, but it's definitely not a cup of soda. I might not even be able to identify the off taste as soda. Maybe it's not! Sometimes I think I taste it more than others. But I'm not sure I like the taste of it. It's confusing, and it might be easier if I just had a glass of plain water, but I don't really have any control over that. But overall, I still feel like what I have is much more like water than soda, especially since I can't always even identify the added ingredient as soda. So I'll call it water. Just not plain water.

 

Neat description. ^^

 

15 minutes ago, Prismatangle said:

So, my problem with SAM isn't with the idea of multiple orientations. I have 2.5 - 3 distinct orientations (asexual, bi/pan/whatever, and ????grayromantic/aro-ish????).

What chafes is more the idea of "splitting" all of my various attractions.

 

Hmm... I was definitely thinking about these distinctions in terms of norms about naming orientations. But it could be that I've described the different relationships to those norms in a way that presumes too much about what lies beneath or motivates those reactions to them. Basically: I'm thinking of lines drawn between "I don't like the romantic & sexual orientations separation" "I like the romantic & sexual orientations separation, that's what works best for me" and "I don't like the romantic & sexual orientations separation either, but for different reasons than the first." Reduced down to that, do any of those three work for you? Or... more generally, how would you describe your relationship to different norms wrt orientation labeling?

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I think it is relevant to determine whether we are only discussing the model in context of romantic & sexual orientations or if we're including tertiary types of attraction?

 

I do experience tertiary attractions (platonic/sensual/alterous etc.) which are significant enough for me to want to label, but I feel like tertiary types of attraction might be better suited to a different discussion/model because that's a whole lot of other stuff; I think there needs to be more terminology developed surrounding tertiary attractions/orientations in general. Also, I get the impression part of the underlying conflict is that people who don't use the SAM resent the expectation for them to label both their romantic and sexual attraction, but there isn't really an expectation for people to label tertiary attraction.

ergh accidentally deleted a bunch and have to rewrite so now it will be briefer

 

1 hour ago, Prismatangle said:

What chafes is more the idea of "splitting" all of my various attractions.

How would you ideally describe your attractions? Currently people tend to do a lot of combinations of abbreviation words, which makes sense because it's not realistic to have a unique term for every single combination.  Is the problem specifically related to issues with communicating tertiary attraction?

 

 

45 minutes ago, Coyote said:

In that case, that sounds closer like a relationship to those norms that I meant for the second description to cover. Any suggestions for how to amend it?

I don't necessarily have suggestions for amendments aside from generally amending it to be more clear and succinct.  I think the overall issue is trying to treat models as rigid boxes people fit into rather than using them as models?

Models are intended to be tools for more clearly communicating information.  An example would be the various models used in chemistry for portraying information about a molecule; all of them can correctly be used for the same molecule, but based on the context and what information needs to be communicated sometimes one model is better than others.  I think part of the underlying issue is about how much information each model communicates:

  • Model 2 communicates all the information but it tends to be rather long.  (ex: lewis dot structure, which shows ALL of the valence electrons)

 

  • Model 1 communicates the same information but in a shorter way. (ex: Lewis structure, which has lines for the bonds and then lone pair electrons)

 

  • Model 3 either doesn't necessarily know all the information or doesn't see why it all needs to be communicated (ex: skeletal structure, doesn't see the need to name every atom or doesn't know how it fits together in order to put in 3D space).
     

There is another aspect of the models based on overlap/intersection of identities vs. wanting to split them up....personally I think it's useful to know the individual orientations, but I also see the need for more succinct terminology for describing things which involve multiple identities and stuff.


Things we probably need terms for:

  • A vague type of attraction which can be used to indicate an attraction/orientation which is neither romantic nor sexual but which involves multiple types of tertiary attraction
  • Analogous to how abbreviations such as "bi" can be used to mean biromantic, bisexual, or both, we need a term that can be used to mean aro, ace, or both which does not require specification of which type of orientation it is describing.  (shortening to just "a" doesn't make sense).
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4 minutes ago, Coyote said:

 

Hmm... I was definitely thinking about these distinctions in terms of norms about naming orientations. But it could be that I've described the different relationships to those norms in a way that presumes too much about what lies beneath or motivates those reactions to them. Basically: I'm thinking of lines drawn between "I don't like the romantic & sexual orientations separation" "I like the romantic & sexual orientations separation, that's what works best for me" and "I don't like the romantic & sexual orientations separation either, but for different reasons than the first." Reduced down to that, do any of those three work for you? Or... more generally, how would you describe your relationship to different norms wrt orientation labeling?

 

Romantic & sexual orientation separation is... pretty much fine for me?

 

I mean, apart from how I still don't really get what a romantic orientation even is, so there's that I guess.

 

The norms of orientation labeling that bother me are...

  • that orientations are considered so often to be solely based on attraction patterns (even more so in the aro community than the ace community apparently, based on responses in the previous thread), to the extent that attraction and orientation are even conflated in the term "Split Attraction Model"
  • that attraction patterns are thus extremely heavily scrutinized in both the aro and ace communities (as well as, to a lesser extent, in wlw spaces)
  • that if you don't fit a certain attraction pattern exactly, some people will say you "aren't really" whatever orientation label you're using (gatekeeping/identity policing)
  • that attraction patterns are presumed to be easily separable/distinguishable (I think some people try to say they aren't that way for everyone by saying "not everyone uses SAM" but that's... incredibly ambiguous and the point doesn't really come through, as discussed before)
  • that the practice of creating more and more labels for each individual attraction or aspect of experience is so normalized that it's often just assumed that people want to label their experiences/orientations, when not all people want to do that

...so maybe that's not what you're looking for? But it's all connected/related and that's the set of problems I have with orientation labeling.

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6 minutes ago, Magni said:

I do experience tertiary attractions (platonic/sensual/alterous etc.) which are significant enough for me to want to label, but I feel like tertiary types of attraction might be better suited to a different discussion/model because that's a whole lot of other stuff; I think there needs to be more terminology developed surrounding tertiary attractions/orientations in general. Also, I get the impression part of the underlying conflict is that people who don't use the SAM resent the expectation for them to label both their romantic and sexual attraction, but there isn't really an expectation for people to label tertiary attraction.

 

I don't consider these "tertiary" attractions. I don't subscribe to that model of... ranking attraction types I guess? Honestly I'm not really familiar with it, and I probably wouldn't group all those that you listed together under one category.

 

For me, this cluster that I described is the primary way that I experience attraction. The things outside of it... aren't really best described as attractions.

 

This cluster of attractions, in combination with other factors, is how I determined that I am bi (but not biromantic). It's not that I feel pressure to label these types of attraction, but that I feel pressure from people questioning why I say I'm bi in addition to ace, when I also don't ID as romantic, to explain that. In other words, I'm not going to let people take away my bi card, just because I'm not allosexual or alloromantic. I've been IDing as bi since I was 13, and the bi part didn't go away just because I realized I'm also ace (and now also kind of aro).

 

7 minutes ago, Magni said:

How would you ideally describe your attractions? Currently people tend to do a lot of combinations of abbreviation words, which makes sense because it's not realistic to have a unique term for every single combination.  Is the problem specifically related to issues with communicating tertiary attraction?

 

I wouldn't. Ideally, I would never describe them at all. The reason that I do so is because I strongly do not relate to the way that other people describe them. I define them differently and it just... is a very different experience than the way others describe it. So I put it out there last year because I wanted to broaden the discussion and give anyone who might have a similar experience to mine a chance to see it out there in the world, and maybe take less time than I did to figure it out. It did get quite a lot of responses, so I think it was worth doing for that reason.

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4 minutes ago, Magni said:

I think it is relevant to determine whether we are only discussing the model in context of romantic & sexual orientations or if we're including tertiary types of attraction?

 

General for the record statement: I want to have a discussion about orientations, labels, identities, and person-descriptors. Attraction is relevant to that, naturally, but not the main thing I'm trying to look at.

 

But to answer the other aspect of your question... mmmI don't think I'm on board with the category-name of "tertiary attraction." That doesn't seem quite fair, calling everything that's not-specifically-romantic and not-specifically-sexual "tertiary." For me, aesthetic & sensual attraction are the most common, strongest, most distinct types of attraction I have experienced. I wouldn't even think to describe them as "tertiary."

 

8 minutes ago, Magni said:

Also, I get the impression part of the underlying conflict is that people who don't use the SAM resent the expectation for them to label both their romantic and sexual attraction, but there isn't really an expectation for people to label tertiary attraction.

 

The way people discuss "the split attraction model" by completely omitting any acknowledgement of (for instance) sensual orientation and other uncommon orientation types is one of bones I have to pick with how people talk about it, yes. That's one of the sentiments motivating how I wrote a couple of my "narratives to complicate the SAM/non-SAM binary" in that main post I linked, up top. For clarity's sake, I'd ask that we avoid saying "SAM" in this thread unless called for, because I'm trying to get away from that language entirely.

 

12 minutes ago, Magni said:

Model 3 either doesn't necessarily know all the information or doesn't see why it all needs to be communicated

 

Um... Are you using "Model 3" to mean the third description, on the list? ...Because I don't think that's exactly what's going on there, no.

 

14 minutes ago, Magni said:

personally I think it's useful to know the individual orientations,

 

Sometimes there aren't individual orientations to know.

 

14 minutes ago, Magni said:

Analogous to how abbreviations such as "bi" can be used to mean biromantic, bisexual, or both, we need a term that can be used to mean aro, ace, or both which does not require specification of which type of orientation it is describing.  (shortening to just "a" doesn't make sense).

 

Yes. Agreed.

 

_____________________________________

 

 

13 minutes ago, Prismatangle said:

Romantic & sexual orientation separation is... pretty much fine for me?

 

I mean, apart from how I still don't really get what a romantic orientation even is, so there's that I guess. 

 

lol based on that first sentence I was about to say that's what I meant for description two, but that second sentence? That's a quoi mood right there.

 

In retrospect I definitely should have summarized the third one differently for the purposes of that question. Resistance against the idea that, if you "separate" them, you must have one of each, is also part of it there. As is... more generally, the disidentification with that particular grid -- the romantic orientation and sexual orientation dyad -- for reasons like "maybe only one or neither of those frameworks is especially useful." For me, for instance, quoiromanticism is like "I don't have a romantic orientation, stop asking." But there's also people like, for example, Mal and Luna, from the narratives section I wrote. And more generally, I've also spoken to at least one person whose way of parsing themself into labels is highly contextual rather than static along that grid. I think some labels, like "bi" and "lesbian," may be especially prone to this, with some aces and aros feeling an association with them without specifically wanting to mark them as either "a romantic orientation" or "a sexual orientation" except when pushed to, and maybe not even then.

 

15 minutes ago, Prismatangle said:

The norms of orientation labeling that bother me are...

  • that orientations are considered so often to be solely based on attraction patterns (even more so in the aro community than the ace community apparently, based on responses in the previous thread), to the extent that attraction and orientation are even conflated in the term "Split Attraction Model"
  • that attraction patterns are thus extremely heavily scrutinized in both the aro and ace communities (as well as, to a lesser extent, in wlw spaces)
  • that if you don't fit a certain attraction pattern exactly, some people will say you "aren't really" whatever orientation label you're using (gatekeeping/identity policing)
  • that attraction patterns are presumed to be easily separable/distinguishable (I think some people try to say they aren't that way for everyone by saying "not everyone uses SAM" but that's... incredibly ambiguous and the point doesn't really come through, as discussed before)
  • that the practice of creating more and more labels for each individual attraction or aspect of experience is so normalized that it's often just assumed that people want to label their experiences/orientations, when not all people want to do that

...so maybe that's not what you're looking for? But it's all connected/related and that's the set of problems I have with orientation labeling.

 

!!! Truth.

 

Man, I don't even know that there's any way to condense all that. There's a lot going on there, you know? ...So many ways that our ways of talking about these things can be a mess...

 

Also it's harder to correct people on small points without "derailing" the whole post if you're on Tumblr which is Reason #83 why I wish these communities weren't so disproportionately active on Tumblr BUT ANYWAY.

 

Back on topic: right now I'm thinking I want to maybe reword things so that it sounds like there's less hard lines between the circles, possibly even find a way to make it seem more like a continuum of sorts. Possibly it would help if I didn't write about them like groups or demographics at all, upon reflection. With that said, I do also want to keep things from getting too abstract.

 

 

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(hey, it's odannygirl7, from your blog post. I guess I sort of ranted here instead of making my own post like a reasonable person)

 

Part of, I think, some of the huge-ish problems is even beginning to untangle the knotted up mess that the tumblr discourse caused to a lot of this identity/attraction/whathaveyou model work. (like attraction and orientation being conflated in "Split Attraction Model" ... pre-discourse there was talk about mixed/match orientations and separated attractions, but because tumblr is one big game of telephone, where half of it is just hatefully not listening and subbing in your own words, instead of a nuanced discussion about how this is one way to describe divergent orientational directions which can happen if someone feels separate attractions (and how the aspec community talks about this model a lot because many in the community experience it) we get, I don't even know, the aspec community forces everyone to feel attraction separately, I guess?) It's the same reason why sexual and romantic attraction is heavily prioritized and why there's almost no discussion about orientation language around the other attractions (if they're even brought up). There was little chance to reinforce the idea that this was a model and that there was a model for those with "one" orientation (or whose attractions either lined up where there was just "attraction" that could not be, or didn't want to be, separated out) it was just unnamed because it was what everyone was already generally working with. Varioriented and perioriented was a step to work that into being named, but, well. Like, obviously, now mixed and matched isn't enough, or doesn't capture the full picture, but I think we'd be a lot further along with things like... "oriented" aroaces.
 

But it's hard to basically... dismiss? ignore? all of that. Like, massive debugging of what everyone thinks. ...I don't know if it's about going back to, like, attraction/s as a thing, orientation as a thing, and, idk, something like (I don't want to say relationship goals, lol), but relationship preferences? ?? as a thing? (this is a thing I see where it's, like, whether an "attraction" is there or not, an idea of a preferred relationship. like, I, personally, am not attracted to anyone, but I could see myself, would I be in a position for a relationship, to open that opportunity to anyone of any gender, whereas someone else might only ever want to be open to only one gender.  ...like, I've played around with the term pan affectionate, for myself, not as an attraction based orientation, but as a prospective relationship sorta-orientation. This might also account for people who are, say, "technically" bi (to use a tired trope, lol) but "choose" to be gay.) None of this helps those who want to nope out of all or it tho. :/

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3 hours ago, Coyote said:

mmmI don't think I'm on board with the category-name of "tertiary attraction." That doesn't seem quite fair, calling everything that's not-specifically-romantic and not-specifically-sexual "tertiary." For me, aesthetic & sensual attraction are the most common, strongest, most distinct types of attraction I have experienced. I wouldn't even think to describe them as "tertiary."

 

3 hours ago, Prismatangle said:

I don't consider these "tertiary" attractions. I don't subscribe to that model of... ranking attraction types I guess? Honestly I'm not really familiar with it, and I probably wouldn't group all those that you listed together under one category.

 

"Tertiary" is the only term I've seen for succinctly referring to this group of attractions; I think tertiary is because the most widely acknowledged types of attraction are romantic and sexual and the others tend to be invisible.  I'm not saying it is necessarily a good term, but unless another term has been established it's the only one I know of for communicating this group of attractions.  I've also noticed people tend to have different interpretations of these and/or they're often hard to separate, so I think it's useful to have terms describing them as a group.

 

3 hours ago, Coyote said:

For clarity's sake, I'd ask that we avoid saying "SAM" in this thread unless called for, because I'm trying to get away from that language entirely.

(tbh maybe my brain isn't processing well rn but I'm kinda confused by this whole paragraph) I get wanting distance from old terms, but also...it's useful to have succinct ways to mention things? It makes things more clear....

3 hours ago, Coyote said:

Are you using "Model 3" to mean the third description, on the list?

Yeah I've been referring to the things based on the number of the description on the original list because it's the easiest way to refer to things.  And yeah...I tend to get turned around in metaphors such that loose clarity, this time especially because I had to rewrite that section after it deleted.

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53 minutes ago, Magni said:

"Tertiary" is the only term I've seen for succinctly referring to this group of attractions; I think tertiary is because the most widely acknowledged types of attraction are romantic and sexual and the others tend to be invisible.  I'm not saying it is necessarily a good term, but unless another term has been established it's the only one I know of for communicating this group of attractions.  I've also noticed people tend to have different interpretations of these and/or they're often hard to separate, so I think it's useful to have terms describing them as a group.

 

Sorry, I'm not understanding you here. Why is there a need to group these attractions in the first place? Is it just to say "attractions that aren't romantic/sexual"? That is the only thing I'm seeing that they share in common and that's... not much. If that's why you are referring to them as a group, then why not just say "non-romantic/sexual attractions"? I mean yes, it is a bit more of a mouthful, sure, but if it became commonplace enough you could shorten it to "non-R/S attractions" at least, and that's shorter than "tertiary attractions" by one character. I just don't see the need to adopt a term like that which implies that they are somehow lesser than R/S attractions, and that sensual and queerplatonic/alterous somehow go together.

 

4 hours ago, Coyote said:

lol based on that first sentence I was about to say that's what I meant for description two, but that second sentence? That's a quoi mood right there.

 

Is it ever, haha.

 

4 hours ago, Coyote said:

And more generally, I've also spoken to at least one person whose way of parsing themself into labels is highly contextual rather than static along that grid. I think some labels, like "bi" and "lesbian," may be especially prone to this, with some aces and aros feeling an association with them without specifically wanting to mark them as either "a romantic orientation" or "a sexual orientation" except when pushed to, and maybe not even then.

 

Yeah, I think you're right about that.

 

4 hours ago, Coyote said:

Man, I don't even know that there's any way to condense all that. There's a lot going on there, you know? ...So many ways that our ways of talking about these things can be a mess..

 

Yeah, there really are a lot of different ideas in there. I think I have so much trouble trying to place it into this new model you're working on because... it isn't and probably shouldn't be addressed by this model. Each one of these ideas could be expanded into its own separate blog post, really. I'm not going to go so far as to separate them all into different posts, though, just saying.

 

4 hours ago, Coyote said:

Back on topic: right now I'm thinking I want to maybe reword things so that it sounds like there's less hard lines between the circles, possibly even find a way to make it seem more like a continuum of sorts. Possibly it would help if I didn't write about them like groups or demographics at all, upon reflection. With that said, I do also want to keep things from getting too abstract

 

I think having more of an idea of a continuum could help, but honestly I have trouble placing these narratives on a continuum. I feel like they're just a bunch of different ways of relating or not-relating to labels, different ways of experiencing things, and while they may share some important things in common (the bolded variables at the end), the experiences are still different enough to not be easily comparable. I would imagine visualizing it would be easier if it was more like a mind map diagram rather than a graph. Does that make sense? In other words, these narratives feel more like the ones in Queenie's Greyromanticism 301 post, I think? 

 

I guess the way that you have these categories set up right now, it's feeling a bit too boolean to me? Like on/off, either/or. 

 

...Wait, did you already edit the draft in the OP at some point while I was typing this out (and then getting distracted and then coming back to type some more)? lol

 

For the record, I thiiiiink? that I was having trouble deciding where I fit between 2 and 3? (I mix up numbers a lot though, so I'm having a hard time keeping track of which is which, but I guess it definitely wasn't 4.) And then also at the same time feeling like this attraction cluster experience I was talking about made it harder for me to tell, because in some respects I'm also like the first group, since if I did experience romantic/sexual attraction they'd all be mixed in with that same cluster, I'm pretty sure.

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wow, there's a lot of discussion around stuff i haven't really thought about.  i'd say i'm the second one, where i like to specify my romantic and sexual orientation...

7 hours ago, Magni said:

but I kinda use all of them based on what feels best for the context?

like, if someone asked my orientation, a lot of the time i'd say "aromantic heterosexual".  aro comes first because i identify more strongly with it, as in, i'm very straight as well as very aro but aromanticism is more significant to me.  both labels are perfectly accurate, and both are important but especially aro.  (i have no problem with 'heterosexual aromantic' but since i have to say one word before the other, i might as well make a strategic choice. 😄)  if we were specifically talking about a certain type of attraction, though, i wouldn't bother to mention my other one, like on here if the question was just where am i on the aro spectrum, i'd say aro, or if an acquaintance asked my sexual orientation i'd probably just say straight.  i realize many people use 'sexual orientation' to mean 'orientation as a whole' because for them that's what it is (i may not have phrased that the best way but you know what i mean).  and sometimes i just couldn't be bothered to come out, you know, like i don't try to hide anything; it just doesn't always seem important to mention.  but if someone knows i'm aro and chooses to call me straight, i will correct them.  only one person besides me has my express permission to call me straight.  so yeah, it can be a bit less certain in terms of communicating my orientation, but as for how i personally identify, 'aromantic heterosexual' is perfect.  i'm not sure i actually answered your question...ok yeah, i think you've basically covered how different people may feel about labeling their orientation, but even within one 'group' not everyone will have the same experience, of course, so i kind of don't think it matters...like you said:

5 hours ago, Coyote said:

Possibly it would help if I didn't write about them like groups or demographics at all

to me it's just interesting to hear various people's experiences, which we are doing.

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These descriptions are much much clearer for me than the ones detailing convergent pieces and multiple orientations. So much clearer. I must say I love the wording you have ended up using, it really puts the emphasis on the way people present themselves to others. 

I'll probably say more later, but I don't have time now :)  

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Those groups make sense to me personally,  but hmm yeah, as @Magni mentioned, it can be a bit more complicated when we're not just talking about some internal feelings about identity and all, but when we're talking in a specific context and for example want to highlight some aspect of our experience without necessarily bringing in all the internal feelings into it and not have people make assumptions based on the limited info we give them.

 

So, loose thoughts, would a distinction like "I id as aromantic" vs "I have aromantic attraction" when one or the other is more relevant be useful..??

 

As for the groups @Coyote suggested, now I need one clarification: group 1 would be people who say they're "[something]-sexual" only and other orientations don't apply?? and group 3 would be people who for example only identify as "[something]-romantic", [something]-sensual", "[something]-[other preference term]", etc. and other orientations don't apply?? Because if yes, then I don't really see a need to have them be separate groups, they'd both just need a way to say that "this is my only orientation" if I'm reading this correctly..??

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@bydontost What is "aromantic attraction"?

 

Um...

 

I don't know how to answer all this @Coyote.

 

I mean like. What about people who prefer an umbrella term like queer to cover their whole identity in a vague/quick way while also internally thinking that 2 or 3 separate orientations are the accurate "technical" way you should describe them but it's too complicated to explain in most contexts? I knew a gay gray-asexual, maybe-aromantic guy who did this (my former queerplatonic partner) and I have a bisexual demisexual friend who will say she's alloromantic if and when it's relevant to a conversation that she's not aro. Actually... I have two friends with that identity!! 

 

I think personally I am not usually bothered by the norm in the communities of everyone has a separate romantic and sexual orientation of some kind, like if someone asks me mine I can answer without qualms and am kinda proud of having finally settled on my labels for my romantic orientation. Although I have a handful of interchangeable ones I might say depending on context. I definitely feel like the labels are an approximation of my actual patterns of attraction but not 100% accurate in the sense that I would need to explain in sentences what my orientation labels "mean to me" if super specifics were necessary in some context. But I also know enough about aces and aros to know that everyone's orientation labels all have some aspect of "what it can actually mean to the individual" that can vary a lot between two people with the exact same label. 

 

The norm is clearly a problem that does bother me when I'm thinking of others who are bothered by it though, of course. I do care that it makes things unnecessarily stressful and asks people to name an orientation or two that they sometimes haven't wanted to label or isn't relevant to them. It expects everyone to be able to name the same exact types of orientations and expects the other rarer orientation axes to not matter to anyone, even if they do. 

 

I had thought aroace is a fine single word to convey a single cohesive identity and @Magni when you said we probably need a term for:

16 hours ago, Magni said:

Analogous to how abbreviations such as "bi" can be used to mean biromantic, bisexual, or both, we need a term that can be used to mean aro, ace, or both which does not require specification of which type of orientation it is describing.  (shortening to just "a" doesn't make sense)

 

I mean we have a-spec and aspec now apparently which back in 2016 when @Coyote first was blogging about it ( https://theacetheist.wordpress.com/2016/09/17/on-a-homogenization/ ? Or a previous post?) I thought back then I hated the conflation of aromanticism and asexuality onto apparently one "spectrum", they're not the same thing and it's was so weird to me how popular it was getting to use the terms that imply one spectrum. But now we have ask-an-aro writing about how we need "the aspec community":

 

"The aspectrum is wide and should be inclusive of anyone who needs it. Those who do and those who do not use the SAM. Aroaces, asexuals, acespecs, aromantics, arospecs. Those who are just one of those things and those who are more than one at once. Those who are questioning if they’re acespec or arospec, or both."

 

I am leaning towards somewhat agreeing with ask-an-aro at the moment. 

 

I don't know??

 

If someone has no sexual nor romantic orientation at all that they want to name, not none in the ace or aro sense of "no attraction but fine naming it", but none in a more nebulous sense that's not just "not one of them" but truly not either of them, then I think those people need to talk to us and explain what they want and what would work for them. Maybe they just want to opt out of the communities that discuss orientation altogether anyway and it's not hurting them that an inside the community norm is to name at least one of those two prioritized ones. Maybe they want a different orientation axis community (a different community) because they don't fit in one of the existing ones anyway. Maybe something else totally different. 

 

Also @Coyote, I think part of the problem with models of orientation delineation thing is that a lot of people use multiple ones? Maybe these ones you listed need to be separated out more and more need to be added, but then each individual real person might mix and match from any number of the models. A small number of people might stick with just one model but it's probably not the norm. 

 

I'm reminded of when you wrote about models of friendship recently. I literally have used all 5 models. I don't just think of my friends using one model and another person defines friends using another model. A lot of us use multiple intersecting models there and i think the same ends up being true for orientation models, especially since for many of us orientation is very tied into orientation labeling.

 

 

Now I'm going to go off on a tangent but I mean even in terms of a friendship conversation, there is a difference between who I openly label a friend and who I internally think of a friend i guess. Like the difference between internal orientation and external orientation labeling. There is a ton of overlap so a lot of times they are basically the same thing, my friends and the people I claim as friends when using language with other humans in my life lol. But also. There are differences too. 

 

*sigh* I don't know. I just feel like I'm getting more and more confused maybe. Lol. Sorry.

 

Hopefully this reply (my first ever comment here on Arocalypse! You've brought me into it all @Coyote! I couldn't resist!) is at least kinda coherent.

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1 hour ago, luvtheheaven said:

What is "aromantic attraction"?

Little to no or non-standard romantic attraction.

 

1 hour ago, luvtheheaven said:

What about people who prefer an umbrella term like queer to cover their whole identity in a vague/quick way while also internally thinking that 2 or 3 separate orientations are the accurate "technical" way you should describe them but it's too complicated to explain in most contexts?

I think those people would probably still land closer to the second group, since they do tell apart those 2-3 orientations themselves, even if it's not always convenient to explain and I'm guessing they use them interchangeably depending on context??

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17 hours ago, zhyrs said:

(hey, it's odannygirl7, from your blog post. I guess I sort of ranted here instead of making my own post like a reasonable person)

 

Hi! Completely fair choice in my book. Forums are for talking, after all.

...Also, you bring up some good points, but. I don't know how to address them lol. Besides just *nods*

 

 

 

16 hours ago, Magni said:

I get wanting distance from old terms, but also...it's useful to have succinct ways to mention things? It makes things more clear....

 

Oh! Okay. Maybe you didn't read the previous thread or the blogposts I linked (completely fair, it is a Lot and I did want people to be able to just jump in). FTR though, I am Not Of The Opinion that classifying people into "people who use the SAM" vs. "people who don't" "makes things more clear" (and in fact... laughed out loud when I saw that sentence, because this is right on the heels of a huge conversation about it where even within the thread people were defining it at least two different ways -- sometimes even coming from the same person!). For more on that, I recommend reading the Remodeling post where I explain how the reclamation of that term from the anti-ace bloc poses some problems, but you can also take a read through this whole argument, or for instance starting with my replies to Echidna here.

 

Please understand that I've already gone through this with several people, and as a result, may be a little less willing to go through the whole song and dance all over again. If you want to argue with me that classifying people as "people who use the SAM" vs. "people who don't" is a crystal clear classification system that doesn't chop me personally in half, then... all I can say is please refer back to the places where I've already talked about this, so you can understand why I'm avoiding it at least. Better yet: take a look at the five narratives to complicate the SAM/non-SAM binary from my Remodeling post and then tell me which is which.

 

ETA: Sorry, in retrospect this reply was rude of me. I am willing to discuss more and talk through things. I'm just... kinda tired of how some of this has played out before, and feeling like a lot of people are largely uninterested in listening or even finding out what I mean.

 

 

 

14 hours ago, Prismatangle said:

I guess the way that you have these categories set up right now, it's feeling a bit too boolean to me? Like on/off, either/or. 

 

I think I get you, yeah. I'm thinking about how to reword it all in a way that's more flexible.

 

14 hours ago, Prismatangle said:

...Wait, did you already edit the draft in the OP at some point while I was typing this out (and then getting distracted and then coming back to type some more)? lol

 

Caught red-handed.

 

 

 

12 hours ago, Apathetic Echidna said:

These descriptions are much much clearer for me than the ones detailing convergent pieces and multiple orientations. So much clearer. I must say I love the wording you have ended up using, it really puts the emphasis on the way people present themselves to others.  

 

lol don't get too attached to it -- it's still got a ways to go. Still: thank you for saying so. :3

 

 

 

10 hours ago, bydontost said:

group 1 would be people who say they're "[something]-sexual" only and other orientations don't apply??

 

Not necessarily. The wording of the first description was based off of what I've heard from people like Yarrow and Siggy, who do use romantic orientation terminology on themselves (reluctantly, in Siggy's case) but also say that that community norm chafes for them because it "implies a split that isn't really there" and has "too strong a connotation of being different from my sexual orientation." See the links for full context in their original words. I don't want to speak for them on this.

 

Quote

and group 3 would be people who for example only identify as "[something]-romantic", [something]-sensual", "[something]-[other preference term]", etc. and other orientations don't apply?? Because if yes, then I don't really see a need to have them be separate groups, they'd both just need a way to say that "this is my only orientation" if I'm reading this correctly..??

 

Siggy as a greyromantic gray-a, with the way he has described an alienation from the R/S dyad, and me as a quoiromantic gray-a, who feels pinched by the expectation that all aces should ID with a romantic orientation, do not have basically the same relationship to these different norms, no. I am not willing to collapse those. Categorizing people by "number and priority of labels" (ex. preferring to just say "I'm gray-a" and leave it at that) is not what I am after here. What I am after is describing the difference between, for instance, what Siggy wants to index himself as apart from and what I want to index myself as apart from, in terms of relationships to different expectations. The way he has talked about it, he doesn't like connotations/expectations of drawing a line through sex vs. romance and wants words for "people who don’t distinguish the different kinds of attractions, especially romantic and sexual attraction," whereas me, I do prefer excluding any statement on romance from my sexual orientation, and my problem with the romantic orientation norm isn't that it has "too strong a connotation of being different" or "split" but rather that the ace & aro communities keep talking in a way where it's expected that everybody involved uses that idea at all.

 

 

 

5 hours ago, luvtheheaven said:

I mean like. What about people who prefer an umbrella term like queer to cover their whole identity in a vague/quick way while also internally thinking that 2 or 3 separate orientations are the accurate "technical" way you should describe them but it's too complicated to explain in most contexts?

 

That depends. Do they think the multiorientation approach is "splitting hairs," or do they mostly only default to the broader label because they're not in contexts where the multi-axis classification scheme is expected?

 

...Admittedly, I should probably add some kind of additional description here for people who are comfortable with both norms and switching between them as called for.

 

5 hours ago, luvtheheaven said:

my first ever comment here on Arocalypse!

 

Welcome. ;D They should give me some kind of recruitment award lol. 

 

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42 minutes ago, Coyote said:
9 hours ago, bydontost said:

group 1 would be people who say they're "[something]-sexual" only and other orientations don't apply??

 

Not necessarily. The wording of the first description was based off of what I've heard from people like Yarrow and Siggy, who do use romantic orientation terminology on themselves (reluctantly, in Siggy's case) but also say that that community norm chafes for them because it "implies a split that isn't really there" and has "too strong a connotation of being different from my sexual orientation." See the links for full context in their original words. I don't want to speak for them on this.

Huh, okay... So this would functionally be like:

Person A: I'm ace and therefore don't fall in love romantically.

Person B: Isn't that an aro thing??

Person A: It generally is, but to me it's part of my aceness.

This kind of thing??

 

54 minutes ago, Coyote said:
Quote

and group 3 would be people who for example only identify as "[something]-romantic", [something]-sensual", "[something]-[other preference term]", etc. and other orientations don't apply?? Because if yes, then I don't really see a need to have them be separate groups, they'd both just need a way to say that "this is my only orientation" if I'm reading this correctly..??

 

Siggy as a greyromantic gray-a, with the way he has described an alienation from the R/S dyad, and me as a quoiromantic gray-a, who feels pinched by the expectation that all aces should ID with a romantic orientation, do not have basically the same relationship to these different norms, no. I am not willing to collapse those. Categorizing people by "number and priority of labels" (ex. preferring to just say "I'm gray-a" and leave it at that) is not what I am after here. What I am after is describing the difference between, for instance, what Siggy wants to index himself as apart from and what I want to index myself as apart from, in terms of relationships to different expectations. The way he has talked about it, he doesn't like connotations/expectations of drawing a line through sex vs. romance and wants words for "people who don’t distinguish the different kinds of attractions, especially romantic and sexual attraction," whereas me, I do prefer excluding any statement on romance from my sexual orientation, and my problem with the romantic orientation norm isn't that it has "too strong a connotation of being different" or "split" but rather that the ace & aro communities keep talking in a way where it's expected that everybody involved uses that idea at all.

 

Hm okay, I think I may get it. I wasn't talking about there being the same relationship with the norms between those two groups at all btw, just asking if those both groups would like to have a way to say "this is all there is to it, stop digging" to a question "So you say you're aromatic/pansensual, so what is your sexual/romantic orientation?". But I see this is not quite the issue. Tbh idk how to bite this, if those attitudes can even be described as groups.

 

Because in group 3, if I'm getting this correctly, could be a person who identifies as pansensual, doesn't have a sexual identity, and wouldn't want someone to assume they do have a sexual identity and a person who identifies as pansensual, doesn't have a romantic identity...?? And a person who identifies aromantic, doesn't have a sexual identity..?? But that doesn't mean all those people don't have other attractions they see as significant, just not the sexual or romantic ones?? And I'm not sure if there's a way to explain which doesn't apply without using the differentiations and upholding the norm 🤔

 

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2 hours ago, Coyote said:

Maybe you didn't read the previous thread or the blogposts I linked (completely fair, it is a Lot and I did want people to be able to just jump in).

My point was less defending the term of SAM itself, more that in general if you say "we should stop using this" it's important to propose alternative terminology for similar ideas?  And I think that generally helps things be more concise.....and yeah I haven't read the other things because there is Too Much (I have ADHD so really hard to read sometimes).  I think it's important in general to at least have succinct summaries of stuff? I know a lot of people are intimidated away from interacting on the forums because it is too verbose, and while tumblr is also good it tends to be more scattered....so overall good to seek ways to make community discussions more accessible and clear to everyone.  (sorry this is kinda a tangent).

 

15 hours ago, Prismatangle said:

if it became commonplace enough you could shorten it to "non-R/S attractions" at least, and that's shorter than "tertiary attractions" by one character. I just don't see the need to adopt a term like that which implies that they are somehow lesser than R/S attractions, and that sensual and queerplatonic/alterous somehow go together.


I feel like y'all are under the impression tertiary attractions is a new term? It's been around for a while just not necessarily mainstream...but it is fairly established.  So, it's already been adopted? That doesn't mean it can't be changed, but it does kinda affect the way it is discussed.  Also I don't like R/S because the abbreviated form is long and has letters instead of words....also it kinda reminds me of a ship name?

 

Also while the types of attraction might not necessarily go together for everyone, they can? For me I have a mess of attraction which I tend to call platonic/queerplatonic for simplicity but really it is a confusing mix of sensual and alterous and stuff (I'm demi-something so I only want to be affectionate to someone I feel emotionally close too).  

 

Also I don't think it implies they're lesser? Like....colors.  Light/yellow green would be a tertiary color but that doesn't make it lesser? It more indicates it's less visible/less talked about?  Like...most people might just say "oh it's green", and while there's technically a true precise green that's a secondary color, most greens are tertiary colors.  So it's more we're...actively acknowledging the more nuanced things that most people tend to ignore and just lump with romantic or sexual or just not acknowledge at all?  It's not less important, it's just more specific and less commonly talked about.

 

***

 

I think by this point we have a lot of scattered sub-topics....it might be useful if someone listed out these things, conversations too off-topic can be turned into different threads, and refocus on overall topic?  I should probably make a new post for stuff with tertiary attraction

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Hmmm, Idk that any of these models work for me exactly. If anything I would place myself somewhere in between model 1 and biaroace's idea of "oriented aroace" . I'm aroace and my romantic and sexual identities aren't in anyway separate, however, I'm also enbian/ nblnb. It's not that splitting orientations never works for me, it just only works some of the time, and usually only when it comes to types of attraction outside of the romantic/sexual orientation dichotomy 

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2 hours ago, bydontost said:

Huh, okay... So this would functionally be like:

Person A: I'm ace and therefore don't fall in love romantically.

Person B: Isn't that an aro thing??

Person A: It generally is, but to me it's part of my aceness.

This kind of thing??

 

Mmmaybe? ...I hesitate because, as I've said, I wasn't intending that one to describe myself, and so I hesitate to speak for them. That's not generally how I've seen it written about, though. I don't know. Maybe. Siggy did seem willing to see himself in that description, though, so I'll pull from what he said: "These lexical gaps were keenly felt by me–I basically didn’t identify with a romantic orientation for a long time, not even 'quoi' because if I ever did identify as a romantic orientation, even one that matched my sexual orientation, there would be too strong a connotation of being different from my sexual orientation."

 

_____

 

 

1 hour ago, Magni said:

My point was less defending the term of SAM itself, more that in general if you say "we should stop using this" it's important to propose alternative terminology for similar ideas?

 

That is the idea here, yes.

 

1 hour ago, Magni said:

and yeah I haven't read the other things because there is Too Much (I have ADHD so really hard to read sometimes).

 

Then you are invited to ask me some direct questions to which I can provide direct answers, because I don't know where to start unless you give me a starting point. In that post, for instance, I've talked some about where "SAM" came from and how it's been reclaimed. I've talked some about where applying that SAM/non-SAM binary to people doesn't work. I've talked some about my thoughts on how we can do better. What part can I help you with?

 

2 hours ago, Magni said:

so overall good to seek ways to make community discussions more accessible and clear to everyone. 

 

Honestly the #1 way to make community discussion more accessible would be to stop having so disproportionately much of it happen exclusively on Tumblr, but I digress.

 

1 hour ago, Magni said:

I feel like y'all are under the impression tertiary attractions is a new term?

 

I don't care how new or old it is. My thinking is -- and this may be too strong of a comparison, but -- calling some attractions "tertiary" feels a little like calling a nonbinary person "third gender." It inherently implies a first and second for there to be a third. That represents basically the exact same centering of romance and sexuality that I want to call into question here.

 

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44 minutes ago, bananaslug said:

Hmmm, Idk that any of these models work for me exactly. If anything I would place myself somewhere in between model 1 and biaroace's idea of "oriented aroace" . I'm aroace and my romantic and sexual identities aren't in anyway separate, however, I'm also enbian/ nblnb. It's not that splitting orientations never works for me, it just only works some of the time, and usually only when it comes to types of attraction outside of the romantic/sexual orientation dichotomy 

 

Hmm. Okay. Do you think I should reword the first description to make more room for multiple orientations, or do you think that belongs in a separate description of its own? Bearing in mind that what I'm trying to describe is relationships to certain norms, not individual choice of labels.

 

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