FishPanda Posted May 22, 2016 Share Posted May 22, 2016 I'm 28, I go by Lilian, and I only figured out I was aromantic about half a year ago. Where I live (not American) there isn't really much awareness of aromanticism. There is a lot of awareness of homosexuality, bisexuality, trans and even asexuality, but I’ve never even heard of aromanticism until coming across an aromantic character in a book half a year ago. It kind of shook my world. I’ve always been aware that I’m “different”. I was never one of those girls that had a “boyfriend” at primary school. My first relationship was at 11th grade, and I’m not even sure I can call it a relationship. I’ve had “crushes” before, but nothing very serious. During the 11th grade I asked my best male friend out. I enjoyed hanging out with him, I liked him a lot, I thought he was cute. It seemed the right time to try out this relationship thing. Bad idea. It basically ruined our friendship. From the moment we started “dating”, everything between us became so awkward. He would just sit frozen next to me and never do anything, and I had to initiate everything, even our first kiss. It wasn’t what I wanted or pictured it out to be. After two months I called it quits. For a long time I was sure he was gay or asexual, but then he got a serious girlfriend and I realised it was just me. Until a while ago I would’ve called him the only person I’ve ever loved, but now I define him as someone I liked as a friend and also wanted to have sex with, without romantic feeling coming into the fold (which is actually pretty rare for me. Sexual attraction and liking someone doesn’t usually combine in one person for me). My second boyfriend came a year after that. He was an acquaintance that asked me out on the last day of school, and I think the fact that we only saw each other once every two-three weeks is the only reason our relationship lasted a year. I liked him a lot at the beginning, he was fun, smart, we had a lot of shared interests. The sex was great. But pretty much that was all that was great. He told me he loved me after two months and I felt pressured to say it back even though I didn’t. He always wanted so much attention and I couldn’t deal with it. I began to resent him. He claimed I was distant and I thought he was needy. I never missed him, even though I only saw him once every two weeks. Eventually we broke up amicably, realising we weren’t right for each other. A year later he wanted to try again, and it took me exactly three days to realise this wasn’t going to work. When I told him this he got angry and we never talked again even though we still have friends in common. After then it was just a pattern of first dates. A lot of first dates, for years. I would meet someone, enjoy their company, agree to a date (sometimes even suggest it), go on the date, and immediately hate their guts. I never wanted to see any of them again, and I couldn’t understand why. I always left the date feeling angry and unsettled, even if it went well. Sometimes I even cancelled the date beforehand because I felt so bad just thinking about it. I didn’t feel something was wrong with me per se, because I was pretty happy with my life, but I couldn’t really understand why this was happening. I knew I liked sex. I was attracted to people, though not a lot of people. I liked having a lot of friends and hanging out with people. But every time I thought about being in a relationship, I just felt ill. I dreaded the thought of one of my male friends hitting on me, which happened pretty frequently and ruined quite a lot of my friendships, because I would distance myself immediately from someone who showed a romantic interest in me. They didn’t feel “safe” anymore. Last year I went on a date with a guy who was just perfect. Really, the entire package – good looking, smart, funny, lots of mutual interests, and I was actually attracted to him, which doesn’t happen a lot. I found myself actually thinking of a second date with him. And then he cancelled our second date, and all I felt was relief. At this point I decided to just stop. No more dates. I was happy being single, I had no interest in a relationship, and all these dates really ate into my reading time, not to mention my pocket. So I knew what I wanted and what I didn’t want, but I didn’t have a definition. And then I read about aromanticism. Suddenly, everything clicked into place. It wasn’t that I was uncomfortable with myself before, but having a definition, being part of a group, was validating. I’m not a very emotional person, but I admit I cried a little. This felt so right to me. And it created a sort of ease in my life. I could stop trying not because I didn’t want to try, but because this is the way I was. In a way it wasn’t down to choice anymore, and it was freeing. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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