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What does "Aro" mean?  

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I've learned that "ace" means "asexual spectrum" -- (though some think "ace" should mean "just asexual no spectrum")

Does "aro" mean "aromantic spectrum"? Does "aromantic" mean "aromantic spectrum"? I've noticed saying "arospec" and "aromantic spectrum" seems to be more common than "acespec" and "asexual spectrum" and I don't know if that's from the aro community wanting to signal spectrum inclusion more often, or if it's from the aro community using aro and arospec as not the same, or maybe it's a coincidence. 

Sadly google searches didn't get me a clear answer. 

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I think it depends on the context. In general, aro will mean "aro spectrum", but in a conversation about umbrella terms for example, it could mean aro specifically.

When I identified as grayro (not anymore, just aro now), I used "arospec" to specifically say that I am on the grey are of the spectrum when it was relevant, but I think it was just me ha ha. I do think the aro community wants to be inlusive though, which can explain the common used of arospec maybe.

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As a grayro person, I consider myself aromantic much more than I consider myself aro-spec. I know a few other aro's who use "aro" to imply "aro-spec", similar to ace. I don't think its a common idea however. I still see a lot of people using the terms separately.

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24 minutes ago, aro-fae said:

As a grayro person, I consider myself aromantic much more than I consider myself aro-spec. 

I know it doesn't fully make sense, but I feel the same way and I'm glad to see someone thinks this way too. 

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If someone would say they're aro I wouldn't assume they've never felt romantic attraction.

The only context were I'm more strict in my aro definition is when it comes to representation in media. There are so many stories where the person who's "never loved" falls in love with someone. I don't consider that aro representation even though technically those characters could be considered aro-spec. 

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I'm technically grey aro, but I prefer using aromantic as an umbrella term. When I say aro I usually mean aro spec. When the distinction is relevant, I just say strict aros and grey aros.  

On 10/29/2020 at 6:05 PM, aro-fae said:

I consider myself aromantic much more than I consider myself aro-spec

I also feel this way. In my case, It's probably because the one time that I did feel romantic attraction was so short-lived and not very intense that it's almost irrelevant to me, so it would feel weird to make it a big part of my identity or label.

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I think that aro should just mean aromantic, not the spectrum, but I know that a lot of people do use for the spectrum. Personally I tend to feel that that using the word aromantic or aro as an umbrella term is kind of erasing those of us who are simply aromantic.

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I know people use it as both terms. Personally I use aro to refer to aromantic and I use a-spec for the aromantic spectrum. But it can vary depending if I am explaining it to a friend or to a stranger. It is based on the topic too, because when I explain what aro means, I include the spectrum too so in that case I am using aro to explain the spectrum.

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People use it either way and it is confusing. There is the same debate for ace and ace-spec.

Also in both cases, some people will feel erased (aros) or not included (grayros,...) which is unfortunate.

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I use aro to mean exclusively aromantic and arospec for the spectrum. I also identify as arospec, because it allows me more fluidity in my orientation, I'm not certain where exactly I'm on the spectrum yet, I'm just non-alloromantic.

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