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at what age did you discover yourself as aro??


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19 minutes ago, Guest - aro? said:

One of the things I hear people talking about a lot on here is that they didn't understand romantic attraction and acted accordingly, but I don't know if this fits me. Whenever I would, say, watch some romantic movie with a friend, I wouldn't love it but I wouldn't hate it? I just viewed it as something different, something somewhat fictional (dramatized for effect), something that didn't involve me. 

Personally, I do enjoy romance in fiction (of written well, bit like everything I watch if I can say). A lot of aros don't like it yes, because they can't relate I guess (if not repulsed), but that's not an obligation to identify as aro. 😄

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22 minutes ago, Guest - aro? said:

I dont... think I've ever had feelings for anyone, like that. Tbh it's hard to remember clearly, but I think I'd know if I had? I remember mentioning to my parents that I never wanted to get married, when I was little, and one of them laughing in the 'oh, you'll change your mind' kind of way. What with celebrity crushes, pretty certain that's a no. 

One side of myself is saying that I've never liked anyone because I never really payed attention to the opposite gender, since everyone would assume I had a crush on them if I was remotely friendly with them... But (not to say that's what I am,) I've heard lesbians say that growing up, a sign had been of their lack of interest in boys. If I don't like any gender, really, wouldn't I just hang out with those that are the norm to, with those who are easiest to? The same gender, that is. So in this way, my lack of general interaction with the opposite gender can be a sign or a blow to the labels I toss around. 

One of the things I hear people talking about a lot on here is that they didn't understand romantic attraction and acted accordingly, but I don't know if this fits me. Whenever I would, say, watch some romantic movie with a friend, I wouldn't love it but I wouldn't hate it? I just viewed it as something different, something somewhat fictional (dramatized for effect), something that didn't involve me. 

Thank you for replying, means a lot. 

Sadly the "you'll change your mind" continues into adulthood too, at least in my experience. But yeah, that's a whole another can of topic how you are expected to "change your mind" on that even if you've been firm on your lack of desire for marriage (and/or having kids, thanks heteronormativity).

And well... Friend groups doesn't necessarily have to do with sexuality, I would say? It would be also linked to what interests you had and other things that might play a factor in who you "got along with" (Ie. as someone on autistic spectrum, I always had one female friend I would latch onto and learn to emulate the attitude of while as an aro, I definitely did not feel at home with most other "normal" girls) so that's only something you can answer by thinking back and keeping an eye out for if you have feelings for same gender? That's also a possibility, of course.

And like @nonmercisays, I actually do like romance in fiction too- Or rather, in my case I often like writing it for the drama and emotional hurt/comfort chance that brings, as well as fandom spaces are so shaped by people's preferences in ships that I essentially tend to find two characters I'm interested in exploring the characters of enough and find someone who is also down to spend months hyperfixating over them with me if I'm lucky, and focus on it, so I would say there are definitely aros who can enjoy it and/or be actively curious about what romantic feelings even are like my confused teen self lol

Also on the topic of attraction to the same gender- that's always a bit funny of a topic to me, mainly because while I was identifying as pan, two out of three people I online dated were girls I very much cared about and thought were amazing people, but once I actually started to date with them, it didn't... feel as natural to do nice things for them? As in, I was talking about making music sheet origami roses to one for being a musician, bc I like making origami gifts for friends, with no real romantic intention behind it besides knowing she liked that sort of cheesy romance stuff a lot, and when we were "officially" dating, I found it felt really forced and... wrong in a way I can't quite explain.

That and also my "asking out" to her was asking her how crushes even feel and if what I felt for her was a crush bc I had coined the term "admiration crush" without knowing squish was a thing to essentially describe it as "short intense bursts where I really get obsessed with wanting to get close to one person bc I think so highly of them and want to be close and important to them, however it fades once I'm close enough without a desire for 'more'." so.

Also I'm glad it was some help 💚

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honestly, the signs that i was aromantic were all the way back in middle school. i just... didn't recognize them for what they were. once you've hit puberty it's... probably just gate-keeping when people tell you you're too young to decide. i don't think that is really valid anyway since people — especially kids — should be allowed and will change their identities. at the flip of a coin? absolutely. so, like, go wild honestly. y'all valid lmao

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34 minutes ago, cyancat said:

honestly, the signs that i was aromantic were all the way back in middle school. i just... didn't recognize them for what they were. once you've hit puberty it's... probably just gate-keeping when people tell you you're too young to decide. i don't think that is really valid anyway since people — especially kids — should be allowed and will change their identities. at the flip of a coin? absolutely. so, like, go wild honestly. y'all valid lmao

haha thanks, you too (are valid). 

 

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I’m 37 and I’m in the process trying to figure things out. I’ve just recently, this month in December read about asexuality and aromanticism in the books “the invisible orientation” by Julie Sondra Decker and “ace” by Angela Chen. 
 

If has a been very mind blowing and emotional read. I wanted to learn more because I want to learn more about every lgtbq+ Orientation of course. I’m Christian and work in church (I’m swedish) I don’t work much with lgtbq+ including work at the moment but I really want to, so I need to learn more. And I’m always interested learning about different people on a personal level too of course. 
 

I found out about the ace and aro community and was absolutely in love with this from the start. I love when people dare to break norms in society, and the norm of sex and romanticism is a really strong one. 
 

I was also curious about asexuality because during these last years of course I’ve been wondering about why I never meet someone and fall in love as my friends of my age. People around me of my age are settling down and having families, but I’m single as always with a non existing sex life. This has caused me a lot of stress and anxiety, but I’ve realised when thinking about it that it’s not necessary that I actually miss having a partner that’s stressful - is that pressure of love being something that is considered as bringing meaning to life, being a part of growing up and so on. I’ve been afraid of missing out something very important and I’ve been worried that I wouldn’t be happy and content with life if I wouldn’t experience love. 
 

I know I’ve even been thinking that “if I only I could just have one of those shitty heartbreaking love affairs that won’t end well, but at least then I can say that I’ve experienced life “ - which is totally crazy of course. I don’t want to be with someone I don’t like just to be able to say “been there done that” 🤣😂 

 

I’ve realised a lot of things while reading those books. I’ve recognized myself and it has been overwhelming and I’ve been feeling very emotional, vulnerable and like being out of my comfort zone. I’m used to listening to friends talking about their love life and and sexuality. Me, I have had hard time talking about that because I don’t feel the same feelings of course, and also because I’ve been feeling odd , that I can’t really relate to what they seem to experience. These couple of weeks I’ve been messaging with people on the AVEN site and also with an online friend and I’ve found myself discussing sexuality in a new way, like I can put words on things I haven’t been able to talk about with friends before. Maybe you recognize this: me telling friends “you know, I might not be capable of feeling things like romance “ and they reacting like I’m saying the most depressing thing in the world and saying “oh noooo you WILL find someone some day, it will come” It will come? I’m 37 years old :P 

 

I am writing a long message here, but I guess I have such the need of putting my experiences and feelings into words to see how others would react and start interacting with people. I’ve read about this. Next step is to get in touch with others, I think, to try and see if I really fit in here. I feel very humble. The aces and aros, you all are amazing people to me and I’m just grateful if I can get in touch with any of you to be able to figure things out about myself (I hope). 
 

I’d be so grateful if anyone would message me to exchange personal experiences and talk, would mean so much to me. So feel free to contact me 😊

 

and thanks for being such a welcoming forum! 

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There wasn't really a set point in time where I figured it out, since I had been questioning my (at the time) panromantic label for a few weeks before. I had considered that I might be aro at the same time I thought I might be ace, but the fact that I still was interested in relationship with people kind of threw me off. It felt like it described me, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized that it wasn't romantic attraction that I felt, it was more like queerplatonic attraction than anything.

There was a specific moment that I finally accepted the aromantic label though. It was the first snow of the year and seeing it outside my window was pretty inspirational, so I decided to write up a song. I generally do a lot of absent thinking while I write songs, and I had been debating whether I was aro or not the night before, but by the time I finished that song, I was sure that I was. And I just remember feeling so satisfied with that conclusion, more than I ever had with thinking I was panro. 

Edited by Skylord
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I have no idea of the exact age that I was, but it was sometime during 2015 I think, which was when I was about 17-18. I know that when I joined these forums I was firmly identifying as aro so it was definitely at least a few months before then.

It's amazing how far I've come in those past 5 years tbh. I was so far inside my own shell back then; I barely talked online at all, and I never felt like I belonged anywhere. This forum helped me feel like I belonged for the first time in my life, and also helped me realise a lot more about myself that would have taken a lot longer for me if this forum never existed.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Found out a few months ago (I am 22, going on 23), although I've been very strongly aro for, well, all of my life. Still very much new to the whole thing, but the aro community so far has been super chill and super helpful in my figuring things out. I'm glad this place exists to be honest-- I hope it sticks around for the other aros out there who've yet to find it.

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My whole life I was kind of just procrastinating figuring out my sexuality. I was always "I'll date later" and now I'm 25 and realized that now is "later" and I still don't really understand dating nor feel ready for it. I came across the term Aro a few years ago and while it seemed like it might fit, I didn't want it to. I was clinging onto hope that I was actually just demi because the idea of romance sounded so nice. I love romantic stories and shipping fictional characters. But now at 25 and after reading "Loveless" by Alice Oseman and relating to it on unprecedented levels, I couldn't ignore the signs any longer. I like the idea of romance, but I just can't feel romantic feelings for people (or at least I haven't in 25 years). I've been working on coming to terms with my aro identity and accepting that I will just not experience "romance" and that's ok. Society makes it seem like it is such a big deal and it feels a little like giving up to just accept that I'm aro. But in the end the relief and freedom, I felt when I deleted all dating apps was huge and I'm much happier now just living my life not worrying about dating.

 

 

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