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Coming out tips


Aroacerabbit
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So I’ve been out to myself as aroace  roughly since March 2020 and told one other close friend who’s lesbian. I’ve thought about telling our two other friends as we’re all really close and they were both perfectly fine with her being gay (we also have a suspicion that one friend is questioning). I even came very close to spontaneously telling them recently when we were hanging out. I mentioned that I don’t think I’ve ever had a crush. It went over fairly well with some curiosity, however the discussion ended up turning elsewhere. However, I’m worried about telling them because being aroace is not as common and I’m worried about them not understanding. I’m also worried because the girl who we believe is questioning has been one of my closest friends since I was in elementary school and has seen me “have crushes” on two boys, who I know think I just thought were smart or funny. Basically I’m just wondering if anyone has any advice or tips on how to bring up the topic or what to do? Thanks!! I’m in desperate need.

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I don't really have an advice except "be prepared to answer questions". In particular "but weren't you having crushes before" if someone thought you were. And then explaining you were saying that to fit the norm or because you thought having crushes just meant thinking someone is nice or funny. 

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My approach is generally to focus on getting people to understand my experiences, rather than any particular label or terminology. I find it's a lot easier to start with explaining something like, "I'm just not interested in finding a romantic relationship. It's taken me a while to realise that I have no desire for things like that - that when I like and care about someone that doesn't mean I want a relationship with them. But I'm much happier and more comfortable since I've realised that about myself!"

When I talk about my experiences in a candid and honest way, people seem more willing to take them at face value. People may still ask questions, in particular about whether "I've never wanted this yet" means "I'll never want this ever", but it's only particularly belligerent assholes who'll double down on the idea that I'm fundamentally wrong about what I think and feel.

And once people understand and accept your experiences to some degree, you can move on to, "...and a lot of people who feel the way I do identify as aromantic, which I think describes me pretty well too!"

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Guest Seven Ball

I second that what eatingcroutons has said. Making it personal is definitely a good idea. You can always mention the "aromantic" label later, if you feel like it.

Also, one thing I advice is that you first do some soul-searching, if you haven't already. I.e. try to really understand yourself and think deep about your true feelings, your true inner self. And if there's still a part inside you that you don't seem to have really figured out, try to figure it out. It's a lot better to come out if you are certain about yourself and your feelings. It's also good for your self-confidence and it helps you to answer question. If you are still unsure, continue reading on about sexual and romantic orientation ... or ask the forum again. :D If you have happy feelings when you think about your orientation, then you probably got it right! :D

Don't talk about your orientation as if it were a confession, because there is nothing to be ashamed of. Talk instead about how you feel about it, what it's like.

That having said, a good friend should always accept you for who you are, even if you are still in a confused/questioning state, nervous. A good friend should be on your side when you have emotional difficulties, otherwise they're not really a good friend. They should also accept you if you later figure out a new aspect of your orientation. The sexual and romantic orientations are something very deep about one's life, it's something innate.

If you fear rejection, think about what you could potentially lose: Well, in your case, you would lose a bigoted false friend (if they really rejected you only cuz your orientation). Well, it's better that way anyway.

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