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What issues effect you the most as an aro person?


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Every group has issues that effect it.. like bigotry and discrimination being big issues that gay people face, and the expectation of sex and the ubiquity of sex in society are issues aces face.  What do you think are the issues aros face, and/or what issues do you deal with as an aro person?

 

For me, one of the biggest is that all my friends have married and/or had kids, so they are now unavailable for all the things we used to do.  I speak to them rarely, since they never have time anymore.  Some have dropped all their pre-marriage friends completely and interact only with their spouse's social circle or friends they made together.  Others are so wrapped up in raising their kids that they no longer socialize.  Others only socialize with other parents whose kids are the same age as theirs.  

And it's a LOT harder to make new friends at 40 than it was in my childhood and teen years (and I sucked at it back then, so....).  So I frequently end up being asocial just by default.  I don't mind being solitary in the least, but there are times I'd love to just go out for coffee with someone, go bum around Bayfield beach on a hot day with someone, or just have someone to talk to about daily life stuff.  Online friends are great, and I'm grateful for them, but there are times you want a face-to-face pal, and I don't really have that now.  I work nights, and that's kind of toxic to a social life too, so it isn't *all* that my friends have married, become parents, and dropped all pre-couplehood, pre-parenthood friends, but most of it is.  

 

What issues effect you?  What issues effect aros in general?

 

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^^^THIS!  A thousand times over!   I used to have a really close friend.  We'd been friends for almost 20 years and had a really cool tradition we had upheld since we had been in High School

in general, it's the fact that we're instantly considered cold,unfeeling,detached, and damaged. This does effect me personally & I hate it. We have feelings like anyone else, they just happen not

I also have the issue with making new friends and loosing them to romance. Some of them have found a partner, some have loved me and I could not give them what they wanted, so they left. The result is

in general, it's the fact that we're instantly considered cold,unfeeling,detached, and damaged. This does effect me personally & I hate it. We have feelings like anyone else, they just happen not to be romantic ones.

oh and don't get me started on when you have a squish,but people think you're just flirting or want to be in a romantic relationship.... What part or aromantic is THAT difficult to understand. *sigh* :facepalm:

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2 hours ago, UncommonNonsense said:

For me, one of the biggest is that all my friends have married and/or had kids, so they are now unavailable for all the things we used to do.  I speak to them rarely, since they never have time anymore.  Some have dropped all their pre-marriage friends completely and interact only with their spouse's social circle or friends they made together.  Others are so wrapped up in raising their kids that they no longer socialize.  Others only socialize with other parents whose kids are the same age as theirs.  

And it's a LOT harder to make new friends at 40 than it was in my childhood and teen years (and I sucked at it back then, so....).  So I frequently end up being asocial just by default.  I don't mind being solitary in the least, but there are times I'd love to just go out for coffee with someone, go bum around Bayfield beach on a hot day with someone, or just have someone to talk to about daily life stuff.

Even if they did have the time they might not have that much in common.
As someone who sucks socially and, at times, can be happy doing stuff by myself I can find that people can assume that I don't want to do social stuff at all.

It can seem like a complete difference in culture.
With mutual difficulties in understanding.
I've been (falsely) assumed to be ace, only interested in sex and waiting for "the one".

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  • I also have the issue with making new friends and loosing them to romance. Some of them have found a partner, some have loved me and I could not give them what they wanted, so they left. The result is the same and it breaks my heart every time. Its lonely and it undermines your trust in people and very hesitant when it comes to investing time and effort in human connections.
  • Having to navigate a world that's been designed for romantic pairs and married couples. Everything is designed for two people. (There is nothing wrong with a two person group, but the pressure to function as part of a duo is so irritating). Any other way of being is treated as dirty and opportunistic, or just a sad looser.
  • Being a lesbian and arospec, I'm constantly caught up in the crossfire of the Discussion. Everything I do, everything I say online is seen as some sort of pamphlet, and I have to keep my full identity in check all the time so I don't trigger a riot just by existing. I'm just so sick of it.
  • Constant relationship drama, as people do not understand what am I looking for and not willing to listen. As an aromantic woman I have to dodge courting rituals and and all sorts of efforts to get me to date someone. I do want to get laid and I do want a companionate dynamic with someone, but that wish is almost always misunderstood.
  • Being slutshamed, people assuming that I have no morals, no common sense, no consideration for other people's feelings or actually having any feelings myself.
  • Having no opportunity to meet other aro people. I want to go to an aro movie night. Or an aro clubnight. Or an irl aro guided discussion. Or any sort of aro social activity.
  • When I try to talk about even vaguely aro themed topics with people who act suspiciously aro like, they get soo defensive. Settling down with a friend? Having sex outside of the framework of a romantic relationship while remaining a decent human being? Not being able to fall in love? Wtf? Seriously? 9_9
  • Disgusting arophobic thropes and allo aro coded characters in the media. No actual decent representation whatsoever.
  • Having no idea what my life is going to be like in 20 or 30 years. That stuff is scary.

 

 

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I recently became friends with a married couple, and that's working out great! I don't have to worry about whether either of them has a crush on me, which is really nice. 

As I get older, I'm guessing it will gradually get weirder and weirder that I'm not married or in a relationship, but there are some people who are single when they are older, and it seems to work out fine for them. I guess I'll just navigate a world made for couples the best I can. 

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15 minutes ago, Cassiopeia said:
  • I also have the issue with making new friends and loosing them to romance. Some of them have found a partner, some have loved me and I could not give them what they wanted, so they left. The result is the same and it breaks my heart every time. Its lonely and it undermines your trust in people and very hesitant when it comes to investing time and effort in human connections.

They might also not understand (or even see) the strength of you feelings towards them. Since according to amantonormatity only romantic love can be a strong emotional connect

20 minutes ago, Cassiopeia said:
  • Having to navigate a world that's been designed for romantic pairs and married couples. Everything is designed for two people. (There is nothing wrong with a two person group, but the pressure to function as part of a duo is so irritating).

Certainly never a vee, triad or quad...
Whilst there are some spaces intended for "singles" they often come with an assumption of "wannabe coupled".

 

27 minutes ago, Cassiopeia said:
  • Having no opportunity to meet other aro people. I want to go to an aro movie night. Or an aro clubnight. Or an irl aro guided discussion. Or any sort of aro social activity.

I'm not sure I have even met another aro IRL.
 

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Amatonormativity. Amatonormativity everywhere. Especially for someone who's perceived as female--not only are you not supposed to run screaming into the void, go on an angry caps lock rant, or want to just curl up in a corner in psychological pain whenever something is unnecessarily amatonormative, be it in media or in interactions with other people or just society in general, but the Almighty Gender Roles say you're supposed to actively enjoy it and contribute to it somehow??? (Which thereby sets off my romance repulsion and my dysphoria at the same time, so, you know, great job with that, society.)

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I'm not that affected by social issues because I don't get out much, so this list might be a bit trivial.

• The stunning amount of romance in fanfics. Sometimes it gets really tiring seeing everyone in relationships when you just want some good plot and action

• Relationships in real life. My two best friends recently got into official relationships and I'm feeling kind of lonely and I'm terrified of being abandoned by them. They say they'll always make time for their friends, but I dunno, there's always the possibility and it scares me.

• The automatic assumption that everyone wants romance? I was never very good at making friends in the first place, but now I'm super reluctant to do so because I can't trust people (mainly boys) to not to misconstrue my actions. I'm probably being arrogant by assuming most people I meet want to date me.

• I actually really want to be in a QPR but literally there is no one of my age group that I know of that remotely dislike romance. I wish I knew more aro people in real life.

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People who automatically assume that I am a romo who's acting like I don't understand others to look like some kind of special snowflake... or people who leave me out of conversations about any kind of interactions between humans just because I might express a different opinion or come up with a "too rational" argument. Because you know, I'm this creep that doesn't understand the Human Nature and thinks everyone should be as cold as me.

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12 hours ago, Dodecahedron314 said:

Amatonormativity. Amatonormativity everywhere. Especially for someone who's perceived as female--not only are you not supposed to run screaming into the void, go on an angry caps lock rant, or want to just curl up in a corner in psychological pain whenever something is unnecessarily amatonormative, be it in media or in interactions with other people or just society in general, but the Almighty Gender Roles say you're supposed to actively enjoy it and contribute to it somehow???

I think gender roles suck for anyone who dosn't fit with them. Regardless of your gender, gender presentation or gender perception there's the expectation of enthusiastically embracing them, especially if you are interested in anything other than purely platonic relationships.. Even if your reaction them is "WTF", "no thank you", "That's just not me", etc.

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not bothering to tell people that you're aro because you just don't want  the 'you'll find the one' speech or people trying extra hard to set you up to prove to you that you're not aro, or people bringing it up constantly to tell you how you can't possibly be and that you're 'normal' and 'perfectly fine' (:facepalm:)

 

Instead, having to put up with 'when you get married' 'when you get a gf/bf' 'ooooh you have a crush'(¬¬) 'your wife/husband will be like this' 'you'll fall in love' dodging people asking you out on dates, people planning how your life will go based on you being in a romantic relationship and then telling you about it, etc, etc

 

and the absolute worst - when your friends point at or indicate a random person in public and then say 'that's your gf/bf husband/wife now' but i think that makes everyone uncomfortable tbh

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On 6/25/2016 at 5:25 AM, Mark said:

I think gender roles suck for anyone who doesn't fit with them. Regardless of your gender, gender presentation or gender perception, there's the expectation of enthusiastically embracing them, especially if you are interested in anything other than purely platonic relationships.. Even if your reaction them is "WTF", "no thank you", "That's just not me", etc.

I certainly agree that the expectation of being okay with romance is there no matter your gender, but I'd also say it's definitely stronger for people perceived as female. Male-perceived people are generally expected to be less emotional by society, so it's seen as more acceptable for them to not care as much about romance, which is often categorized as "mushy feminine stuff"--e.g. how "chick flick" is often considered to be practically synonymous with romantic comedy, romance novels are generally marketed exclusively towards women, and so forth. If people so much as suspect you don't have a Y chromosome, as far as they're concerned there's no harm in grouping you in with the rest of the stereotypically Most Alloromantic Gender Ever that they think you're a member of--you know, because romance is a universally great thing and everyone needs more of it in their lives and even people who say they're not interested are just waiting for that perfect someone to sweep them off their feet (also known as basically the exact plot of probably 75% of all romance novels, because societal idealizations of human nature as presented in novels are *always* right and positive and should always be taken literally and at face value)--and so it's much, much more in the way of "isn't X fictional relationship just the best?" or "wouldn't it be great to date Y?" or "Oh come on, you'll never meet a guy in college if you don't do Z" and so forth. 

 

If you ask me, this is yet another wonderful reason to burn the gender binary and all of its societal trappings to the ground.

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7 hours ago, RedNeko said:

I wish I didn't feel like I have to be open to romantic relationships to have a sex life

Something which dosn't tend to be an issue for aro aces.
Which is where gender roles can also become an issue.
Since the typical expectation is that men ask women. Thus for the latter "open to" may wind up more like "actively seeking". Which likely to be virtually impossible for someone romance repulsed.

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On a personal level I think what bothers me most is I often get into bad situations where people misunderstand my intentions because they dont understand how you example can like to be sensual or sexual with someone you also like as a person without it being romantic.

 

On a more general way I feel the biggest issue how invisible aromantism is.

I didnt knew about it until I was up in my 20ties despite the fact I learned about lgbt+ stuff from I was 12. When I finally did learn about it, it was really hard to find others even people who just had heard the word. If I compare it to other type of minorities, me being aromantic may not be the one who affect me the most in the sense that I am not scared of my life or that I think I will lose a job due to it. However the loneliness is really hard to deal and I felt alot more alone compared to many other minorities where I had a greater chance to find articals about me or find people to meet with.

 

I try to make alittle awareness but it does feels very much like an one-mans project even within the lgbt+ comunity and I never felt like that with ex the trans comunity where I felt like a group and if something bad happent I could easly find support.

 

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One more thing that I feel is sort of an issue for both aces and aros:. Family members, coworkers, and acquaintances who insist on setting you up on dates with their best friend's brother, their postman's son, their cousin's boss, etc because "they'd be soooooooooooo perfect for you!" (Insert epic eye rolling and gagging noises here)

 

On the bright side, I have gotten very good at deflecting well-meaning but totally unwanted set-ups....

 

 

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  • I empathize with a lot of aros when I think about how many times my friend of 13-14 years just kind of forgot that her relationships had nothing to do with me? Along the way, most of what we talked about were her relationships. Her most recent boyfriend... man that was a tragic relationship and I feel sorry for her, but it hurts to constantly lose that kind of friendship to guys who aren't even worth either of our time?? idk that's what worries me the most. That the most important people in my life would forget me for the sake of romance and sex or both. 
  • And there's the fact that we're made to feel like we're constantly disappointing our parents (for some, I suppose) by not actively seeking out "partners"
  • actually i could list a few more but mostly as a woman in a very traditional family, i'm expected to marry a man who's handsome (bc apparently my "face would be such a waste" if i didn't) and rich to please everyone else 
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20 minutes ago, nock said:
  • I empathize with a lot of aros when I think about how many times my friend of 13-14 years just kind of forgot that her relationships had nothing to do with me? Along the way, most of what we talked about were her relationships. Her most recent boyfriend... man that was a tragic relationship and I feel sorry for her, but it hurts to constantly lose that kind of friendship to guys who aren't even worth either of our time?? idk that's what worries me the most. That the most important people in my life would forget me for the sake of romance and sex or both.

 

^^^THIS!  A thousand times over!

 

I used to have a really close friend.  We'd been friends for almost 20 years and had a really cool tradition we had upheld since we had been in High School together.  Every couple of years or so, when a particular singer we both adored toured and the tour brought her within driving distance, we'd buy tickets and go.  It was an important thing for both of us and we always had a huge amount of fun.

Anyway, she toured again, and the tour had a date in Toronto.  We made plans for me to buy the tickets (I was the only one with a full time job and credit cards at this point) and we'd drive down in my car, splitting the driving (since I was the one who owned the car, but found crowds difficult to cope with and sometimes needed Ativan, which I couldn't drive after taking). 

I bought the tix, which were very expensive.  We then had a few weeks of total crisis at work, so I didn't get the chance to talk to him until two days before the concert.  During the time I'd been in workplace hell, he'd found himself a new boyfriend.  

And suddenly, his new BF wants my friend to dump me and go to the concert with him.  So BF buys two more tix, on the opposite side of the venue.  And my friend lets this happen.  

I was upset when my friend told me but said "We can still drive down together in your car and hang out together!  It'll still be fun!" so we made new plans for me to pick my friend and his BF up at my friend's house and drive us all to the concert.

 

The day of the concert arrives.  I arrive outside my friend's house at the agreed upon time, but no one comes out.  I wait.  Nothing.  After 10 minutes, I go pound on the door.  His mother answers and tells me that my friend and the BF already left in BF's car.  I called my friend's cell... And was told that BF thought it would be more romantic if they went to the concert alone, without me. And my friend allowed this.

 

To add insult to injury, I was now stuck with a second ticket I couldn't use.  An *expensive* second ticket.  During a time in my life where I had very little and was trying to pay a mortgage alone.  And the new BF, for whom my friend threw away a long friendship, only lasted 2 weeks before they broke up.

 

Needless to say, my friend became my ex-friend that day.  He still doesn't think he did anything wrong or hurtful.  I have spoken to him only a few times in the last 12 years.  I have been polite, but have shut down his attempts to get back in my favour.  I know I can't trust him, so I keep him at a very great distance.  We live in the same town, but I speak to him only if I meet him accidentally while out doing errands.

 

Fuck romance.  

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13 minutes ago, UncommonNonsense said:

The day of the concert arrives.  I arrive outside my friend's house at the agreed upon time, but no one comes out.  I wait.  Nothing.  After 10 minutes, I go pound on the door.  His mother answers and tells me that my friend and the BF already left in BF's car.  I called my friend's cell... And was told that BF thought it would be more romantic if they went to the concert alone, without me. And my friend allowed this.

 

To add insult to injury, I was now stuck with a second ticket I couldn't use.  An *expensive* second ticket.  During a time in my life where I had very little and was trying to pay a mortgage alone.  And the new BF, for whom my friend threw away a long friendship, only lasted 2 weeks before they broke up.

My heart dropped so hard especially after reading this. I'm so sorry to hear this. I truly am. Just recently, I was supposed to go with my friend to a water park. I didn't really care, but there was something that bugged me about it. When she asked me to go with her, it was because her boyfriend wasn't allowed to. I ranted about it to my mom, but I agreed to go with my friend anyway only to find out she went with her boyfriend anyway. I had to find out about it from my mom, who already knew I was pretty damn excited to finally spend some time with her even if I was just the second choice.

 

So a month after that, my friend got lost somewhere, but her boyfriend didn't even try to help and instead accused her of cheating on him. I wanted to say I told you so because their relationship, in my eyes, was toxic as hell but I had to hold all of my own anger back because friendship. Gotta protect the few friendships you have. No matter how shitty they make you feel. I wish it were easy to cut this one off like some of the other friendships I turned my back on.

 

And my sentiments exactly. Fuck romance and everything supposedly "magical" that comes with it. Maybe romance is just black magic. All the power to you and everyone else who got kicked to the curb in the name of romantic love.

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2 hours ago, UncommonNonsense said:

One more thing that I feel is sort of an issue for both aces and aros:. Family members, coworkers, and acquaintances who insist on setting you up on dates with their best friend's brother, their postman's son, their cousin's boss, etc because "they'd be soooooooooooo perfect for you!" (Insert epic eye rolling and gagging noises here)

This never happens to me at all. Though I hear quite a lot of complaints about it here.
As someone who struggles a lot with social interaction I'd kind of welcome being "set up", even with associated romantic BS.

On the other hand I do get "When will you get married?" (especially from family) and "You'd make a good husband."

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I guess it would be how generally unrelatable everyone I meet is in terms of romantic and sexual orientation. They'll be talking about how happy they are in their marriages, and with their kids, when even the thought of either of those things in my life literally makes me nauseous. And then when I try to explain that to other people, they just tell me I'll find 'the one' some day, and I have to struggle not to roll my eyes before I walk away.

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On 28 June 2016 at 0:41 AM, Saber_Wing said:

I guess it would be how generally unrelatable everyone I meet is in terms of romantic and sexual orientation. They'll be talking about how happy they are in their marriages, and with their kids, when even the thought of either of those things in my life literally makes me nauseous. And then when I try to explain that to other people, they just tell me I'll find 'the one' some day, and I have to struggle not to roll my eyes before I walk away.

I'm finding this frustrating lately because my 2 school friends have got crushes, one of them a potential relationship. I'm happy for them and I want to listen to what makes them happy but last time we hung out they wouldn't stop talking about their crushes. I was somewhat drunk and even that didn't prevent me from getting frustrated (and also incredibly sex repulsed when being questioned about my sexual experiences - that's personal! And also somewhat of a trigger) so that definitely put a dampener on the night and I think I was also scared of what would happen when they were finally in relationships.

 

They've been best friends for 12 years, whereas I've only known them for 6 and only got closer to them recently. I imagine a lot of double dates would ensue, which makes the fact that they go to a different uni to me and live a bit further away from me all the worse. I've never had doubts until now because they've always placed friendship as a high priority and I don't want to lose what I have with them.

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A lot of people see me as odd or strange for not having any interest in romance or for not having crushes. A big annoyance is that the super religious adults use ME as an example of how a 'good girl' should behave. Being a good girl apparently means dressing 'appropriately', not talking about boyfriends or celebrity crushes and not having a boyfriend until 18 years of age.

 

Other than that I'm doing pretty well, but who knows I still have to enter 6th form so things might change. 

 

Due to some stories from other people I got a lot of fears about 6th form and life in general. I'm afraid that people won't believe my orientation and think I'm a closeted lesbian, not that there is anything wrong with that. I'm afraid that a future guy friend might make romantic advances on me and will be angry when I reject him. 

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7 hours ago, aussiekirkland said:

I'm finding this frustrating lately because my 2 school friends have got crushes, one of them a potential relationship. I'm happy for them and I want to listen to what makes them happy but last time we hung out they wouldn't stop talking about their crushes. I was somewhat drunk and even that didn't prevent me from getting frustrated (and also incredibly sex repulsed when being questioned about my sexual experiences - that's personal! And also somewhat of a trigger) so that definitely put a dampener on the night and I think I was also scared of what would happen when they were finally in relationships.

 

They've been best friends for 12 years, whereas I've only known them for 6 and only got closer to them recently. I imagine a lot of double dates would ensue, which makes the fact that they go to a different uni to me and live a bit further away from me all the worse. I've never had doubts until now because they've always placed friendship as a high priority and I don't want to lose what I have with them.

 

I can relate, it's definitely hard. It's happened to me in the past, and though you want to be happy for them, and are, you can't help but feel slighted, and left behind. I'm fortunate enough to have people who are similar to me in sexual and romantic preference, but it doesn't stop that feeling of alienation among coworkers or other friends, because you're happy for them, but you can't relate, and don't want to. It almost feels like a rift opening up between you and them. Hopefully, your friends will make the effort to keep you included regardless. Maybe it would help to talk to them about how you feel?

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