Jump to content

Pickiness? Greyromantic-ness? I'm not so sure...


Recommended Posts

So I'm a bit of a silly case. Majority of my crushes (for me that's sustained romantic and sexual attraction) have been on fictional characters. I enjoy writing and fantasizing about romance and sex, but it's within a fictional world and focused on fictional characters. I know what the attractions feel like and can distinguish them (at least with fictional characters I can), and I consider myself romance-favorable in real life.

When I do have a crush on a real person (which is rare), it's not nearly as intense as it is for these fictional characters. I think there's only one person I can definitely say I had sustained sexual and romantic attraction to, and even that, while strong, wasn't on the level of some of my character crushes. We were apart for years and it's arguable I was in love with a memory and not the actual person. He's the last real person crush I've had, and I started crushing on him way back in 2014.

I am capable of forming deep bonds with real people; one of my best friends feels like "the one", and our relationship and my current attraction to her isn't romantic or sexual. I thought it was those attractions in the beginning until my tempestuous emotions settled into what they are today—a very engulfing love that's deeply platonic if not something beyond. The one person I did date when I was younger I feel strongly for too, and he's another person I'm pretty sure I confused deep platonic attraction for romantic attraction, since soon after I broke it off, things felt right again. I feel intensely for him and crave his company but in what I heavily suspect is deeply platonic, as the recent hint of him possibly having romantic interest in me sorta squicked me out.

The fact that I can feel romantic attraction in fiction is what really stumps me. I've heard you can be arospec/acespec and still be into fictional characters, since that's not necessarily always reflective of what you like/want/are attracted to in real life. But at the same time, it makes me wonder if I'm allo and just not meeting the right people and thus overthinking everything. Does this sound like greyromanticism? Or perhaps just a pickiness when it comes to real people? There's plenty of perfectly logical people I could've had a crush on, but didn't, so I'm pretty stumped.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hello and welcome!

Something you can ask yourself when it comes to fictional characters you have feelings for is this: Do you wish that character existed so you can be with them? Or does that kind of ruin the point? If you feel like you'd actually really want to be with that fictional character, that suggests maybe being allo and either not having met someone you really have chemistry with, or just not being ready to take the romantic feelings into real life. Otherwise, well, sometimes fictional characters serve the purpose of being completely distant, so they're safe in that way. No need to ever worry about anything coming over to you, the real person. I am like that with fiction. I like to fantasize about a lot of things that I would not actually want to happen IRL. And we can absolutely relate to things in fiction that is separate from what we feel in real life. That's part of the purpose of fiction, in my mind. To in some way experience things we would not have experienced normally.

The most distinctly aromantic thing in your list, as I see it, is not about the fictional characters, but the way you feel deeply for this friend of yours but uncomfortable with the idea of it being made romantic. Also, then thing with their being logical people you could have crushes on but you don't, that also sounds like some aro-logic to me x) I am pretty certain that's not how romantic attraction works for allos either, there is no checklist.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

23 hours ago, Deltalorian said:

Sounds like greyromanticism to me. If you prefer your relationships when they're platonic, then it definitely is some flavour of aromantic.

Yeah, re-examining my real life attractions is what made me start to question myself in the first place, like wait a minute, these intense feelings aren't actually romantic ones, what does that mean haha. Thanks for your input!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)
Quote

 

Something you can ask yourself when it comes to fictional characters you have feelings for is this: Do you wish that character existed so you can be with them? Or does that kind of ruin the point? If you feel like you'd actually really want to be with that fictional character, that suggests maybe being allo and either not having met someone you really have chemistry with, or just not being ready to take the romantic feelings into real life. Otherwise, well, sometimes fictional characters serve the purpose of being completely distant, so they're safe in that way. No need to ever worry about anything coming over to you, the real person. I am like that with fiction. I like to fantasize about a lot of things that I would not actually want to happen IRL. And we can absolutely relate to things in fiction that is separate from what we feel in real life. That's part of the purpose of fiction, in my mind. To in some way experience things we would not have experienced normally.

The most distinctly aromantic thing in your list, as I see it, is not about the fictional characters, but the way you feel deeply for this friend of yours but uncomfortable with the idea of it being made romantic. Also, then thing with their being logical people you could have crushes on but you don't, that also sounds like some aro-logic to me x) I am pretty certain that's not how romantic attraction works for allos either, there is no checklist.

 

Ouu yeah you bring up a really good point about the fictional characters. I'm not sure how I'd react to them becoming real, like it'd be uncanny to me if they suddenly went from their 2D designs to IRL humans, and it probably wouldn't engender the same response. But if they retained their original designs, then I anticipate I'd want to be with them. Though most ideally, I'd want to exist in a fantasy world and interact with them via an avatar character of sorts. I definitely feel most comfortable when things are in the context of fictional characters/worlds. I could very well just have a block when it comes to real people for some reason. I guess all I can do is wait and see what happens when I'm socialized more and meet new people, though it never hurts to wonder about myself. Thanks for your response!

Edited by Twilight Firefly
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hey, I'm the same way. I can have strong feelings (both romantic and sexual) towards fictional characters, but those feelings are pretty much nonexistent IRL. I've only had 2-3 "crushes"(???) on real people throughout my life, and the emotions were dulled compared to what I experience in fiction. It's cool to see other people like me, because it can feel awkward explaining that I'm an aromantic person who knows what romantic attraction feels like.

Whether or not you include fiction when labeling your orientation is up to you. IMO fiction is like a separate axis of attraction, and incongruence between fictional and irl orientation happens with both a-spec people and non a-spec people. For example lesbians can still be attracted to fictional men, and there's a phenomenon within the furry fandom called "furry bi" where people are straight/gay irl but bisexual when it comes to furry characters. And then there are people who, for example, label their overall orientation as bi because they're attracted to multiple genders in fiction and that's important to them.

There's also fictosexual and fictoromantic, which are terms you might find useful!

You're free to call yourself gray, or fictosexual/romantic, or aromantic, or multiple labels at once. I've used all of these terms at different times. Right now aromantic fits best because I don't feel the need to include fiction when signalling my orientation to others, even though fictional attraction is still very meaningful to me. But in the past I've called myself fictoromantic instead of aromantic because it was more dominant in my life at the time. And I am still ficto, I just don't really use it as a label unless I'm trying to explain stuff :v

I've definitely run into those "what if I'm just picky?" worries. And "what if I'd be able to experience IRL attraction if I stopped crushing on characters?" But I've been this way my whole life and nothing has really changed. I've waited my whole life to find people attractive but it just doesn't happen. I've had deep friendships and none of them have turned romantic. At this point I've just accepted that this is how I am. Also, like you mentioned, if my favorite characters became real I don't know if I'd still be attracted to them. I like them more when they look 2D, and I think some of their personalities would just bother me if we actually interacted 😄 When it comes to fictional attraction, there's this notion of "oh, you just need to find someone who's like that character in real life!" but it's not always so simple.

Maybe things will be different for you, and you'll start experiencing crushes or find a special someone. But if you don't, there's nothing wrong with that and you definitely aren't alone.

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)
Quote

 

I've only had 2-3 "crushes"(???) on real people throughout my life, and the emotions were dulled compared to what I experience in fiction. It's cool to see other people like me, because it can feel awkward explaining that I'm an aromantic person who knows what romantic attraction feels like.

 

Yep, that sounds a lot like me, I definitely feel strange considering whether or not I could be arospec while feeling intense romantic attraction for fictional characters. It's like I'm split in two almost and I don't seem to fit snugly on either of the allo-aro "poles". Like I know I'm capable of the attractions, and they do sometimes cross the threshold into reality, but not nearly as strong or often with real people as in fiction. I'm glad to know there's someone else like me out there!

Quote

I've definitely run into those "what if I'm just picky?" worries. And "what if I'd be able to experience IRL attraction if I stopped crushing on characters?" But I've been this way my whole life and nothing has really changed.

Yeah I've been drawn to fictional characters since I was 4 years old, so it's pretty much ingrained in me, like a second nature that's just a part of who I am. I do worry about the "growing out" of characters at some point and then having exclusive attraction to real people, which is a funky thing to worry about, though I suppose it's because a lot of my writing is driven by the fictional characters I like, and RPF isn't really my jam X`D

Quote

Maybe things will be different for you, and you'll start experiencing crushes or find a special someone. But if you don't, there's nothing wrong with that and you definitely aren't alone.

This was really comforting to hear, cuz I've been grappling with whether or not there's some sort of issue where I just brick with real people, but maybe that's just how I am, feeling more in fiction and occasionally poking my head out of my shell for real people XD

Thanks for your response! It's helped me think about how labels work, and I think I'll go with what feels the most me at the moment. Maybe I could use greyromantic to describe the funky grey zone I'm in right now, and maybe that'll change down the road. Maybe the "dullness" in my IRL attraction will spark up, or maybe it'll stay the same. Time'll only tell.

Edited by Twilight Firefly
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You are posting as a guest. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...