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I wrote an informative essay about aromanticism


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This isn’t the best essay since I had no pre planning . I tend to be a bit scatterbrained, so my ideas may be all over the place. This is meant to be an informative essay with a little bit of personal experience/content towards the end.

 

What is aromanticism? 

 

   Perhaps you’ve heard of asexuality, and despite having similarities, aromanticism and asexuality are NOT the same thing. Some have debated on the definition of aromanticism, but it is generally classified as “having little to no romantic attraction and/or having no desire to be in a romantic relationship”. This definition may be confusing to some. What even is romantic attraction, anyway?

 

   Romantic attraction is generally defined as “having the desire to engage in romantic coded activities such as kissing, hand holding, cuddling, and dating in general”. When one has romantic attraction, it is typically directed at a certain person(s). These aforementioned activities can be performed in a platonic sense of course, but people who are aromantic tend to dislike doing these things with romantic intentions. As hinted by their title, romance is not normally something aromantics desire. While they may not feel or desire the “norm” of romantic love, they can still feel love and attraction in several other ways

 

    Despite lacking romantic love, aromantics can experience love, just not in the conventional way. They may feel extreme platonic love, familial love, or even sexual love. Many aromantics tend to prioritize their platonic relationships (such as friendship) over romantic ones. As mentioned before, aromanticism and asexuality are NOT the same thing. Aromantics may be able to feel sexual attraction or the urge to have a sexual relationship without romantic attraction involved. Some aromantics also may be asexual as well, and that is not uncommon. Not all aromantics are asexual, and not all asexuals are aromantic . Some aromantics may not even feel platonic love necessarily, because it is a spectrum. Not everybody will have the same experience.

 

  Just because they don’t desire romance does not mean that aromantics are heartless. Many aros have very deep and committed friendships. Even though this may sound contradictory, some aromantics still may experiment with dating for several reasons. Aromantics still are allowed to date, but they may not have the same romantic attraction their partner does. They may just do it for sheer experimentation, or the need to have someone close. Some aros may even “date” in a platonic sense. 

 

    Unfortunately, aromantic people receive a lot of amatonormative comments that may make them feel invalidated. Amatonormativity is the belief that everybody should eventually be in a romantic relationship to have happiness in their life. This belief can be very harmful and stifling to some people, especially when romance is just something they have little to no desire for. It can be extremely hurtful to an individual and they may feel “broken” due to not being able to feel romantic attraction. Many people, be aromantic or not can be extremely happy and fulfilled without having a romantic relationship. Lots of aromantics get dismissed because they “just haven’t found the right person yet” or they “just aren’t experienced enough”. This may be true for some people and love may come eventually, but many aromantics feel repulsed to the idea of themselves in romance. It just simply isn’t for everybody. 

 

   There are many happily single people who choose the “single life” because of different circumstances such as success, distaste of lack of freedom, or for spiritual reasons. This does not necessarily mean that they are aromantic. If they have romantic attraction and they’re making the conscious choice that they don’t want to date for certain reasons, that is not aromantic. Aromantics don’t CHOOSE to feel this way or CHOOSE this “lifestyle”. In fact, many celibates make the choice of celibacy for spiritual and religious reasons, but they may still have romantic feelings. Just because they do not act on those feelings does not mean they aren’t there. Celibacy is VOLUNTARY. Aromanticism is NOT. 

 

   Some people may beg the question: “If aromantics or asexuals DON’T feel any romantic/(and or) sexual attraction, and it revolves around their lack of attraction, why is it considered in the LGBTQ community?”. The LGBTQ community isn’t just about being gay or trans, it’s a community for people who have non-normative experiences with their sexual, romantic, or gender identity. Aromantics and asexuals do not fit in the mold of what society considers a “normal” romantic or sexual identity. You may be also wondering: “If you’re aromantic (or asexual), do you have to associate yourself with the LGBTQ community?”. The answer to that is NO. Not all aromantics or asexuals consider or associate themselves to be a part of the community. They are not obligated to. 

-“But why do they get a fancy label then?”

 This question seems to be irrelevant. Heterosexuals who don’t identify with the LGBTQ community still identify as straight. It simply is no different. 

 

   Being aromantic or asexual should not conflict with any religious views or rules, because a lack of romantic or sexual feelings is nothing of sinful nature. In fact, it may be seen as a blessing by some people because there is no temptation to fall into sexual immorality. Paul even promotes singleness if it can help you become closer to God.

    “I wish that all men were as I am. But each man has his own gift from God; one has this gift, another has that. Now to the unmarried and the widows I say: It is good for them to stay unmarried, as I am. But if they cannot control themselves, they should marry, for it is better to marry than to burn with passion.” (Corinthians 7:8-10) 

He even states that perhaps staying unmarried is better for your relationship with God because a spouse can distract you from the Lord.

   “An unmarried woman or virgin is concerned about the Lord's affairs: Her aim is to be devoted to the Lord in both body and spirit. But a married woman is concerned about the affairs of this world--how she can please her husband.” (Corinthians 7:34) Like mentioned before, not all of these people associate themselves with the LGBTQ community, so there should inherently should be no problem. Someone’s lack of romantic or sexual feelings should be no reasonable cause for concern.

 

  My personal experience with aromanticism is quite complained. I never had any crushes at all growing up (not even any fictional ones). I didn’t have my first “crush” until I was 11 or 12. I hardly recalled even liking him much, but I believe I forced myself into liking him so I could feel “normal”. Of course, those feelings never lasted for long, nor escalated into anything serious at all. I’ve had other “crushes”, but looking back, none of them have ever had any romantic desire whatsoever. Most of them stemmed from either really appreciating them as a person or as a friend, or just straight up non-romantic obsession. I have never wished to date any of my “crushes” or do anything romantic with them. 

 

I’ve always had extremely blurry lines on whether I liked someone or not. Every time I make a friend, I start to get obsessive feelings over them. Looking back, none of them were romantic at all, and they were just sheer appreciation of them. I personally could never find myself enjoying a romantic relationship at all. I am very averse to physical constant and especially physical intimacy (even non-romantically/sexually). Dating has always seemed utterly useless to me. I think that if you have so much in common with someone and you really appreciate them, being friends seems like a way better solution. Unfortunately, not everybody thinks the same way as I do, and there may be some issues with unrequited love from the other person that I would see unromantically. Romance just seems completely unappealing to me in so many ways. I despise physical contact, even non romantic hand holding or cuddling puts me at unease. Kissing seems absolutely horrible and disgusting in so many ways. Intimacy in any shape or form seems awful. I’ve never felt the urge to say “I love you”s to anyone. It’s always been uncomfortable for me to say platonically or in a familial sense. Being married and living forever with someone seems much more like a curse than a blessing. I have zero desire to have children or get married, and do not see my ideals changing any time soon. 

 

I’m not going to tolerate “You just haven’t found the right person yet”. Romance and any sort of intimacy is just not my cup of tea. I’ve felt this way for a long time, and I truly can’t see my opinion changing very much in the future. It’s possible I may change in the future, but I do not want to be invalidated because of how I truly feel. I don’t want words being put into my mouth about how I’ll supposedly feel. Not everybody desires romance. Not everybody needs it. I could never see myself loving somebody that way, and that’s alright. Not everyone will feel the same, and not everybody will have the same experiences. Some people center their whole life around love and couldn’t imagine it any other way, while some people just don’t feel that way and have no desire for romantic love. Not everyone needs romantic love to feel fulfilled. I can find happiness in other things, and I am perfectly content with who I am. This is how I feel. I am NOT a copycat, I’m NOT mentally ill, and I’m NOT making this up for attention. Every passing day, somebody asking me out is a debilitating fear of mine. I don’t care who it is, it stresses me out thinking about it. A lot. I fear anyone liking me romantically. I fear having to deal with that. I don’t feel romantic love at all, and that’s okay. I don’t need someone in my life to determine that my existence has meaning. I’m proud to be me, and this is just the way I am. 

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Posted (edited)

Nice work. What class is this for? I would also recommend specifying that you're talking about Christianity when you bring up "not conflicting with religious views", as there are many religions in this world and while I don't believe that most would discriminate against aros, it's still not good to imply that Christianity is the only one.

Edited by Jot-Aro Kujo
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i did it mostly for fun, or if i ever come out to my (slightly) aphobic parents who need a bit of info…

 

 tysm! i actually noticed my error a bit back and fixed it in my google docs version, but not here 

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