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Dating while aro


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I don't think I've seen a thread to discuss dating before, so I thought I'd make it myself. Personally, I'm gray aromantic and still interested in dating, but it's a very different experience from someone who's alloromantic, so I wanted a place to talk about it with other aros.

Feel free to discuss anything related to dating here, I'll also ask some questions to start us off. Have you ever dated? If so, what have your experiences been like?

Currently I have dated 3 different people, but 2 were in high school where it's not serious at all, so I still feel inexperienced. Being aromantic certainly doesn't help with that, I never fully understood dating and probably never will but it's fun.

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I did date and even was in a relationship with a guy at the age of 15. Honestly, in retrospective I don't think there was any romantic feelings involved (I completely lack those), we just had a glorified friends with benefits. I only got together with him because everyone around us were shipping us and because I was a horny teen. 

One strange thing I remember about it, you know how people always talk about "butterflies in your stomache", the greatest feeling of all time and whatnot? I remember having a sensation in my belly when cuddling with that guy once, but it felt... awful. Like there were stones constantly moving in my stomache. 

Maybe an early sign of me being aromantic...? I would categorise myself as romance neutral, but sometimes if people show active romantic interest in me I tend to get repulsed, so maybe that was something along those lines.

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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, Helion said:

I did date and even was in a relationship with a guy at the age of 15. Honestly, in retrospective I don't think there was any romantic feelings involved (I completely lack those), we just had a glorified friends with benefits. I only got together with him because everyone around us were shipping us and because I was a horny teen.

I can relate to that experience, dating as a young teenager then realizing later you weren't really interested. For me, I dated 2 different people when I was 14, before I knew I was aro. Now looking back, I'm not sure I was really interested in them, more the idea of a romantic relationship. Probably why neither of those relationships lasted long, though most high school relationships don't.

Edited by dewy
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I've had two boyfriends and gone on various dates with different people. First date was almost always fun but by third I felt bored. I feel like maybe now that I'm more mature I might give dating another chance, but it's gonna be much more of a relationship anarchy approach, mainly building friendships but some sensual or sexual activities might not necessarily be off the table.

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On 1/8/2024 at 5:26 PM, dewy said:

I don't think I've seen a thread to discuss dating before, so I thought I'd make it myself. Personally, I'm gray aromantic and still interested in dating, but it's a very different experience from someone who's alloromantic, so I wanted a place to talk about it with other aros.

Feel free to discuss anything related to dating here, I'll also ask some questions to start us off. Have you ever dated? If so, what have your experiences been like?

Currently I have dated 3 different people, but 2 were in high school where it's not serious at all, so I still feel inexperienced. Being aromantic certainly doesn't help with that, I never fully understood dating and probably never will but it's fun.

I had 2 relationships I would say left an impact. One in high school I got dumped by my ex because I wouldn't kiss them after we had only been dating for 2 almost 3 weeks. The other one was in college. It was a very toxic relationship and at one point my ex told me I treated them too much like a friend. I still do not know what that means I always thought a romantic relationship was a best friendship with romantically coded activities for fun and to show commitment and care. I also was not aesthetically attracted to my last ex so that might have been part of the problem.

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I don't think aromantic ppl should date as it is unfair to the other person unless they are also aromantic. And if it is a qpr or close dependent relationship or whatever it shouldn't be called dating.

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3 hours ago, Milly said:

I don't think aromantic ppl should date as it is unfair to the other person unless they are also aromantic. And if it is a qpr or close dependent relationship or whatever it shouldn't be called dating.

I'm sorry, but saying such a statement so incredibly generally is pretty horrible.

The only case in which an aromantic person dating an alloromantic person is "not okay" is when the aromantic person lies to the allo person about their romantic attraction or doesn't tell them even when their relationship expands to a pretty deep level (You don't have to tell them day 1 of dating necessary). I would say it's wrong not to share such an important piece of info about yourself that does affect the relationship with your partner. In that case it is not about "they shouldn't date", but one party plainly being a bad partner for whatever reason.

In literally all other cases it's okay because the allo person WILLINGLY dates an aromantic person. Remember, if we are talking about aromantic people willing to date we are talking about aromantic people who aren't repulsed by the idea of having a partnership with someone at least in some aspects - These people deserve to date literally anyone who consents to it, you don't need to find a person that feels exactly the way you do, which is incredibly hard, by the way. 

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22 hours ago, Helion said:

I'm sorry, but saying such a statement so incredibly generally is pretty horrible.

The only case in which an aromantic person dating an alloromantic person is "not okay" is when the aromantic person lies to the allo person about their romantic attraction or doesn't tell them even when their relationship expands to a pretty deep level (You don't have to tell them day 1 of dating necessary). I would say it's wrong not to share such an important piece of info about yourself that does affect the relationship with your partner. In that case it is not about "they shouldn't date", but one party plainly being a bad partner for whatever reason.

In literally all other cases it's okay because the allo person WILLINGLY dates an aromantic person. Remember, if we are talking about aromantic people willing to date we are talking about aromantic people who aren't repulsed by the idea of having a partnership with someone at least in some aspects - These people deserve to date literally anyone who consents to it, you don't need to find a person that feels exactly the way you do, which is incredibly hard, by the way. 

It shouldn't be called dating bc it's an alternative relationship. An aro and allo person can't normally date.

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5 hours ago, Milly said:

It shouldn't be called dating bc it's an alternative relationship. An aro and allo person can't normally date.

Yes, they absolutely can. I repeat, aromantic is an umbrella term, it includes people like greyromantics, people who feel less romantic attraction, but still some of it, demiromantic people, who only feel romantically attracted to people they have a very close bond with, etc. Some people on the aromantic spectrum can feel romantic attraction under certain circumstances, so if they date allos sometimes they can feel just as much attraction as an alloromantic person. 

On the other hand: Even aromantic people that have no romantic attraction can still be okay with having a partner and go on a date. You are for some reason using relationship and dating as two same-ish words, when dates are mostly about learning to know your partner and spending time with them. I as someone who feels no romantic attraction whatsoever would be absolutely for going on dates if I did end up wanting to partner up with someone because that's a great and cute way to learn to know them. What else would you call that but a date? A "meeting to figure out whether I like this person and consider them for becoming my partner?" That is quite literally a date.

I have no idea why you are trying to gatekeep that term so much. Your argument is on the same level as "A homosexual marriage shouldn't be called a marriage because it's different" or "sex between a cis and a tra s person shouldn't be called sex because it's different". It's just odd and makes you sound bigoted, which I sincerely hope you are not actually. 

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6 hours ago, Milly said:

It shouldn't be called dating bc it's an alternative relationship. An aro and allo person can't normally date.

Apart from what others have already mentioned  Some people desire a romantic relationship even if they don't experience romantic attraction. They might choose to be in a romantic relationship with someone they are not in love with. Nothing wrong with it as long as they don't pretend to experience romantic attraction.

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18 hours ago, Helion said:

 

Yes, they absolutely can. I repeat, aromantic is an umbrella term, it includes people like greyromantics, people who feel less romantic attraction, but still some of it, demiromantic people, who only feel romantically attracted to people they have a very close bond with, etc. Some people on the aromantic spectrum can feel romantic attraction under certain circumstances, so if they date allos sometimes they can feel just as much attraction as an alloromantic person. 

On the other hand: Even aromantic people that have no romantic attraction can still be okay with having a partner and go on a date. You are for some reason using relationship and dating as two same-ish words, when dates are mostly about learning to know your partner and spending time with them. I as someone who feels no romantic attraction whatsoever would be absolutely for going on dates if I did end up wanting to partner up with someone because that's a great and cute way to learn to know them. What else would you call that but a date? A "meeting to figure out whether I like this person and consider them for becoming my partner?" That is quite literally a date.

I have no idea why you are trying to gatekeep that term so much. Your argument is on the same level as "A homosexual marriage shouldn't be called a marriage because it's different" or "sex between a cis and a tra s person shouldn't be called sex because it's different". It's just odd and makes you sound bigoted, which I sincerely hope you are not actually. 

Bruh it’s called hanging out if it’s not a date💀and ik that dating and relationships are different hello that’s the whole base of this argument?? That is an alternative relationship, not dating, that’s all I’m trying to say. Idk it’s validation or sum that makes you want to call it dating but go for it guess but it’s just not like a regular relationship unless ur demiromantic or smthn very close to it🤷🏽‍♀️I just don’t see the purpose of calling it dating when it is a different way of being with someone, wouldn’t you want to have pride in that? Wouldn’t you want a more specific term? That’s why there is sub labels to everything???? And the gay marriage comparison thing is stupid 1. Clearly I’m not homophobic hello look at this gay ass website I’m on 2. Marriage is just weird af in general and I don’t actually care about the rules for it or whatever I’m never doing it 3. It’s just the joining of 2 souls idk if you get married platonically. You can do and believe whatever you want to but I just don’t understand why you wouldn’t want to have pride in a different type of relationship and have a different term for it.

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8 hours ago, Milly said:

Bruh it’s called hanging out if it’s not a date💀and ik that dating and relationships are different hello that’s the whole base of this argument?? That is an alternative relationship, not dating, that’s all I’m trying to say. Idk it’s validation or sum that makes you want to call it dating but go for it guess but it’s just not like a regular relationship unless ur demiromantic or smthn very close to it🤷🏽‍♀️I just don’t see the purpose of calling it dating when it is a different way of being with someone, wouldn’t you want to have pride in that? Wouldn’t you want a more specific term? That’s why there is sub labels to everything???? And the gay marriage comparison thing is stupid 1. Clearly I’m not homophobic hello look at this gay ass website I’m on 2. Marriage is just weird af in general and I don’t actually care about the rules for it or whatever I’m never doing it 3. It’s just the joining of 2 souls idk if you get married platonically. You can do and believe whatever you want to but I just don’t understand why you wouldn’t want to have pride in a different type of relationship and have a different term for it.

How do you react when someone like me has dated two people in the past?

Plus insisting an aro just get into a QPR is a form of platonormitivty, not every arospec experiences platonic or queerplatonic attraction, nor does every arospec desire a QPR/QPP.

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On 1/12/2024 at 9:51 AM, Milly said:

It shouldn't be called dating bc it's an alternative relationship. An aro and allo person can't normally date.

Yeah no, I'm dating an alloromantic person currently and we're perfectly happy as we are. Feel like I should mentiom they've always known I'm aro, by the way. I really don't think it's unfair to them. Honestly, I've heard enough of this sort of thing from aspec exclusionists, that aros can't have healthy relationships, and it's pretty tiring.

Also "normally date"...what does that mean? And does it matter if me and my partner are "normally" dating if we're both happy? As Lovebird mentioned above, not all of us want a queerplatonic relationship. Personally I don't find the term helpful for any of my relationships.

Others also brought up some good points here that I'm not going to repeat. But thank you guys for that, from a romance favorable gray-aro.

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3 hours ago, Lovebird said:

How do you react when someone like me has dated two people in the past?

Plus insisting an aro just get into a QPR is a form of platonormitivty, not every arospec experiences platonic or queerplatonic attraction, nor does every arospec desire a QPR/QPP.

Who doesn’t experience platonic attraction😭omg?? that’s crazy💀Idk if you have dated ppl in the past, I’ve dated ppl in the past but it wasn’t real💀and I’m not saying qpr I’m saying alternative relationship, don’t reply to my comment if u haven’t read my other replies which alr covered this.

1 hour ago, dewy said:

Yeah no, I'm dating an alloromantic person currently and we're perfectly happy as we are. Feel like I should mentiom they've always known I'm aro, by the way. I really don't think it's unfair to them. Honestly, I've heard enough of this sort of thing from aspec exclusionists, that aros can't have healthy relationships, and it's pretty tiring.

Also "normally date"...what does that mean? And does it matter if me and my partner are "normally" dating if we're both happy? As Lovebird mentioned above, not all of us want a queerplatonic relationship. Personally I don't find the term helpful for any of my relationships.

Others also brought up some good points here that I'm not going to repeat. But thank you guys for that, from a romance favorable gray-aro.

IM NOT SAYING QPR!!!! Alternative relationship🙏

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On 1/12/2024 at 12:48 AM, Milly said:

And if it is a qpr or close dependent relationship or whatever it shouldn't be called dating.

You're contradicting yourself, you just said this earlier.

18 minutes ago, Milly said:

Who doesn’t experience platonic attraction😭omg?? that’s crazy💀Idk if you have dated ppl in the past, I’ve dated ppl in the past but it wasn’t real💀and I’m not saying qpr I’m saying alternative relationship, don’t reply to my comment if u haven’t read my other replies which alr covered this.

IM NOT SAYING QPR!!!! Alternative relationship🙏

And what even is an 'alternative relationship' in your definition?

I did read your replies, they sucked, and it's no wonder you're being criticised for it.

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2 hours ago, Lovebird said:

You're contradicting yourself, you just said this earlier.

And what even is an 'alternative relationship' in your definition?

I did read your replies, they sucked, and it's no wonder you're being criticised for it.

Bruh none of you guys ever have any fun Jesus Christ😭An alternative relationship is anything outside of the norm and I’m surprised none of you know what that is bc this is a very niche little online thingy and there’s like a million labels in here💀 So yeah I would say that anyone that doesn’t fit into the norm of a relationship aka experiences less than the adverage person or no romantic attraction shouldn’t even be considered as dating at all😭i don’t know why or even when you all decided to make all these rules up but anyone who’s not actively in the aromantic community wouldn’t call a romantic ish relationship just normal dating💀 There is no correct answer bc aromanticism has only been an actual term for a few years so don’t act all high and mighty as if this is such an obvious conclusion that everyone should come to, bc everything on planet earth is up for debate.

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8 hours ago, Milly said:

Bruh none of you guys ever have any fun Jesus Christ😭An alternative relationship is anything outside of the norm and I’m surprised none of you know what that is bc this is a very niche little online thingy and there’s like a million labels in here💀 So yeah I would say that anyone that doesn’t fit into the norm of a relationship aka experiences less than the adverage person or no romantic attraction shouldn’t even be considered as dating at all😭i don’t know why or even when you all decided to make all these rules up but anyone who’s not actively in the aromantic community wouldn’t call a romantic ish relationship just normal dating💀 There is no correct answer bc aromanticism has only been an actual term for a few years so don’t act all high and mighty as if this is such an obvious conclusion that everyone should come to, bc everything on planet earth is up for debate.

I mean, yes, there are a lot of aromantic sublabels and terms, but not everyone knows or understands them all. Personally I don't find most sublabels helpful and even have a hard time understanding them, as I'm not super active in the aromantic community online these days. And like I said, I don't understand what queerplatonic relationship is, and I don't think I want to count the relationship I have with my partner as an "alternative relationship" since we've been dating for a while now and I don't see why the label matters so much? Especially seeing as we're both queer in other ways than me being aromantic, so our relationship would not be considered "normal" dating even if I were alloromantic.

I'm not trying to make up rules, and I don't think anyone here is. Yes, aromantic people can date, but obviously not all of us want to, and that's ok. If I were making up rules, I would be saying something like all aromantic people should try out dating to see if they like it, which is...not something I believe in at all. I really think it's up to the individual.

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12 hours ago, Milly said:

Who doesn’t experience platonic attraction😭omg?? that’s crazy💀 

Aplatonic people. There's some great threads in the forum about it. You should look them up.

9 hours ago, Milly said:

😭💀😭i don’t know why or even when you all decided to make all these rules up but anyone who’s not actively in the aromantic community wouldn’t call a romantic ish relationship just normal dating💀 There is no correct answer bc aromanticism has only been an actual term for a few years so don’t act all high and mighty as if this is such an obvious conclusion that everyone should come to, bc everything on planet earth is up for debate.

What rules? Aromantic people can date if they want to, that's not a rule. They can have other types of partnerships and relationships if they want to. You're the one that came in here and said aro people shouldn't date and shouldn't call what they do dating. 

Aromantic people can do what they want and that includes dating and even being in romantic relationships. As long as they're not hurting anyone, why is it unfair or wrong? Insisting we shouldn't date is establishing a "correct answer" too, y'know? 

You seem to be open to alternative relationships and I think that's great, but keep in mind that not every aro person wants that for themselves. Be open to aro people being in so called regular/normal relationships. And be open to criticism, that's also part of debating. 

 

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23 hours ago, Milly said:

 There is no correct answer bc aromanticism has only been an actual term for a few years so don’t act all high and mighty as if this is such an obvious conclusion that everyone should come to, bc everything on planet earth is up for debate.

??? Why are you saying "there's no correct answer" when just a second ago you were saying aro people "can't date normally" and that "alternative relationship" should be the only name for these types of relationships. You're the one who was pushing for one correct answer here.

That's all I'll say though, I hate arguing online. It never goes anywhere and everyone's time is just wasted. This website is a safe space for aspec people to share their experiences with one another, everyone deserves to be included. So no more arguing about whether people's feelings are "correct" or not.

Edited by MondoBilby
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11 hours ago, MondoBilby said:

??? Why are you saying "there's no correct answer" when just a second ago you were saying aro people "can't date normally" and that "alternative relationship" should be the only name for these types of relationships. You're the one who was pushing for one correct answer here.

That's all I'll say though, I hate arguing online. It never goes anywhere and everyone's time is just wasted. This website is a safe space for aspec people to share their experiences with one another, everyone deserves to be included. So no more arguing about whether people's feelings are "correct" or not.

I WAS SAYING THERES NO CORRECT ANSWER BC YOU THINK THERE IS CLEARLY I THINK THERE IS USE CONTEXT CLUES💀like what? You read that wrong😭bro I promise nobody’s safety is a risk from an online argument I don’t care enough to like come to ur house or something idk what ur on about💀and idk what source u have that online arguments don’t lead anywhere bc yes they do and at the very least it’s entertaining enough to keep logging on😭I literally asked the admin guy to delete my account like days ago so if u got a problem w me go tell him to hurry up💀

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On 1/13/2024 at 5:11 PM, Guest said:

Bruh it’s called hanging out if it’s not a date💀and ik that dating and relationships are different hello that’s the whole base of this argument?? That is an alternative relationship, not dating, that’s all I’m trying to say. Idk it’s validation or sum that makes you want to call it dating but go for it guess but it’s just not like a regular relationship unless ur demiromantic or smthn very close to it🤷🏽‍♀️I just don’t see the purpose of calling it dating when it is a different way of being with someone, wouldn’t you want to have pride in that? Wouldn’t you want a more specific term? That’s why there is sub labels to everything???? And the gay marriage comparison thing is stupid 1. Clearly I’m not homophobic hello look at this gay ass website I’m on 2. Marriage is just weird af in general and I don’t actually care about the rules for it or whatever I’m never doing it 3. It’s just the joining of 2 souls idk if you get married platonically. You can do and believe whatever you want to but I just don’t understand why you wouldn’t want to have pride in a different type of relationship and have a different term for it.

As an aromantic person, no, we don't want to be super alternative for the sake of pride. Believe it or not, we still are and want to be in the normal society and don't need special terms for everything related to relationships. Yes, we are different about relationships and we can still be proud of ourselves despite that, but that doesn't mean we wanna be totally excluded from all of society by using a different language for the sake of... I dunno, I guess appealing to people like you? That's the issue, why would you call an "alternative relationship" (Like a poly one) not a relationship? It's completely nonsensical and unnecessary and it's essentially the same thing you are saying about aromantic people. And count all the other examples I named again. I never said you are homophobic or something, I cannot possibly know that, I am just comparing your claim about aromantic people to same-ish claims about other lgbtq+ people. If you disagree with all of them but specifically want to go against aromantic people that's just hypocritical and also odd. I don't care if you yourself are aromantic or not, what you say is very harmful.

"Hang out" might be very inaccurate depending on how intimate the partners were/want to be with each other. How about you stop this strange tirade about forcing people to use their own vocabulary to be different and let people use it? Believe it or not, people aren't stupid. If an aromantic has a very close and intimate relationship with someone (Possible even without romantic feelings) they might call it dating to signal to other people that there is some commitment and intimacy, in whatever way and that they are very close to their partner or partners. If an aromantic person wants to just platonically marry someone to not be alone and wants to avoid romantic connotation because they are uncomfortable they will use the word hanging out. Others like saying "platonic dating" to signal there is something of a commited relationship, but it's very different from a usual one, etc.

We know the connotation of words and we are capable of expressing ourselves and make other people understand what we mean. We don't need some internet weirdo to police how we talk about our experiences with relationships, thank you very much. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I do not participate in conventional dating; I do not even completely understand the concept. To my best knowledge, I have not been on an official date, but I believe I have been on a few dates by accident because I was thinking we were meeting as friends yet the other party had different expectations. By now I have learned my part to speak directly in order to avoid awkward situations. 😅

Nevertheless, I still very much enjoy doing date-like activities with a friend. By that I mean activities that could be considered romantic (especially when there are two people of the opposite sex involved in heteronormative thinking), but where we both know we are doing this for fun and not with romantic expectations. Unfortunately, not so easy to do with alloromantic people or someone in a romantic relationship because it requires a decent amount of clarification that ruins almost all the fun of it.

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