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Aliyiah

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Hey (:

So I was wondering what your experiences with aromanticism in school were/are.

For me it got weird when all the girls in my class gout out of that "Boys are gross"-phase and started to get interested. For me that just made no sense at all.

Also we played a lot of truth-or-dare games in between classes, so most times you were asked to kiss someone on the cheek or tell whom you were interested in. Nobody ever believed me when I said I wasn't interested in anyone so I would make someone up (one time it was a boy that went to my school and my best friend at that time teased me endlessly about it).

 

So what are your stories from school? :D

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I got harassed a lot by boys but there were only two I ever kind of liked - I'm not sure how much I liked the first boy but I'm pretty sure it was strong affection of some kind, rather than a crush (I know the feeling was definitely not mutual lol but I wasn't overly offended by it), then there was a really quiet guy from a different year group who would sit next to me on the bus home sometimes. We never actually spoke xD I think I just liked those two guys because they weren't going out of their way to treat me like crap.

I did get asked out by a number of boys (and a couple of girls lol) but I turned pretty much everyone down, mostly because of disinterest but also I hated their disrespect and immaturity. I couldn't understand how they could be so nasty to me, then ask me out? 

(I've never understood why people who claim to hate the opposite sex then want to have a close relationship with one of them. That would be like me marrying a wasp or something).

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In high school, I was going through some serious, untreated mental health issues, which complicated my aromantic experiences in school. For years, I thought that getting into an intimate relationship would "fix" my mental illness, so any strong attractions I had towards people were unhealthily possessive and desperate in nature. My ignorance towards my own toxic masculinity also made it worse.

 

Basically, I had a chronic nice-guy mentality. 

 

There were two types of attractions I experienced towards people--lust, and squishes--both of which I mistook as crushes. I would try to get into romantic relationships with my "crushes." If they didn't want a romantic relationship with me, I'd cut them out of my life, because I interpreted their rejection to mean that they didn't care about me as a person, or that they hated me, or that I wasn't good enough for them. Yeah. High school me was really fucked up.

 

Also, to make matters more complicated, I was never interested in having a romantic relationship with any of my "crushes." I just wanted them to fall in love with me. In a classic toxic masculine manner, I treated emotional attachment like a conquest, where I wanted to "win" as many people as possible. At the same time, actually getting romantic reciprocation from people grossed me out. I hated it when I "won." I discovered that I liked fighting for people's affections more, so I found myself continuously getting attached to unavailable people, while ignoring those who actually cared about me. Eventually, after faking my third romantic relationship, I stopped actively pursuing romance. 

 

But then, during 11th grade, I got a "crush" on a girl who seemed to have ambiguous romantic/platonic feelings towards me. She'd switch between interacting with me in romantically-coded ways and platonically-coded ways. Sometimes, she'd act friendly towards me, and other times, she didn't want to talk to me at all. During one of the times when she enjoyed my company, I ended up asking her to prom, where she ended up ditching me to go dance with another guy. We had a fight over that and didn't speak for an year. Then we made up and had an year-long alterous friendship filled with lots of romantic and sexual tension until she got tired of things and I got tired of her and told her to get out of my life for good.

 

#badAro

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Well, people didn't really pressure me into dating there, probably because I didn't really have any close friends to irritate me about that kind of thing. Kidding though, I would have liked to have at least one decent friend that stuck around and didn't move to another town. :/

 

I saw the others dating each other and couldn't understand why. They had several dramatic breakups, and then the next week they'd be crazy about someone else again. I lost a lot of respect for the ones I had respect for. :P

 

There was some rumour floating around about me being gay at some point. That's all I really know... I spent most of my time at school daydreaming and ignoring the people around me anyway.

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In high school, I internalized the pressures to want romance and desperately wanted to fall in love. On the same token, I internalized the "friendzoning people is bad" attitude, so I found myself dating a lot of people I wasn't attracted to, hoping that "fake it 'till you make it" was a valid dating strategy. (Spoilers: it never worked.)

 

As an eternal academic, school makes explaining my single-ness easier when I don't want to explain my orientations, because I have the "I'm focusing on my studies" excuse that will likely work until "I'm focusing on my career" takes its place.

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On 23.2.2017 at 0:15 AM, Untamed Heart said:

I did get asked out by a number of boys (and a couple of girls lol) but I turned pretty much everyone down, mostly because of disinterest but also I hated their disrespect and immaturity.

 

I got asked out a couple times, too and I kinda tried dating with one of them (before I discovered aroness) but it never worked out between us ^^

 

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I was mostly just completely oblivious to people doing the romance at school xD. I only knew of like 4 different romantic couples when I was at school, and that's only because people told me about them. I would never have noticed if they hadn't! I personally never felt any pressure to get into a relationship. People probably were trying to pressure me maybe? But if they did I didn't notice. I honestly saw no point in getting into a romantic relationship so I never bothered.

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I'm currently still in high school, and I don't know that I've really felt pressured to get into a relationship (or perhaps I just unconsciously ignore it). Mostly I've experienced invisibility and a sense of isolation. Health classes have been particularly unpleasant, other-ing, and often times scary. I've also felt an immense pressure to "hide" my orientation or apologize for it, even to people who are supposedly my "allies."

 

I've felt pretty silenced, I guess, but that's one of the many reasons to love Arocalypse!

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I felt pressured when I first entered puberty, around 10-11 years, but I don't think the other students actually did anything to pressure me. It was more because of sex ed, and me assuming that I'd have crushes and then interpreting random aesthetic liking and the occasional squish for a crush.     

Then I was homeschooled for several years because I'd been getting bullied very badly and was struggling in school (undiagnosed autism). I basically had no interaction with kids my age around this time, which is what I really needed. I was lonely, but I was terrified of other kids and I really needed to feel safe again.

I returned to school for one year when I was 15, which is when I got my autism diagnosis. I remember getting sexual comments from guys in cars when I was walking to school, and seeing lots of other kids pairing off, but I literally only was asked about my own crushes once, and they were respectful (and surprised) when I said it hadn't happened. I still wasn't sure I was asexual, I thought I might be a late bloomer instead, but I did know enough by then to know that I wasn't attracted to anyone.       

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My experience in High School was being convinced I was a super romantic person because I thought romance was just really good friendship with sex attached. This led to me having a lot of squish-based and lust-based "crushes" that I never acted on, partially because I was super awkward (more so even than I am now), and partially because on some level at least I knew that I wouldn't know what to do with a relationship if I got into one. It was only in my first year of college (read: earlier in this year of college) that I finally started thinking about what I really wanted out of a relationship and realized it was the same as what I wanted out of a friendship.

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i was such an oblivious child *facepalms*

 

people were dating in primary school and I never knew, and my primary school had 100 students, maximum. 

 

young me didn't notice when people started dating unless I was told explicitly. I have had several people have crushes on me, and eventually just told them i was a lesbian. it's probably spread but tbh i don't care. If people think i'm a lesbian (haha i'm not even female), stereotypes dictate I must be alone most of the time, right?

 

 unrelated but funny; at the very start of secondary school, one of the 'popular girls' asked me if i was a virgin. Poor sheltered me was barely aware of what that word meant, so did not make a comeback like 'are you?' or 'none of your business'. (fyi girl, still a virgin) 

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On 2/23/2017 at 9:50 PM, SoulWolf said:

I saw the others dating each other and couldn't understand why. They had several dramatic breakups, and then the next week they'd be crazy about someone else again. I lost a lot of respect for the ones I had respect for. :P

 

I haven't thought about school for years, but yeah, that was totally how I saw other people's relationships at the time. I thought they were sooooo immature xD To me it was like watching a bunch of pre-schoolers playing 'house' or something ("right, today I'll be the girlfriend and you be the boyfriend" - and then by next week they'd forgotten all about it and it was somebody else's turn to play). I, of course, was far too 'mature' to ever play this silly game! It only occurred to me years later that what they were doing was a pretty normal and understandable part of growing up - and it was my aloof attitude towards it all that was a bit strange! Oh well -_-

 

On 4/17/2017 at 6:35 PM, Generic Clown said:

I thought romance was just really good friendship with sex attached. This led to me having a lot of squish-based and lust-based "crushes" that I never acted on, partially because I was super awkward (more so even than I am now), and partially because on some level at least I knew that I wouldn't know what to do with a relationship if I got into one.

OMG YES! I can 100% relate to that! "I'm a dog chasing cars - I wouldn't know what to do with one if I caught it" :rofl:

 

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In middle school I had a group of friends who were the sort to have the "so what guy do you have a crush on" conversations. (They were really great, otherwise.)  I can remember feeling a distinct mix of awkwardness, being unable to relate, and trying to avoid drawing attention to the fact that I wasn't participating.  (I've actually felt this once or twice since then and it was interesting how much it reminded me of middle school, but not as negative as it had been then since I knew I was aro and would not mind coming out to the group I was talking to.)  I mostly evaded and then ended up saying I had a crush on one of the guys who I actually though was decent (I disliked most of the guys in my grade) and I wouldn't mind being friends with.  Ironically these guys ended up being a part of their friend group in late high school, so I was right, they were people I would want to be friends with (I moved before ninth grade, and then back to the same school district for senior year.)  Also ironically, I actually did have a squish on one of my best friends (who was not a part of that group) but we were all so heteronormative so I didn't acknowledge it.

In the school that I moved to, I spent three years being mostly oblivious to relationships unless they were very, very obvious (even thought there for 40 people in my year) and also slightly questioning my sexuality because I now acknowledged that I had felt something more than normal friendship for my best friend (but totally was not interested in a romantic relationship) but I had had "crushes" on guys, right? 

Senor year I spent being oblivious to my close friends' (some of the same from middle school) relationships ("Oh, so you have a new boyfriend... since when?...January?...and why didn't I notice until April?")(It really happened.)  Towards the end of the year, I also realized that I was asexual and then later aromantic.  I didn't really tell anyone until college and now have amazing friends who not only know I am aro, but also accept that I find their romanticness strange and a bit ridiculous at times and as a result we have some very interesting conversations. 

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People started dating in primary school, which was highly unpleasant. Surprisingly it calmed down for the first year of high school, then the slut shaming started. The school quickly separated into 3 groups, kids who dated someone new almost every week with lots of partner swapping so they could use 'oh we were dating' to explain every kiss (basically this group is why I thought romance was a social construct for years), the kids who didn't care but tended to seek partners outside the toxic society of my high school, and those who didn't do anything or pretended not to do anything. I fluctuated between the last 2 groups, I had many friends and almost all of them asked me about crushes or attempted at matchmaking so I never felt I could be very open with them. It felt like they were constantly trying to change me when I didn't want to change, plus guilt and fear and teenage hormones. Oh and years of dodging spin the bottle.  

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