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Just Me, Myself and...Zie?

The line between romance and QPR

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Just Me, Myself and...Zie?

What is the difference between a romantic relationship and a QPR? What are the defining characteristics of each? What traits are applicable to one, but not the other? Thank you in advance.

 

 

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Sotapanna

extended mouth to mouth kissing seems like one obvious item..
anything more than a peck

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AVEN #1 fan

Romantic relationships are a stronger bond or kind of compromise, technically you can do everything friends doesn't do and there's more attachment involved to it .

 

 

Usually QPRs are like "friends with benefits", "open relationships", "love without compromise" or a "colorful friendship".

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Dodecahedron314

Actually, QPRs can entail just as strong of a bond as romantic relationships, or stronger, with similar levels of commitment (e.g. living together, support through really awful times, etc.). The difference is that this bond is entirely platonic in a QPR, whereas it's romantic in a romantic relationship.

 

Of course, the definition of romantic as opposed to platonic is something that's been the subject of debate around here for years and years, so if you ask a thread's worth of people, you'll probably get a thread's worth of different answers. That being said, my own personal way of conceptualizing it is that there's none of the tension and drama and world-shaking "passion" and obsession that you hear a lot about when romantic relationships are being described. Rather, it's a sort of mutual affirmation, a sense of safety and stability, where instead of your soul being on fire or some cliched attempt at poetry like that, you just sort of fit comfortably. It's quite similar to friendship, and often develops from it after a while, but takes on a bit of a deeper meaning and a higher level of commitment than most people ascribe to friendship. It's not losing yourself in someone, it's knowing exactly where both of you are and exploring it together. I often say that if romantic relationships are like staring into someone's eyes and calling them your world, a QPR is more like leaning jauntily on their shoulder and calling them your partner in crime, but with the same amount of significance (though a different sentiment) behind it.

 

(Source: have been in a QPR in name for about a year, in practice for several years)

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litanies

I don't have a clue.  This is because I am quoiromantic: http://aromantic.wikia.com/wiki/Wtfromantic.

 

In any case, I can definitely tell you that your question doesn't have one single answer.  Everyone is going to give you different ones, because everyone has different definitions, boundaries and needs :)

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litanies
3 hours ago, Dodecahedron314 said:

Actually, QPRs can entail just as strong of a bond as romantic relationships, or stronger, with similar levels of commitment (e.g. living together, support through really awful times, etc.). The difference is that this bond is entirely platonic in a QPR, whereas it's romantic in a romantic relationship.

 

Of course, the definition of romantic as opposed to platonic is something that's been the subject of debate around here for years and years, so if you ask a thread's worth of people, you'll probably get a thread's worth of different answers. That being said, my own personal way of conceptualizing it is that there's none of the tension and drama and world-shaking "passion" and obsession that you hear a lot about when romantic relationships are being described. Rather, it's a sort of mutual affirmation, a sense of safety and stability, where instead of your soul being on fire or some cliched attempt at poetry like that, you just sort of fit comfortably. It's quite similar to friendship, and often develops from it after a while, but takes on a bit of a deeper meaning and a higher level of commitment than most people ascribe to friendship. It's not losing yourself in someone, it's knowing exactly where both of you are and exploring it together. I often say that if romantic relationships are like staring into someone's eyes and calling them your world, a QPR is more like leaning jauntily on their shoulder and calling them your partner in crime, but with the same amount of significance (though a different sentiment) behind it.

 

(Source: have been in a QPR in name for about a year, in practice for several years)

Nice answer.  I think my relationships (regardless of whether the other person classifies them as romantic or platonic) feature a combination of the traits you described (from my end), but mostly the ones you associate with QPRs.  I especially like the partner-in-crime bit :)

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Slayerin96

@Dodecahedron314 hit the right nail on the head. A queerplatonic relationship is not about sticking to or crossing out certain elements. It is about the meaning behind them. The two partners involved can do anything, but the key is that doing those things won't make them blush or give them butterflies in the stomach and set them into a kind of ecstatic trance or something. At least one of the two persons involved has feelings for the other, which are NOT romantic in nature.  

 

 

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Slayerin96
23 hours ago, Sotapanna said:

extended mouth to mouth kissing seems like one obvious item..
anything more than a peck

No, the degree of physical intimacy present between two people doesn't dictate whether or not they're romantically attracted to each other.

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Rhyme
21 hours ago, Dodecahedron314 said:

That being said, my own personal way of conceptualizing it is that there's none of the tension and drama and world-shaking "passion" and obsession that you hear a lot about when romantic relationships are being described. Rather, it's a sort of mutual affirmation, a sense of safety and stability, where instead of your soul being on fire or some cliched attempt at poetry like that, you just sort of fit comfortably. It's quite similar to friendship, and often develops from it after a while, but takes on a bit of a deeper meaning and a higher level of commitment than most people ascribe to friendship. It's not losing yourself in someone, it's knowing exactly where both of you are and exploring it together. I often say that if romantic relationships are like staring into someone's eyes and calling them your world, a QPR is more like leaning jauntily on their shoulder and calling them your partner in crime, but with the same amount of significance (though a different sentiment) behind it.

That's it. I'm aromantic. I just figured it out. Thank you. I've never really been able to understand the difference between romantic and platonic relationships, but I get it now. I don't want the "world-shaking passion", I want a "partner in crime". Mind = blown. 

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kaseythefairy

Thanks for asking this question @Just Me, Myself and I! I didn't know I needed this thread in my life.

 

On 5/21/2017 at 1:27 PM, Dodecahedron314 said:

Of course, the definition of romantic as opposed to platonic is something that's been the subject of debate around here for years and years, so if you ask a thread's worth of people, you'll probably get a thread's worth of different answers. That being said, my own personal way of conceptualizing it is that there's none of the tension and drama and world-shaking "passion" and obsession that you hear a lot about when romantic relationships are being described. Rather, it's a sort of mutual affirmation, a sense of safety and stability, where instead of your soul being on fire or some cliched attempt at poetry like that, you just sort of fit comfortably. It's quite similar to friendship, and often develops from it after a while, but takes on a bit of a deeper meaning and a higher level of commitment than most people ascribe to friendship. It's not losing yourself in someone, it's knowing exactly where both of you are and exploring it together. I often say that if romantic relationships are like staring into someone's eyes and calling them your world, a QPR is more like leaning jauntily on their shoulder and calling them your partner in crime, but with the same amount of significance (though a different sentiment) behind it.

^This, of course, is a great answer. I think many can agree on that. But I wanted to add in my thoughts about being aromantic bisexual, or aromantic sexual in general. Based on other replies to this thread, I see that there can be confusion about the physical limitations of a QPR. [A quick disclaimer: I've never been in a labeled QPR, but I am currently in a committed partnership with my 'partner in crime.' I haven't talked to him about being aromantic, so he doesn't know yet, but there is no other way to describe our relationship than "committed partnership with my partner in crime."] Anyway, my partner and I do/have done all of the following: hold hands, cuddle, kiss, hug, sleep in the same bed, and even have sex (*gasp*). But still, I feel no romantic charge behind these actions. For example, we tend to hold hands when we are having a deep conversation. It is a way to show attention and support to each other; I do not hold his hand to show other people that he is mine, or to prove that we "love" each other. Jumping to the next extreme, we have from the very beginning been clear about our intentions with sex. We sometimes have sex because we want to have fun. We want to make each other happy because we care. If that sounds boring please let me correct you. No it isn't sex with the passion of a million burning suns, full of "love" and "romance." But there is a different "passion" that we have. We are passionate about caring about one another, in a similar way you might be passionate about a best friend & their happiness. Even though me and my partner have a physical relationship, I am not romantically attracted to him and never have been. I am still passionate about being his friend, in a similar(ish) way that I'm passionate about petting cats, or my work as an artist.

 

--Its hard to explain or show people how platonic "passion" can exist. I can never think of a better word for it than "passion" which can be a little misleading I suppose. But I hope it makes sense! 

 

p.s. I'm intrigued to hear from other aromantic sexuals about their experiences! And feel free to message me personally if you would like :)

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Dodecahedron314

I'm glad people found my explanation helpful! :D

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Deus Ex Infinity
On 21.5.2017 at 9:22 PM, AVEN #1 fan said:

Romantic relationships are a stronger bond or kind of compromise, technically you can do everything friends doesn't do and there's more attachment involved to it .

 

 

Usually QPRs are like "friends with benefits", "open relationships", "love without compromise" or a "colorful friendship".

I've never see it like this but I have to admit that it makes sense somehow. So if I'd use this definition, I would only go for a romantic (long-term) relationship.

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AVEN #1 fan
2 hours ago, Deus Ex Zero said:

I've never see it like this but I have to admit that it makes sense somehow. So if I'd use this definition, I would only go for a romantic (long-term) relationship.

I think romantic relationships are more open to do stuff that need high intimacy.

 

 

Both kinds of relationship can least long.

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litanies
16 hours ago, kaseythefairy said:

 

--Its hard to explain or show people how platonic "passion" can exist. I can never think of a better word for it than "passion" which can be a little misleading I suppose. But I hope it makes sense! 

 

p.s. I'm intrigued to hear from other aromantic sexuals about their experiences! And feel free to message me personally if you would like :)

I lol'd at the "million burning suns."

 

This though, THIS.  Thank you.  I am quite passionate toward my platonic friends.  One definition of passion is just "an intense desire or enthusiasm for something."  That works for me.  I am intensely enthusiastic about any close relationship I have.  I'm actually a pretty flat person emotionally, so I don't experience passion like a million burning suns anyway--for me it is more like an act of will, a simple state of being.  I guess you could say my passion isn't in the body or the mind, but simply in my spirit.  It's an act of will and a declaration of gratitude, trust and care, not an emotion.  

 

By the way, have you ever noticed how TV shows and films feature characters who are passionate about all kinds of platonic relationships, but you rarely encounter that in real life?

 

I'd say an easy and great example for any Doctor Who fans would be the majority of the relationships the Doctor has with his Companions.  Donna is a wonderful example.  She was passionately committed to the life she'd chosen on the Tardis, and wanted to stay forever.  Definitely not a sexual relationship, and not a romantic relationship either.  At the same time though, way too passionate to fit most standard definitions of platonic.  A lot of the Doctor's relationships seem passionately queerplatonic to me.  I'm always confused about how it's such a popular show, and yet the average fan of the show would never understand or pursue the types of relationships it features in their own real lives.

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Just Me, Myself and...Zie?

By the definitions on this thread, I'm aromantic. I can't fully rule out being demiromantic, as I've never truly formed a very strong emotional bond from knowing someone for many years, but QPR's seem so much more desirable than romantic relationships. Why has society blurred the two? I like telling people I love them and hearing it back. I like short physical contact when I know someone very well. I like talking with someone for hours. But I don't want to become fully absorbed in them, and vice versa- nor do I want an expectation to be entirely committed forever. This makes sense. Thank you for all of the incredibly, incredibly helpful responses. :cake:

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Dodecahedron314
On 5/23/2017 at 11:13 PM, litanies said:

I'd say an easy and great example for any Doctor Who fans would be the majority of the relationships the Doctor has with his Companions.  Donna is a wonderful example.  She was passionately committed to the life she'd chosen on the Tardis, and wanted to stay forever.  Definitely not a sexual relationship, and not a romantic relationship either.  At the same time though, way too passionate to fit most standard definitions of platonic.  A lot of the Doctor's relationships seem passionately queerplatonic to me.  I'm always confused about how it's such a popular show, and yet the average fan of the show would never understand or pursue the types of relationships it features in their own real lives.

Agreed! This is why I really loved the dynamic between Rose and the Ninth Doctor (not so much the Tenth...when Ten happened, things got weird)--the vehemently platonic way in which they care so much for each other just gives me so much life. If that's not a QPR, I don't know what is.

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litanies
41 minutes ago, Dodecahedron314 said:

Agreed! This is why I really loved the dynamic between Rose and the Ninth Doctor (not so much the Tenth...when Ten happened, things got weird)--the vehemently platonic way in which they care so much for each other just gives me so much life. If that's not a QPR, I don't know what is.

Totally.  Even with Ten though, I wouldn't say the relationship is what most people who identify as romantic would be happy with in their own lives; they still seemed very QPR to me.  I am glad the relationship was left ambiguous.  And I have heard David Tennnant say he perceived of Ten as an ace, so there's that too.  

 

Anyway, I watch DW on loop, and I swear every episode I walk away going, "Why can't I find this in my life!"

 

Btw, love the gender listed on your profile =D

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WoodwindWhistler

Huh, I never thought of queerplatonic relationships as being common in fiction. Do you have some other examples? It seems like aces feel left out of fiction precisely *because* romantic relationships are so focused on. 

I do know that fandoms engage in "friendshipping," but that's not the same thing. 

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MaybeIBelongSomewhere

.

 

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SakiBi
On 21/5/2017 at 10:27 PM, Dodecahedron314 said:

Of course, the definition of romantic as opposed to platonic is something that's been the subject of debate around here for years and years, so if you ask a thread's worth of people, you'll probably get a thread's worth of different answers. That being said, my own personal way of conceptualizing it is that there's none of the tension and drama and world-shaking "passion" and obsession that you hear a lot about when romantic relationships are being described. Rather, it's a sort of mutual affirmation, a sense of safety and stability, where instead of your soul being on fire or some cliched attempt at poetry like that, you just sort of fit comfortably. It's quite similar to friendship, and often develops from it after a while, but takes on a bit of a deeper meaning and a higher level of commitment than most people ascribe to friendship. It's not losing yourself in someone, it's knowing exactly where both of you are and exploring it together. I often say that if romantic relationships are like staring into someone's eyes and calling them your world, a QPR is more like leaning jauntily on their shoulder and calling them your partner in crime, but with the same amount of significance (though a different sentiment) behind it.

Oh my god, this description is fantastic, and it's actually what I always wanted! A partner in crime & adventure companion...

So one question arises... How does one find a queerplatonic partner in a world that is so predominantly romantic?

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Grinchmer
On 5/21/2017 at 9:22 PM, AVEN #1 fan said:

Romantic relationships are a stronger bond or kind of compromise, technically you can do everything friends doesn't do and there's more attachment involved to it .

Grump.

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cinary
On 21.05.2017 at 10:27 PM, Dodecahedron314 said:

I often say that if romantic relationships are like staring into someone's eyes and calling them your world, a QPR is more like leaning jauntily on their shoulder and calling them your partner in crime, but with the same amount of significance (though a different sentiment) behind it.

Wow, thank you. I knew that I'm aro but for some time I had a problem with describing the kind of relationship I'd want. I knew what my boundaries are and what I'd want, but I had a problem with defining, like, the nature of the relationship (does it make sense?). And this! This is exactly what I've been looking for, this phrase! So thank you so much :D 

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Perilous Poozer

I’m pretty sure I’ve had a QPR, lasted from age 17 to age 28, but I didn’t recognise it until joining AVEN a couple of months ago. It was an exclusive platonic relationship and I simply considered her my best friend. We saw each other daily, went to events as each other’s plus-1 including family picnics, holidays and significant events. Neither of us dated anyone during this time, although my friend had a couple of one-night-stands and a few crushes. We never kissed, hugged or engaged in any remotely romantic behaviour together and I was always quite offended when people assumed we were gay (yeah I guess I was naive!). Having no comparator I assumed all best friend relationships were like this and it never occurred to me that I was supposed behave differently or desire more - I was completely satisfied. We’re both now married in heterosexual relationships with children and don’t see much of each other any more which makes better sense when considered as an expired ‘romantic’ relationship. In all honesty the only difference between that relationship and my current romantic relationship is that my husband and I touch, kiss and bone, I find him aesthetically appealing, and went through a bit of a giddy phase when we first met. I enjoy the cuddling but I can take or leave the sex, it’s something I do for him. Based on this, one seems to involve physicality (to the extent that both parties are comfortable), and the other is a super-intense friendship. 

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