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Bazinga

Is it difficult being an asexual adult?

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JDP

It's tough for me, being married to a sexual. I would not wish this life on anyone.

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jay williams

A little advantage to being asexual: Whether you are male or female, you need to shave your nether region, and keep it shaved, if you are going to indulge in sexual activities. Otherwise your partner will be grossed out.

I don't, and I clearly don't have to.

Also, sexual women need to take precautions for pregnancy. For example, take birth control pills. Both sexual men and women need to take care to avoid disease as well.

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Snao Cone
5 hours ago, jay williams said:

A little advantage to being asexual: Whether you are male or female, you need to shave your nether region, and keep it shaved, if you are going to indulge in sexual activities. Otherwise your partner will be grossed out.

This is far less true than media (and porn) make it out to be. It's the same with a lot of other features we're taught to be ashamed of. I'm putting up a spoiler for TMI details:

 

I've met many people who do not care about pubic hair, or prefer it natural or at most likely trimmed.



 

Similarly there are bodily features like fat distribution or shapes of intimate areas that we're told are shameful, but with experience or maturity, a lot of people figure out that they're still attracted to normal human bodies.

 

 

Though, it's still a relief not to have to worry about whether a partner will be like that or not.

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Blackthorn

It was difficult trying to act 'normal'.

I am a lot happier now I am just my own person.

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Blackthorn

It was difficult trying to act 'normal'.

I am a lot happier now I am just my own person.

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Deus Ex Infinity

Not really. What's to be difficult?

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ggcatlady
On 6/27/2017 at 1:45 AM, Bazinga said:

Hello everyone. I am currently 16 and have recently realized that I was asexual. At first, I was elated that I finally found a label for myself. However, it dawned on me that I would never be able to get married or have children (I'm aromantic as well). I never wanted marriage or children, but I thought I did because of societal norms. However, I now feel deeply saddened because I know that Ill never be able to live a "normal" life like that of my friends. It's probably just the teenager in me speaking, but, I truly want to be able to fit in or at least relate to everyone around me. I have always felt isolated for my entire life, and I just need some guidance from adults who have been through it all.

 

Is it lonely being an asexual later on in life (if you are aromantic or single)? Do you miss out on a lot? Do you ever wish you were heterosexual? How do you deal with being alone? Do you have pets? Are there any benefits? (Not having to deal with relationship trauma) Do you feel sad that you wont have children of your own?

 

I don't mean for this to be a pity thread; I am merely looking for guidance and honest answers. All the best.

Thanks for all your questions Bazinga.  I think it's great that you have asked for guidance from the 'older, more experienced' crowd.  I only hope that my answers are helpful to you.

 

I also used to worry about being "normal" and "fitting in" but I find that as you get older, you tend to worry less about what others think of you and fitting in.  When I lived alone, I did feel a bit lonely sometimes and isolated but I got relief by calling family & friends to have a chat.  Now I am living with my sister, who is also single and I don't generally feel lonely.  I have a pet cat and I enjoy letting her sleep on my bed at night because she makes no demands of me.  I never wish I was heterosexual.  I think heterosexual people actually have pretty difficult lives.  Successful relationships require a lot of hard work, give & take and compromise.  Some people actually find the relationship they are in to be a source of friction and antagonism rather than support.  Parenting is relentless and exhausting.  I don't have to deal with any of that.  I am not sad that I don't have children of my own.  I have always thought that parenting is hard work and I have even talked to other people who regret having had kids.  Having kids is a huge responsibility that a lot of people are simply not suited for, regardless of orientation.

 

I do not find being an adult hard at all.

 

My advice is, don't compare yourself to other people.  Just because everyone else is doing something, doesn't mean that you will be happy doing the same.  Think about what YOU enjoy and what makes YOU feel good, and let that guide your actions.

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Jesterpot

Everyone gave some excellent points. You have a bit of an advantage since you are so self-aware at a young age. Many of us tried to live "normal" and was not happy. Do what makes you happy and you'll thank yourself for it.

 

Like many others here, I am also an introvert, so I do not ever get lonely or crave company from people. I enjoy hanging out with friends and family sometimes, but mostly I'm at home alone with my cat and life is good and so so very uncomplicated. My only regret is that I didn't start living this way sooner. Life will continuously get better as you get older.

 

Allow me to list all of the wonderful things about living alone as an adult ace/aro:

-Don't need a big house, live small, live cheap

-Your free time is your own, no stress or pressure about anyone else's needs

-Spend your money however you want on whatever you want, it's all yours

-Being so independent is empowering in a way that is hard to describe. You feel like you can do anything, and you can.

-No one cares if there's a sock on the floor, a little dust on the tv, or that you drink orange juice out of the container

 

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mxblue

I can relate to what Jesterpot said. I tried to live "normal" and wasn't happy. I ended up in 2 marriages trying really hard to be a cis and straight person like the world said I'm supposed to be. My first relationship turned abusive and ended after 2 years and the other one lasted over a decade, but fizzled out for a couple reasons-- some of them unrelated to the topic at hand, and some because I was finally empowered to realise I wasn't straight. The point is that trying to get into relationships that seem "normal", if they're not right for you, are never going to end well. You should count yourself lucky that you know at such a young age, even if it seems rough. I often think about how my life might have been different if I'd have known what asexuality was when I was a teenager and been able to grow up without trying to "fix" myself for like 20 years. I mean, I straight up spent years in therapy and with doctors trying to make myself straight. That's what we did before we knew about asexuality. Well, some of us. Those of us who didn't, for whatever reason, have the ability to stand up and say "I don't care if I'm different from how you are, this is how I am." often ended up doing that 'please fix me so I can be normal' crap. Now I'm in my thirties and trying to put an authentic life together for the first time.

Since you're asking for advice though, I can say that at 16 and you talking about wanting to fit in and relate, that there's a chance that's somewhat age-related. The desire to fit in is usually stronger in teens and I think it can be sort of a developmental phase so there's a good chance you'll give less f-s when you're older. Especially if you're aromantic, as you age and gain confidence, you may feel more comfortable with not wanting that 'typical' life so much of society expects us to have. 

 

Is it lonely being an asexual later on in life (if you are aromantic or single)? I'm hella lonely. But I'm also not aromantic. I had a long-term relationship with an ace that I thought was going to be my life partner. Until a sudden and unexpected betrayal, I was incredibly happy. I think, having experienced a fulfilling ace relationship, it's made the absence of companionship all the more intense. I'm not sure I'd be as lonely if I didn't know how good companionship could be though (while it's good anyway.) I'm trying to adjust to being single and learn to like it.
Do you miss out on a lot? No. Especially if you're solo it might feel weird to go out or do things alone. I'm still kind of learning to do that. I'm going on 4 years of singledom now and, even though I do wish I had a relationship, I'm trying to learn to accept that ace relationships are hard to find and I may not find another. Sometimes I feel like going out alone is going to be empowering like "treat yo self!" and then I end up feeling mopey like it's the kind of thing you're supposed to do with friends or a partner. To combat this, I'm working on going out and doing things with friends or family, but adjusting to the idea that I'm a single person going out gently in hopes of working up to something like a solo vacation.
Do you ever wish you were heterosexual? Yes, but it's not because I actually hate being asexual, it's because other people sometimes just treat you like shit for being ace or you get tired of feeling marginalized. But then I tell myself that wanting to change myself to avoid discrimination is garbage. It's not me who should be changing, it's them. It's a kind of self-hate they want to impose on us. Sometimes I have to fight hard not to fall into it, ngl.
How do you deal with being alone? I am trying to think about all the things I can focus on if I stop putting so much energy into dating or wondering if I'll be alone the rest of my life. Maybe have a career, have a cute apartment or house, focus on my hobbies, etc. Being alone, even currently being lonely, doesn't feel at all as bad as the rejection of dating with intersectional identities where people treat you like you're undatable or unwantable. The rejection is what does it. The constant rejection. That's what's hard to deal with. I'd say not dealing with the rejection is the benefit of being single too!
Do you have pets? I don't have pets. I actually don't really like cleaning up after animals, but I -do- have a kid (haha, putting them in the pet category answer!) Knowing I have a family with my kid, someone that I love and care for, and someone I have to stay strong for has really helped me keep it together while I adjust to the single life. For me, the love I feel for my kid has become a very important part of my life, but parenthood isn't for everyone and if you're not meant to have them, you won't feel lonely or have regret if you don't have any. You can also have relationships with other peoples' kids. Be the cool friend of the family or become involved with kids of any siblings or cousins you may have. That sort of thing. 

You might also consider that family comes in all kinds of ways. Maybe finding a network of queer people or aromantic friends who support each other? Not everyone wants to necessarily share domestic space, but domestic labor or different life labors are sometimes easier if you have people around. You could maybe find an aromantic network of people who help each other out with that sort of stuff. Like hey, can I borrow sugar? Or crap, I broke my leg, can you help me get groceries? Being aro doesn't mean necessarily stark loneliness.

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InsomniacAnna

I'm not aro, but there are other types of relationship apart from the romantic ones. There's more ways of having a connection with another human being apart from the romantic one. It doesn't have to be a lonely life, you will have friends and family and other aro/ace people that will understand you and make you feel less alone :) 

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chandrakirti
On 25/07/2017 at 2:18 PM, jay williams said:

A little advantage to being asexual: Whether you are male or female, you need to shave your nether region, and keep it shaved, if you are going to indulge in sexual activities. Otherwise your partner will be grossed out.

I don't, and I clearly don't have to.

Also, sexual women need to take precautions for pregnancy. For example, take birth control pills. Both sexual men and women need to take care to avoid disease as well.

 

This shaving malarkey has been around various cultures at various eras in history. I hate it. Why would an adult want to look like they're pre-pubescent? I think it stems from those porn videos where punters want 'a better look' at the genitals and I also wonder whether the fashion for child like genitalia has aided and abetted the child porn industry.

As for keeping yourself 'cleaner'....the hair is there to do just that, it protects the eccrine gland secretions that keep genitalia healthy. In the same way that douching the internal genitalia in women can take away the natural immune system, so can shaving the hair, plus, a little nick there and who knows what! Geez, it's great being Ace!

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JustinJ
On 6/26/2017 at 11:45 AM, Bazinga said:

 However, I now feel deeply saddened because I know that Ill never be able to live a "normal" life like that of my friends. It's probably just the teenager in me speaking, but, I truly want to be able to fit in or at least relate to everyone around me. 

as a 37 year old aromantic asexual, I have good news: relating to people is no harder/easier for aro-aces than it is for anyone else.  it is a skill learned over time in life, largely having to do with active listening and paying attention to the feelings of others.  i didn't really start to figure it out until I was in my early 30s because i was very caught up in my own feelings and sorting my own life out before then, which i suspect means it can be learned at any age.  

 

On 6/26/2017 at 11:45 AM, Bazinga said:

 

Is it lonely being an asexual later on in life (if you are aromantic or single)? Do you miss out on a lot? Do you ever wish you were heterosexual? How do you deal with being alone? Do you have pets? Are there any benefits? (Not having to deal with relationship trauma) Do you feel sad that you wont have children of your own?

I will answer as best I can based on my own experiences.  


is it lonely being a single aro-ace adult?  nope.  sometimes i am overwhelmed by the sheer number of people in my life, or the amount of attention/energy they ask of me.  quite the opposite of lonely.  Some of this comes from my family (parents and siblings understand i like my alone time and don't care to date/marry/procreate, older relatives not so much).  some of it comes from work.  The workplace is a big opportunity to interact with people and make friends.  some workplaces even encourage their staff to go volunteer in the community (another good way to relate to people/fit in).  

 

do I miss out on a lot?  this is a vague question. if missing out means getting excluded from things specifically because i am ace, i don't miss out on anything.  in the adult world, no one cares about your sexual/gender/etc identity.  they don't know anything about it unless you tell them, and you are completely free to not tell them if you don't feel like explaining asexuality.  

Do i ever wish i was heterosexual?  definitely strongly hell no.  up until my late 20s/early 30s, i had never heard of asexuality and considered myself a very unlucky heterosexual who had somehow missed out on all the love/sex/flirting/dating lessons everyone else seemed to have gotten.  i tried asking people i cared about and trusted for help, and the only answer i ever got was "you should just know."  they wouldn't or couldn't even explain where/when/how i was expected to get this knowledge (they probably hadn't heard of asexuality either).  i had long since given up on trying to learn by the time i learned about asexuality.  if anything, i wish asexuality had been more widely known/taught about when i was younger so i could have saved myself and others a whole lot of hassle.  

 

How do you deal with being alone?  if you start from the viewpoint that being alone is a problem, you can solve it by volunteering, getting involved in some kind of activity (tabletop/LARP games, theater, cosplay events, taking a second job to fill the time).  if you start from the perspective of enjoying being alone, you can enjoy your free time however you like (books, movies, arts/crafts/tinkering, video games, cooking, long naps)

 

Do i have any pets?  no.  i grew up in a house with many pets and learned that I do not like cleaning up after pets.  i have relatives with pets, and I like their pets okay, but i'm not volunteering for litterbox/pooper-scooper duty.  i have thought about getting a cactus, but don't want one enough to go out of my way to find one.

 

are there any benefits?  whenever your non-ace peers start complaining about their love lives, take note.  the benefit is not having to deal with any of that ever.  as you get older and more of your peers have spouses/kids to complain about, you will learn about even more benefits.  if any of them gripe about divorce and child support payments, chalk all that up as more wins.  

 

do i feel sad that i will not have children of my own?  Nope.  i never wanted children of my own, so i am quite happy to not have them.  I hear they take a lot of time, work, and money to properly care for and can continue to require work/attention/money from you for much longer than any pet.  

 

 

 



 

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will123

I've always been a 'busy' person, so even before I found out about asexuality I didn't have a lot of spare to myself. As a result even though the thought of having a girlfriend entered my mind at times, I never put a lot of effort into it.

 

I have enough friends in various activities that I'm quite happy. 

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Moonchaser

Adulthood is what we make of it. There are asexuals who marry, and who have children. One thing you have going for you is that you already know what asexuality is, before you get to that point. There wasn't a word for it when I was young, and I wound up married to someone who isn't asexual, and I had no idea what the problem was. It just always seemed it was a problem with me.

 

There are many reasons people don't marry or don't have children, and asexuality isn't part of many of those reasons. 

 

You just put together the best personal life you can that fits you as an individual. That varies with each person. I personally like things quiet, uneventful, and I like to do creative things and spend time with my pets and in my yard. I'm married, but I also lived singly for a while, and I didn't mind that either. There were differences, pros and cons to each way of living.

 

Just be true to yourself.

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will123
30 minutes ago, Moonchaser said:

Adulthood is what we make of it. There are asexuals who marry, and who have children. One thing you have going for you is that you already know what asexuality is, before you get to that point. There wasn't a word for it when I was young, and I wound up married to someone who isn't asexual, and I had no idea what the problem was. It just always seemed it was a problem with me.

 

There are many reasons people don't marry or don't have children, and asexuality isn't part of many of those reasons. 

 

You just put together the best personal life you can that fits you as an individual. That varies with each person. I personally like things quiet, uneventful, and I like to do creative things and spend time with my pets and in my yard. I'm married, but I also lived singly for a while, and I didn't mind that either. There were differences, pros and cons to each way of living.

 

Just be true to yourself.

Well said.

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Grinchmer

Not more difficult than being a straight adult or whatever. The vast majority of adult life duties and activities aren't related to your sexual orientation. Running errands, paying taxes, going to work...

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Nowhere Girl

I don't really consider it difficult. But I have prepared myself by consciously preferring non-conformism. Long before I knew I was asexual (as a really small child), I decided that I don't want to have children or get married when I grow up. It might have been the earliest signs of my asexual tendencies, but not necessarily. At the point when I decided not to have children, I only knew approximately how are babies born and it totally freaked me out, but I didn't know yet what sex is. Deciding later that I don't want to have sex either only supported my earlier decision.

It's not like I don't feel any pressure - but I learned to be proud of resisting it. A lot of people live a more standard lifestyle not because they truly want it, but because they don't realise that they don't have to. So there IS a reason to be proud of not having sex: for me it means not going for what society tells you, but consciously choosing your own way. Being inner-directed. For me ethical norms about not doing harm to anyone are to be kept, but supposed norms about what kind of family life is "right" are only to be rejected.

Having strong interests and hobbies also helps. Why should I have a family or have sex if I can read? So my life is in many ways similar to my earlier years. I just work now and of course didn't work as a 15-year-old. Does it mean that I'm childish? And if I am, am I doing harm to anyone this way?

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will123
6 hours ago, Nowhere Girl said:

I don't really consider it difficult. But I have prepared myself by consciously preferring non-conformism. Long before I knew I was asexual (as a really small child), I decided that I don't want to have children or get married when I grow up. It might have been the earliest signs of my asexual tendencies, but not necessarily. At the point when I decided not to have children, I only knew approximately how are babies born and it totally freaked me out, but I didn't know yet what sex is. Deciding later that I don't want to have sex either only supported my earlier decision.

It's not like I don't feel any pressure - but I learned to be proud of resisting it. A lot of people live a more standard lifestyle not because they truly want it, but because they don't realise that they don't have to. So there IS a reason to be proud of not having sex: for me it means not going for what society tells you, but consciously choosing your own way. Being inner-directed. For me ethical norms about not doing harm to anyone are to be kept, but supposed norms about what kind of family life is "right" are only to be rejected.

Having strong interests and hobbies also helps. Why should I have a family or have sex if I can read? So my life is in many ways similar to my earlier years. I just work now and of course didn't work as a 15-year-old. Does it mean that I'm childish? And if I am, am I doing harm to anyone this way?

True!

 

I've always kept myself busy, so I never spent a lot of time lamenting my lot in life when I couldn't figure out 'things'.

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mari

If you ara asexual you have to pay the price of being alone with only a few exceptions. It hurts a lot 😞

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Grinchmer
19 minutes ago, mari said:

If you ara asexual you have to pay the price of being alone with only a few exceptions. It hurts a lot 😞

A lot of sexuals are alone, too. Being sexual is not the guide to happiness.

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will123

Before I moved to the boonies, I tried to be out and about. During the winter I went skating a couple of times a week. Summertime I did a couple of group mountain bike (MTB) rides with co-workers. I'd do at least one other solo MTB each week and one or two 'urban bike rides.

 

Plus I used to hit the movies once a week when I was on day shift. I haven't been to the movies much the last few years as nothing has really caught my eye to be worth the 45 minute drive into the city. I think the last three movies I've seen were Skyfall, Spectre and Black Mass (the Whitey Bulger flick).

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Moonchaser

One thing I have found rewarding is, all my life, to have some effort in place in regards to growing into a better person. Whether that be spiritual, psychological, philosophical, educational, creative, through volunteerism, or even political activism, to me it makes sense that as a person I am always trying to be better. Not perfect, I don't think that's realistic or healthy to shoot for. But better. It's always possible to be a better person today than I was yesterday, whatever "better" means to me at the present time.  I try to forgive past errors in myself and others, and just be a little better.

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oldgeeza

I personally don't know of life being any different, I had a few relationships, I was cheated on by all my partners, some who just enjoyed cheating for the thrill of maybe getting caught out, some I would say now, looking back on it, would have been due to the lack of sexual activity, at the time, no one told me why they cheated, so I'm going on guesswork really, but having never had a long term relationship, my last relationship was my longest, it lasted 28 days, that was back in 1991, so I'm used to being on my own.

 

 My friends have accepted me for who I am, I have the advantage of being able to see my friends and godchildren without being answerable to anyone, that's good for me, as someone else mentioned, if there's dust on the surfaces, which there often is as I work away a lot, I am not one who cleans the house thoroughly every day, if I drink milk from the carton, if there's a sock on the floor, or I let out a ripping fart, there's no one there to moan about it, on my days off, if I want to stay in bed for an extra hour, I don't have to answer to anyone, so living alone as an asexual being, for me is very easy, as I mentioned, my friends accepted me for who I am, my family, well, they don't understand it, so, like most, they are defensive of it, they see me as an embarrassment, that's their choice, they don't bother with me.

 

 I don't have any pets, it would be unfair, I work long hours, sometimes I don't get home for days on end, especially this time of year, so having a pet isn't a viable option. I don't conform to the way in which society expects, I don't own a TV set, I don't go out drinking, I'm not really into computers or technology, I'm not into fashion, or the latest gadgets or cars, not much into films or modern music, that said, I don't dislike all modern music, I am more of an old punk/metal head, but I also love the Carpenters, Abba, Vivaldi, I enjoy most music, I also like that I can be me.

 

Of all my friends, one couple have lived together for 26, nearly 27 years, never married, they have their ups and downs, one other couple have been married for 17 years, been together for 21 years, another couple have been together over 35 years, married for nearly 30 years, everyone else has been divorced, remarried, or having extra marital affairs, so, there's good and bad in sexual and asexual life, my advice to you is to be yourself, those who don't accept you for who you are, well you don't necessarily need them in your life 

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nikarose7

I'm asexual and 30.  I honestly have a great life.  I have good friends, great hobbies, am in graduate school, and making a wonderful life for myself.  I'd like to get married one day (to another asexual of course!) and definitely plan to adopt children.  Being asexual  doesn't limit your life!

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will123
36 minutes ago, nikarose7 said:

I'm asexual and 30.  I honestly have a great life.  I have good friends, great hobbies, am in graduate school, and making a wonderful life for myself.  I'd like to get married one day (to another asexual of course!) and definitely plan to adopt children.  Being asexual  doesn't limit your life!

Well put!

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giorno

i know im very much on the young side (19) to be adding to this thread but i related a lot to what youre describing input from

is it lonely being an asexual later on in life (if you are aro or single)? it's going to vary from each person. some people even if they are constantly with their partner, live with them each day will feel terribly lonely whereas someone who lives on their own and is doesn't interact much might not feel lonely in the slightest. for me i go about my daily life not so much lonely but i do get the lonely vibes from time to time. i'm aro and ace, so i'm never going to have a romantic partner to share my time with and most likely will live alone my whole life. if you are prone to loneliness you just have to spend your time by filling it up with things you enjoy/take your mind off issues. for me i go to class each day, just having talks with my teacher or a classmate sitting next to me is already enough interaction for me but i also get mine from talking to older people at my local bus stop who i see regularly. having a quick chat with a cashier/shopping assistant. i also like talking with my co workers, we are all friendly to eachother and that's enough for me. i also do an online dungeons and dragons thing weekly and that interaction is really fun. i'm also considering going to some of the aven meetups one day once i have my own place established. i don't feel lonely despite not having anyone in my life really. it's how you live and how you feel about what you do. if you feel you will get lonely by being alone in your home all the time, there's always house sharing/room letting which is an option. basically where you rent a room in someone's house and/or share a house with multiple people who are renting rooms too. you won't be so lonely because there's always going to be others sharing the house/home with you.

do you miss out on a lot? i'm assuming you mean romance or social opportunities etc. for me no. i am so glad i don't have relationship drama, stupid stuff like that or sex. that drama always bored me to death. i don't have that consuming my time so i can just focus on my own interests and needs.

do you ever wish you were heterosexual? a part of me does, i can't lie. i'd love to be "normal" or whatever and be able to settle down with someone like i should and have a romantic relationship. but then i look at how that's turned out for me so far and think screw that! i'm glad i'm ace/aro

how do you deal with being alone? i feel my answer to this is similar to the is it lonely one. personally i love being alone, it depends on who you are as a person. 

do you have pets? hell yea! instead of children or a romantic/sexual partner i chose cats. they really make your life less lonely if you like animals.

are there any benefits? no relationship drama, if you live on your own you can literally do anything in your home and no one will care or tell u otherwise. decorate however you want and have no person tell u they don't like it. you can use your freetime however you want. vacations on your own are hard to get used to but once you are used to it it's great. no money to have to spend on children or a partner. many benefits.

do you feel sad that you won't have children of your own? HELL NO! i didn't want kids to begin with and never will. even if you do want children you can adopt, foster or even do ivf or other methods of getting a child. it's very easy/not that hard to get a kid without sex nowadays so you're fine. if i ever did want a kid though i'd probably foster since those kids need love and support the most.

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will123
On 12/4/2017 at 1:04 PM, giorno said:

do you ever wish you were heterosexual? a part of me does, i can't lie. i'd love to be "normal" or whatever and be able to settle down with someone like i should and have a romantic relationship. but then i look at how that's turned out for me so far and think screw that! i'm glad i'm ace/aro

That sounds like how I've felt at times.

 

I've had a couple of guys over the years (one after a divorce) and the other just as a general observation. I didn't have to deal with any drama over the years and appear to be happy with my life.

 

No comments about sex from them, so that was good as the one instance was before I figured things out. The more recent situation, I don't know how'd I'd explain it to a younger fellow that's hetero'.

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