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Amcan

Brief musings of an aromantic

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Amcan

Sometimes it hurts to know I will never feel love in a romantic way. I will never understand the many ways love pervades our literature and culture.

It;s everywhere; music, plays, poety, movies, TV, books, art. Everywhere love of a romantic sort os explored and tlaked about nad explored and celebrated and I...don;t get it.

Sometimes being aromantic makes me feel less of a person, less of a human.

Becuase this is the one pervading emotion humanity lieks to champion - love.

Then I see what love can do to people and wonder if really I am better off this way.

Still I have cried mysleep over knowing I can never fall in love with another person. Would the stress and torture be worth it?

I have no idea.

Sometimes I think perhaps I can find a way to find out.

But that's the impossible.

I will just have to stick with being me.

/musing

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Flying_Pig

there are two steps you have to go throught to lead a good life.

1.Accept that you are a robot

2.Learn to Love it

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thylacine

No, don't say that. It's not being a robot, or less human... It's about having less problems & complications in life! Be happy! Other people are miserable stuck in all these crappy "relationships." Or the relationship starts happy and then turns crappy, or the relationship is crappy to begin with and they have to keep up the pretense that things are wonderful because most people are in relationships...

I feel that I'm surrounded by miserable people who are all pretending to be happy!

Lookit, no kids, no husband / wife, no diapers to change, no brats running around screaming... its... FREEDOM!!!

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Vampireseal

Bravo Thylacine!

I'm aromantic myself and have never once pined for romantic affections. It's like yearning for the happiness of playing the oboe. I'm happy they take such delight in the oboe, but I feel absolutely no desire to play it myself. Like playing the aforementioned instrument, bungee-jumping off bridges, joining the military, or getting on a reality show, the romance game is nothing more to me than something that other people do.

I'm happy for those lovers that are happy, but I also bear witness to their bitter, horrid divorces. I certainly don't envy messy, expensive divorces, the nagging anxiety if my other is having an affair, if my lover is bringing home a disease to me, if I'm really respected, etc., etc.

I've observed the beauty and the ugliness of the relationships around me. And to them, I say "meh". I was never a romantic child, nor am I a romantic adult. Romance novels are absolutely boring to me, as dull as submarine movies. I'm happy enough (and undoubtedly happiest) watching wildlife, reading and talking to friends in person and on the internet.

No matter what people, and the media have tried to tell me, I still don't see the mating/dating game as anything more than a time-consuming hobby, one I have nothing against, just no interest in. I don't see their obsession as a bad thing, anymore than my obsession for manga, but it's just a different obsession for a different person.

I sometimes feel that it's like living in an alien world where every member of the species is obsessed and consumed and consuming mayonnaise. I mean, I've tried mayonnaise, and its fine, but God it's just a condiment, its not that big a deal. You either like it or you don't, no big whoop.

But everyone is so obsessed with mayonnaise, they think that you're wrong, broken, deficient. You haven't seen the light that is the awesomeness and power of mayonnaise. Even if its spoiled and gave you food poisoning, at least you tried the mayonnaise right? And it was good right? That whole week in the hospital, and violent cramping, it was all worth it for the mayonnaise. And yes, you must have mayonnaise again. Even if that last experience went rank. You are destined to love mayonnaise. The fact you have a mouth and that eggs and vinegar exist, proves it.

But dude, (or dudess) I say, it's just mayonnaise. I'm glad you love it, good for you, but why do I have to like mayonnaise? Can't I like cheese instead?

But bottom line--why stress over it? Is the stress of not having a relationship greater than not having one to you? Weigh the stresses in your mind, go the path of least stress, and try to stop worrying about it. Don't give in to the stress.

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Sally

Perhaps it is partly because I've already gone through the "in love" thing and found it a HUGE pain in the ass, and partly because I'm post-menopausal, and partly because I'm on a mild dose of antidepressants which sometimes include you toward more rational thinking...

But anyway, I am becoming quite aromantic. In fact, I think falling in love is reallyjust infatuation with what you think you want, and it's natural that it doesn't last very long because it's kind of a case of flu you catch and then get over. Some people get the flu over and over and over again and those people are really boring to be around because they TALK about it constantly (only you can't keep track of who the other person is because it changes every month).

So I've been married, then had two kids, then been in love (not with husband), then had a long-term relationship, and from what I can see, I could easily have had just as nice a life never having done ANY of those things.

Do not feel too bad, Am. You may indeed love/care about someone without the annoying in-love phase. Or you can care about yourself and we at AVEN will care about you. :cake:

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2tabbymom

How many sexuals or romantic asexuals have the time to devote to their hobbies like we do? Without abandoning their friends and families, of course.

This last winter I spent two months making a needlepoint Christmas stocking, two months crocheting a baby afghan, and one month helping my niece-- five to six days a week--when she had health problems during her last month of pregnancy. No one was able to complain that I had abandoned them or tell me that I was spending too much time on my projects and not enough time on them. My cats were a little lonely, but they don't use the phone and didn't trash the house. :D

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Sciatrix

I'm less worried about feeling less of a person for being aromantic than I am about "growing up," having everyone else I know solidify further and further into their nuclear family groups with their spouses and children and eventually being left alone but for an occasional letter or get-together. I know that that doesn't happen to everyone--or I hope not--but it's all I've ever seen happen in my parents' lives and those of the other adults I know well, and I don't want it to happen to me. I need to have friends in my life to be happy, and after three years of trying to pretend I didn't I'm not doing it again if I don't have to. I think that's part of the reason I'm so desperate to have a career I enjoy--because I'm afraid that there won't be anything else in my life.

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Sally
I'm less worried about feeling less of a person for being aromantic than I am about "growing up," having everyone else I know solidify further and further into their nuclear family groups with their spouses and children and eventually being left alone but for an occasional letter or get-together. I know that that doesn't happen to everyone--or I hope not--but it's all I've ever seen happen in my parents' lives and those of the other adults I know well, and I don't want it to happen to me. I need to have friends in my life to be happy, and after three years of trying to pretend I didn't I'm not doing it again if I don't have to. I think that's part of the reason I'm so desperate to have a career I enjoy--because I'm afraid that there won't be anything else in my life.

In the United States, about 50% of all marriages end in divorce. That's kind of sad (very sad); however, what it means is that you will NOT be alone. Besides people who don't get married, there are plenty of people out there of all ages who are no longer married, and many of them don't intend to marry again. Most of them are involved in some kind of interest group and almost all of them work, so they're everywhere.

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Shrine Maiden
Lookit, no kids, no husband / wife, no diapers to change, no brats running around screaming... its... FREEDOM!!!

*bows down in worship*

Exactly! Freedom to be yourself instead of the you everybody else wants. Because, let's face it, Love for all the altruistic I-would-die-for-you presentations we get in movies and books is the most selfish of emotions in real life. Those who love another actually do so for reasons like psychological dependence and gratitude, economic/societal status worship, the obsessive need to have somebody and not be alone. And in the end they want you to change to fit their life better. Granted, it's a compromise and they will change as well, but I don't frigging want to change a single thing about me and nobody is going to tell me to "act sweeter" or "wear more makeup" if they want to keep their fingers.

Very few people approach the ideal of love that society throws in our faces and they do so because they were born and raised to those feelings. But that is mostly like being a people person or having been born with blue eyes. I don't beat myself over not having blue eyes or being a social butterfly and I don't see a reason to go hunting for a relationship when the very thought of having one sends me into a fit of despair. Very few times in my life I have felt a doubt about this and it was mostly peer pressure--which I didn't give into since my brain is smart enough to know peer pressure for the stupid trap it is.

So, yeah, don't be sad, it's mostly an illusion. When we feel doubt we tend to see only the good points about something but the fact is, relationships are so riddled with problems it surprises me some manage to stay afloat for so long...

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Astryda

Don't be like that, you don't know what future's gonna be. Perhaps you'll find someone whom you can love.

But if not, being aromantic isn't a bad thing, if you really feel it's a part of you, then accept it as a part of your penguin- borgish cool human being. Plus, being aromantic doesn't mean you can't love at all. Of course, you can, and this love may be even more pure and stronger than

others.

You know, love, or rather thing thing they call 'love', is overrated. Those people not necessarily love each other, it's a sign of the culture, and love you see in movies, isn't real. Besides, to most people love is something sexual, mostly. But you are A. You will never feel this romantic sexual emotional mix. Not because you're aromantic, but because you're asexual.

Cheer up, Am!

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AFlyingPiglet
Sometimes it hurts to know I will never feel love in a romantic way.

Sometimes being aromantic makes me feel less of a person, less of a human.

This is simply not true. You are no less human than anyone else. What I hear is your sense of frustration in what you are saying. That there are times you are frustrated at not being able to feel romantic attraction. That this frustration can hurt at times and makes you cry - you sound VERY human to me.

The only thing I would say is that the way you are is NOT your fault - its just the way that you are - so its really important that you Love yourself. Loving yourself can involve all sorts of things - at times this simply involves what you are already doing - allowing yourself to feel what you do feel and being honest with yourself - Loving yourself I guess is a process that we need to continually keep doing our whole lives.

This love of self I am referring to is not a self-centred Love. Many people in romantic relationships deep down do not love themselves (some of them are even in the 'romantic relationship' in an attempt to fill that void of not loving themselves in their own lives - that is an example of what I would call (to some extent) self-centred Love).

It is important for all of us to Love ourselves and enjoy our relationship with ourselves - after all, that is the ONLY relationship any of us will ever have with anyone which is happening 24/7 from our first, until our last day on this earth!

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Ninny

Hey there Amcan!

I identify as aromantic, not because I can't feel romantic feelings, but because I don't seek it out. Once I thought to give the whole relationship a go and somehow found myself in a 2 and half year relationship. I was deeply in love but to be honest - it was far too much bother. Love seems to be more pain than happiness to me :rolleyes:

Now a days I focus all my attention on my relationships with friends, family and meeting new people. I've found the love you share with friends and family far more rewarding, and a damn sight less stressful, than romantic ones.

Everyone elses advice so far has been great so I wont repeat it! :P

Amcan, rather than focusing on what you can't experience, focus on what you can! Love is just one feeling of the whole wonderful feeling rainbow :)

*hugs*

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Ninny

Damn, double post.

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Amcan

I am happier with myself than I ever have been. I am a lot more confident, more fun as a person than I was 5 years ago.

I;ve seen my parents' marriage and have no desire to end up like that.

I am too selfish for any kind of romantic relationship and I know that. Hard to come to terms with it butyeah. I;m also far too selfish to be a parent or any kind of role model for small children.

I think part of my frustrstion is I have no-one close to me apart from my mother and younger brother. That's it. Emotionally I only have them.

I think my issues stem more from that than feelings of being 'broken'.

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Sally
I think part of my frustrstion is I have no-one close to me apart from my mother and younger brother. That's it. Emotionally I only have them.

I think my issues stem more from that than feelings of being 'broken'.

Yes, you really can love/like yourself and still be sad because there's a real dearth of emotional relationships in your life. I understand that feeling and share it -- I have many "friends" but my daughter-in-law is really the only emotional support person I have. My sister is 3 states away and we haven't lived near each other for 40 years, and she's even older than I so... Since my daughter-in-law's split up with my son, I worry about her finding someone else and not really being in my orbit anymore. She makes clear that that won't happen as she considers me a second mother, but when you're down to one emotional-support person, it's a little scary.

But I think I said above this that hard as it is, it's not much easier for non-asexual people. There are a ton of sexuals who don't feel close to anyone outside their family (or in). That doesn't make us feel any better, but it does make clear that this isn't just a disadvantage of being asexual.

My daughter-in-law came over today for Mother's Day and told me about a couple she and I both know, her age, and that they're going to split up soon. I had no idea; they look fine together. You never know about anyone else.

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henrik

I'm completely aromantic and I find it only a blessing. I've never understood the big thing about romance and the virtues of love. Every time I see romance in tv, movie or books, I always thank goodness that I'm aromantic because it really doesn't look like worth the effort and pain. Not to mention the time. Imagine how much people would accomplish if they had spent that time on something productive instead of the endless relationship problems. And since by far most relationships end badly, I really don't see the point. I have my friends and I see no reason to get more involved with anyone.

In general, I have to agree with everything Vampireseal said, except the bit about submarine movies.

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Amcan
I think part of my frustrstion is I have no-one close to me apart from my mother and younger brother. That's it. Emotionally I only have them.

I think my issues stem more from that than feelings of being 'broken'.

Yes, you really can love/like yourself and still be sad because there's a real dearth of emotional relationships in your life. I understand that feeling and share it -- I have many "friends" but my daughter-in-law is really the only emotional support person I have. My sister is 3 states away and we haven't lived near each other for 40 years, and she's even older than I so... Since my daughter-in-law's split up with my son, I worry about her finding someone else and not really being in my orbit anymore. She makes clear that that won't happen as she considers me a second mother, but when you're down to one emotional-support person, it's a little scary.

But I think I said above this that hard as it is, it's not much easier for non-asexual people. There are a ton of sexuals who don't feel close to anyone outside their family (or in). That doesn't make us feel any better, but it does make clear that this isn't just a disadvantage of being asexual.

My daughter-in-law came over today for Mother's Day and told me about a couple she and I both know, her age, and that they're going to split up soon. I had no idea; they look fine together. You never know about anyone else.

That's it exactly Sally!

You summed it up perfectly.

You make good points.

*hugs*

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Jarl
How many sexuals or romantic asexuals have the time to devote to their hobbies like we do? Without abandoning their friends and families, of course.

This last winter I spent two months making a needlepoint Christmas stocking, two months crocheting a baby afghan, and one month helping my niece-- five to six days a week--when she had health problems during her last month of pregnancy. No one was able to complain that I had abandoned them or tell me that I was spending too much time on my projects and not enough time on them. My cats were a little lonely, but they don't use the phone and didn't trash the house.

Sounds good doesn't it?

But then the cold fist of reality chins you and you realise that the only things that you have emotionally bonded with....are your cats. Hell, I'm sitting here in a cold room while I hear, what i suspect to be, an 'intimate couple' on the next floor. I occasionally see those two outside on the bench...arms around each other and heads on each others shoulders.

I've seen much the same thing whenever I walk into a lecture hall for class. At least two or three couples sitting next to each other, quietly chatting and laughing with each other before the lecture. I'm usually first out of the door when it comes to an end, I've learned the hard way that watching the parade of people walking in front of me with hands clasped does little to improve my mood. Then its the long walk back to my prison cell room to trawl the internet and pretend to myself that I have it better than them because "I have more time".

It's a crock and an inverted pyramid of piffle to suggest that living alone with your cat for your sole company is somehow fulfilling. I should know, I used to have a cat before it 404'd one day and never saw it again. Do you not think it somewhat sad that no-one "was able to complain that I had abandoned them or tell me that I was spending too much time on my projects and not enough time on them". That no-one actually cares about you for this scenario to happen?

Ach, this is sounding like I'm flaming you, but to be honest I'm looking in the mirror here...so no this isn't aimed at you, I just used your quotes for context.

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GirlInside
I'm aromantic myself and have never once pined for romantic affections. It's like yearning for the happiness of playing the oboe. I'm happy they take such delight in the oboe, but I feel absolutely no desire to play it myself. Like playing the aforementioned instrument, bungee-jumping off bridges, joining the military, or getting on a reality show, the romance game is nothing more to me than something that other people do.

I'm happy for those lovers that are happy, but I also bear witness to their bitter, horrid divorces. I certainly don't envy messy, expensive divorces, the nagging anxiety if my other is having an affair, if my lover is bringing home a disease to me, if I'm really respected, etc., etc.

I feel as you do, except that I use to believe very strongly in the religion of romance. When I realized that I'm asexual and aromantic--not to mention how hard the whole thing would be for me--I turned my back on it.

I sometimes feel that it's like living in an alien world where every member of the species is obsessed and consumed and consuming mayonnaise. I mean, I've tried mayonnaise, and its fine, but God it's just a condiment, its not that big a deal. You either like it or you don't, no big whoop.

But everyone is so obsessed with mayonnaise, they think that you're wrong, broken, deficient. You haven't seen the light that is the awesomeness and power of mayonnaise. Even if its spoiled and gave you food poisoning, at least you tried the mayonnaise right? And it was good right? That whole week in the hospital, and violent cramping, it was all worth it for the mayonnaise. And yes, you must have mayonnaise again. Even if that last experience went rank. You are destined to love mayonnaise. The fact you have a mouth and that eggs and vinegar exist, proves it.

But dude, (or dudess) I say, it's just mayonnaise. I'm glad you love it, good for you, but why do I have to like mayonnaise? Can't I like cheese instead?

This is a great analogy--I couldn't have written a better one myself! It makes me think of the story of a French visitor to the United States--he started to put ketchup on pancakes, and when his host stopped him, he said, "Don't Americans put ketchup on everything?"

It seems to me that people (not just Americans, sadly) put romance and/or sex on everything. Even kids' TV and movies--the only romance-free kids' movie I can think of off the top of my head is the Care Bears movie. And sex is part of this too--I once saw an episode of Inspector Gadget where the title character used his Gadget Binoculars to stare at a woman's chest--"Go, go, gadget [genital organ]!" Why do we teach this crap to kids when everyone knows they're too young for it?

The analogy I always used was being a Westerner in a Polynesian culture where the people worship stones, but I think I'll use yours, if that's OK.

Anyway, I think most of us will end up alone, unless we can find someone who isn't interested in relationships (which is extremely difficult). I've pretty much given up on friends--they always dump me for their stupid romances. I spend almost all of my free time either alone or with my mom, and I don't see that ever changing. I feel just like Jarl about this.

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Amcan
Then its the long walk back to my prison cell room to trawl the internet and pretend to myself that I have it better than them because "I have more time".

That's it. That's how I end up feeling.

Then I get really morbid and wonder when I die who will mourn me?

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GirlInside
Then its the long walk back to my prison cell room to trawl the internet and pretend to myself that I have it better than them because "I have more time".

That's it. That's how I end up feeling.

Then I get really morbid and wonder when I die who will mourn me?

Me too. I get even worse--I start thinking about how perhaps the reason no one will mourn me is because I'm not worth remembering, let alone mourning.

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oneofthesun
It seems to me that people (not just Americans, sadly) put romance and/or sex on everything. Even kids' TV and movies--the only romance-free kids' movie I can think of off the top of my head is the Care Bears movie. And sex is part of this too--I once saw an episode of Inspector Gadget where the title character used his Gadget Binoculars to stare at a woman's chest--"Go, go, gadget [genital organ]!"

First of all, ROFLMYAO. Second, I think they put that kind of sexual innuendo in kid's shows for the benefit of parents who are forced to watch them. I think they assume it goes right over kids' heads. After all, most parents would like to believe that their kids have no freaking clue about sex for as long as possible.

EDIT: All of you are assuming that life would automatically be better if you weren't aromantic/asexual. It could actually be worse. You could be a perfectly normal person and try all your life to get a long-term partner, yet still end up alone in your old age. The way I see it at least I know for sure what my future will look like.

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GirlInside

I'm not just talking about sexual innuendo that goes over kids' heads. I also mean the fact that almost everything has a romance element in it--many kids' shows have at least one couple or one person who has a crush on another. Sometimes it gets a bit to adult--I recently saw an episode of iCarly, in which Carly (who is 15) goes from hating the guy who stole her brother's motorcycle to making out with him and being madly in love with him--all this during her brother's hour-long trip to a smoothie bar--and any protest is depicted as simple overprotectiveness. (I am not making this up!) In an earlier episode, Carly's two friends who hate each other kiss just to get their first kiss over with. And this is rated TV-Y7! (For those of you who say, "Then don't watch it," that is exactly what I intend to do!)

P.S. I'm glad you found my post funny. :)

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Jarl
EDIT: All of you are assuming that life would automatically be better if you weren't aromantic/asexual. It could actually be worse. You could be a perfectly normal person and try all your life to get a long-term partner, yet still end up alone in your old age. The way I see it at least I know for sure what my future will look like.

Perhaps, but this sounds like a case of sour grapes to me. The saying goes: "Better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all."

Then again, the grass is always greener etc. Many jilted lovers would dearly desire not to feel the way they do, and many aromantic asexuals would love to experience the depth of human emotional attraction.

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Gotanks0407
EDIT: All of you are assuming that life would automatically be better if you weren't aromantic/asexual. It could actually be worse. You could be a perfectly normal person and try all your life to get a long-term partner, yet still end up alone in your old age. The way I see it at least I know for sure what my future will look like.

yeah but if i already can see the future doesnt it get boring after a while especially when i already know how its going to end, and the middle is blah blah. it just seem all blah blah why the f*** and i wasting my time. and yeah i agree with the whole prison cell that is my room...but i love my prison cell i know it will always be there when i get home.

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Sally

NO -- you cannot see what your future will be.

Just because you're asexual does not mean you're going to spend your life alone; not even if you're an aromantic A does it mean that. You have no idea who you might meet next week, or next year, or ten years from now. You simply----don't----know. Your future does not consist of a diagnosis or a label.

I'm as pessimistic as anyone or more so; I'm just arguing on the basis of the chaos of the universe. Nothing's predictable. 10 years from now there will likely be a lot of asexuals who are "out." Who knows who they will be? Could be people you meet. They could move in next door. You could hate them, you could like them, you could love them.

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Jarl
NO -- you cannot see what your future will be.

Just because you're asexual does not mean you're going to spend your life alone; not even if you're an aromantic A does it mean that. You have no idea who you might meet next week, or next year, or ten years from now. You simply----don't----know. Your future does not consist of a diagnosis or a label.

I'm as pessimistic as anyone or more so; I'm just arguing on the basis of the chaos of the universe. Nothing's predictable. 10 years from now there will likely be a lot of asexuals who are "out." Who knows who they will be? Could be people you meet. They could move in next door. You could hate them, you could like them, you could love them.

Interesting how an aromantic asexual could come to love someone, surely the aromantic part prohibits it?

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Gotanks0407
NO -- you cannot see what your future will be.

Just because you're asexual does not mean you're going to spend your life alone; not even if you're an aromantic A does it mean that. You have no idea who you might meet next week, or next year, or ten years from now. You simply----don't----know. Your future does not consist of a diagnosis or a label.

I'm as pessimistic as anyone or more so; I'm just arguing on the basis of the chaos of the universe. Nothing's predictable. 10 years from now there will likely be a lot of asexuals who are "out." Who knows who they will be? Could be people you meet. They could move in next door. You could hate them, you could like them, you could love them.

knowing how self-destructive i am and how i consiously push people away even if i like them or if they like me, i know i will end up alone...i think its a personal goal of mine...consciously and subconsciously

i know i can love people in an aromantic way...but everytime i do it always gets pushed back in my face. which in turn has made me amotional...and i pretty much have just given up on the world

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Billie
Interesting how an aromantic asexual could come to love someone, surely the aromantic part prohibits it?

There are many kinds of love, not just romantic one.

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Sarahmarie

Amcan -- I know what you mean. To hear the media tell it -- if you aren't perpetually in a deep, sexual relationship, well, perhaps you aren't really human. "Bah, humbug!" I say to that.

For some time now, I have wondered just how many people who are actually in relationships are genuinely satisfied and happy with the person they are involved with? Given the amount of stress I consistently see in society, I have a hunch the answer is: not much.

I agree that it is all too easy to feel left out, incomplete and less than human for living relationship free. It has taken me a long time to learn how to deal with this inappropriate pressure, and at times it still gets under my skin. Over time, I am progressively finding it easier to ignore other people and just be my normally enigmatic self. Effectively not having any family left may be playing a part in this recovery effort, but I'm not totally sure.

Personally, I feel like I am more alive as a human being by living as an aromantic asexual. For one thing, especially during the holiday season, I am constantly amazed at the stress everybody else struggles with. If the process of giving and receiving gifts brings such discomfort, why do it?

One thing worth keeping in mind is this: romance/love/sex is critical to the existence of large chunks of corporate America. Thus, they have a vested interest in selling the idea that those not in active relationships are "not normal" Far as I am concerned, asexuals are just as normal as anyone else, and have every right to be just as happy.

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