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Enigma Child

Demiromantics and Demisexuals and Dating

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Enigma Child

I recently identified as demiromantic. It's sort of ironic because growing up I always classified myself as a "hopeless romantic" and here I'm actually on the aromantic spectrum. Not really sure where I fall on the sexual spectrum. But anyway. Dating as it is commonly practiced has never made much sense to me. But I although I only fall for friends and can't even tell if I'm romantically attracted to someone without an emotional bond, I really want a romantic relationship. I've been on lots of different dating sites. I met up with a guy from one of the sites a couple times, in public safe environments with friends and allies present so it wasn't even a real date type date, but I just felt so nervous and anxious and Panic Panic Panic. I couldn't do it. I had to tell him this wasn't working for me and it was awful. We'd been talking online for several months. I noticed in an old thread (see below) that other demiromantics seem to have this reaction and wondered if that was a characteristic or just an intersectionality with social anxiety. Anyway I wanted to start a conversation going about this stuff.

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affogato

I am really off-put by dating as someone who currently identifies as greysexual/demisexual/panromatic.

 

Granted I was with someone for 7 years before I realized that I wasn't the average heterosexual and then jumped into single life. 

 

There are few things that annoy me about the current dating 'climate': 

  • There is an urgency to it. Especially with online dating, it seems to be a race to the finish line (being sex). 
  • Dates don't seem to be fun anymore, people just seem to be waiting to get to something physical, which makes it awkward. 
  • Online dating and dating apps promote a culture of sexual normativity, were sending people comments about how hot they are and how you want to hook up is the norm. 
  • There is less value placed on getting to actually know someone before you have sex. 
  • There seems to be an expectation to have sex super frequently towards the beginning of a relationship when you barely know someone. 
  • I support sex-positive culture, you do you, but I don't want to feel like I am having to conform to what is "normal" or "expected of me". I did that for 7 years and it was not cool. 

I also feel like a lot of sexuals I know can just look at someone's facebook, Instagram, tinder, twitter, etc. and glean everything they would need to know about them. I need more than that before I can even agree to a date, I have to text for a least a few weeks. Even then sometimes I would meet up with them and it wouldn't feel right. I tried to go on a few dates with people before I had some time to get to know them and it always failed. 

 

I think it needs to develop naturally and right now people don't really seem to focus on that. They want to just download an app and find someone. That doesn't really work for me. 

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Hannah Rae

yeah. Im a demiromantic ace, too, and I hate dating. I always feel pressured, because the other person seems to get much more quickly attached than me. When I see couples together that obviously are very loving toward each other,  I think its the cutest thing. However, when someone has tried to do the same for me on like the first or second date or even via text, i'm just like WHAT. We don't know each other and it just feels very disingenuous to me. I've gotten to the point where I just don't even try to date. Its stressful for me and a waste of time for the other person.  

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Sugar Clouds

I actually have been thinking of how I would be able to do online dating as a demi romantic. And in all honesty, going on a date & having to date a complete stranger scares me. Since I know the type of dating I wanted to do earlier in life was because I actually loved someone for who they were, but I know this will be a completely different type of dating all together. 1. I don't know the person behind the screen, 2. I won't know if they're the person they say they are, & 3. There's a whole bunch of other stuff. But I thought that the way to do it was to have a few or several dates and make a friendship with them. So that way I'm dating in order to find a romantic partner, but I'm not actually committing to a person yet. Of course, I'd have to let any of the people I decide to date know that friends first is a requirement & I'll be doing the same with a few others since it'll take a few years to develop romantic attraction & feelings. But I'm not sure if this idea would work, since us demiromantics need people that would have good patience with us. I know some people really don't like to wait for things. Which can make it harder in the long run. But at least it'd make an effort to get to know somebody for quite a while. In the end there's no guarantee that I would fall in love with someone. Even if this is a clever idea.

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Enigma Child
15 hours ago, affogato said:

There is an urgency to it. Especially with online dating, it seems to be a race to the finish line (being sex).

@affogato You're right about that. So many people are just looking for a hookup. I'm a Christian who places a high value on chastity (=abstinence before marriage and fidelity in marriage) so that definitely isn't what I'm looking for. Then there are the sincere, genuine people who are looking for their life partner. Then I run into a different kind of urgency, an intensity of focus that leaves me caught as a deer in the headlights, because somehow I'm supposed to know whether I might find someone romantically attractive ahead of time. But that's not how I fall in love. I used to think that there was something wrong with me. Now I know I'm just a demiromantic, but that doesn't change the problem where modern dating just isn't built for people like me.

 

15 hours ago, Hannah Rae said:

I always feel pressured, because the other person seems to get much more quickly attached than me.

@Hannah Rae Yeah it feels weird. And sometimes you wind up hurting people when you were just trying to do what makes sense to you.

 

14 hours ago, Sugar Clouds said:

And in all honesty, going on a date & having to date a complete stranger scares me.

@Sugar Clouds I agree. It's terrifying. I'm an introvert, but I'm known as an outgoing person who will greet strangers and is pretty much immune to stage fright. But dates? That's some scary stuff.

 

The trouble with being demiromantic or demisexual is that eventually you run out of friends in your circle. And it can be hard to make new friends as an adult. Especially when most of your peers are paired off and you want to make new friends who happen to be single.

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Lockylocks

That’s the issue I have with dating. I just don’t get how to meet people with the sole purpose being the possibility of a relationship. And when I do meet someone who has feelings for me it’s just so awkward having the expectation to reciprocate it. It takes forever for me to feel romantic attraction for someone. Which wasn’t the case when I was younger. I guess I just expect more from another person and I’m not so quick to fall for someone. 

The downside is that by the time I do start feeling romantic attraction the other person has moved on and I’ve been friendzoned. Kind of hilarious and pay back for friendzoning them first. 

I just don’t even care at this point and don’t really bother with dating sites unless 4am and I’m drunk and bored. 

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Enigma Child

So funny story about a week ago my friend got me a subscription to match dot com. So I dutifully went through profiles and messaged people and found a guy whose picture I liked the look of and who seemed like a promising prsopect for me in other ways, and thought maybe I could even meet this guy and like him, maybe I'm wrong about this whole demiromantic thing. Well I met up with him today (in a public place with a bunch of my friends) and it was clear that we were both pretty nervous but also clear to me that no, I really am blind as a bat to whether I could romantically like someone I don't really know. I really am demiromantic. Maybe I didn't panic as badly today as I did the last time I was in this situation, but I'm never going to enjoy this. Not this stage, the meeting strangers phase where I'm somehow supposed to evaluate if it's worth going further. And yet I love meeting friendly strangers on the internet (thinking of AVEN members here) and I love meeting new friends in general.

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