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What does 'aromantic' look like?

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Telecaster68
3 minutes ago, Chihiro said:

I have never missed my best friends.

I think this is not a usual experience. I know I miss my friends, I know they miss me. Maybe this is where some of the confusion is coming from.

 

 

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Chihiro
2 minutes ago, Telecaster68 said:

I think this is not a usual experience. I know I miss my friends, I know they miss me. Maybe this is where some of the confusion is coming from.

 

I am definitely not confused about my romantic emotions though. The constant yearning is unmistakable. But how I choose to express that definitely doesn't follow the norm and that doesn't mean I am aromantic. I hate cliche romance (although during honeymoon period, I do feel like doing some cliche stuff. Obviously, dies after that period)

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Telecaster68

Sure the way I miss friends is that aching yearning in a romantic relationship, but I still think about them, wonder what they're doing, would really like to see them, etc.

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Chihiro

I dont just think or wonder about my romantic crushes/partners, I will use any excuse to procrastinate or skip my work/chores to be with them. In case they aren't available I go through our texts/pics/gifts etc or text them a bunch or do anything to make me feel connected to them.

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firewallflower

Just popping in because I happened to see the discussion taking place. :)

 

I have a (coincidentally, also asexual) friend. We are very close (metaphorically, that is—geographically we're usually separated by a significant chunk of the planet :(). We share a deep bond, I miss her, and I think about her often. I'd go so far as to say I love her... platonically. Improbably, she expresses similar feelings towards me.

 

As it happens, my friend is also in a long-distance romantic relationship. She obviously shares a deep bond with her partner, misses him when they're not together, and thinks about him often. Thus far, these descriptions could sound identical... but they are not. One is a close friendship (we refer to each other in sisterly terms at times). The other is, well, a romantic relationship. There is a certain quality of feeling that firmly differentiates the platonic bond my friend and I share from romantic love. (Being quite bewildered about romanticism myself, I don't presume to try to define that quality, but it clearly exists. :P)

 

I guess part of what makes this so confusing at times when we try to pin it down is that, ultimately, every person, and every person's experience of attraction/love, and every relationship, varies. Feelings are quite subjective, and explaining them in their relatively more "objective" (or at least, clearly describable) manifestations is often our best bet, yet that's not a sure explanation either. Many common descriptors of romantic love may apply to an imitate friendship or familial relationship. A relationship may not match most common descriptors of romance, yet be very definitively identified as romantic by the individuals in the relationship. So then, we wonder, what does anything even mean?? 😱

 

It's easy to get incredibly tangled up in definitions and labels, and as Overthinker Supreme, I 100% get that. Sometimes it's useful to just sit back, go with the flow, and feel what you feel, without worrying too much about what to call it. :)

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Anthracite_Impreza

Missing someone isn't a romance thing, even I miss the odd human, and after only a few days of my non-romantic car being away I already feel like I'm missing a limb.

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Telecaster68
17 minutes ago, Chihiro said:

I dont just think or wonder about my romantic crushes/partners, I will use any excuse to procrastinate or skip my work/chores to be with them. In case they aren't available I go through our texts/pics/gifts etc or text them a bunch or do anything to make me feel connected to them.

I think most people are like that over romantic partners. Your point was that you pretty much literally didn't think of friends if they weren't actually sitting in front of you...

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Serran

Think it depends on the person. I dont miss friends if we dont talk for a few weeks, really. But, I do miss my partner if we dont talk daily. 

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xstatic ☆゚°˖* ᕕ( ᐛ )ᕗ

The topic of conversation is what is it like as an allosexual in a relationship with an aromantic.  I'm with an aromantic.  I'm not just slapping labels on my partner.  We've had conversations about it.  I don't want him to be aromantic.  But it is what it is, and I'm not looking for him to change.  His extreme empathy and loyalty towards his friends can be easily twisted into people not understanding his intentions.  I'm just his friend.  His cuddle buddy.  His guardian.  He loves and cares about me.  But in the end, he's not in love with me.  He wants to be.  And he worries about how it affects me.  He's content with me being there and he's fine with me being in love with him.  It sounds cold, when you break it down, but it's not.  I wish I could explain it better, but I can't.  

 

I can answer questions all day about it, but I won't tolerate being attacked and judged and told that I don't know what I'm talking about.  In the end, I'm the one that's there.  I am very aware of reality.  Being aware of my reality allows me to embrace it without dillusion.  I've been told over and over that you can't be in a relationship with an aro, and I'm telling you that I can.  It isn't a typical arrangement.  But I assure you, I'm happy.

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Telecaster68

I do, honestly, get the difference - my nearly-exwife was the same in a lot of ways, apart from any physical affection, and she cared for me. But it felt like the last few notches of intensity up from friend to lover/partner just weren't there, and I needed them to be. I'm genuinely happy you don't feel the same way.

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Winged Whisperer

@xstatic ☆゚°˖* ᕕ( ᐛ )ᕗ I hope I didn't come off as attacking or judgy, I sincerely wanted to just better understand and learn more and am thankful for you sharing your experience and knowledge.

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xstatic ☆゚°˖* ᕕ( ᐛ )ᕗ

@Winged Whisperer You were just trying to understand.  I have no problem with that.

 

@Telecaster68 You're one of those people that understand the subtly of the differences.  I also understand that you have different needs and you had to do what was best for you.

 

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LeChat
1 hour ago, xstatic ☆゚°˖* ᕕ( ᐛ )ᕗ said:

...I'm with an aromantic... His extreme empathy and loyalty towards his friends can be easily twisted into people not understanding his intentions.  I'm just his friend.  His cuddle buddy.  His guardian.  He loves and cares about me.  But in the end, he's not in love with me.  He wants to be.  And he worries about how it affects me.  He's content with me being there and he's fine with me being in love with him.  It sounds cold, when you break it down, but it's not.  I wish I could explain it better, but I can't...

Wow. It's almost as though you're describing me, although I have felt uncomfortable and awkward when others have expressed wanting to cuddle and have a physical relationship. I don't mind if others like to talk to me, as I've enjoyed having that type of social interaction with friends, in the past, and going places/participating in hobbies with them, but anything more than that just...the feelings/desire isn't there, so that's why it feels uncomfortably awkward.

 

But, my parents and relatives were like this, too, so that's why I sort of thought that maybe it was, perhaps, just a result of experiencing a dysfunctional family/family from other countries, with a different culture, where physical affection wasn't often shown or expressed.

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TimeDelay
3 hours ago, xstatic ☆゚°˖* ᕕ( ᐛ )ᕗ said:

 I wish I could explain it better, but I can't.  

 

You explained it perfectly, thank you! My husband sounds very much like your boyfriend so I get what you describe. I hope that over time it doesn't wear you down the way it has me but at least you are fully aware from an early stage in your relationship. My husband and I are in our late forties and only discovering what's been 'wrong' with our marriage all these years. Thanks again, best to you both.

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xstatic ☆゚°˖* ᕕ( ᐛ )ᕗ

I'm 38 and divorced twice.  I definitely have had my fair share of experience.  I wish you nothing but love and happiness and if you need to talk about it, I am here for you.  💕

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Whatsis
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What does 'aromantic' look like?

From a quite removed and outside perspective, with absolutely no direct stakes in any of it (so, humongous grain of salt, y'know):

These kinds of relationships, to me, seem to various parts cruel and self-destructive. Assign parts as applicable.

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