Content advisory: non-explicit sex mentions, swearing, discussions of neuronormativity as it impacts the romantic attraction spectrum, discussions of amatonormativity.
One definition of aromanticism is low or no romantic attraction.
I can’t find romance in me.
Attraction is a human concept, but I’m an android, an alien, a loveless character mocked during nineteen-minute sitcom episodes. A character only redeemed by learning to honour and obey romance’s rules in a partnership with another. When to text, date, fuck and wed; what gifts to give and holidays to celebrate; what to wear and how to speak. As if the world didn’t already seek to bewilder and confuse!
Autistic characters in TV shows and books are only given the label human when we
love anothermaster neurotypical displays of romance. Aromanticism’s proud green validates and values my monstrosity in ways autism alone can’t and won’t.
Do I fit the word?
Kissing makes me shiver and shudder.
(Why do you expect me to enjoy your skin pressed against my tingling, screaming lips? Why are you so offended when I say I can’t?)
I don’t hug or cuddle.
(For how long must I bear your perfume hurting my nose and tightening my throat? For how long do I fight to quiet my body against yours when it wasn’t made to stop moving?)
I avoid dating.
(Will I be able to eat at the restaurant you pick? Will I survive the pounding music and the uproarious laughter from the table beside us?)
I struggle to talk to new people.
(What do I say when I don’t like the same things or go to the same places as everyone else? What do I say when small talk is a nightmare? What do I say when nothing I speak allows me the connection I crave?)
Sex doesn’t require words, once you know what sensations I can’t bear and what touches I crave. I can command and consent with my hands, legs and body. Sex is feeling, stimming, sensory: intensity allowable but safely temporary. Nobody expects our bodies to remain pressed together.
Is that attraction?
People are pretty the way I admire my blue plush blanket or a tabby cat. Bright, warm, soft. I like running my hands through your hair; I like tracing moles, scars and those dry patches of skin covering your knobbly knees. I can appreciate your body and the feeling mirrored in my own skin when I know I am allowed, after, to part and retreat. I look at you and I think I want. Is this sexual attraction? The edges catch when I try to fit what I am inside that box, but I can still connect and interact with allistics who use that word to describe themselves.
Maybe it is sexual attraction. Maybe it isn’t. Close enough, anyway; I’ll call myself allosexual just the same. The word doesn’t bruise my skin.
Why don’t I feel that way about aromantic?
(Will I feel better about the word when allosexual aromanticism, the green entwined with the gold, is easier to voice aloud? Or is it because sexual attraction is easier to recognise and define? Less nebulous?)
Romance disdains the safety of distance or escape. Togetherness is love or love is togetherness, the two so entwined that the world sees no need to pick them apart. In this community, we connect by discussing its omnipresence, our monstrosity, their amatonormativity. I am by this light possessed of the same behaviours and desires as others in this sanctuary.
Am I aromantic if I dislike kissing not from repulsion or its association with romance, just its sensory overwhelm?
What if I date another autistic who likes quiet, wants to build Lego sculptures while watching Star Wars, disdains restaurants, collects stim toys, allows me to escape to my room as often as needed and never kisses me when we fuck? The word I have for such wonderment is “queerplatonic”, but what if it’s an autistic shape of romance? Why shouldn’t it be when the West’s view of romance is an allistic imposition, someone else’s reckoning of our humanity? How do I know it isn’t what romance should be?
How is alloromanticism not another neuronormative expectation?
Aromanticism also comes with unspoken rules and expectations: assumptions about feeling and repulsion, attraction, romance. Some behaviours and feelings are alloromantic; some behaviours and feelings are not aromantic … except when they are.
(Is there anything romantic not also non-romantic?)
This word should announce to the world that other people permit, share and celebrate my monstrosity. This word should fit beside my autism, explaining, defining, validating. Instead, I’m flailing. Red rules, green rules. If I am aromantic, why can’t I see the difference between them?
Folks recognise the inconsistencies that plague us but attempt to draw lines anyway: I am repulsed by kissing because it is to me a romantic behaviour. I’m supposed to know what does and doesn’t belong. I’m supposed to find comfort in knowing that this place doesn’t follow romance’s rules. I’m supposed to protect others who chafe in a world of red, but every rule feels a lie, a falsehood. What’s romantic? What’s sexual? What’s platonic? What’s platonic and sexual? What’s alloromantic? What’s aromantic? Why can’t you all just decide?
How is aromanticism not another neuronormative expectation?
I need this word. I need it to survive when autistics weaponise romance in the fight against the ableist stereotypes of androids, aliens and nineteen-minute sitcom characters. I am too monstrous to find validation in autism alone; I must be, have to be, aromantic!
Years clothed in this word, but I still can’t breathe.
I need the vague. A word indifferent to attraction’s binaries. A word that gives me space to be aromantic in so far as it resembles the state of not being neurotypically romantic. A word that doesn’t rely on my ability to pretend that I understand the incomprehensible and the contradictory.
I’m lichen growing over granite, the green unable to thrive without the grey.
(Or is it nebularomantic? Why do I have to pick just one word, anyway?)
Hallo, Aro is a series of short pieces about allo-aro experiences and sexual attraction as shaped by aromanticism.
I got drunk and I just want y’all to know. It is NEVER okay to like someone. Like Romantically
Aromantic is a complete identity. Aros don’t need other labels if they don’t want them. The community already has helpful terms like no-sam/neuaro to describe aromanticism as your main identity, but they aren’t universal. These terms refer to more specific experiences, and even people who don’t relate to them (or who do and don’t want to use them) should still have the freedom to just be aro. It should be enough for someone to say “I’m aromantic” without any followup. There shouldn’t be pressure for aros to take on more identities because of the mindset that it isn’t enough just to be aromantic.
Pretty much every aro is gonna have a different relationship with their aromanticism, so the identity is already very broad. It’s alright to embrace this broadness. Lumping your relationship to sexuality/other attractions/qpps within the aro identity is always an option. If you feel that aromantic describes your entire experience, it is enough!
only ace positivity in my gang
(Image description: the trans, intersex, nonbinary, more color more pride, genderqueer, queer chevron, asexual, aromantic, agender, and androgyne pride flags with a black box in the center, white text inside the box reads “liberation not medicalization”.)
You flirt and kiss and for what??? Sex?????! Love?????? Pathetic.
To level my charisma stat
Ah a gamer, you may pass
Using a U.S. population-based sample of lesbian, gay, bisexual (LGB) and
other sexual minority (e.g., queer-identified) people, we compared
those who identified as asexual (n = 19; 1.66%) and those who were non-asexual (n = 1504;
98.34%). Compared to non-asexual respondents, asexual respondents were
more likely to be women or gender non-binary and belong to a younger
(ages 18–27) cohort. Asexual individuals were also less likely to have
had sex in the past 5 years, compared to non-asexual men, women, and
gender non-binary participants, and also reported lower levels of sexual
attraction to cisgender men and women than non-asexual women and men,
respectively. However, asexual participants did not differ from
non-asexual participants in being in an intimate relationship. Asexual
respondents felt more stigma than non-asexual men and women, and
asexuals reported more everyday discrimination than did non-asexual men.
Asexual and non-asexual respondents did not differ in their sense of
connectedness to the LGB community. Asexual and non-asexual respondents
were as likely to be out to all family, all friends, and all co-workers,
but fewer asexual participants were out to all healthcare providers
than non-asexual men. The two groups were similar in general well-being,
life satisfaction, and social support. In conclusion, asexual identity
is an infrequent but unique identity, and one that has the potential to
expand the concept of queer identity as well as to destabilize the
foregrounding of sexual behavior.
The most popular spanish speaking youtuber with an lgbt topics channel is a cis white gay man who tries to educate about the community but has said some hella aphobic and panphobic stuff and thinks the acronym stops at lgbt and shouldn't include more letters (tho they accept pans under the b) . Ahh man like. This isn't fun. Pls anyone aspec, english, spanish or w/e speaking that has been debating making videos, i encourage u to make them. Ppl looking for resources and validation deserve better