wanting and not wanting at the same time
a comic for asexual awareness week
bringing this back today for the start of pride month. still overwhelmed by how well this comic went down and with how many people relate. it’s easy to think aro-ace people are all totally accepting of their identities and really proud of who they are. i guess on websites like this you see a lot of people proudly putting their identity in their bio, a flag in their profile picture.
in fact i think a lot of aro-ace people really hate that part of themselves, hide it, and struggle for a long time to ‘accept’ who they are and feel any sense of ‘pride’. that’s the feeling i wanted to capture here. the disappointment, the loneliness, upon realising that you can’t feel what is such a wonderful thing. the embarrassment of not being ‘normal’, of being some random sexuality that nobody irl has heard of, and letting down those around you because you can’t be who they want you to be. how desperately you want to change, how desperately you want to feel. but you just can’t.
i know not all aro-ace people feel like this. i know lots of aro and/or ace people feel able to be in relationships, to feel closeness and have partners in other ways. but i think it’s important to be aware that some aro-ace people do feel like this.
the comments on this comic have mostly been great but a few have been very frustrating. a comment it got a lot was along the lines of ‘aw!! you don’t need to have sex to be in a relationship!’. you completely missed the point, hah. this is not a comic about sex. it’s about a lack of feeling, the lack of something beautiful other people seem to have. another comment that popped up a few times was ‘maybe she’s a lesbian’. well maybe lesbians and aro/ace girls have more in common than people think – maybe they both often struggle to accept that they feel no attraction to men, even though society has conditioned them to do so, sometimes spending years trying to force themselves to like men in that way, when they just can’t.
this comic is called ‘wanting and not wanting at the same time’ because she wants to love. but when it comes down to the reality, she can’t fulfil the requirements of that. she wants to love someone forever, to get married and have children and grow old with her soulmate, but she doesn’t want it with this person. or that person. or anyone she meets or will ever meet. a sort of catch 22, i guess.
hope that makes sense. thanks for listening, and have a lovely pride month ❤️
“When I was a kid, the most thrilling thing that could happen to me was getting permission to have a friend stay the night. These sleepovers were so much fun that I was sure when I grew up I would live in a giant house with all of my friends forever. (I never wondered who would do the dishes.) Nearly everyone I know had similar daydreams, but this is something we are supposed to grow out of, and replace with daydreams about living with a romantic partner. This isn’t entirely going as planned for our society. It seems like every few weeks an article is circulated that inspires a giant online hand-wringing about millennials resisting committed romantic relationships, or Gen Xers continuing to have roommates. (“The millennial generation lacks the ability to love!” “Meet the people flatsharing in their 40s!”) We’ve collectively decided that people who live with their friends have failed terribly, people who live with a partner have achieved incredible domestic success, and people who live alone or don’t centre their lives around romance are possibly just broken. We are all encouraged to work hard to have stable lives. But at the same time, we’re encouraged to anchor our lives around the relationship that is the least stable. It is uncomfortable to think of romantic love in those terms, but it’s not inaccurate.”
Audra Williams, from this National Post article “Why living with your friends doesn’t make you a bad adult”. Really interesting and valid as an observation of the state of our society nowadays and the fact that focus on marriage as ‘success’ is totally ideological, but it also resonated with me as a defense of asexuality; and ace, aro issues. Romance does not have to rule your life.
Check out more of Audra’s work and words [right here]
me, a tired aromantic who enjoys tie-die and painting nails.
No, Patrick, sex is not an inherent human need.
Romance is not an inherent need either.
Nemo can’t stand your romance
im laughing so hard holy shit omg
HAHAHA. HES LIKE, SHUT UP WITH THE FRICKIN MUSIC ALREADY ITS GETTING OLD REAL FAST HUMANS D:<
this is the most aro thing ever and I AM HERE FOR IT
hi so i just heard this song and ??? i’m crying ???? my aro ass can finally relate to something ???
psa: just because you don’t feel romantic love doesn’t mean you don’t feel love in general
challenge the idea that the most important kind of love is romantic!!! fuck that!!! love your friends!! love your qpps!! love your family!!!
on the flipside, if you don’t love anyone that doesn’t make you any less of a person!!
you are valid and powerful and important no matter what!!!!
love (or the lack thereof) doesn’t take away your personhood