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How do you know if you're aromantic?


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Hello,

I've been posting a lot of worries and questions lately, and although I want to say sorry for posting yet another one, it's what this forum is for so here goes. 

So, I'm pretty much 100% sure  I'm asexual, if not then greysexual, but the point is I'm repulsed by sexual stuff and that's that. Now, I've also been wondering if I'm aromantic. I was chatting with my friend who just the other day admitted that she likes me, I admitted I like her too. There's all sorts of barriers in the way though, but the main thing is, as we were talking, I suddenly started reflecting on my feelings and googled aromantic and was surprised. See, I've always thought that it was about not wanting a relationship or not having any romantic attraction to anyone ever at all, but I saw that it isn't just that, it can be LITTLE to NO romantic attraction and you can still want a relationship. It got me thinking because I pretty much never have any romantic attraction to anyone. I've had probably less than 10 crushes in my life and I'm 21. I've never really had a strong romantic crush on celebrities, or fictional characters, and when I have they're not strong at all and fizzle away pretty quick. The part that makes me sad is I'd really like to be in a relationship one day and I'd love to get married, but how can I do that when I'm rarely attracted to anyone at all? It's so frustrating. Even if I had a good crush on someone, I'm scared that we'd get together and the slightest breeze would just blow my romantic feelings away. After reading the definition of aromantic, I realised that it makes perfect sense. If you knew me you'd be like 'oh that explains everything'. I've struggled before, too, with not understanding whether I'm just incredibly good friends or attached to someone in a friendly way, or if I like them. It doesn't help that I'm generally just terrified of relationships anyway, but I'd really like one and to get married, like I said. Finding someone who meets my criteria, whatever that criteria is in all this, seems impossible. I don't know how to navigate this. 

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Hey :) 

I've always been very comforted by routine and keeping control of my own space and my life, which now I believe may be because I'm autistic, so the thought of all the changes that come with a relationship really scares me. So, I guess change is the big thing there. I'm also scared of upsetting people, being in a relationship with someone and then suddenly no longer liking them and having to break it to them. This has happened before. I feel like I'm instinctively  just scared of relationships despite wanting one. There are so many mental barriers that make me so anxious and scared and worried about relationships. I know this because when I'm tipsy, all these barriers go away and I'm a lot more romantic and sure of myself which is really annoying. I feel like even if I found someone who was really understanding, patient, perfect for me, I'd still be terrified. Like, after I and my friend talked, the day after I felt really nervous talking to her over text, I felt like a timid animal huddled in a corner for safety. It's so strange. 

I hope I've explained it well?

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  • Digital Mentor

Hey,

Yeah, you explained that really well. I totally get what you're saying about how the changes that come with a relationship are scary, and this is scary for anyone, but especially so for autistic people who may struggle more with change. It's interesting that those barriers go away when tipsy, and I'm wondering, how does it feel when you are more romantic? Also, despite relationships being scary for you, what are some of the advantages that may come with being in one? 

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Hiya,

Feeling romantic when I'm tipsy, I mean it's still nerve wracking toa degree but no where near as much as when sober. It feels good, I feel proud of myself and I feel excited and honestly, not broken. I know I'm not broken, but it's hard, I just want a romantic relationship but my brain doesn't seem to work that way, or not very well anyway. But yeah, when tipsy, it feels exciting, but i know that if I got with someone when tispy (not that I would) I'd regret it when sober. 

Advantages - always having someone to have fun with, to relax with, so company, someone who really understands me would benefit me massively and make me feel more confident, someone who I can cook cool food for, share my special interests with and not feel weird, there are a lot of advantages and cool things that would happen. 

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Hi,

Oof, tricky to explain. Umm... I think maybe that it'd be a sober shock? a panic? I wouldn't think about it as much, weigh up the pros and cons and stuff. I don't really know how to explain it, it just doesn't make me feel good thinking about it. It's probably a lack of control thing, I think I obsess over control so the thought of waking up sober and realising I'm with someone would petrify me hahaha

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  • Digital Mentor

Hey,

Yeah, that makes sense because of how you want to be in control. From what you've said, it definitely seems like you're putting barriers in place for yourself because of fear, which I totally get. I wonder, how might things be different if that fear faded a little? 

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If these fears suddenly faded away, I'd feel freer, like I can experiment and explore, maybe actually meet someone and be much less scared of it. I wouldn't freak out if people hit on me or asked me out. I know it isn't all about get a relationship and all that, be myself, love myself for what I am, but I do want a relationship one day but if my brain is like this I have no chance. 

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  • Digital Mentor

Hey there,

Yeah, I think you're absolutely right about feeling freer and like you can experiment and explore :)

What do you think one small step could be towards facing your fears and overcoming them? 

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hi Monsoon,

It's been a while. 

I mean, I did ask someone out for a drink a few weeks ago so I guess doing that would be a step? Even if it goes nowhere, it's a step in my book. 

Can people who are aromantic be in relationships? I'm not very knowledgeable on it.

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  • Digital Mentor
4 hours ago, Marv said:

Hi Monsoon,

It's been a while. 

I mean, I did ask someone out for a drink a few weeks ago so I guess doing that would be a step? Even if it goes nowhere, it's a step in my book. 

Can people who are aromantic be in relationships? I'm not very knowledgeable on it.

Hey Marv,

It's nice to hear from you again. How have you been? Asking someone out is a huge step - how did it feel?

Also, I'm wondering, can you tell me how you would define someone who is romantic? After that, we can explore this more. Speak soon. 

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