Month: May 2016

Women, Passion, and Celibacy | Chapter One: “Genital Messages”

The Thinking Aro

“We appear to live in a sexual society, but it is not genuinely sexual, because a truly sexual society offering free choice for both women and men would be threatening to the power elite. What we live in a genitally-fixated society which communicates messages to women that change with the times to serve the social order. These are what I call ‘genital messages’ (Cline 24-25).”

This point cannot be emphasized enough right now in the early 21st century, where so many people are under the false impression that we’re living in a post-sexual liberation movement era where everyone is truly sexually free or where sexual freedom is available to everyone. As I said in my last post on the introduction of the book, we are not living in a sexually liberated society but in a sexually liberal one. “Sexually liberal” and “genitally fixated” can be considered interchangeable terms here…

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Romance is Not Love: What Negative Aromantic Stereotypes Say About Romantic People

The Thinking Aro

When they aren’t forgotten or ignored completely, the most common reaction that aromantic people get from ignorant romantics sounds something like this:

“You can’t be aromantic, that isn’t a real thing, you just haven’t met The Right Person and fallen in love yet, because romantic love is the ultimate human experience, so saying that you are an aromantic human being is as nonsensical as saying you’re a human being who doesn’t need oxygen to survive. Only psychopathic criminals feel no romantic emotion or a desire for romantic relationships. Something is seriously wrong with you if you can’t or don’t want to fall in love.”

What they’re implying is: aromantic people are cold, heartless, unfeeling individuals who are antisocial loners with no desire or capability for positive attachment and connection in the context of an interpersonal relationship with someone else. If you don’t want romantic love, you don’t want love, period…

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Water is Wet, Everybody Dies, and Romantic People Suck at Friendship

The Thinking Aro

I want to engage with an article recently published in The Atlantic, titled “How Friendships Change in Adulthood.” I think that this piece of writing is important, in that those of us who are perma-single aromantics can learn something about allo* people and how they approach friendship with us. And I want to use this essay as a perfect and thorough example of why I choose not to build real, emotionally significant friendships with alloromantic people in my adult life.

My favorite part of the entire essay is the opening line:

“In the hierarchy of relationships, friendships are at the bottom. Romantic partners, parents, children—all these come first.”

I love it when people speak the cold, hard truth. Don’t you?

I’ve spent the entirety of my time writing this blog, talking about and concerned with the fact that there is this Romantic-Sexual Relationship Hierarchy, which is intertwined…

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Aromantic or Romantic LateBloomer

I have had four known crushes in my life between the ages of 7-13. Anything afterwards seemed like a blur. When I was 14, I had my first boyfriend and I did get involved in ‘relationships’ with guys afterwards. But these relationships never felt right to me. It seemed as if the feelings I had for these guys was merely that I felt for casual friends. But there were a few guys who I stayed with long enough to develop some emotional connection and looking back I think  what made me sad when we broke up was that I would no longer be given that sort of attention and ‘intimacy’. Hard to explain.But I never felt actual breakup pain until my last relationship ended. I was with a guy for 13 months and I think he is the first guy I probably liked because we were close and intimate with each other and it would hurt whenever he was being distant cause I really just wanted him to hold me and carry on a long deep conversation with me like he was my best friend. Then there was a guy I broke up with because I just could not find myself attracted to him. He was just like a friend to me. Though we did have a close friendship with each other which led to him developing feelings and asking me to be his gf and because he was a cool guy I saw no problem. I started to feel like something was wrong with me and a big problem I had was being unable to differentiate between whether I was ‘in love’ with someone or just loved them intensely as a friend. This first presented itself in a close friendship I developed with a guy when I was 16. I didn’t have a ‘squish’ on him from the beginning but I drew to love him a lot and started to question if I was ‘in love’ with him. But he was not the first guy I have loved immensely. The first guy was my best friend K. We would talk to each other for hours and make lists of stuff we wanted to do together like moving in an one bedroom apartment and going skinny dipping. There was nothing we couldn’t tell each other and we were very intimate both emotionally and physically. The entire school thought we were dating and I actually hang out with a group of guys and I still do as I find forming friendships with males easier and more fulfilling. I love guys! The end of our closeness was my first heartbreak and I have never experienced anything such then. We grew apart because he developed romantic feelings for a close friend and focused all of his attention on her instead. But he noticed how this had hurt our friendship and apologized but since then we were never able to get back to where we were. However, I have the same love for him and we still can tell each other everything it’s just we don’t talk frequently. But we still spent time together and share that physical intimacy (holding hands, cuddling, kissing). I actually share physical intimacy with majority of my friends even if I don’t have that emotional closeness, I’m still a very affectionate person and enjoy cuddling with and kissing my friends. I really love touch.

However, I developed my first squish on a guy known as M in late 2014. He was the best friend of my last boyfriend and my best female friend had a crush on him so we usually spent casual time together due to the circumstances. I actually only found out what a squish was and that the definition fit this strange feeling I got which I defined as being ‘platonically in love’ with someone about 3 days ago. I had this immense attraction to this guy and I wanted to play a great role in his life; I got jealous when I saw another girl refer to him as her best friend because that is what I wanted to be. I wanted to be very close and intimate with him. After some failed attempts in forming a close bond with him, our friendship blossomed quickly over the last 2 weeks of the summer (I was still in a ‘romantic relationship with his best male friend) and we became close friends. I revealed how I really felt about him. I really love this guy. N.B Both of us were in romantic relationships for the first few months of our friendship. After forming our close friendship I did not see him for 5 months until we met up at my best friend’s house on Boxing Day. The joy that can be felt just lying in the arms of a close friend and having that physical intimacy is like a touch of heaven. I can’t wait to see him again. A time at my house we were watching TV, he was lying in my arms and holding my hands and every once in while we would just stare into one another’s eyes…then he actually kissed me on the lips. Knowing the nature of our friendship, I thought nothing romantic of this gesture and I returned the kiss. He also almost gave me a hickey. Hilariously, he only remembered this act about two months later and was confused. I told him that our friendship is already so inappropriate when judged by society’s conventional standards that a kiss on the lips is nothing.  Next time. we meet I want to discuss the whole queerplatonic thing with him and see how he reacts.

I’ve developed a 2nd squish this year and it’s still a work in progress but my feelings for him aren’t as intense as they were at the beginning for M.

I never really understood the point of ‘falling in love’ and I could never see the difference between platonic love and  romantic love. I just saw love as love and as a sexual person told myself that actual love between a romantic couple was just the same love between friends but paired with sexual attraction. When asked if I would marry without being ‘in love’ I responded yes because I know that I can love someone intensely, be intimate emotionally, physically and sexually and spend my life growing with this person without being in love with them. N.B. As a sexual person I still want my sexual relations to be within a committed relationship. I just want that connection with someone because I love being close and intimate. Without this real love, the romantic relationship would just be based on chemical reactions in the brain and there would be no true love where you choose to love someone unconditionally and be there for them no matter what. Basically we are to love all people the same. People prioritizing romantic relationships over those they have with friends and family never made sense to me. My romantic homosexual brother keeps saying that he needs someone to love him and that he needs to find love etc…and all the other dumb amatonormative phrases and I’m annoyed to hear all of them. Why not focus on your friends and family? When I read The Thinking Aro’s post on relationship anarchy I realized I always felt that way.

When I learned about amatonormativity, aromanticism, queerplatonic relationships and relationship anarchy a few days ago I felt like something clicked and I’ve been conflicted within myself and asking myself questions everysince. I’m single right now for several reasons: I’m actually a Christian and I’m waiting to meet someone that sort of shares my beliefs to settle down with, I’m testing myself to see if I am capable of falling in love without any pressure or other factors screwing with my judgement. I don’t see a need for a romantic relationship if I can have this intimacy with a friend.

Hopefully I can learn more about who I am.