Lovely article from a woman who has never been in romantic love but acknowledges that you can be in love in many different ways and it doesn’t not have to meet society’s traditional model
So yesterday, I decided to send my friends a photo expressing my love for them, and one guy replied that telling him “I love you nonromantically” was a contradiction because love is romance to which I responded “Wow, you’re very amatonormative”. He also went on further to equate sex with love. I pointed him to Google to look up the definition of amatonormativity and this guy totally defends it by saying that all humans want love and I just view it differently because I’m religious.
I pointed out:
He still did not get my point because he kept arguing that I will always have a different perspective because I’m religious. Yes, I personally believe that sex is for marriage but I understand those points I made above and with him being someone who is sex-crazed and having constant casual sex I expected he would too. But that’s just another example of romantic-sexual relationship hierarchy in society. He is still chasing the “one”.
Meanwhile, I’ll be taking a nap. See you soon.
I’m very grateful for my friends and family. With all of the love, intimacy, support and physical affection I receive from you all I will never feel unloved, unworthy, lonely or miserable just because I don’t have a “boyfriend”. I could live my whole life being single and be even more fulfilled than people in romantic relationships because I have you.
But society has done a good job in making us believe that if no one is romantically interested in us or if we don’t have a romantic partner, that we are unloved or broken. It makes us believe that romantic love is superior to platonic love, that romantic relationships are greater than friendships and that only romantic relationships are worth investment and commitment. It leads us to limit love, physical intimacy, emotional intimacy, sensual touch (cuddling, kissing, hugging etc) and commitment to only romantic relationships. You see, these things are essential to humans. And because these things are deemed as inappropriate within friendships, we all feel the need to chase a romantic partner to have such things because society says you can only get these things from your romantic partner. Remove those amatonormative glasses from your eyes and start to experience real love. Focus on loving your friends and family and developing close, loving, intimate relationships with them. Stop chasing romance.
We live in a society where it is totally acceptable and expected for us to go long periods without speaking to our friends (notice I said ‘friend’, not acquaintance, which is a more casual superficial relationship) and brush it off as being “grown” and “busy” but when it comes to our romantic partners, we are expected to maintain steady, consistent contact and communication with these individuals and to invest a great deal of time in building intimacy, love etc no matter how busy we are. We are expected to sacrifice our friendships and familial relations at the drop of a hat to please our romantic partners. How often do you see a person leaving their hometown to follow their friend overseas because they don’t want to be without their friend? Rarely, but we do this for our romantic partners in order to maintain the relationship. Yes, I do acknowledge that we can have friends who we love dearly and go a certain amount of time without speaking with them but why don’t we view romantic relationships the same? Is it because society has this messed up idea that romantic relationships are worth more than friendships? We prioritize romance over friendship. Our romantic relationships are of a higher priority than our friendships because we all know when someone/something is a priority we make time for it no matter how busy we are. Simple! How often do you go without speaking to your “significant other” or someone you are romantically interested in? Because we are not romantically interested in our friends (let’s be honest, most people don’t have close, passionate, intimate friendships. Friends are just people they hang out with, share a few jokes and common interests with. They don’t have deep relationships with their friends, especially if they are of the gender which they are sexually and romantically attracted to) we don’t see it necessary to invest time in building an intimate, sensual, loving relationship with them because society says we only want to spend time with, touch and be emotionally close with someone out of romantic interest for them. It’s a society that tends to romanticize any emotionally intimate, physically affectionate or sensual, deep, meaningful friendship. It’s an amatonormative culture based on a romantic-sexual relationship hierarchy. Even if these close friendships are accepted, they are only viewed as appropriate during childhood/adolescence. Growing up means leaving friendships behind in pursuit of finding the “one” and any close friendship is viewed as having an “emotional affair” because we are only to be close with our romantic-sexual partner. A world where romance and love are not seen as equal, where sensuality and physical affection are not so closely linked with romance and sexuality is a more loving world for everyone.