Let’s face it, the reason why most people pursue relationships these days is because of romance. There is something about those cute, and somewhat crazy acts that people link to their partner’s commitment level. But, have you ever sat with your friends, listening to stories about being swept off their feet by a romantic partner, and you just can’t relate?
If that sounds familiar, then you might already be wondering ‘am I aromantic?’ Before you fold it up and conclude that you do not understand the romantic attraction, check out these signs of aromanticism. Sure, some people simply have not met the right person and others are asexual. Either way, these tell-tale signs will let you know where you stand.
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Answer me this, have you ever sat with a group of friends gushing about how amazing it is to fall in love, yet there is just this giant question mark above your head? Even more, have you had to fake crushes or romantic relationships just to create some form of ‘normalcy’ in your already confusing life?
If this sounds a bit familiar, then chances are that you are not cut out for romantic attraction. You know at the back of your head that though you may appreciate how a person looks or how they carry themselves, romance has nothing to do with how you view them. Many people do not realize early on that there is no one set way to express love.
With that in mind, many aromantic people spend a lot of time faking crushes to fit in. Some even adopt a fake it till you make it mindset as they wait for the fabled ‘one.’
You know they say that losing one sense makes the other ones sharper? Well, whether that is true or not, that is kind of how it works for aromantic people. Sure, they may never be able to experience romantic attraction, but they forge the strongest familial and platonic bonds.
It is as if all that energy they would have channeled into romantic feelings is directed at their loved ones and close friends. Also, empathy, loyalty, and all the other facets of a good friendship tend to come easily to you. Your friends can rest assured that you will be there for them, come rain or shine.
People often confuse asexuality with aromanticism, but there is a clear difference. Though they may not experience romantic attraction, sexual attraction is still up for grabs. As mentioned earlier, with aromanticism people are still able to appreciate physical attributes. As such, they can definitely be sexually attracted to another person.
So, if you have been finding it a bit difficult to connect to anyone, whether they are male or female, then out of the blues you feel that twinge in your nether regions, that takes asexuality off the table.
What drives the point home is if after having sex you are fond of the person, but not romantically attracted to them, then that is clearly aromanticism. Note that not all aromantic people experience sexual attraction, at times they are also asexual.
Aromantic people may not fall in love, or even experience romantic attraction, but that does not mean they do not want relationships. In fact, they probably thrive in relationships even though there is no element of romance. Their relationships are mostly formed for reasons such as companionship, financial stability, and the age-old need to have a family of their own.
Last I checked, being romantically attracted to someone is not a guarantee that your relationship will last. In fact, most couples will attest to the fact that romance plunges at some point and they have to rely on the friendship they have forged. Guess who is great at maintaining friendships?
Aromantic people are, so they can build long-term relationships even if they are not romantically attracted to someone.
Many people will tell you that they can have sex without catching feelings for the other person. It hardly happens that way, at some point in the relationship one person, or both feel they want a little romance. Aromantic people, on the other hand, are perfect candidates for friends with benefits relationships.
For them, romantic relationships are off the table so they can bump uglies with the other person for as long as love stays out of it. Even more, they can perfectly separate their friendship from the sexual aspect of the relationship. So, if you’ve noticed that you thrive when it comes to sex with no strings, but cannot keep a romantic relationship to save your life, then aromantic.
As much as you love your friends and want them to be happy in their respective relationships, you tend to zone out when they drone on about romantic attraction. It's normal because when you cannot relate to something, it does not appeal to you as much.
Aromantic people may be able to comfort a friend with a broken heart or rejoice with one that just got engaged, but they may feel drained or bored at some point.
For Alloromantic people, the fact that they experience romantic attraction makes it easier to get super invested in a friend’s breakup. That is because they know the pain of that kind of rejection or betrayal. Nevertheless, what entails a relationship is a bit different when it comes to aromanticism.
Do not get me wrong, the fact that aromantic people don’t have romantic relationships does not stop them from taking an interest in a friend who is hurting. Look at it this way, some people have a romantic relationship with the wrong guy up to 50 times, and only someone who can understand the allure will lend a shoulder to cry on without zoning out at some point.
Don’t get me wrong, you do not have to be aromantic to feel like Mills and Boons are overselling love and attraction. But, there is always that one song or movie that hits so close to home that you can practically feel the love of your life there with you. For someone who may probably never have a romantic relationship, these art forms may seem pointless and borderline annoying.
On the other hand, some aromantic people may enjoy these art forms, but that does not mean they want them in their lives. For them, it is simply entertainment. So, if you’re the only one of your friends who never had a Boyz to men craze or currently lives by the words of Taylor Swift, it is simply because that form of love is foreign to you.
If you are not already familiar with the term, you are probably wondering what a squish is. Well, when aromanticism is involved, crushes are a foreign term. Rather than having an intense desire to be in a romantic relationship with someone, aromantic people have the intense desire to be friends.
This is not the same thing as falling for someone you know and wanting to spend every waking minute with them. No, in this case, you would gladly walk into the friendzone, set up camp, and remain there till the end of days. On the other hand, this could be the basis for a long-term relationship with an aromantic.
Remember, being an aromantic does not mean you do not get to shack up and have a family. All that is different is the way you express your love for your partner.
No one comes out of the womb with the knowledge that they are aromantic. In fact, most people are brought up with the notion that romantic love is everyone’s birthright (thanks Disney). For people who have not figured out that they are aromantic, it is common to try their hands at a romantic relationship.
Here is the thing, how do you function in that kind of relationship when that is not how you experience love? So, if you noticed that you can’t quite keep a man or woman without flaking out at some point, it may be because you are aromantic. Sure, every relationship has its problems but you should be able to find someone you love and lock it down, right?
As you accept your identity as an aromantic, you will understand yourself better and navigate these issues a lot better.
Being aromantic does not mean that you are fine with perpetually being alone. Nevertheless, you do not immediately conform to the way society paints love. Yes, you enjoy the company of others (or you don’t) and you like being with people who care about you.
Nevertheless, aromantic people are unlikely to plop themselves on the couch and cry because they don’t have a date on Saturday night.
For the most part, aromantic people are quite comfortable without a partner because they have a network of friends and loved ones who fulfill their emotional needs. Throw in friends with benefits and you have yourself one happy aromantic. If this sounds like you, then you are aromantic.
No one is saying that a squish is not intense for your run-of-the-mill aromantic, but there is something about puppy love that makes a person act crazy. Even people with a good level of self-esteem can get tongue-tied in the presence of their crush. SInce aromantic people do not have those feelings swirling about, most of the pressure is taken off their shoulders.
I am going to go out on a limb to say that some aromantic people may experience the whole shebang when it comes to someone they love and really want to connect with. But this probably depends on their personality type and confidence level. But, for the most part, aromantic people do not experience the intense nervousness that comes with crushes.
Roses and candlelit dinner may be a dream come true for some, but an aromantic does not buy into that. If their partner goes out of their way to set something up for them, they will probably appreciate the effort. But, an aromantic may not necessarily get giddy and overwhelmed at the sight of such romantic gifts or gestures.
As implied all through this article, an aromantic is not a soulless husk, they can love as well. But romantic displays are not the way to their heart. Does this sound familiar?
Here is one thing you need to know as an aromantic, nothing is written in stone. Yes, generally, aromantic people do not experience romantic feelings. Nevertheless, there are some instances where an aromantic could yearn for a romantic connection.
Look at it this way, love is not a black or white affair, you may find out that you are more than just aromantic, perhaps you are also demiromantic.
Some people will hear the word aromantic and think, here you go again categorizing the weirdos. That is just backward thinking, being aromantic is not synonymous with being emotionally stunted. In fact, aromantic people experience a full bouquet of emotions, they simply process love differently.
So, don’t expect to feel dead inside before you embrace the aromantic label, being aromantic does not limit anyone from loving.
At this point, you should be able to tell whether you are aromantic or not. It is not as complex as some people think it is. With the way romance is peddled to the masses these days, being an aromantic means you may feel different as you develop your identity.
Besides helping you figure out if you are aromantic, I hope this article also helped you understand that being aromantic is not weird.
If you are aromantic you can honestly say that you have never fallen in love or experienced romantic feelings before. Of course, you are fond of people, but it has never gone beyond platonic love. Altogether, you simply cannot relate to the chick flicks, songs, or books people have written about romance. Though it is all around you, the aromantic in you makes it foreign.
For the mere fact that people that are biromantic do experience romantic attraction, it is safe to say you cannot fall into both categories. You see, an aromantic person does not experience puppy love or even crushes. They have what is called a squish, and that can only be likened to the feeling of really wanting to be friends with someone.
Yes, aromanticism is an orientation, but it falls into the category of romantic orientation, not a sexual orientation. So, being aromantic is not dependent on being straight, gay, asexual, etc. Romantic orientation is simply a person’s way of expressing romantic attraction and though it is based on gender, it is independent of their sexual orientation.
Having a crush is just a step down from falling in love. It’s this intense feeling of happiness, giddiness, nervousness, and romantic attraction all wrapped up in one. Often people talk about butterflies in their stomachs and hyperactivity. Altogether, it is an emotional rollercoaster but feels great when the feelings are reciprocated.
Think of demisexuality as a half-point between asexuality and alloromanticism. Here, the person is not sexually attracted to anyone unless they have romantic feelings for them. Note that this is not based on sexual orientation or gender identity. In some cases, demisexuality is considered a subcategory of graysexuality which is when a person seldom experiences sexual attraction or may experience it without any interest in sex.
Back in the day, people were put into little boxes and were defined by certain standards that were not the right fit for everyone. So, if you were not romantic, then you simply had not met the right girl or guy. If any of the above signs sound familiar, then you fall under the aromantic category.
For the most part, romantic attraction is a by-product of love, it is not love itself, so you’re not soulless, or weird. With that in mind, we hope you got some insight into your romantic orientation here, if you have any responses or comments for me, feel free to use the comment section below. Even more, share this with someone who needs the clarity you now have.