Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Picture-pretty

So I've finally been browsing some of the Hot Pieces Of Ace videos, although youtube seems to be messing up and stopping me watch the majority of them. As I said, I'll tune in on a topic of particular interest to me, and long-term followers of the blog may know that aesthetic attraction is something I think about quite a bit (basically, whenever I see someone incredibly pretty).

For example, I agree with the little scenario in Ally's video where her friends are like "Oh, he's cute, I want to have sex with him" and she's like "Oh, he's cute, I want to... like... look at him! Oh, maybe we could have a conversation!" and that's ditto for me, even down to the excited "best thing evar" voice.

However, there's something I've seen in a lot of the videos, and in a lot of places before, that I suddenly realised was odd.

When people ask how we can find someone attractive but not aesthetically, the response is often "I find them pretty in the same way that landscapes are pretty." And it's an answer that often works. It has the benefit of simplicity. It references the fact that we just love to look at them, like you would an amazing picture (and my love of photography and of pretty men seem to feed off each other in complex ways when I look at a good photo of a pretty man). However, I'm guessing it's often a downright lie.

See, I crush. I don't know how I know it's a crush. There's generally no (or little, depending on how demisexual I feel today) bedroom antics at the base of the crush, but my response to a pretty, confident man with a big personality is so different to my response to a basket of kittens.

Come to think of it, my response to said man is different to my response to a pretty woman, which tends to be an aesthetic attraction in the same way a picture is. It's hard to describe, but my response to the man contains something of that attraction that most people think of as sexual. But not the sexual bit.

If you want to use the "pretty like a picture" illustration, good for you. Especially if you feel it is really true for how you experience sexual attraction. Heck, looking back through my blog, I've used it myself. But, personally, I feel that I'd be lying if I simplified it to that. And it'd be one of those lies that weaves itself around you and ends up trapping you.
So my answer? Probably a "Why do crushes have to be sexual?". There's so much else involved in a crush, I'm sure, why can no-one understand that what I feel is the same thing as you feel*, except without the desire to rush of and have sex with them?

I'd go so far as to say that I think a lot of people, assuming those feelings are always about sex, self-define them so that they become about sex anyway. The "Oh, I really want to... oh no, I actually don't. There's nothing I specifically want to do" feeling is offputting.


*another simplification- I tend to assume that no-one feels any aspect of attraction in exactly the same way. Talking about attraction is like talking about pain- language fails because there can be no common references.




NOTE: So this was a random little thought that occured to me. I'd promised myself that, starting after my holidays, I was going to adress to an audience of any vaguely sex-non-normative people or allies, rather than sticking to adressing a small crowd of in-the-know asexuals constantly. As you can see, this post blatantly disregards that. Sorry. Will try harder.

Monday, 12 July 2010

Aromantic until further notice

Firstly- no, I have not posted for the last month or so.
Secondly- I doubt I will post again before my three-week internet holiday starting next week.
Two reasons: Firstly, because I decided this blog simply has to take last priority in my life. If I can't keep it last priority, I can't keep it at all.
Secondly, because I tend to write when an idea pops into my head, I mull over it for a day or so, and then set it all down. This all relies on ideas. At the moment, I have little about asexuality. My head has been buzzing about the practicalities of aromance, but not really in bloggable form, and not that much. A lot of awesome real-life stuff is happening. And now is where I sort of want them to connect. I've been over 2 years asexual and now I want my pay-off. I want to take all the theories and graphs and deeper understandings and cash in in meat-space.

I'm having to deal with the loss of social circles. At this time of year, I'm stopping seeing my friends and acquaintances (worse- friends I never made) from college, I'm reminded of this time last year when I went through the same about school. And my very best friends ever are back from university, and we're having to re-negotiate our closest relationships. At the same time, I have more circles blossoming. Two activities I've been doing for years have, for various reasons partly to do with my new independence and partly through random luck, started blossoming in various ways into something more approaching social circles. And then there's university this autumn. Whatever happens there.

And something about me is changing, and I think it's the aromantic in me. I'm getting stronger. More world-wise, more determined. I have ways of looking at friendships now that I never had before.

This year, which, you notice, has been the main year of my blogging, was all about change, independence that had been fought off too long, growing more comfortable in my skills, my place in the world. And I've transformed, slowly, and asexuality has helped me. Asexy posts like these have been the final straws.

I'm declaring myself aromantic polyamorous. No relationships, and many. I like the contradictions, but I like the lifestyle better. I like the focus I can have on creating satisfying, meaningful relationships. I like the fact that my relationships can just be what they are. And I like the fact that, with this idea in my head, this map of what the future can be like, I can start to develop the tools to make it that way.

Also, I like the fact that, after a year of transformation, this blog (and my sexuality) finally has relevance to my real world! Which means my real world, what happens to me day to day, has relevance to this blog! Which means reams of easy materal! Harrumble!

(more will follow on the actual technique of living aromance. Once I've figured it out, mostly)

Friday, 2 July 2010

First Person

My First Person post, exploring how I connect with the idea of virginity, is out on The American Virgin blog. Check it out. (The title stands better as part of the text than it does on it's own) And, if you feel you have something to say, contact them, they're looking for more First Person stories, especially from an asexual perspective.