I’ve decided to try out doing a weekly roundup summary of my thoughts on asexuality and aromanticism and queer stuff that week.
I’m getting a lot more involved in the queer community at my university this year. Previously I didn’t get too involved because of a combination of feeling out of place as a grad student among undergrads; not being sure of my welcome as an ace person; and general shyness. This year, we’re actually starting to form a queer grad students group; at the first non-grad student-specific event I went to, there were two other ace people; and I just know more people in the community now, so I feel less shy. I’ve now realized that having other ace people around is more important to me than having other grad students around.
If we accept the 1% figure, and there are 800 some grad students at my university, where are the other 7 asexual grad students?! (Yes, I know statistics don’t actually work that way. Actually, the fact that there are at least 6 ace-spectrum people that I know of out of a student body of 9000 some feels pretty amazing!)
Spending more time in queer spaces/with queer people/with ace people also means I’ve been spending a lot more time thinking about queer and ace things, which is good. It’s what I want. But it’s also exhausting. I was following link trails through old Asexual Agenda posts, and the analogy of being a phone (or laptop) constantly searching for service really rang true. Sometimes I really do just want to turn on airplane mode and stop thinking about this all for a little while.
I was at a party where we decided to play Cards Against Humanity; normally this isn’t something I’m willing to play. Between the pop culture references I don’t get and uncomfortable sexual stuff (I have to say these words out loud?!), it’s just not my thing. But in a queer space, with other aces, where people know I’m ace, it was ok. I did start thinking, though, if you took out all the sexual stuff, you might not be left with too much. But what could you replace it with to make an ace version? (Is there a card that just says “Cake” already?)
At an Asexual Awarenesss Week event, someone (non-ace) asked, “What should I do to support my ace friend?” We didn’t come up with much beyond “Don’t ask them personal sex-related questions,” “Don’t try to make everything about asexuality,” and “You know, normal friend things.” It makes me want to come up with a list of specific things you can do to support an ace friend. (This feels more specific than just “how to be an ace ally.”)
I think I’ve finally found the right way to describe my romantic orientation! I’ve been in a “hovering between greyromantic and aromantic but neither of those labels feels quite right” zone for a while. Every time I try to construct the arguments for either side, they just fall apart. Last night, it just popped into my head: “I’m asymptotically approaching aromantic.” As a mathematician, this delights me; I even made a cute picture about it, to make it clear that I am not approaching aromantic from the direction of romantic.