From the inbox #355

“Hiya, I have a question for asexuals who questioned or struggled with identifying their romantic orientation.
I’ve known for a long time that I’m asexual, since around middle school but I didn’t fully come out until last year at 23. One thing I’m still struggling with is identifying whether or not I’m also aromatic. I’ve never had a crush on someone in real life, and this is going to sound really pathetic, but the only crushes I’ve ever had are on fictional characters (in the sense of goddamn I really wish I could hug this person for hours on end), both with male and female fictional characters. The thing is, in real life I’ve been in two relationships (they were the ones to approach, the second one even lasted 2 years), and for the two times in my life I was in the situation to respond with ‘I love you’ with all of my being it felt like it was a lie saying it, and wholly uncomfortable. But I really liked being with these guys so it shouldn’t have felt that way! Both ended on good terms, but I’m unable to confidently know whether I’m panromantic or aromatic. I would really enjoy being with someone a small step above platonically, but do those fictional feelings not count in determining it? Was I just not with the right person? Most seems to point to being aromantic, and it probably doesn’t help that I also hate kissing, but cuddling is alright.
I’d love to hear stories of how any of you guys figured it out or any advice you have in figuring it out. ”

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