Question of the Week: April 10th, 2018.

How do you know if you want to be in a relationship with someone?

In Siggy’s recent post on gay coming out stories he writes that while crushes are a big part of coming to realize you are gay narratives “I knew I was ace when I understood what it meant that I didn’t have crushes on anyone. And then I knew I was gay when I understood that relationships don’t need to be built on crushes.” After reading his post I reflected on my past relationships and dates and thought about what feelings had let me know if I wanted to pursue people or stop seeing them. I didn’t come up with any clear answers.

I don’t know if I’ve had a crush. I think so? I remember being excited about people and I’ve had long term relationships. If I had to describe my feelings it would be like a trusted close friend that didn’t repulse me. We are so close I won’t freeze up if you touch my arm or kiss me. Way down the line I might even like it (but it’ll be more about my comfort and desire, not attraction).  You don’t repulse me doesn’t seem like a great indicator for a crush but it’s the best I get. I am internally cringing at the thought that a past date might even read this and see the uncensored version of what I felt (can you imagine honestly saying this to someone’s face?). After two dates the marker to continue becomes doesn’t repulse me, doesn’t bore me, and I genuinely like this person exactly as they are (or seem to be). I rarely get past the two date point because very few people meet all these qualities. As I write this I’m becoming more skeptical that I’ve ever had a crush.

About Talia

Talia is an asexual, nonbinary, vegan-feminist that drinks a lot of coffee and stays up very late playing Blizzard video games and writing fiction. They are working on a PhD in Environmental Studies where they think a lot about oppression as intersectional and impacting identities differentially. Talia has a particular fondness for asexuality, fandom, and Critical Animal Studies. Their personal blog is petuniaparty.tumblr.com
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5 Responses to Question of the Week: April 10th, 2018.

  1. Siggy says:

    So my thinking is, when people are in long-term relationships, they usually don’t have crushes except at the beginning. They’re based on some other set of feelings. Based on a few attempted relationships, I had a sense that I didn’t experience crushes but I experienced those other feelings. So it was just a matter of overcoming that initial barrier.

    So here’s what I did. I tried to rely on other people pursuing me (or imagining that other people might be interested in me). I thought about whether we would work well together. And I set my standards low for what kind of feelings I had to have about a person before I allowed those feelings to motivate my actions.

    On a side note, I appreciate that when I talk about not having crushes, that resonates with a lot of other people, but the resonance only goes one way–when I hear other people talking about not having crushes, it mostly doesn’t resonate for me. For me, the lack of crushes was completely unambiguous. I knew that I didn’t get crushes long before I knew I was ace.

    • Ettina says:

      Never been in a relationship, but honestly, I suspect I’m the same way. I could see myself in a long-term relationship the way they work after the NRE/limerence has faded. I just don’t have any clue how I’d actually get to that point because I don’t have crushes or really get attracted to anyone.

  2. Rivers says:

    I think everyone might have a little bit of a different answer with this because what kind of relationships people want what people want in a relationship can be so different from person to person. I really like the thought of having a discussion like this because it opens up about how we are different, and I think that’s really cool.

  3. Rivers says:

    I have personally only been in one relationship (the one I am in now)(it’s a QPR for context), and it’s something I fell into really. Though, it was definitely something I wanted for a long time before that. We have kind of been best friends our entire lives, so it was more a certain progression in our relationship then I feel like what typically happens when two people decide to get together.

    Even though I have never experienced anything close to a crush, I have experienced very intense squishes throughout my entire life. I can recall having squishes on people since first grade. I honestly thought I had some kind of loyalty complex or something weird for the longest time. I would not necessarily say I have squishes on all my friends or the people I want to become friends with or end up becoming friends with or anything, but there have definitely been some moments where I have just seen or barely talked to a person and had a very distinct “I NEED TO BE FRIENDS WITH THEM” moment.

    People have different experiences, and I would not describe that as the only feeling that even I have that represents that I have a squish on someone, but it’s just something I’ve found very interesting.

    And even with those more intense/overtly platonic feelings I get, it takes knowing a person over a period of time before I would even think about getting into a QPR with them. Most of those people would be incompatible with it which I am perfectly okay with.

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