Discussing Allo-Aro Identity (And Why Fluid Folks Need Better Definitions)

Handdrawn illustration of a yellow pasture against a background of hills and sparodic trees. Scene is overlaid with the dark green/light green/white/yellow/gold stripes of the allo-aro pride flag. The text Aro Worlds Discussion Post sits across the image in a black, antique handdrawn type, separated by two ornate Victorian-style black dividers.

I began my Allo-Aro 101 page by defining the words “allosexual” and “aromantic”. If “allosexual” is uncommon terminology outside a-spec spaces, “allo-aro” (in all its grammatical and stylistic permutations) is even less accepted. “Aromantic” itself voyages into arcane language, often understood by outsiders as only a relationship to or a form of asexuality. Visitors to this website may not know what “allo-aro” means, so–limited by current terminology and conceptualisations of the split attraction model–I follow the well-trodden educator’s path of first mimicking a dictionary.

I consider my following explanation more important, as an allo-aro whose relationship to this identity cannot exist untouched by fluidity:

Any allosexual aromantic who isn’t also, solely and permanently, asexual; or any aromantic who wishes to centre their experience of sexual attraction alongside their aromanticism. Heterosexual aros, bisexual aros, pansexual aros, gay aros, lesbian aros and aros with fluid or shifting attractions inclusive of allosexuality can identify as allo-aro.

Some allo-aros identify as both asexual and allosexual or shift between them. Abrosexual aros may be entirely allosexual or experience both asexual and allosexual identities. Aceflux aros may experience allosexual identities along with their asexual ones. Being solely and permanently allosexual should never be a requirement for allo-aro identity and community participation.

I can count on one hand (with spare fingers!) how often I’ve seen fellow a-specs acknowledge attraction’s potential fluidity in their defining of “allo-aro”. In stressing adverbs like “permanently”, I am an outlier in the genre of explaining allo-aro identity and community membership.

Most allo-aros explain our identity by the words comprising this term: allosexual and aromantic. What more need one say on this subject after coming to agreed-upon meanings for the words “allosexual” and “aromantic”? What more need one say than to explain that allo-aros are aromantic and not-asexual?

Such an explanation erases a non-zero number of fluid allo-aros (not to mention forcing aromantics who are neither asexual nor allosexual, or reject identifying with this binary construct, under the allo-aro umbrella).

It erases me.

Continue reading “Discussing Allo-Aro Identity (And Why Fluid Folks Need Better Definitions)”

A is for Allo-Aro Pixel Art Icon Set

Handdrawn illustration of a mountain road scene with trees in the foreground and bushes in the background. Scene is overlaid with the dark green/light green/white/yellow/gold stripes of the allo-aro pride flag. The text Aro Worlds Resources sits across the image in a black, antique handdrawn type, separated by two ornate Victorian-style black dividers.

I’m finishing my quest to post something new each day of @aggressivelyarospec‘s Aggressively Arospectacular 2020 event by … squeaking in an extra Sunday post, because it’s still Saturday elsewhere in the world! I wanted to post an allo-aro set of my letter “a” pixel art icons and digital stickers, so why not take advantage of some time zone trickery?

These stickers are available for personal or non-commercial use with credit to one of my accounts.

The selection of allo-aro combo flags is still limited, but on Aro Arrows I have stickers and icons for trans, non-binary, bi lesbian, pansexual and bisexual allo-aro flags, as well as multiple flag variants for some of the stickers shown above. This set of twenty-eight images is also available in both simplified icon and bordered sticker styles!

For flag creator posts, please see my Allo-Aro Flag Guide and the #alloaro tag on @aroflagarchive.

A is for Aro Pixel Art Icon Set

Handdrawn illustration of a mountain road scene with trees in the foreground and bushes in the background. Scene is overlaid with the dark green/light green/white/grey/black stripes of the aro pride flag. The text Aro Worlds Resources sits across the image in a black, antique handdrawn type, separated by two ornate Victorian-style black dividers.

Continuing in my quest to post something new each day of @aggressivelyarospec‘s Aggressively Arospectacular 2020 event, today’s offering is for folks who can’t cross stitch their own pride patches: a set of pixel art icons and digital stickers based on my letter “a” cross stitch design.

These stickers are available for personal or non-commercial use with credit to one of my accounts.

If you’re after identities not shown above, or simplified (no border or drop shadow) versions better for Tumblr icons, please head on over to Aro Arrows! I have a set of forty-eight images in both icon and sticker styles for every aromantic-spectrum identity I can think of that begins with the letter “a” and has a five-stripe flag or flag base!

Aro-Spec Artist Profile: Neir

Handdrawn watercolour-style image of a sparse forest of redwood trees growing among grassy hills, with a white and orange fox sitting in the grass at the base of a tree on the viewer's right-hand side of the image. Scene is overlaid with the dark green/light green/white/grey/black stripes of the aro pride flag. The text Aro Worlds Artist Profiles sits across the image in a black, antique handdrawn type, separated by two ornate Victorian-style black dividers.

Our next aro-spec creator is Neir, introducing eir work to the world as R. Tally, better known here on Tumblr as @tallyrunning​.

Neir is an asexual, aroflux and genderqueer person demonstrating the diversity of talent amongst aro-specs in poetry, fiction and musical composition. You can find eir classical and ambient music on Soundcloud and eir writing on Wattpad and Booksie, encompassing an eclectic mix of literary fiction, autobiography, LGBTQ+ fiction and short stories. If you have a dollar or two you’re wanting to invest in worthy aro-spec talent, please investigate eir Ko-fi!

With us Neir talks about identity and connection to other people, composing non-romantic musical pieces, the fear of misinterpretation by alloromantics and the challenge of finding an audience for non-romantic works. Eir words encapsulate a passion for challenging alloromantic norms and celebrating unique creativity, so please let’s give em all our love, encouragement, gratitude, kudos and follows for taking the time to explore what it is to be aroflux and creative.

Can you share with us your story in being aro-spec?

My aro realization was fairly quiet, and it came much later than I think I logically would have expected it to, had I known it would. It was easy to figure out that I was asexual; sex has always made me very uncomfortable, and as I grew older I realized that it wasn’t immaturity that was causing my repulsion, but just lack of attraction. It didn’t make sense to engage in something I didn’t want to do with someone I didn’t want to do it with. I also had an ace friend at the time, so the vocabulary came easily to me.

My aro realization came much later, around halfway through university (not more than two years ago). A friend of mine whose feelings with regards romance I strongly shared got a boyfriend, and I became confused because if even she could feel romantic attraction, and we were so similar, why couldn’t I?

I am a touchy-feely person who loves hand-holding and hugs, so for the longest time I thought my strong love for my friends (and potential friends – notorious feelings called ‘squishes’ I couldn’t name at the time) had to be romantic. I honestly just did a lot of internet research and stirring in my own head until I woke up one day and just went, “romance is a sham, I don’t understand it and I don’t want it.” The -flux part of my identity is something I recently started using to label my vastly differing moods and feelings day-to-day regarding platonic attraction. Some days I love people and being close to others; other days I want nothing to do with anyone and am cold as ice.

Continue reading “Aro-Spec Artist Profile: Neir”