This year, February 21-27 was Aromantic Spectrum Awareness Week: a whole week to celebrate arospecs! So all month long, every Friday, I made art inspired by an arospec orientation. And during the week itself, I released a piece daily. Lastly, I made a digital quilt that compiles all of this year’s arospec art together, which I released on the 28th.
February, especially Valentine’s Day, brings a lot of pressure to conform to alloromantic norms, so it’s important to be extra supportive of arospecs at this time. We’re even erased by the wider queer community too, so please do your best to be a great ally for us. And one way you can do that is by learning different arospec experiences, and from different arospec people.
Without further ado, the art.
A light green layer on top of a medium green layer, a medium blue layer, a dark blue layer, and a white-green layer. inspired by the arospec flag!
a large green diagonal stripe left of center on a black and white background. right of center is a small gray diagonal rectangle. on top of the green diagonal strip and the black part of the background is a small light green triangle, anchored to the bottom of the image. inspired by the current aromantic flag!
white triangles, silver triangles, and green triangles scattered across a black background. Demiromantic. “someone who does not experience romantic attraction until they have formed a deep emotional connection with someone.”
gray and silver cubes inside white cubes on a blue and light blue background. Frayromantic. “when someone only experiences romantic attraction towards those that they are not deeply connected with, and lose that attraction as they get to know the person.”
large red dots, medium blue dots, small white dots, and small pink dots on a dark blue background. Nebularomantic. “unable to distinguish the difference between romantic and platonic attraction… due to one’s status as neurodivergent.” neurotypical counterpart: platoniromantic. closely related: idemromantic. I’ve known about neurogenders for a while now, and those are super cool. So learning about neuro-orientations was like “oh yes, of course neurotype can affect your orientation(s) too!” People like me have our own branch of queerness! ^-^ And we have wiki pages! It makes me very happy.
tiny white circles, small light green circles, small medium-light green circles, medium green circles, medium-dark green circles, and large gray circles trailing across a black background. Caedromantic. “someone who feels that they were, at one point alloromantic, but that has been taken or ‘cut away’ from them due to past trauma.”
a white rectangle anchored in the top left corner of the image, reaching halfway across. Beneath it is a wider light blue rectangle that reaches all the way across the image. Beneath the light blue rectangle is a light yellow rectangle that reaches halfway across the image, starting from the right side. A ways below that is a silver square peeking out of the right side. Black background. Requisromantic. “someone who has limited or no romantic attraction, interest, or activity due to some form of emotional exhaustion.”
an argyle pattern featuring green and gray diamonds and pink lines.
pink, green, and gray horizontal stripes.
a few green and pink diamonds on a gray background.
many pink and green diamonds on a gray background. Arospike. “someone who usually feels no romantic attraction, but occasionally has rare and sudden spikes of romantic attraction for an amount of time that can vary from a day to a couple of months before returning to one’s normal amounts of aromanticism”.
a cat outline with light green, yellow, and gray circles. its eyes and nose are green. black background.
black, yellow, green, and light green circles on a gray background.
yellow, gray, light green, and green squares on a black background.
yellow, light green, gray, and black triangles on a green background. These four pieces were inspired by an older, yellow-striped aromantic flag. The reason we use the white-striped flag now instead of this one is because yellow can cause people sensory issues; and pride needs to include everybody, not just neurotypical people. Ableist queers can fuck right off.
a giant star on a white background. the star has a light green core following a pink layer, a light pink layer, and a black layer.
tiny white stars, small pink stars, little light pink stars, and medium light green stars on a black background.
pink, black, light green, and light pink stars waving across a white background.
pink, light green, light pink, and white stars bundled on a black background. Recipromantic. “someone who does not experience romantic attraction unless they know that the other person is romantically attracted to them first.”
squares of various sizes and shades of green and gray on a white background.
half hearts of various sizes and shades of green, gray, and white, on a dark gray background. the half hearts are cloistered in the center of the image, with the green ones on the outermost layer, pale green and light gray in between, and white and dark gray in the center.
rectangles of various sizes and shades of green and gray on a white background.
hexagons of various sizes and shades of green, gray, and white, on a dark gray background. Grayromantic “those who relate with aromanticism, yet feel that there are parts of their experience that aren’t fully described by the word aromantic.”
a digital quilt featuring art inspired by the yellow stripe aromantic, recipromantic, arospike, grayromantic, caedromantic, requisromantic, arospec, white stripe aromantic, demiromantic, frayromantic, and nebularomantic flags. captioned “we are all queer, period!”
Arospec people are queer, period! We do not need another queer identity to be queer. We are queer just by virtue of being arospec.
If you exclude arospec people from the queer community, you’re excluding me too. And I’m way more queer than you’ll ever be 😛!
I generally just call myself aro or arospec since I’m satisfied with those labels; but I could specify that further with nebularomantic and occasional bouts of requisromanticism. I’m very demiromantic too. It takes me forever to slot people into the friends category, let alone the love interests category.
But anyway, I hope my art and words are affirming to my fellow arospecs.
And I hope alloromantics are inspired to learn more about the many wonderful identities included in the aromantic spectrum, and to learn from arospec people and our experiences. Who knows? Maybe you’re not as alloromantic as you think.
And I hope arophobes fuck right off.
The original form of this post debuted in
Queersletter Issue #1.