…and wow. I’m a little surprised by some of the ways people have found me.
(Trigger Warning for some discussion of Child Sexual Abuse in the first 3 paragraphs below.)
First of all, let me say that there are a few searches that have led people to my blog that make me worry that children and/or teens who are being sexually abused in various ways by family members are finding my blog but not finding the advice they need, because I don’t write about those topics. I suspect they might be finding my blog because the word “Family” is in the title of this blog, and because I discuss things related to sex frequently on here. Luckily, these searches are the minority of the ways people are finding my blog, but I still feel compelled to try to help these searchers. I may be overreacting and misinterpreting these searches, but just in case I’m not…
To these people, I want to say that if you feel uncomfortable about what your family is having you do with them, trust your feelings. If you are wondering if it’s normal for families to participate in sexual acts together, it’s not. “Family masturbation” is a search term that worries me greatly. I’m not sure what the searcher meant by that, and also someone else searched “sharing sex in the family”, but just in case, I have some recommendations now. Please consider reading this page: http://www.americanhumane.org/children/stop-child-abuse/fact-sheets/child-sexual-abuse.html for a list of some of the things that can count as sexual abuse. This PDF is also very worth reading: http://dcf.vermont.gov/sites/dcf/files/pdf/protectkids/Protecting_Your_Children.pdf and I just urge you to consider the fact that you may not have realized it was abuse, but it certainly may have been.
If you want to talk to someone privately about your experiences, you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I promise not to tell anyone else your story. I can try to help you find other people who are better equipped to handle talking to you about your situation, whether you are an adult now, or still a teenager, or even if you are a younger child. I am not a sexual abuse survivor myself, for which I am very grateful, so I will try my hardest to remain aware of my own limitations. But if anonymity is important to you, that will remain my first priority. I am saying all of this because a few of the searches that led to people clicking on my blog worry me, including some that are quite ambiguous which I’m not writing out now but which may have been related to childhood sexual assault/abuse, so I just really want to make sure I say these things to those of you, just in case. I don’t want to ignore what may be a very serious problem that you need help with.
Now I’m not sure how to transition out of that awful topic, but… um… For all of the other search terms that have led people to my blog here, things are not quite as upsetting.
On the lightest/most “fun” note, I would like to apologize to those of you looking for specifically “lemon” (sexual) fanfiction for certain specific fandoms or characters, or even in one case if you were looking for a The Fosters fic about menstruation?? All of my fanfiction is rated T, pretty much, and I’ve never written much about sex between characters. If you guys want to read my fics, you’d have to go here, although my fanfiction is never what would be called a “lemon”, sorry, and I’ve also never written about menstruation. And if you want to find M-rated/Explicit sexual fanfiction I recommend you go specifically to fanfiction websites, rather than Google, and use each site’s specific search tools to find what you’re looking for. For Brandon/Callie lemons, try clicking here. 😛 I know multiple people were looking for them when they found my blog. Etc.
Despite the surprisingly high number of fanfiction searchers, most of the people coming to my blog have more likely found things somewhat related to what they were looking for.
The main thing people find is my very old post about What is the difference between Platonic and Romantic Love?, after searching for pretty much those exact same words. It disheartens me a little to read one person contrasting platonic with “real” love in their search, as all kinds of love are certainly “real”, but I also understand how romantic love is coded as the only “real” one in our amatonormative* society. I also, similarly, got a search for “What’s the different between love and platonic love?” – *sigh*.
Spade Coyote explains importantly at the end of a great post which you should read in its entirety here:
the idea of Platonic love comes with some extra ideological baggage — which is that the point of Platonic love, the equal love between two romantically-entwined philosophers, is meant to serve as a stepping stone to enlightenment and spiritual growth, an idea which I think a lot of the aro community would reject. It posits physical attraction/desire (and I’m presuming all three types of physical, here) as something “base” and “earthly”, which is elitist, but also suggests that such feelings are necessary in the process of beginning to appreciate and contemplate wider universal mysteries, specifically by embarking on that path in dialogue with another, in a way that implies aromantics, singles, and nonamorous people are disqualified from developing the same depth of meaningful philosophical thought as those with Platonic lovers.
…”platonic” is a very loaded term with a very complex history of meaning.
I mean, in the first place the term “platonic” may be problematic and I’m not 100% sure what everyone means when they use it – what they’re looking for when they search Google and find my blog here.
Secondly, even if “platonic” in many people’s minds simply means “everything that isn’t romantic” that still doesn’t help me much when it comes to understanding what searchers are looking for, because the definition of romantic is clearly confusing for me – and for many of my searchers too. I’m WTFromantic myself, precisely because I have a lot of confusion surrounding the blurry dividing line between romance and… everything else. Because I feel like I fall on the aromantic spectrum, and am somewhere around gray-romantic. Because I went from thinking I was “straight” (meaning, in my case, heteroromantic heterosexual) to realizing I was asexual but still thinking I was heteroromantic, to realizing I might be more biromantic/panromantic, to realizing maybe I was actually aromantic… or maybe I was still some degree of heteroromantic or panromantic… to settling, finally, on a state of relatively permanent confusion as my romantic identity because I was no longer working actively to figure it out, and that was when I adopted the label wtfromantic.
Some other common things people search for before stumbling upon my blog are the term “wtfromantic” itself, and some other searches that have happened less frequently, sometimes by only 1 person, include: “asexual difference between romance and friendship”, “heteroromantics can still fall platonically in love with same sex”, “i think im aromantic?”, “what is monogamous platonic relationship?”, or “what is the difference between monogamous and platonic?”.
I think that poor person with that latter search might’ve been very confused. To answer the question, monogamous means, according to The American Heritage Dictionary:
The practice or condition of having a single sexual partner during a period of time.
The practice or condition of being married to only one person at a time.
I’m pretty sure we have expanded the definition to mean just 1 “romantic partner”, just one “boyfriend” or “girlfriend” or “significant other” at a time. I’m pretty sure that most people agree that even if celibate/non-sexual, a romantic relationship can be monogamous, but the term is not used for non-romantic partnerships/friendships/family relationships, unless perhaps it is a “QPLP” (another search term multiple people have used to find my blog) – a Queerplatonic Life Partner is specifically “queering” of “platonic” relationships and one way those relationships can be queered is by letting monogamy apply to a non-romance, I suppose. Queerplatonic relationships DO NOT have to be “for life”, but they potentially could be. (And FYI, potentially another way queerplatonic relationships could “queer” traditional platonic relationships is by letting the “opposite” of monogamy, polyamory, apply to the queerplatonic relationships, as well.)
More search terms people have used before stumbling upon my From Fandom to Family blog here:
“is everyone panromantic?”, “the difference between platonic relationship”, – again, I’m worried these searchers may have been quite confused?? .
I want my blog to be able to help these searchers with their questions, but I don’t have all of the answers. I still don’t know what the difference is between romantic and platonic love, and part of the problem is that it is different for everyone. I recommend people check out Queenie’s linkspam on greyness, perhaps, because that might be the best place for, at the very least, realizing just how grey and confusing this can be for many other people, not just you and me.
I have also gotten an array of searches that I don’t quite know what to do with:
- “i dont feel like you love me”
- “how to compel my bf to touch me”**
- “asexuality virgin forever”
- “asexual/sexual he prefers to remain friends”
- “my boyfriend took off my bra during sex when i was wearing nothing else and i didnt notice”
- “why stay in a relationship with someone you love, but only platonically”
- “how to bury desire of having sex forever”
- “how to tell the difference between want, need and love?”
- “is like and love the same?”
- “sex parts doubts”
- “do asexuals virgins feel a lot more pain when having first time sex”
- “platonic sex but still go out and hang out”
- “my wife is averse to sexual pleasure”
- “do lesbians squirm during love making?”
- “broke up with asexual”
- “if im a heterosexual panromantic then does that mean im still straight?”
So this is pretty much the entirety of how people have found my blog, and I find it fascinating (and at times, upsetting/worrisome). I just felt like sharing, today, since my last post on this blog was for the September Carnival of Aces and I just felt like it was about time I posted something else again. Please don’t hesitate to leave a comment below, especially if you have any thoughts on any of the “questions I didn’t know what to do with” in the bullet points above.
*When I use the term “amatonormative”, I basically mean that every single human being is assumed to experience romantic feelings, that romance is assumed to be the best kind of love, that everyone’s ultimate/biggest goal in life is to end up in a happy romantic relationship, that without romantic love your life is empty, etc, etc. Read posts like this for more perspective: http://bibliotheca-babble-on.tumblr.com/post/88196700219/beranyth-bibliotheca-babble-on
**People, you really should not be asking how to “compel” your boyfriends (or girlfriends) to do anything. This language choice is icky and controlling and doesn’t sound like you respect your boyfriend as a person with his own boundaries and desires.