This is a submission for the January 2021 Carnival of Aros, hosted by CharCharChar on the theme of “Stories”. The Call for Submissions was here. Note, I’m the blogger who used to go by the name luvtheheaven. This is my new blog under my new username, VioletEmeraldx. This is the third of my submissions.
The prompts we were given include:
Stories shape perception, expectation, and the fabric of reality.
Complain about a story, or a recurring theme in stories.
as well as
Analyze the story line of a movie or fanfic or a podcast.
I have so many thoughts that may jump off of these prompts and relate in some way to aromanticism, although some are more of a stretch to tie to aromanticism than others.
I rewatched the tv series Friday Night Lights this past summer, and then for the past 6 weeks I’ve been rewatching Gilmore Girls.
For Gilmore Girls, I’ve been taking notes on every single mention of anything relating to queerness, to gender roles, whether it be just acknowledging that not everyone is straight or a homophobic or transphobic joke or whatever. I’ve seen nearly 5 seasons of the show in these 6 weeks. (I know; I need to figure out ways to spend much more time on all the things that aren’t binge-watching television and much less time on the TV show viewing.)
I started doing this for a few reasons. Gilmore Girls is one of the most formative shows for me in my life, and one of my favorite television series of all time. Around age 15 or so, I started the series, and when I started vidding near the start of my junior year of high school when I was 16, after maybe 2 ER vids I ended up vidding nearly 100 vids all in the Gilmore Girls fandom before my senior year of high school concluded, within about a year and a half. I probably created over 100 Gilmore Girls fanvideos before I turned 19. (As I’ve said in a recent blog post, I turned 31 slightly over a week ago from the time of me posting this.)
This is a submission for the January 2021 Carnival of Aros, hosted by CharCharChar on the theme of “Stories”. The Call for Submissions was here. Note, I’m the blogger who used to go by the name luvtheheaven. This is my new blog under my new username, VioletEmeraldx. This is the second of my submissions, and I hope to post a third submission tonight.
A few months ago, in July and August, I rewatched the entire MTV television series “Faking It”, and started to clip and share on YouTube all the moments of Amy’s journey questioning her sexuality.
This is a show about a pair of best friends who are mistaken for being lesbians by a classmate, and then one of the pair decides it would be a good idea to fake and pretend being lesbians, and the other develops intense feelings for her friend and isn’t actually “faking” anything in their “Fake dating” dynamic. Many people have expressed extreme criticisms of the premise, and also especially of the character Karma’s horrible exploitation of the way straight cis guys often fetishize lesbians where she uses “faking being a lesbian” in order to “get a guy she has a huge crush on”, and there is at least one explicitly biphobic moment of dialogue in just the videos I link to below…
However, there is this undercurrent of something so genuine and relatable to so many queer fans of the show in Amy’s questioning her sexuality storyline, and so much heart, which means I and many others can’t help but love the series. They also play with the idea of Karma potentially being bi all along, and only faking being a lesbian with Amy because deep down Karma has romantic & sexual feelings for Amy. They never establish for sure what Karma’s orientations are either.
The answer to the question of “what is Amy’s sexual orientation” is never “answered” per se before the show was canceled, as Amy doesn’t like labels. The writers of this show give you the idea early into the show that she might be a lesbian and not attracted to guys in any romantic and/or sexual way, especially given how she kisses Oliver and doesn’t enjoy kissing him. She thinks all the things line up where she “should” like him, and begs for answers about why she doesn’t.
But the show also implies she only ever has had the kind of feelings she currently is having for the first time in her life for this one close female friend of hers, Karma, and demisexuality and/or demiromanticism are legitimate possibilities that would have worked well, had the show decided to show that.
With time, she seems to fall for a couple of other girls in the latter 2 seasons, and to have potential feelings for Felix, a boy, as well. I believe her continued questioning really made it seem like she’s biromantic but homosexual or demisexual, OR, conversely, bisexual but homoromantic or demiromantic. Where she has such mixed feelings, because she is written in a way to have mixed orientations and that’s confusing for anyone without the language for it. She does legitimately feel some kind of feelings for both genders, probably feelings that are different than what she feels for friends, but not “all” the feelings for both genders.
Amy also strikes me as potentially both demiromantic and demisexual but then certain episodes/seasons she doesn’t quite as much. So it’s complicated.
I also really enjoy the queerplatonic vibes I find myself reading into Amy&Karma’s friendship, because of how they call each other “soulmates” and Amy has feelings that are not platonic but the relationship remains platonic throughout the series, especially seasons 2 and 3 after they stop pretending to date.
As an aro viewer, I can’t help but feel drawn to the way friendship is such an important theme in these characters’ lives. As an ace viewer, I love seeing a variety of comfort levels with sex depending on the character, including Amy’s seeming lack of comfort with sex relative to Karma’s in many instances. As a generally queer viewer, the show resonates so much more than most shows would because it has a questioning queer main character at the heart of the series, instead of centering around the heteronormative types of stories that are usually told. (The show also has an intersex character, a gay guy main character, etc.)
This show gave me a hint of a taste for the kinds of stories I would love to see be told on television. I want to see a questioning aro character at some point, and more questioning aces than the few I’ve seen. I want demisexuality and demiromanticism to be brought up on a TV show one day. I want people who have never seen themselves in a character before to be able to one day see themselves in a character.
This is a submission for the January 2021 Carnival of Aros, hosted by CharCharChar on the theme of “Stories”. The Call for Submissions was here. Note, I’m the blogger who used to go by the name luvtheheaven. This is my new blog under my new username, VioletEmeraldx. This is the first of my submissions, but I intend to submit one or maybe two more tonight.
It’s just hard for me to even know where to begin, as I have so many thoughts on the broad idea of “stories”, and so many can at least somewhat be tied back to aromanticism. But also none of my thoughts are super specifically focused on aromanticism either. I really wanted to participate in this carnival this month though, I like the theme, and I wanted to see what I can do.
I am heavily immersed in fandom spaces, especially vidding ones, and to a lesser degree podficcing ones, and to an even lesser degree than that I am a fan of fanfiction and meta analysis of fandoms as well, and for all 4 types of fandom stuff I love both consuming and creating the fanworks. I entered fandom spaces somewhere between age 14 and age 16 depending on how you measure it, and I’m 31 now, so this has been roughly half my life. This has been 14.5 to 16.5 years worth of time paying overly close attention to characters I get attached to and feeling deep emotions over the storylines in fiction, especially in television and a few select book series. I didn’t know I was asexual until 7.5 years ago, and didn’t realize it was an option until around 9.5 years ago. And I didn’t know I was aromantic until even more recently than that, although I guess I started questioning if I might be aro in the back of my mind around 7.5 years ago as well.
There were a lot of years of a teenage and young adult me entering fandom spaces and feeling obsessed with works of fiction when I didn’t have the concepts I needed to have about my orientations. When I didn’t know it was possible to be interested in partnering with multiple genders when my only desire for partnership was in a completely non-sexual and non-romantic way, and so I didn’t know I was queer on a few different axes – I was pan, and I was ace, and I was aro.
Two years ago, in January 2019, when I was asked how could I be aro and a shipper by my grandmother, I explained that it’s often like rooting for two people to be happy much like going to a wedding. My grandma understood me saying that people aren’t happy for the couple getting married because they are attracted to them. Generally, people are simply happy for them. So I think this is where I come from with all this with at least a high percentage of my ships? But I wasn’t entirely sure. As an aro-spec ace who was confused about if I experience crushes at all or very often but who certainly is a shipper, it’s hard to explain why I feel the way I do, especially without understanding exactly why others feel the way they do and where my feelings diverge.