Joci was 10 years old when she first realized she might not be exactly like everyone else.
While attending a church service, she noticed that all of her friends were “going absolutely nuts” over the “cute as a button” 12-year-old son of a guest preacher.
“I remember looking at my mother and pulling her aside and saying, ‘What is wrong with them?’” she told me when we spoke for the latest episode of “D Is For Desire,” HuffPost’s new love and sex podcast. “She just looked at me and she said, ‘It’ll happen to you at some point,’ and I remember thinking, God, I hope not.”
Spoiler alert: It never did happen for her.
But Joci didn’t realize why until she was 46 and came across the word “aromantic,” which means feeling little or no romantic attraction, in a Sherlock Holmes fan fiction story. Suddenly everything started to make sense.
But many ― probably most ― of us have never heard of aromanticism or even considered that we have a romantic orientation.
In this episode of “D Is For Desire,” I chat with Joci to learn about what life has been like as an aromantic, why she ended up getting married despite feeling no romantic attraction, and how everything changed for her and her spouse when she finally discovered she wasn’t “broken.” I also chat with Elizabeth Brake, a professor of philosophy at Rice University whose research involves how we define and understand romance and try fit ourselves into it:
New episodes of “D Is For Desire,” which include a journey into the world of sex witches, an interview with a man who’s had 10,000 sex partners, and a look at the joys of period sex, will premiere each Friday. Subscribe below so you don’t miss a single desire-filled minute.
Subscribe to “D Is For Desire” on your favorite podcast platform:
“D Is For Desire” is produced and edited by Nick Offenberg, Sara Patterson, Becca DeGregorio and Noah Michelson, who also hosts the podcast. If you have a question or a comment about the show or a suggestion for an episode, email us at email@example.com.
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This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.