What's the main difference between friendship and QPR?

Hm. I was thinking it was something more on the aromantic-asexual continuum. Asexual but not aromantic. Otherwise…isn’t is just a friendship between queer people? The question as asked isn’t clear at all, I think all the confusion in this thread makes that very clear.

We suffer as a society by losing the understanding (this is a pot and kettle argument, be warned, as my closest friends are all over the internet and mostly in countries other than my own) of close friendships and deep relationships that aren’t sexual. I think it’s a problem to do with a growing societal immaturity, and no, I have no basis for that assumption or idea of what to do about it. Someone who studies social psychology could probably fill pages with why I am wrong, but from a pure anecdata POV, we simply don’t understand friendship anymore as a society. Everything gets hyperfocused on the question of sex. It’s where the whole “x to lovers” trope does us all the most disservice.


I was partially joking. I didn’t really expect it to be a reference to the Queens Park Rangers, but I didn’t know what QPR was. Never heard of queer platonic relationship.

Also, I’m with @E_RedMark on this one. If it’s platonic, does it matter whether it’s queer or straight or whatnot?

I have NO idea what’s going on in this thread right now, but to answer the original question, QPRs often contain actions that are seen as “romantic” (ie; kissing, holding hands, marriage, living together, raising kids,) in a platonic way. That’s the most common example of QPRs, and the one I see most when they’re represented! However, the whole point of QPRs is that they’re sort of… undefinable, if that makes sense? Like- the entire purpose is that the relationship is something outside of societal norms and what’s seen “appropriate” for two people who are friends, etc. Many aro’s like to distinguish their feelings in QPRs to their more common feelings of platonic love, and call them things like “alterous attraction” or suchlike.

This is all a lot of jargon, but the important thing about QPRs for me, when seeing them in pieces of media, is that it feels like the participants do have an affection for eachother, and they all mean something to the other(s). Too many QPRs i’ve seen in media just feel like lawyer contracts :joy:


The “Queer” in queerplatonic doesn’t refer to sexuality, it refers to the original definition of Queer, which just means outside of societal norms. Something I’m writing contains an M/F married queerplatonic couple!

Edit: to put it short, the “queer” in “queerplatonic” doesn’t mean gay, sdjfsjkdnkjs.


Interesting. Thanks for the clarification.

I guess confusion also comes because in real life relationships are rarely as clear-cut as a lot of media would have us believe - or indeed games, in which friendship may be boiled down to a binary variable. It doesn’t help that we keep seeing silly viral takes like “don’t ask your friends to drive you to the airport” or “don’t expect your friends to cook for you” in which relationships are presented as transactional sets of rules that don’t bear much resemblance to how people relate warmly to each other in real life.

I think you’ve put it much better than I have!


QPR’s aren’t unique to people on the aromantic/asexual spectrum.

It’s essentially people who are close friend’s coming together and making life decisions (similar to what married couples would do) together with no romantic feelings involved - whether that is moving in together, buying a house together, adopting/having a child, etc.

Sometimes, depending on the people involved, it can include physical affection most people equate as romantic gestures or even sexual relations.


Something like this…

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CORRECT!! They’re more common for aro and aroace people solely because we tend to know about them more, (considering the whole “Hey! Romance isn’t for me!”) but they aren’t EXCLUSIVE to us, which is something that bugs me a lot when people talk about them and say they are.

It’s this part that gives me pause, because… it sort of excludes a lot of QPRs that I know. They’re just as diverse and varied as romantic relationships, and summing up romantic relationships as “People that get married and kiss and do xyz with romantic intent/feelings” feels weird.

Like; you can have two teenagers that are dating and in a romantic relationship, who are completely disconnected from each other’s professional and home life! And that’s okay, and recognized as a romantic relationship! But this is what I was talking about earlier; QPRs aren’t just a set of ThingsTM that “elevate” or move a “normal friendship” to a “higher level”. They’re their own thing, if that makes sense? They’re typically separate, or recognized as another type of relationship- by the aro community at least.


Maybe married was a bit too specific as an opposite example, but I meant it as people in a platonic relationship committing to each other intimately and collaborating together on decisions (which could be anything under the sun as it pertains to someone’s life - the examples I gave are just the usual big ones that most people recognize and equate with romantic relationships).

Even if a romantic couple isn’t connected to each other’s home or professional life they would still be collaborating on decisions that effect their partnership.

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I guess what I’m trying to say here is that putting a label on what a QPR IS feels like a disservice to what the term represents. It’s there for people who have certain relationships that can’t be defined by the labels that society has given them, but that they feel like deserves a name to put to. Something that where you can say “Oh, it’s a QPR!” and it won’t tell people what that means or what it contains- because, oftentimes, the participants can’t describe the relationship- but it tells them that the relationship is fairly important to you regardless, and that, whatever it is, it’s something that you care about a lot. Y’know?

Of course, there are the couples that can describe what it is and what it means to them, but the term is incredibly useful to those that can’t.

I know what you were getting at here but it’s kind of funny considering I’ve done this multiple times :joy: I’ve had a few friends where our relationship is fairly physically affectionate (hand holding in public, hugging, cuddling, etc) and I’ve made it VERY clear where I stand on that front (which is, “I enjoy it but you NEEED to understand that I’m aromantic and thus will not enter a romantic relationship with you”) before we continue with said relationship, dhsinsdkj.

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Well, if defining what QPR is (even if vaguely) harms it then… Should I just give up on trying to write it, lmao? :sweat_smile:
Because I want to represent it (+ it feels kinda scam-y when IFs advertise be ace/aro/both, but then for players who choose it just emits RO content & don’t add anything for those players… ), but right now I don’t know what to do… :face_exhaling:

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Write … get readers who are ace/aero/both and have them give you feedback on your writing

The first step is to get your story written, then you can use feedback to make changes and tweaks as needed.


AH- no, not at all, I should have worded that better-

What I was trying to say is that QPRs are diverse enough that people saying there’s “one” way to do a QPR feels bad and wrong, not that there’s no way to define certain types of QPRs.

I kind of got off track in the way of advice for you and just started talking about QPRs in general (I got excited because there’s like no acknowledgement of their existence so-) but once again, the most important thing I would keep in mind is to make sure it feels like the characters actually have affection for eachother in a real way.

If you’re looking to write one, I would say maybe add some of the “what are we?” vibes to it? For a more natural forming/slow burn QPR, there is a LOT of that, and perhaps there could be a scene where the two talk about what They AreTM, and how they make eachother feel. A sort of “X character feels romantic love for the first time” but it’s for the characters trying to define/figure out what they MEAN to eachother? This is hard to explain in ways that aren’t like. Specific and not generalized, shdnfskdj.

This is also a very good idea!!!


Don’t stop trying to write it. Just the fact that we’re talking about it indicates that there’s a group of players being left out and our not knowing how to define it or if it even needs to be defined doesn’t mean those players don’t deserve a story that has a relationship category specifically for them.


I guess I just don’t see how I’ve described it is doing the term itself a disservice. A QPR isn’t a friendship in the strictest sense of the word nor is it a romantic partnership but it does have a level of intimacy and collaboration similar to what someone would usually expect to see in an romantic relationship.

It’s an oversimplification of it sure, but trying to explain all the specific nuances of a relationship (platonic, romantic, or familial) - especially when speaking about a concept in the abstract - is a fool’s errand.

Like the others have said, I wouldn’t give up on writing it if that’s what you want to write about. Gaps in knowledge about a subject just means you need to do some research and get feedback from various sources. As long as you go about it respectfully (like any other subject matter) you will be just fine.


This is interesting… I’ve been wondering what constitutes a QPR for a few years now. It makes me wonder if I’m in one? I met my childhood best friend in the 9th grade and we’ve been inseparable ever since – despite multiple year-long spats of me living abroad and moving around the world a ton. It’s 15+ years later and we live together now, independently for the first time. We planned and saved for this move together for years and combine our bills when we can. We raise our cats together (they do not get along so it is definitely a team effort lol). We’re actively planning the next move which is meant to be to the country we finally want to settle in. We make lifestyle changes together. We do groceries together. I think the only things we don’t mix at this point are meals and laundry :joy: And meals is literally just because we have very different diets.

She is, of course, my platonic friend. But since moving out here together (about to be a year soon), I’ve found myself consistently struggling to call her my “best friend” or “childhood best friend” even. Roommate is an absolute no-go. None of those feel correct or right or even respectful(???) of the commitment we make to communicating and cohabiting the way that we do. I’ve also called her my sister in the past, but, honestly, I’m the oldest of 10 and she doesn’t feel like a “sister” to me. She’s family, but it’s something different. We literally make our life decisions together and there’s no one else in my life that is true of, even though I’ve got a gigantic family and other very close friends.

So… if that describes what might be a QPR, there’s some food for thought? We’ve never had A Talk before though so :eyes: I’ll bring it up to her tomorrow and gather her thoughts! Will update later lol

*Post-conversation update: yeah, basically :laughing: she completely agreed with everything I expressed in this post. as i expected she would! it feels more accurate to refer to her as my partner but it isn’t what I’d want to use in casual conversation because it would definitely be misconstrued as romantic. but it feels closest to the most accurate word for who she is to me, far more accurate than sister or best friend :slight_smile:


I am thinking I might have a committed platonic friendship between two primary characters in my own story. I think showing more diversity in the types of relationships people can form would be valuable! [What do you define it as…? I am unsure, I was thinking of two people who were extremely close for almost a decade, lived together, and spent a lot of time with one another. Enough they could more or less gauge each other’s moods based off of a look, and there was little motivation between them to keep up walls. Still, they never felt a need to put any special words to how they felt about one another. They knew they had a deep connection, much else beyond that didn’t matter.]

That is what I would think of, anyway. This conversation has made me re-evaluate my own preconceptions. I just realized I might be on the aro-spectrum. Damn.

Also, part of me wonders how many "QPR"s there have been in the past that get railed into ‘being friends’ or ‘being lovers’ but really the line was blurry for a reason. We have a tendency to try to paint history as black and white when in reality there was just as many shades of gray then as there is now.


The thing with any type of relationship is that it’s not binary or black and white, much less one like the kind you’re trying to write about. What’s most important in writing is that the relationship makes sense within the context of the story, and that the characters involved are people and not caricatures or stereotypes.