An asexual is someone who doesn’t experience sexual attraction to any gender. It’s the same neutral feeling a straight person has towards their own gender; only I have that neutral feeling towards everyone.
In a way, I always knew. For the longest time, I considered my lack of sexual attraction a personality quirk rather than an orientation. I read my first article about asexuality when I was 22; it was less of a sudden revelation and more of a quiet realization. I openly identified as asexual not long after.
Common Misconceptions About Asexuals
The most common is that asexuality is a choice. Like any other orientation, asexuality is not a choice; abstinence or celibacy is a choice. It’s who we are and there’s nothing else to it. An asexual may choose to be celibate, but a celibate person is, by definition, not asexual.
Another is that we’re heartless or incapable of having a meaningful relationship. There are many different types of relationships; just because we don’t see our partners as sexually attractive, doesn’t mean we don’t desire an intimate relationship with them. Everyone experiences asexuality differently; some want to be in relationships and others don’t. And a successful relationship isn’t inherently dependent on the sexualities of the individuals; it’s dependent on how well you communicate your needs and desires.
The worst, I believe, is that we haven’t slept with the right person yet. It’s often stated as a challenge by people who see us as closeted gays (or straights). And they usually follow-up with invasive questions such as: “How do you masturbate?”, “Do you still have sex?”, or “Are you asexual because you were raped?”. There is no sincerity behind these questions, and it’s frankly none of their business.
Does It Affect Dating Choices?
My sexuality doesn’t affect my dating choices or relationships at all. I did have to explain why I left the dating pool for a while, but it’s not something I feel left out of. I’d rather spend my time alone then with an intimate partner, and embracing my sexuality had made that easier to accept.
Asexuality doesn’t change how we seek out relationships. We look for partners or friends based on shared interests, beliefs, and values; just like everyone else.
Personal Views Towards Sex
It’s not something I enjoy or would do again, it’s just awkward and uncomfortable. Even watching or reading porn was a challenge, I stopped trying a few months in. Masturbating can be a bit tricky, but I find it much more pleasurable than partnered sex.
Despite my feelings towards partnered sex, I don’t view sex itself as repulsive or something to be ashamed about. (It would just be contradictory to my work if I did.) I believe that consenting adults have the right to experiment and engage in safe sex. If you have sex daily or don’t have sex at all, it’s no matter. Your body, your choice, right?
How To Have A Relationship With Asexuals
I’m going to tell you the secret to having a healthy relationship with an asexual. Talk. With. Them. That’s it, that’s all there is. Just as in any other relationship, you should be discussing what you are and are not comfortable with. Not every asexual is the same. Some enjoy sex, some are neutral about it, and others are repulsed by it. A few are kinkier than I would have guessed. Discuss what you would like to happen in the bedroom, or what you would like to avoid. They might prefer to engage in different forms of intimacy. Or they may be opposed to any form of contact that would be considered sexual. I recommend reading articles about mixed relationships with asexuals; they offer more advice than I can in this short article.
And honestly, it may not work out. While it may be devastating in the short-term, it’ll be much better for both of you in the long run. Neither of you are wrong for wanting more (or less) from your partner. However, it is wrong to expect your partner to alter their entire personality and/or sexuality for your own benefit.
Understand Asexuals Better
Asexuality.org and whatisasexuality.com are great resources for anyone interesting in learning more about asexuality. Wiki.asexuality.org keeps track of academic journals, interviews, and articles written about or by asexuals. And some dedicated members of the community have made wonderful infographics and comics explaining the basics of asexuality. These are excellent resourcing for the curious or the questioning.
Summer – I started selling my panties by accident thanks to a few resourceful friends. For about a year, I worked freelance before I decided to switch to an online platform. It’s been a slow transition, but is certainly better than my previous haphazard methods. Feel free to follow me on Snapchat as I do exciting things such as: laundry, painting my nails, and watching all 8 Harry Potter movies in one sitting.
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