This year, Asexual Awareness week comes out on October 22 – 28. This is the perfect time to share some info about this often misunderstood identity.
Like any other gender or sexual identity, Asexuality exists on a spectrum. (That in itself could be the take away from this post.) Folks may identify as Demisexual or Gray-As, which loosely means that a strong emotional connection is needed before sex is even considered. Whereas someone who is not asexual could objectively find someone sexually attractive (and possibly want to have sex with them) without ever even speaking with, let alone getting to know them deeply; that element of attraction may not happen initially for people who are asexual.
Asexuality should not be confused with gender identity or presentation. Nor should asexuality be confused with orientation. Furthermore, people who identify as asexual may have relationships. These relationships also exist on spectrums and can take the shapes from monogamous to polyamorous or nonmonogamous. In cases where the relationship style leans toward nonmonogamy, it can be a relief to the person who is asexual paired with a partner who is sexual for that partner to have other partners with whom they can be sexual.
How asexual folks relate to sex and masturbation, also runs the gamut. Some have no interest in sex or self-pleasuring, others will see these as more of a release, or stress relief, or ways to connect with their partner, emotionally or otherwise. Still others, will quite enjoy sex, but it’s not something that they’d gravitate toward and would just as soon do something else.
With this in mind, folks who are asexual may identify many, many ways, whether they ever have (partnered) sex or not; they may be heteroromantic, homoromantic, biromantic, panromantic, or even aromantic (not to be confused with aromatic, though I’m sure they smell just fine).
This was meant to be a very basic, maybe 101, post on asexuality. I’ve included a few resources below if you are interested in learning more. Ultimately, I wanted to shed some light onto an often stigmatized and misunderstood group. Asexuality, just like anything else, falls on a spectrum.
If you identify as asexual, there’s no right or wrong way to do it.
You are valid.
Just a few resources on asexuality to get you started:
Asexual ACES Facebook Page
(A)sexual the movie – you can check out a trailer here.