What Is This “Asexuality” Thing?

[tweetmeme source=”joliea” only_single=false]
The other day I read a very interesting post written by @cdohnio on his blog and since I’ve always wanted to know about asexuality, I read more on the links he provided.

He gladly allowed me to ‘borrow’ his post and here it is.

Overview
An asexual is someone who does not experience sexual attraction. Unlike celibacy, which people choose, asexuality is an intrinsic part of who we are. Asexuality does not make our lives any worse or any better, we just face a different set of challenges than most sexual people. There is considerable diversity among the asexual community; each asexual person experiences things like relationships, attraction, and arousal somewhat differently. Asexuality is just beginning to be the subject of scientific research.

Relationships
Asexual people have the same emotional needs as anyone else, and like in the sexual community we vary widely in how we fulfill those needs. Some asexual people are happier on their own, others are happiest with a group of close friends. Other asexual people have a desire to form more intimate romantic relationships, and will date and seek long-term partnerships. Asexual people are just as likely to date sexual people as we are to date each other.

Sexual or nonsexual, all relationships are made up of the same basic stuff. Communication, closeness, fun, humor, excitement and trust all happen just as much in sexual relationships as in nonsexual ones. Unlike sexual people, asexual people are given few expectations about the way that our intimate relationships will work. Figuring out how to flirt, to be intimate, or to be monogamous in a nonsexual relationships can be challenging, but free of sexual expectations we can form relationships in ways that are grounded in our individual needs and desires.

Attraction
Many asexual people experience attraction, but we feel no need to act out that attraction sexually. Instead we feel a desire to get to know someone, to get close to them in whatever way works best for us. Asexual people who experience attraction will often be attracted to a particular gender, and will identify as lesbian, gay, bi, or straight.

Arousal
For some sexual arousal is a fairly regular occurrence, though it is not associated with a desire to find a sexual partner or partners. Some will occasionally masturbate, but feel no desire for partnered sexuality. Other asexual people experience little or no arousal. Because we donโ€™t care about sex, asexual people generally do not see a lack of sexual arousal as a problem to be corrected, and focus their energy on enjoying other types of arousal and pleasure.

Note: People do not need sexual arousal to be healthy, but in a minority of cases a lack of arousal can be the symptom of a more serious medical condition. If you do not experience sexual arousal or if you suddenly lose interest in sex you should probably check with a doctor just to be safe.

Identity
Most people on AVEN (Asexuality Visibility and Education Network) have been asexual for our entire lives. Just as people will rarely and unexpectedly go from being straight to gay, asexual people will rarely and unexpectedly become sexual or vice versa. Another small minority will think of themselves as asexual for a brief period of time while exploring and questioning their own sexuality.

There is no litmus test to determine if someone is asexual. Asexuality is like any other identity- at its core, itโ€™s just a word that people use to help figure themselves out. If at any point someone finds the word asexual useful to describe themselves, we encourage them to use it for as long as it makes sense to do so.

I hope this has opened the eyes of more people out there ๐Ÿ™‚

Advertisements

12 Responses to “What Is This “Asexuality” Thing?”

  1. cdohnio Says:

    Nice! Now that I’ve featured on your blog I demand I be put on your blogroll!

    • Joliea Says:

      DONE!!!

      • cdohnio Says:

        Yaaayyyyy!!!

  2. Wyndago Says:

    Now now, this is new to me. But it reminds of a chic i once knew who didn’t like sex! She said it was messy and yucky, but the foreplay part appealed to her. I guess we can slap that ‘asexual’ sticker on her back. But that first guy to do her really spoiled for a lot of men out there.. just sayin ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Joliea Says:

      Haha! I bet she wouldnt want to be labelled at all by anyone else other than herself! Buut…if she liked foreplay then I doubt she is asexual. Hmmm…..funny,,,,more chics prefer foreplay to actual sex! #ohjustlikeme!!! ๐Ÿ˜€

      • Rainbow Amoeba Says:

        Asexuality does not mean not enjoying sex – I know several asexual people who have sex with their non-asexual romantic partners and do enjoy it. Asexuality means not to experience sexual attraction – not to feel attracted to someone in a way that would translate into wanting to have sex with them.

        Some asexuals do think that sex is disgusting, but many asexuals are very sex-positive and think sex is certainly great – they just don’t feel like having it, or don’t see the point.

      • Joliea Says:

        Thanks for this RA. Sheds more light on the dark topic!

  3. wyndago Says:

    I see. If only there was enough of me to go around then I bet the case would be different. lol!

  4. PKW Says:

    I’m now one level less ignorant on sexual orientation (or practically, lack of ?)

    • Joliea Says:

      Practically less, yes!

      Good thing though. Thanks for dropping by!

  5. Stephanie Silberstein Says:

    Thank you for this post. I am asexual and sooo many people have asked me ridiculous questions like, “So I guess you’ve never had an orgasm?” or “When are you going to the doctor to get that fixed?” People also tend to presume that because I am asexual I am anti-sexual and therefore romantic relationships are absolutely out of the question.

    We definitely need more people spreading the word that asexuals exist. Thanks again.

    • Joliea Says:

      Thanks for this Stephanie!

      Actually, my post was published on one of the local magazines here in Kenya so I am happy that a few more peeps understand this.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: