This is a transcription of my coming out post. It’s the only article about asexuality there is on my website, which I think is pretty much the introduction to and the reason of this blog.
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I’m asexual. And I’m perfectly OK. I’m healthy. And I’m sane. And I live a happy life. Yet there is a problem with being asexual: As asexuality is known only poorly, it is often misunderstood and very often misjudged. And it is so diverse, so different from person to person, so wide and so fluid (just as any other sexual orientation) that taking a single testimonial (even if I’d love to give mine!) as a definition would lead to a constrained generalization.
So, yes, I will tell you how I have experienced asexuality, but before I do that, I’d like you to see this:
I like this video because I feel it is a good summary, a good introduction to asexuality, and also a good example of how the traditional medical/psychological community approaches the subject. Medical professionals tend to try and «fix us» explaining that we most likely have some kind of trauma, or are ashamed, or are afraid of intimacy (well, if you make a living by counseling people about their sex life, how inconvenient would it be that potential clients find out there’s actually nothing wrong with them?).
So, after that, let me say that I am asexual because of three main reasons:
1) I am not heterosexual
2) I am not homosexual
3) I am not bisexual
I am 4) Asexual. Asexuality is a sexual orientation… that defines the lack of sexual attraction (although I don’t feel I «lack» anything).
I do, however, have a romantic orientation: I’m hetero-romantic… asexual. I fall in love with men, but I have never, ever, experienced any kind of sexual attraction (the desire to engage in sexual activity) to men. Nor to women. Nor to both. This doesn’t mean I can’t enjoy sex, or that I despise it. I just have never felt the need for it. And that is OK.
The funny thing is that, I learned this only two months ago. Being 29, I had always identified myself as heterosexual because… well, I liked men. Did I? Euh… not in the way most women do.
My crushes have always felt only in my stomach, and ultimately, in my broken heart😛 But apparently, most people feel them further down too (and I was actually shocked when I found out). Actually, that’s what defines what your sexual orientation is: Which gender is the one that produces you that feeling down there.
But at school you are never told that!!!
I guess that in sexual education classes they assume that by the words «sexual attraction» everyone understands what they’re talking about. Well… some of us don’t. I always believed I was «sexually attracted» to men because I fell in love with men… except that I never felt anything sexual about it!
It’s complicated. We are all different. But I know that from the moment I knew I was asexual, I have felt a lot happier. I have always wanted a romantic relationship, but I always thought that, in order for that to happen, I would have to ultimately have sex at some point, because it was the «adult» thing to do. Because it was what I was «supposed» to do. But since sex is something I have never wanted, the issue of its importance in romantic relationships had always felt as an enourmous pressure. Now that I know asexuality exist, and that I know a lot of people identify as asexual, I feel… relieved! Truly, deeply relieved.
And I can’t but smile at all the asexual pride we have adopted: An asexual is called an Ace (for the pronounciation of the English word asexual). And we use a lot of emoticons of cakes, because it is said that between sex and cake… an asexual would rather take cake. And we are all asexy!
It’s been said that 1% of the population of the world is asexual, but I’m sure that number is higher. It’s just that people don’t know that asexuality, as the fourth sexual orientation, exists, and they define themselves by their romantic one. Just as I used to do.
The good news is that there are already popular asexual characters on TV, literature and film. It’s just that the label hasn’t been put officially on them. Check out some of my favourite ace moments, from very popular characters I’m very fond of:
Sheldon, from The Big Bang Theory, as The Clueless archetype*:
Amélie (specially from 2:20 to 2:59), from Le fabuleux déstin d’Amélie Poulin, as The Cupid archetype*:
So… that’s pretty much it.
Want to learn more? I believe there is no better way than AVEN (Asexual Visibility and Education Network) itself. Check out the forums. Either if you are sexual or asexual, you are always welcome to share experiences, advise, and above all, ask questions about asexuality and participate in an open debate. But please, be nice.
Please, feel free to share this blog. The asexual community needs as much visibility as possible. Believe me, this will make a lot of people happy. Thank you!
*As proposed by David Jay (@davidgljay) in Asexuals on the TV Screen