What is Asexual? Everything You Need To Know
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A person is considered asexual if they do not experience any or very little sexual attraction.
To have sexual attraction for a person indicates, at its most fundamental level, that you find something about that person’s sexual allure alluring and that you want to have sex with them.
People who identify as asexual, often known as “ace” or “aces” for short, typically do not have feelings of sexual attraction toward other people and do not want to engage in sexually intimate relationships with them.
Having said that, being asexual can imply a variety of things to a wide range of people.
It’s possible that some people never feel sexual desire in any situation but the most extreme ones. For instance, a person who is demisexual, which some people consider to be the same thing as being asexual because they only sense sexual attraction when they have a profound connection with another person,
To put it another way, they might not experience sexual attraction to other people outside of the framework of an emotionally fulfilling romantic relationship.
Even if they do not feel sexual attraction toward another person, some people will nonetheless choose to engage in sexual activity with another person.
To put it more succinctly, the experience of being asexual is unique to each individual, and there is no one correct way to identify as asexual.
There are some individuals who never feel sexual desire toward another person.
People who don’t experience any sexual attraction but do experience other forms of attraction can nevertheless feel attracted to other people.
You may also experience the following things in addition to sexual attraction:
Attraction in a romantic sense is the desire to have a romantic relationship with another person.
Aesthetic attraction is defined as the feeling of being drawn to another person based on how they appear.
A desire to have sensual or physical contact with another person, such as to hold, hug, or kiss them.
Platonic attraction is the desire to have a friendly relationship with another person.
Emotional attraction is defined as the desire to form an emotional connection with another person.
People who identify as asexual have the potential to feel all of these forms of attraction, in addition to a great number of others.
There are a remarkable 37 different words that may be used to describe the many kinds of attractions that can be found here.
Some information on being asexual
Are you interested in learning more about what it means to be asexual? The fundamentals are as follows.
A sexual urge and a desire to have sexual encounters are not exclusive to asexual people.
There is a distinction to be made between libido, the desire to engage in sexual activity, and sexual attraction.
Libido. The desire to engage in sexual activity, have sexual pleasure, and find sexual release are all components of libido, which is often referred to as your “sex drive.” It might be described as having the same sensation as wanting to scratch an itch in some people.
Sexual desire. This refers to the desire to engage in sexual activity, whether it be for the sake of pleasure, making a personal connection, conceiving a child, or any other reason.
The attraction of a sexual nature. Finding someone you find sexually alluring and developing the desire to have sex with them is part of this process.
There are a lot of people who aren’t asexual but do have a low libido and possibly don’t want to have sexual encounters. In a similar vein, many persons who identify as asexual do nonetheless have a libido and may experience feelings of sexual desire.
Even asexual persons can have sexual encounters and masturbation.
After all, a person’s sexuality does not necessarily indicate that they do not take pleasure in sexual activity. It merely indicates that they do not experience feelings of sexual attraction.
There are many different reasons why an asexual person might want to engage in sexual activity, including the following:
to sate the cravings of their libido
to have or to bring forth children
to ensure the satisfaction of their relationship.
to indulge oneself in the sensual joys of sexual activity.
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to communicate and be shown affection
for the pleasure of sex, including the sensory pleasures of touching and cuddling.
As a matter of course, there are some asexual persons who have very little or no sex drive or sexual desire, and that’s perfectly OK because asexuality has a variety of definitions depending on who you ask.
A significant number of asexuals both yearn for and engage in romantic partnerships.
A person who identifies as asexual may or may not have feelings of sexual attraction, but they almost surely will experience feelings of romantic attraction.
A person who identifies as asexual may have a romantic attraction to individuals of the same gender, individuals of a different gender, or individuals of several genders.
Many persons who identify as asexual both want and are able to have romantic relationships. They could form these romantic relationships with other asexual people, or they could form them with people who aren’t asexual at all.
Asexual individuals are capable of having sexual relationships with partners.
Because having sexual desire is different from having sexual attraction, some persons who identify as asexual do in fact have sexual encounters.
To put it another way, you might not look at someone and immediately feel the want to engage in sexual activity with them, but you might still experience the desire to engage in sexual activity on occasion.
Every person who identifies as asexual is unique. Some people may find themselves disgusted by sexual activity, while others may view it as unimportant or even enjoyable.
There is a range of sexual orientations.
A lot of people think of sexuality as being on a continuum.
Some people experience no sexual attraction at all, while others experience a small amount of sexual interest, and still, others experience a significant amount of sexual attraction. This demonstrates that asexuality can also exist on a continuum.
People who identify as graysexual either may not experience sexual desire very often or experience it to a very mild degree. Many individuals perceive gray sexuality as a halfway between sexuality and asexuality, as the Asexual Visibility & Education Network (AVEN) states. Graysexuality can also be thought of as a third sexual orientation.
Desire and attraction in a romantic relationship are distinct from those in a sexual relationship.
There is a distinction to be made between wanting to have sex with someone and wanting to develop a love connection with that person.
In a similar vein, it is essential to keep in mind that just as there is a difference between sexual attraction and romantic attraction, there is also a difference between sexual desire and romantic desire.
It is possible to want a love connection without also wanting sex, and the same is true for the other way around.
Relationships that are not romantic are more to some people’s liking.
Some persons who identify as asexual simply do not care about having romantic partners.
Persons who identify as aromantic feel little to no romantic attraction, similar to how people who identify as asexual experience little to no sexual attraction. Aromantics make up a portion of the asexual population, although not all of them.
One approach to talk about relationships that aren’t romantic is to use the term queerplatonic, which comes from the groups of people who identify as asexual or aromantic.
AVEN defines a queerplatonic relationship as a particularly close personal connection between two people who identify as gay or lesbian. People who are in LGBT platonic relationships are equally as devoted as those who are in romantic relationships, despite the fact that they do not involve romantic attraction.
A queer-friendly platonic relationship is open to anyone, regardless of their sexual or romantic preferences, and anyone can have one.
Some people notice that their ability to attract or satisfy desire changes with time.
A significant portion of the population holds the view that their identity is malleable.
They may feel as though they are asexual at some point in the future since they do not experience much or any sexual attraction. After a few weeks or months, people can notice a change in themselves and discover that they experience sexual attraction more frequently.
In a similar vein, a person might initially identify with the terms heterosexual or bisexual before coming to the conclusion that they are asexual.
This does not imply that they were previously erroneous or confused. This also does not imply that a person’s sexual orientation is a “phase” or something that they will outgrow as they get older.
Your power to attract others is not predetermined in any way.
Some individuals report that the intensity of their attraction to other people shifts over time. This is absolutely fine for your health.
Even if an asexual person has experienced the sexual attraction in the past, this does not mean that their identity has changed.
Your identification as an asexual person is not invalidated in any way, even if you have previously felt sexual attraction but no longer do so.
The same can be said for those individuals who no longer consider themselves to be asexual.
It’s possible that you were born asexual but later discovered that you’re frequently sexually attracted to people. This does not mean that you were never truly asexual in the first place. It’s possible that your orientation has shifted slightly over time.
Misconceptions and urban legends
Now, let’s dispel a few of the common misconceptions about asexuality.
It refers to either celibacy or total abstinence.
Many people are under the mistaken impression that asexuality is synonymous with celibacy or abstinence.
Abstinence refers to a decision to refrain from having sexual encounters. In most cases, this is only transitory. Someone might decide to stay away from sexual activity:
till they have a child together
when they were going through a challenging time in their life
The practice of celibacy involves making the conscious decision to abstain from sexual activity and, in some cases, marriage for an extended length of time. Many people choose to remain celibate for their whole lives for a variety of reasons, including those that are spiritual, cultural, or personal.
The fact that abstinence and celibacy are both choices is one of the most significant distinctions between the two. The absence of sexuality does not.
In addition to this, those who identify as asexual might not actually abstain from sexual activity at all, and those who want to be celibate or abstain from sexual activity can absolutely feel sexual attraction.
It is a form of medical illness.
There is a widespread misconception that asexual individuals have anything “wrong” with them.
The world often operates under the assumption that all people experience sexual attraction. As a consequence of this, persons who identify as asexual may fear that there is something wrong with them if they do not experience the same level of attraction.
Asexuality, on the other hand, is neither a cause for concern nor something that should be corrected.
Being asexual is not the same thing as having any of the following experiences, which should go without saying:
concern about being alone
a falling sexual desire or drive
No of a person’s sexual orientation, they are all susceptible to developing at least one of these illnesses in their lifetime.
The only reason why someone would do anything like that is that they can’t find the perfect companion.
People who have good intentions may mistakenly believe that asexual people will experience feelings of sexual desire when they meet the “perfect” person; however, this is not how asexuality works. It’s not about falling in love or having a romantic encounter.
In point of fact, a great number of asexual individuals long for romantic partnerships, and a great number of asexual individuals are content and fulfilled in their romantic partnerships.
Romance doesn’t have to involve sex, just as sex doesn’t require romance.
The dynamics of asexuality in romantic partnerships
It is entirely possible for a romantic relationship to be successful even when one of the partners is asexual but the other is not, provided that there is enough open and honest communication. It’s really all that different from any other kind of healthy connection, is it?
If you identify as asexual, you and your partner should have a conversation about the types of sexual activities you are open to engaging in (if any), as well as any other sexual boundaries you have.
It’s possible that you and your partner both want a serious long-term commitment, but that your spouse has a significantly higher sexual drive than you do. You may explore the possibility of having what is known as an open relationship, in which your significant other has other sexual partners but remains emotionally committed to you.
The truthful expression of each partner’s wants is of the utmost importance, as is the realization that although sexual attraction can change over the course of a relationship, it might not. Therefore, it is not helpful to think that an asexual partner will suddenly develop sexual desire. This is generally the case.
Bear in mind that it is not only acceptable but also highly healthy to have a high sex drive and the desire to have sex frequently. Sometimes it just so happens that two people aren’t meant to be together. If your spouse is asexual and doesn’t want to have sex but they aren’t willing to explore having an open relationship with you, you may want to evaluate whether or not the relationship is meeting your requirements (which are entirely valid, too).
Is there a ‘reason’ that lies under the surface?
There is no fundamental “cause” of asexuality, just as there is no such thing as homosexuality or bisexuality. It’s just the way that certain people are.
Asexuality is not caused by genes, traumatic experiences, or anything else in a person’s environment.
Having said that, speaking with a sympathetic therapist who affirms LGBTQIA+ identities might be helpful if you are experiencing any discomfort as a result of your orientation, if you feel unclear about your orientation, or if you are wondering what your lack of sexual desire might indicate.
How can I tell if I am asexual or not?
You are unable to determine whether or not you are asexual by taking a specific test; nevertheless, you can determine whether or not you are asexual by asking yourself a few essential questions in order to assess your wants and analyze whether or not they correspond with common asexual features.
Some questions to consider:
What exactly does it mean for me to have sexual attraction?
Do I feel sexual attraction toward other people?
How do I feel about the idea of having sexual encounters?
Do I sometimes wonder if the only reason I should be interested in sex is that other people anticipate it?
Is having sex a priority for me?
Do I find myself drawn to attractive people and compelled to carry out my sexual fantasies with them?
How can I take pleasure in displaying my affection? Does sex have a role in this?
These questions do not have any “correct” or “wrong” answers, but they might help you think about your sexuality in different ways.
Providing those you care about with a better understanding of asexuality
If you come to the realization that you are asexual, you may find yourself wondering how to describe your sexuality to the people in your life, particularly those who may be less knowledgeable about the term.
You may begin by clarifying that asexuality is an orientation in the same way as being gay, queer, or pansexual is. This is always a good place to start. Some people are sexually attracted to those of only one gender, while others are attracted to those of multiple genders, and still, others do not experience any sexual attraction at all.
It’s possible that your family or friends are concerned that being asexual means you’ll never have a romantic relationship. If this is the case, reassuring them that you won’t be lonely is something you can do. Asexual people can and do experience the need for friendship and other close ties.
It is also helpful to keep in mind that you are not obligated to provide anyone with an explanation of who you are if you do not wish to do so. It is none of anyone else’s concern if you do not have romantic or sexual aspirations. Having said that, a significant number of individuals believe that being forthright about their sexual orientation assists them in leading a more genuine life.
Naturally, if you have romantic feelings for another person, it is imperative that you disclose your sexual orientation to that person.
Have a need to chat?
The Trevor Project is a non-profit organization that is dedicated to aiding LGBTQIA+ youth and young adults. If you or someone you know needs support, you can speak with a skilled and compassionate counselor there.
Receive assistance around the clock, 365 days a year, by doing one of the following:
Dial this number: 1-864-488-7386
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Counselors are trained to listen, provide support and information, and assist in connecting clients with appropriate resources.
It’s possible that you feel no sexual attraction at all or even a very slight amount. Your sexuality, orientation, and identity can all be defined however you see fit, and only you have the authority to determine what it means for you to be asexual.
In the end, you always have the option of selecting the identification or identifiers that make you feel the most at ease for yourself. It is quite acceptable for you to choose not to apply any labels in order to explain who you are.