A personal announcement, emphatic thank-you, and cheers to Fedora.

Thank you for posting, krev - I wasn't aware that asexuality existed, but it's great that you feel comfortable enough to share that in this space.

It is really cool that you're feeling more comfortable and confident with your sexual preferences, and that you're helping folks like me learn about portions of the sexual spectrum they might have otherwise been unaware of.

Good on ya, krev!

Thanks for posting Krev. I'd heard about asexuality but I've never known anyone who identified openly as asexual.

Good on you, Krev. I read about asexuality in a Belgian magazine years ago, but you're the first person I know. I'm also proud to be a part of a community where you feel comfortable enough to 'come out'.

Thanks for posting that, krev. I know disclosure of that is never easy. Best wishes to you.

Thanks for sharing krev. As I've said before, that you felt you could trust GWJ as a place to discuss this says volumes about this community and those within it. I've heard the term asexual before but actually never knew what it truly meant and hadn't thought about it much. Just your post explained a lot and now I'm curious to find out more. Cheers!

Glad you felt safe coming out to us, Krev! I saw a documentary on asexuality a while ago, but I haven't met anyone who's identified themselves as such to me. Gotta be some interesting challenges you face there.

Big ups krev.

Thanks folks, you're all wonderful, I'm ever glad to have found somewhere that accepts people for all that they are. This has gone far far better than the few times I've tried to come out to individuals and as a result has been very liberating, it helps me accept myself more which can be a bit hard to do when presented the type of responses mentioned in my first post.

I'm now even more confident this will all help me find the strength and patience to try and explain the situation to my future partners rather than pretending to experience something I don't. I'll still have to contemplate the appropriate time in the dating game to reveal such things but that's a far easier task in the scheme of things and likely doesn't have any one "right" answer anyway.

Thanks for being you!

Does Morrissey present himself as asexual? I'd heard that he did at one time.

Thanks for sharing Krev.

I've known a couple of asexual people and it can be tough for them. Diversity is what makes this world wonderful and I appreciate you sharing this to let more people know that this orientation exists.

Fedaykin98 wrote:

Does Morrissey present himself as asexual? I'd heard that he did at one time.

He has frequently, yes. Not sure where he's at with that right now, being an enigma and all.

Paul Ërdos described himself as having no interest in sex. And honestly I think the spectrum is pretty broad. I rarely relate to pop-media portrayals of, as you say, hypersexuals.

I've lamented this before, and it's nigh painfully obvious, but not only is it unfortunate anyone feels they have to hide these things, but I feel for people who do because there are enough toxic things that fatigue a human spirit without heaping on these pressures.

Thanks for sharing and chipping away at the block.

Not sure if this is worthy of being posted here, but I read this article the other day and it made me think of this thread. Jenkem Magazine. I thought it was a nice bit of insight into what she's gone (and still going) through.

Krev, you have my respect for 'coming out' (although it pains me that we have a society where such a thing is even a matter of comment) about your asexuality. It's a fundamental tenet of my own medical practice that I want to be as open and approachable as possible with regard to my patients' sexuality, regardless of their orientation/gender. I know that a lot of folks in the LGBT community (for example) sometimes struggle to find a doctor with whom they feel comfortable discussing their concerns or questions. The more niche orientations/genders must only have it worse, I cannot help but believe. Accordingly, I try to increase my understanding wherever possible. Have you had difficulty discussing your orientation with medical professionals? It occurs to me that when I ask about sexuality, I phrase it as "men, women, or both?" with regard to orientation (which really annoys the older patients) but it never occurred to me that "neither" was a response that I might unconsciously be repressing in a nervous patient.

Coldstream: Excellent thinking, imho. I recently had a "new patient" visit to a new primary care physician, and he asked me a very thorough (invasive?) series of questions, including sexuality, affairs, drugs, etc.

The one thing he forgot to ask about was diet, which thrilled me because that's the most "sinful" area of my life.

Coldstream, it's actually never come up for me in a medical context and I've never felt reason to share it with my medical professionals. Trusting that it's medically relevant I personally would not take issue with any of my doctors doing as you describe so long as they were willing to accept an answer that doesn't fit their provided options. It would however bother me if upon my answer they launched into the usual Asexual bingos, tried to insist I must be one of the above, etc - that sort of behavior strikes me as unprofessional at best. I don't imagine you doing that so you should be generally okay.

Beyond that what I can say is that if you want to fully include the spectrum it would be a rather long list, so much so that it would be unrealistic to expect you (or anyone) to memorize them all much less list them all every time you need to ask such questions. If you're concerned about leaving people out then an alternative may be simply to ask "orientation?" or more specifically "sexual orientation?", but then either of those may come across as too direct to some patients.

Fedaykin98 wrote:

Coldstream: Excellent thinking, imho. I recently had a "new patient" visit to a new primary care physician, and he asked me a very thorough (invasive?) series of questions, including sexuality, affairs, drugs, etc.

The one thing he forgot to ask about was diet, which thrilled me because that's the most "sinful" area of my life. ;)

Heh. One of the things that takes some getting used to while in medical school is the erasing of usual social boundary lines. To meet someone and less than fifteen minutes later be discussing intimate details of their life is a phenomenon that takes time to really become comfortable with. Happily, most people still regard physicians, nurses, and therapists as occupying a sort of special place in society in which they can speak freely of deeply personal issues without fear of embarrassment or of it becoming public. This is why I feel so strongly about the need to re-strengthen the physician-patient relationship, and why I get so very, very angry with insurance companies, politicians, and snake-oil peddlers who make their living by trying to shove their way in between people and their doctors. One thing they'll never be able to stop is people approaching physicians at parties about "this rash I've had..."

First off I would like to say Congrats along with everyone else. I think this community is fantastic and so special.

Forgive my ignorance, I do not want to sound like a douche asking questions. However, you yourself said part of the reason was for education. I understand asexual but struggle with aromantic. You said you are not aromantic, which means you are one of the other four. Do you mind telling us which one? Then my next question what is that based on? You are attracted to the person just not sexually?

This is where I do not want to sound ignorant. I am attracted to many of my female friends, due to personality or attitude, but I do not want to sleep with them because I am sexually attracted to men. How do you know your romantic type over just a friend?

Again, I apologize if I am being dumb. (I kinda am )

Great question, Cheeto!

I'm guessing the ultimate answer (meaning in my imagined Star Trek future, where we know all and are widely accepting) will be that all "romantic" attraction is basically strong personality attraction, and people presently defer to sexual attraction as their guiding light for romantic relationships.

Sometimes hetero guys will be very, very close and love each other dearly, but have no desire to become "romantic". Some hetero guys even refer to having a "man-crush" on a friend that they think is unspeakably awesome.

All this is common knowledge, but what I'm suggesting is that this kind of personality attraction may be basically identical to what they feel towards certain women, but without any possibility of sexual attraction. In fact, this would help to explain why some men marry women they have little personality interest in, and ultimately prefer to spend time hanging out with the guys instead.

Or maybe this all sounds crazy.

Hmm, I thought Cheeto was asking krev.

carrotpanic wrote:

Hmm, I thought Cheeto was asking krev.

He was asking krev about himself, you are right, but to my mind he tangentially raised this interesting question, which immediately got me thinking, and posting. I think that's okay in this forum. If not, no offense intended, krev and Cheeto.

You'll note I didn't attempt to answer for krev, and couldn't, since I theorize that those with sexual impulses are allowing those to govern their romantic impulses - which apparently could not be the case in krev's case.

I, too, am interested in his answer.

Not dumb at all Cheeto, separating the issues is conceptually tricky for many people, especially in our culture where the two are constantly closely tied together. To further complicate things affectional orientation is as broad a spectrum as sexual orientation. Personally all of my relationships have been heteroromantic, conceptually I'm not closed to the possibility of falling in love with any gender identity, who they are matters more to me than what they are, so far it's just happened to be females displaying the personality traits and behavior that appeal me in seeking a romantic partner.

For me though there's never any sense "hey that person is sexy/I want to boogle with them/whatever", there's no "dat ass(or any other body part)", etc. There never has been for that matter which made being a teenage male a bit more awkward than it already is.

The main difference between my friends and relationships is in what I'm willing to emotionally share with each of them, how close I'm willing to let them get on that emotional field - relationships get much much closer. I think the best analogy I can come up with off hand is that you may love your closest friends but you're not in love with them in the same way that you're in love with a romantic partner. Contemplate whether the only difference between the two is the desire to for-boogle, I submit that there's more to it than that.

In my case there also happens to some difference in physical behavior as well, I do enjoy physical intimacy and I reserve that closeness solely for my romantic partners - bear in mind physical intimacy need not mean sex. If sex happens to be very important to someone I fall in love with then of course I would do my best to work something out for them, it's just that going forward my solution isn't going to be posing as something I'm not. It's been rather awkward in past relationships trying to find the right degree of acting that role and I look forward to simply not dawning the mask in the first place.

I think I probably qualify as demisexual, myself. I've never been sexually attracted to someone without being romantically attached to them first. Romantically, I've been almost exclusively interested in women. (The exception being... kind of a long painful story. Short form: You can end up in a weird mental place when you have trans stuff going on and you're romantically interested in someone who you're pretty sure is only interested in members of the gender you identify as, not the gender they know you as.)

Coming at things from where I am has always made me rather confused at the whole range of "casual sex" sorts of behaviors in society. It took me a while to really register that for most other people, there's apparently no need to fall in love before engaging in sexy times.

Thanks for sharing Krev!

Thanks for bringing that up and sharing Hypatian, demisexual is another of those lesser known parts of the spectrum, heck I've met a few demisexuals who didn't know there was a name for it.

In case anyone is confused; the difference between demisexual and asexual is basically that once demisexuals fall in love they may experience sexual attraction to the target of their affection, whereas asexuals do not. As Hypatian points out demisexuals can also end up feeling rather apart from the norm in modern culture for similar reasons.

krev82 wrote:

For me though there's never any sense "hey that person is sexy/I want to boogle with them/whatever", there's no "dat ass(or any other body part)", etc. There never has been for that matter which made being a teenage male a bit more awkward than it already is.

Hypatian wrote:

Coming at things from where I am has always made me rather confused at the whole range of "casual sex" sorts of behaviors in society. It took me a while to really register that for most other people, there's apparently no need to fall in love before engaging in sexy times.

krev82 wrote:

In case anyone is confused; the difference between demisexual and asexual is basically that once demisexuals fall in love they may experience sexual attraction to the target of their affection, whereas asexuals do not. As Hypatian points out demisexuals can also end up feeling rather apart from the norm in modern culture for similar reasons.

This whole discussion has me seriously rethinking a lot of past experiences. I wouldn't say my high school and college years were all that awkward, but there was a whole lot of lighthearted discussion that I simply couldn't identify with. I'd always just chalked it up to somewhat harmless cases of immaturity among my peers that I outgrew earlier than most, but perhaps it's not that simple.

krev82 wrote:

Thanks for bringing that up and sharing Hypatian, demisexual is another of those lesser known parts of the spectrum, heck I've met a few demisexuals who didn't know there was a name for it.

Yeah. I always just sort of thought of myself as being a romantic, and not that interested in sex. Sometimes I figured I had a low libido or something, but... all of that seemed at odds with the times when I [em]was[/em] involved with someone and really intensely attracted to them. I sort of puzzled out what was going on over time, and then recently when I got exposed to some of the more modern breakdowns of GSRM stuff I was like "Oh! Okay, yeah, that!" It does make me wonder if it's easier for me as a demisexual to hear about asexuality and be like "Duh, of course that makes sense".

What about folks who feel... er... less constrained forms of sexual attraction? Do these categories make sense to you, or is it sort of like "Wait, what? There are people like that? How could that be?"

Hypatian wrote:

Coming at things from where I am has always made me rather confused at the whole range of "casual sex" sorts of behaviors in society. It took me a while to really register that for most other people, there's apparently no need to fall in love before engaging in sexy times.

krev82 wrote:

Thanks for bringing that up and sharing Hypatian, demisexual is another of those lesser known parts of the spectrum, heck I've met a few demisexuals who didn't know there was a name for it.

Quoted you both for resonance.

I feel what Hypatian is saying very strongly. I was at least in my late 20s before something clicked that I viewed things very differently than that people around me. Communication with others can be especially difficult. It frequently feels like conversations about love, sex and relationships may as well be in a second language that I only know a few words of. There's a burden to remember the difference, and a sometimes faltering hope that the other partner will understand and remember the difference as well. It's been extremely rough at times.

This is getting close to the things I had to start dealing with things last year. I'm putting this much out in hopes of adding to the message of "not alone."

The word demisexual came across my radar probably last summer, and I got a brief overview of what asexuality means through that. Again, I think Krev and Hypatian and everyone else are doing wonderful things by offering to help others. Best wishes to everyone.

Hypatian wrote:

What about folks who feel... er... less constrained forms of sexual attraction? Do these categories make sense to you, or is it sort of like "Wait, what? There are people like that? How could that be?"

As a person who uses sexuality as a pretty core part of my social identity, this stuff makes total sense to me. Asexual, demisexual (which is new to me as a term), aromantic are very interesting ways to view the various spectrum along which we all lie. I'm heterosexual but I'm fairly biromantic, I guess, and you could just say that differently as I'm very secure in my sexuality and I love being close to people.

I very much get this topic and these terms as a way to bucket our levels of attraction to each other if we are forced to put people into categories. This makes a ton of organizational sense when we are thinking in macro terms. When we think in terms of the individual, I'd rather shy away from those terms and just talk about each person's experience and using those terms may be helpful or unhelpful depending on the conversation.