People are often unaware of their sexuality and prejudiced by common misconceptions. These myths are false.
Like all sexual orientations there is a spectrum of asexuality. As the world celebrates Asexual Awareness Week, (Ace Week), it is important to learn how to be an asexual ally.
Ace week was founded by Sara Beth Brooks, in 2010. It is now in its tenth year. It’s the ideal opportunity to learn about sexual, romantic, and identity so that you can be an ally for asexual people.
It’s easy enough. It’s easy to see that not all asexuals have romantic relationships.
Next, learn about the identities and labels that are associated with asexuality. This will enable you to recognize when it is time to intervene.
What is the definition for asexuality?
Many asexuals feel a lack of sexual attraction towards other genders.
Asexual people may still feel attraction, but it’s about sexual attraction.
This lack of understanding can lead to a variety of problems for asexual people. This can change depending on where the person is located in the world.
In the worst cases, however, asexuals face severe medicalizations, mental problems, rejection from their families, and even violence and harassment.
They face discrimination at a higher level in society and institutions that do not understand their sexuality.
“The greatest challenge is dealing with constant pressure from society for sexuality.” Asexual YouTuber Slice Of Ace ,, or Daniel tells me.
“Before you discover about sexuality, it may make you feel broken. You’re not experiencing the same thing that everyone else is experiencing.
It doesn’t help that being asexual is more difficult than other orientations. For example, if you are gay, you may be able to recognize your attraction to other people of the same gender. There’s no way to recognize a homosexual. It’s impossible to prove you don’t feel sexual desire, but it’s infinitely easier than the reverse.
For Yasmin Benoit a prominent asexual advocate , she is frustrated at the invisibility that asexual people have within the LGBTQ community. Even with the acceptance one might expect from them.
Benoit informs me that stereotypes about asexuality lead other LGBTQ people to believe we are harmful in queer spaces due to untrue prejudice over what is called our ‘antisex’ attitudes.
“Unfortunately, there’s not a lot of visibility for asexuality within the LGBTQ community to counter these negative stereotypes. Many people who hold these views about homosexual people don’t know anything.
What is the difference in sexuality, attraction, and libido.
One of the most common prejudices that asexual people face is sex.
It is important to distinguish sexuality from attraction. Understanding these terms will allow you to understand the feelings of homosexual people about these aspects of sex.
Sexuality refers to the way that people express and experience sexuality. We often refer to sexual orientations as “attractions” but it is important to distinguish between the two.
Attraction can literally be defined as “who we are attracted to”-who catches your eye. Attraction is different from sexuality, which is about the expression of sexuality, while attraction is what sparks interest in us.
Libido refers to our sexual drive or desire for sexual activity.
Asexual people can be attracted by people. They may not want to be sexually explicit. Their libido, or lack thereof, will define their sexuality.
Asexuality 101: What is the difference between being sexy-repulsed, indifferent or sexy-positive?
Every person will experience their sexuality in a unique way, just like every other gender and sexual identity. Some people find solace in the labels below, while others may not feel the need to choose one.
It is crucial to be an ally by learning the various terms used by asexual people so that you can understand them when they speak. It’s important to remember that even though someone might feel comfortable using a label to describe them, you shouldn’t use it to judge them. Individual identity is important.
Sex-repulsed people, literally feel disgusted or put off by the thought of sex, says WhatIsAsexuality.com. It’s not necessarily that sex is wrong, but that it’s “icky”.
Indifferent to sex
Sex-indifferent people, sometimes called sex-neutral or sex-neutral, have no strong feelings about sexuality. According to the LGBTA Wiki, “Sex-indifferent Asexuals do not feel repulsed by sex but also have no particular positive feelings about it.”
This could be interpreted as indifference to sex. However, for some people it may mean indifference to all forms of sex. People who are sex-indifferent might have sex to give pleasure to their partner or reproduce. They may not feel strongly about sex.
Sometimes referred to as sexy asexuals, these sex-positive people enjoy or are sexy. Many reasons may lead to them seeking out sexual relationships. They may seek sex because they enjoy it, or because it builds into a romantic relationship. It is important to remember that sex acts can make them feel either indifferent or disgusted.
You should also be aware of other labels in the asexual and split attraction spectrum
Split Attraction Model
Many asexuals use the split attraction model to define their identity. This model reflects the fact that sexual attraction and romantic attraction are different for some people.
This is a short name or nickname that some asexuals use. YouTuber Vesper is known as Queer Ace.
“I identify as Queer because not only am I anything but ‘straight’ or cis, but my lack of experience of sexual attraction is non-[hetero]normative,” they tell me.
“And with Ace” because I feel strongly about putting an end to my lack sexual attraction, even though I leave all else up to the imagination with “queer.”
An aromantic orientation is a romantic orientation that has little to no sexual attraction to other people.
Demisexuality can be described as a sexual or romantic orientation. Demisexuals are attracted to those they have close emotional relationships to.
Grey-A, or grey asexuality, is another way to acknowledge the fact that asexuality can be seen as a spectrum. People may use this label to describe their experiences with sexual attraction only occasionally, trying to capture the gray area between sexuality and asexuality.
Facebook might describe it as “it’s complex” but that doesn’t make it any less real.
This is how people describe their feelings. It can also be used to describe a non-romantic relationship or an ambiguously romantic relationship.
It’s a relationship that is defined by strong bonds or emotional commitment. However, this doesn’t extend beyond friendship.
These are three easy ways to be an ally in asexual relationships today
An ally of asexuals is similar to being an alligator to transgender, bisexual, or non-binary people.
Understanding your privilege is key, as well as learning all you can about asexuality before asking other people.
Asking asexual people demeaning questions such as “how do I know” or “but haven’t you tried?” is a bad idea. These questions undermine someone’s legitimacy.
Keep in mind that generalizations about homosexual people, such as those made in this article, can only be useful up to some extent. Asexuality and identity are different. Think about what you would feel if you were asked questions about your identity.
If in doubt. Continue reading. These are more resources that will help you keep this week of asexual awareness going.
Aven– Asexual Visibility and Education Network
Vesper’s resources to Ace POC persons
The Asexual Agenda A Community Blog
a aria label=”What Is a Sexuality?” class=”color-link” data-ga-track=”ExternalLink:http://www.whatisasexuality.com/” href=”http://www.whatisasexuality.com/” rel=”nofollow noopener noreferrer” target=”_blank” title=”http://www.whatisasexuality.com/”>What Is Asexuality? – Website
The Asexual Journal
Julie Sondra Decker’s “The Invisible Orientation” – Book
Angela Chen’s book “Ace”: What Asexuality Reveals about Desire, Society and the Meaning of Sex – Book
Ash Hardell’s “The ABC’s of LGBT+” – Book