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Clarissa 29 Brighton UK. Atheist asexual cynic. Loves green. Hates kids.
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Asexuality - my very own take
Sun, Mar 20 2005 @ 00:03   //   Category: Opinionated   //   25 comments

So here it is... my asexuality entry.
If there are any questions feel free to comment.
Entry may be edited as we go along.

Right, let me start by trying to explain why I felt the need to write about this in the first place. Because in fact I don't. What I wanna say is that I am not a militant asexual (and it seems the majority of them aren't) and the whole issue is actually of very little importance to me. I don't define myself by my asexuality, and I don't feel strongly enough about it to start campaigning for more acceptance or whatever. I just wanna live my life the way I feel most comfortable. I don't need a label for that. The only reason I ended up with one was because of other people's perceptions, questions, and so on.

This is how I started using the term "asexual." When I first did a few years ago I was totally unaware that there was actually a movement of asexuals, that "asexuality" had in fact become an official term and concept for an attitude that's been acknowlegded more and more. Some online forms/quizzes etc actually have 'asexual' as an option alongside 'straight, bi, gay' etc. There is also an asexual pride movement slowly emerging not unlike the gay pride movement a few decades ago. I welcome all of this but I don't really care.

The reason I did end up with a label, a word to describe how I feel, was mainly because it seemed that people were no longer satisified with my usual "no I still don't have a partner, I'm just not interested" replies so I thought I'd just be a little more bland about it. The reaction to that would usually be "what's wrong with you?". I know people back home (I mean mainly family) have long assumed I'm gay - this went from "nudge nudge, is that what it is?" to "oh please tell me that you're gay so you can at least have a girlfriend - anything but this!"

This general reaction is really the only reason I am interested in the subject. I am sick and tired of being told there's something wrong with me, that I will end up crazy cuz everyone needs a relationship and sex, or that I will 'come round' once I find the right person yadda yadda. Any friend I've not spoken to for a while, one of the first questions will invariably be "so how's your love life?" and my reply "non-existent" will be met with disbelief, pity, condescendence or attempts at counselling. All I want is to be left alone! Why can't people accept that this is what I want, that I am happy like this? Don't try to force your lifestyle on me just cuz it's the way of the majority!

End of rant. So let me explain. I will actually have to refrain from reading asexuality sites until I'm done writing down my own take on things cuz I'd be tempted to just quote them and add "I agree". It is refreshing to read what I have felt and thought all along expressed by other people - but this is supposed to be a personal opinion.

So the sex issue then

My take on sex is this: I have absolutely no interest in sexual intercourse with another person. It just does not appeal to me (and yes, I am practically - tho not technically - a virgin). Of course the typical reply to that will be "but how can you say you don't want it if you haven't tried it?" The thing is, I do not want to try it! I wanna try sex just as little as I wanna jump down a bridge attached to an elastic rope. Yes there is a remote chance that I might enjoy sex (I'm pretty sure I wouldn't) just as I might enjoy bungee jumping (again I doubt I would) - but why should I have to force myself to try either if I don't want to, and if I feel my life is quite complete without one and the other?

The argument against that usually goes sth like "yeah but you need sex to have balance in your life" - rubbish! One of my friends actually tried to convince me it was a biological need like eating - not it's not! Look at me! I'm alive! I dont have sex! If you think it's that important in your life that's fine, but to me it's not. I don't want it, I don't desire it, I don't miss it, the end. Just because most people do want sex it doesn't mean everyone has to want it. Deal with it.

Biologically we are of course meant to have sex, since the reason we are on earth is to perpetuate our species, i.e. to procreate. So yes I break with biological rules - as do gays, as do people who use birth control, and so on. So maybe I'm an aberration in the biological sense - well I can live with that. (and maybe I need to stress that this does in fact not at all influence my conviction that we are nothing but animals that essentially live to make babies - but that would be a totally separate entry.)

So much about sex.

But I feel physical attraction?

Yes I do. I can fancy someone and find them gorgeous. I'll call it sexual attraction for the sake of simplicity, because that's what people are used to and what they understand. But I don't actually wanna go to bed with the person. I wanna be close to them, emotionally and physically (yes I like physical closeness, I like hugging etc) - but I don't want their dick inside me, or I don't want them to eat my pussy (sorry for the expliciteness lol, I just wanna get my point across).

The things I find sexy can be unusual. I call my car sexy, I call my laptop sexy. I sometimes liken "being sexy" to "being pleasant to look at". There are of course different levels to that. A sunset gives me pleasure to look at but I don't find it sexy. I find most of my friends beautiful but I don't find them all sexy. So there is of course something I set apart for 'sexiness' - in that sense I am not a completely asexual person. I know I do an awful lot of 'drooling' over some people (I don't actually drool of course) - but the point is, I do not want to have sex with them.

Sex to me seems largely a means to an end (don't get me wrong - I acknowledge and accept the fact that to many people it's fun and pleasure. I am talking about myself here). I was thinking about that yesterday and discovered I have only ever used sex - any sexual acts - as a means to have power over someone, or to get what I wanted, or simply to prove something to myself or to others. Sex is power, domination, aggression - which is why for instance a powerful car is also sexy (ha!).

Mating and breeding

Power and money are sexy (to most people!) for that very same reason. Also of course because power & money mean security and a good genepool (here we're back with the old "we must procreate" idea). Of course all these things are linked - I have a very cynical view of the whole game of sex & love (just as with everything else) and that just makes me wanna get involved even less. I just do not see the point. I don't want kids (God help me), I don't want to have to adjust my life for the sake of someone else, I don't wanna be that dependent on someone else, and I can't imagine having someone in my life all the fucking time... so why should I have to go through the whole process?

From my experience a lot of people end up saying they want a relationship because they're afraid of growing old alone - some more, some less openly so, but it seems to preoccupy most people. It doesn't me. I like being alone, I need it even. I don't like the idea of sharing every fucking aspect of my life with someone for the rest of my days. That thought scares me, suffocates me, makes me wanna run off screaming. So you see - I don't even have a reason to put up with sex in order to obtain something else (as I believe a fair amount of people do, esp. women).

But I talk about it - doesn't that mean I want it?

Some people seem to have issues because I joke about sex, or seem to find pleasure in analyzing it or whatever. Well just because I don't practice it myself doesn't mean I have no right to talk about it, or that I am absolutely unqualified to have an opinion. You can have your opinion on politics without being a politician, and you can enjoy a book without being an author. I don't have a problem with sex - most people do it and I'll let them have their fun - I just don't wanna do it myself. I am still allowed to talk about it. That includes giggling immaturely at sex jokes.

All I want is for people out there to accept my choice without assuming I am dysfunctional. Or (the condescending variant) worrying about me. And I think that's the general point of view of the 'asexual' movement... which leads us back to the general concept of asexuality (and away from my personal take on it).... so to finish I shall leave you with a few links...

Asexuality @ Wikipedia - interesting article that gives you a general, tho somewhat conservative, overview.

Glad to be asexual - New Scientist article that started it all (i.e. made me realize there were other people who felt the same as me)

Asexuality FAQ "light" - this is a great & short FAQ that I can almost 100% relate to (thanks to Lo hehe). Rest of the site is worth checking out too.

Study says 1% of adults have no interest in sex - blog entry with link and some cute "me too" comments. *g*

People say...

Thanks, that was interesting.

I agree with you on the "I like being alone, I need it even. I don't like the idea of sharing every fucking aspect of my life with someone for the rest of my days."
I just don't believe I could ever find someone that I would like enough, and get along with enough, to want to spend the rest of my life with them. Never ever. And I'm totally happy being 'alone' because I actually have a bunch of great friends/family. Why stress about something you probably wont find? And why stress about something that you don't need?

Posted by: snow on Sun March 20, 2005 at 0:27

Wow. That was really interesting. I assume you don't masturbate either then? I believe that asexuality is just as natural as being gay or hetero. I think you are very open about this and frankly, I appreciate it.

As for me: I am not exactly looking for a relationship at this point either but I do have sexual urges and know how to deal with it. If I didn't have them, I think I would be just as content. In fact, I can go through weeks without even thinking about sex so I guess that makes me a part-time asexual

Posted by: Anne on Sun March 20, 2005 at 21:51

I'm the exact opposite to you ;)

Posted by: Dave on Sun March 20, 2005 at 23:52

Okay, you provoked me.

There was a report (in New Scientist) a while back stating that for a stable population of any species, it was neccessary for certain individuals to be unengaged in procreation. Now at the time this was in reference to homosexual (non-child producing) behaivour in animals, but the comparison to asexual behaivour should be obvious. I'll let you know if I locate the article when I sort past issues.

There was also an article last week in the T2 section of the Times newspaper which included an interview with a woman who felt that she was asexual despite being married with kids because, culturally at the time, sex was just something that was done to please your husband. How many jokes, etc. are there about 'loveless' marriages (by which we really mean sexless marriages)?

Posted by: Charlie Williams on Mon March 21, 2005 at 14:35

Exactly @ snow. Tho people will argue that everyone else will find a partner and you're left behind (which does happen), so if you don't like solitude you might wanna find someone after all.

Anne, I do actually, tho not terribly often (I prefer to investigate other people's habits lol). I am entirely self-sufficient Another reason why I don't need a man.

Thanks for that Charlie, I'd definitely be interested in reading that. Of course on top of asexuals there are also those who cannot procreate for different reasons. My guinea pigs couldnt have babies either. (hehe)
And yes in my experience there are many women who have a fairly low sex drive (I'm not saying they have none at all) and mainly have sex for the sake of their partner. Incidentally, this works the other way round too. *g*

Posted by: Clarissa on Mon March 21, 2005 at 18:50

So what do you masturbate to, if you're not sexually interested in other people? Most women masturbate to thoughts (of men/women/whatever), men masturbate to porn, but what about asexuals?

Posted by: Katja on Mon March 21, 2005 at 19:33

I think of my horse.
j/k. Just... nothing? I used to do it when I was very angry or was made to do sth I didn't wanna do. That doesn't apply so much anymore since I don't have parents who tell me what to do anymore.

Posted by: Clarissa on Mon March 21, 2005 at 19:39

You don't even think of objects or anything?
And why did you masturbate when you were angry? Anger is not very erotic to me. *g*

Posted by: Katja on Mon March 21, 2005 at 19:47

Objects???? Like Bugs? No.
I have no idea why. Maybe it was a way for me to let off steam or sth. And why are you not on Yahoo?

Posted by: Clarissa on Mon March 21, 2005 at 19:55

Bugs is no object! Tobias wants me to mention him here (not as an object either, obviously).
I mean real objects. Like... äh... sticks. Or carrots (Bugs... *sigh*). *g*
(No, I'm not a pervert. Not really.)

Posted by: Katja on Mon March 21, 2005 at 20:00

I don't think of carrots or sticks (and I don't think of Tobias either).

Posted by: Clarissa on Mon March 21, 2005 at 20:14

LMAO@Tobias as an object

I'm a bit surprised too that you don't think of a man or a woman or a sexual scene when you're diddling Miss Daisy (sorry, got this expression from that sex dictionary ) I wonder who thinks about vegetables tho

Then again... when I was little (well a bit younger) and discovered how it worked, I didn't think of any male either - that came on later

Posted by: Val on Mon March 21, 2005 at 21:57

yeah well you're obsessed with them now tho aren't you

Posted by: Clarissa on Mon March 21, 2005 at 22:10


Posted by: Val on Mon March 21, 2005 at 22:38

There's one thing I don't quite agree with:

>I like being alone, I need it even. I don't like the idea of sharing every fucking aspect of my life with someone for the rest of my days.

I wonder: why are you online 90% of the time and why do you write a blog? I think you do not want to be alone most of the time but you just want to be able to press a button and end it if you feel like it. And I'm not pointing my finger at you... a lot of people are like that... and maybe I'm one of them...

Posted by: Val on Mon March 21, 2005 at 22:52

Oh of course. I need my friends, I like being able to discuss issues etc. When I say "I like being alone" that is exactly what I mean. I don't want someone - anyone - around me all the time.
So yeah - I like being able to choose & say "that's enough for now". But that's just what a relationship prevents you from doing. NB when I say "I like being alone" I do not mean "I don't need people ever and I wanna be a hermit", I just mean "I don't need or want a full time partner" (define that as you will).

Posted by: Clarissa on Mon March 21, 2005 at 23:15

I'm not going to get married just because all my friends (might) do it. Thats a stupid argument! Do people actually say that to you?

I wonder, and sorry if im being intrusive but someone brought it up anyways, if you masturbate then you have to be sexual on some small level, even if that doesnt mean you are attracted to people, right?
How do you know you would probably not enjoy sex? Or is it more, you might find it pleasurable, but just not enjoy the whole, um, ahem, having someons erm, love-stick inside you.

Posted by: snow white on Tue March 22, 2005 at 10:22

Yes people say that. If you tell them you don't need a partner cuz you have friends a lot of them will go *wagging finger* "oooh but you wait, they'll all find someone and then you're left alone".
Which is actually true. My mum is often lonely now cuz all her friends have families and little time for her. Of course if she'd kept the friendships active (rather than spending all her time with my dad) maybe it would be different. But it's a fact that for most people family comes first.

Asexual doesn't mean unable to have an orgasm. I also didn't say I am not attracted to people, I said when I am I still don't wanna go to bed with them.
I do not desire to have sex - as I said in the entry, it appeals to me just as little as bungee jumping or, say, boxing. I don't feel I have to justify myself for that or explain it. Would you ask a gay person "how can you know you wouldn't want straight sex?" if they're happy having gay sex? It's kinda the same thing. Accept my choice - I don't lack anything.

Posted by: Clarissa on Tue March 22, 2005 at 11:49

Sorry Clarissa, I hope you don't think I was attacking you, because I wasn't.
I have no problem whatsoever with you being asexual, or asexuality at all. Its just something that I know very little about, and I'm trying to better understand it.

Posted by: snow white on Tue March 22, 2005 at 12:18

I wasn't suggesting that not wanting sex was wrong, or that you should try it.
But IMO, I can't say that I wouldn't like sex with a woman, because I haven't tried it so how could I know if its good or not? That doesn't mean that I want to go out and actually have sex with a woman, or that I *should* have sex with a woman.

Posted by: snow white on Tue March 22, 2005 at 12:23

No but if you have no particular desire to have sex with a woman, and are quite happy having sex with men, then there is no reason why you'd have to go out and find a woman to have sex with just because 'it is done' or sth.

And no I know you weren't attacking me, it's just that what you asked was exactly what everyone else asks & one of the reasons I did this entry. *g*

Posted by: Clarissa on Tue March 22, 2005 at 14:43

Ok. I understand that you get sick of people saying you should have sex, because its what people do. Because obviously its not what everyone does. And I think thats a stupid argument for anything anyways.

Posted by: snow white on Wed March 23, 2005 at 7:50

I absolutely hate the condescension of "Oh, you don't have a boyfriend at the moment... awww, don't worry, it'll happen." Can't STAND it. I love being single. In fact, I was actually pretty reticent to even get into my currect relationship (with someone I really really REALLY adored) because I hated the thought of losing the freedom and the anonymity (not having to be Someone to Somebody) and the lack of pressure that comes with not having a significant other. I like my freedom, I like my space, and I like being unattached. I like being non-committedly sexual, or even completely non-sexual (which I almost exclusively am when single).

Of course, I like being attached too, like I am now. I like being sexual. I like to be able to kiss and hug and come home to someone. But I'm not ready to do it full-time, not at the moment.

I like your way of thinking. It doesn't work for me, necessarily, but it makes sense for you, and that's all that matters.

Posted by: Mummy Proo on Wed March 23, 2005 at 8:31

I'm not gonna put a long comment coz everyone else already has and I'm at work and can't be arsed. But the whole "why are you not in a relationship, how's your love life..." saga every time you meet up with someone fucks me off too. They're obviously just incredibly small minded. I NEVER ask people "how's your love life?" coz I don't actually care, and when someone asks me I generally completely ignore the question and change the subject.

They should all die.

Posted by: The BML on Thu March 24, 2005 at 10:50

lol They are small minded because unlike you they care enough to ask?

Posted by: JarJar on Thu March 24, 2005 at 12:51