---------

I wonder if any asexual people have their hormones checked. It could be due to a hormone imbalance rather than just a personality trait. Low testosterone in men can affect sexual feelings. I mean if people want to be asexual, more power to them. But, if they are interested in not being asexual, a medical work-up might could help some of them.
Since I'm not broken, I don't need fixing.
I don't think she was coming from a hurtful place.
No one is calling you broken, and no one is saying you need fixing. But it very well could be a hormonal imbalance in your system.
Her comment was not addressed to you. You are fine with being asexual. Her comment was directed to be people who are asexual and are not fine with it. If you weren't so easy to upset, you would probably be a happier person...
amen
She is simply expressing the same scientific curiosity I share. I would be interested to know if ACES have hormonal or genetic differences. Variance does not mean broken, and does not require fixing.

But some people who do find their own lack of libido to be a problem do sometimes find that the situation can be "fixed"...but only if they want to...
No one said you were broken. But if your hormone levels are abnormal, you could be doing harm to your body.
Except that isn't what the OP said now was it.
Sisiters' comment sounded exactly like the anti-gay response to gay people in the 1940's and 50's.
No. you dont have to.
How do you know you are not "broken"? There may be physical reasons for someone not feeling sexual attraction, and you don't know unless you are willing to check.
And if you were "broken" the only person who could "fix" you would be you!
You stole my line!!! LOL
Nice suggestion....but keep in mind for future reference this isn't about whether people "want" to be asexual.
Good point, jenn
if u dont want to be then why are u go for what is pure and righteous jesus is there to help you he loves u he died for u find out why he died he did not do this for nothing we are something to him
Yes, we have had them checked (at least I have). They are normal. I am normal.
Normal is a setting on a washing machine.

I think it's possible to have things like hormones, cholesterol, or white blood cell counts in a normal range, but when it comes to our minds and personalities, there's no such thing as normal.

Normal is a statistical term that mathematicians consider to be a value within two standard deviations of the mean, or average. When it comes to being a human, what's the mean?
I agree. It seems this could be the result of a hormone imbalance. Of course no one is calling it a choice and no one is saying they have to be sexual, but unlike straight, gay, and bi, there could be ways of bringing sexual attraction to these people, if they so desire.
It might be a better way to phrase that to mention there *are* physiological and psychological things that can cause a simple lack of *sex drive:* (I was a late bloomer and despite being thoroughly bi, some things that *seem* a lot like asexuality are pretty common for me: I actually do have some endocrine deficiencies, and a bit of associated damage from various sources. A likely difference here is I still have clear attractions even when it seems the whole thing's gone dormant, and I'm not into or even thinking about much of anything along those lines. It'll be good to hear from more asexuals about what their experiences are like just to even discuss this intelligently.
It will be good. I assume since it's growing, that there would be a number of asexuals who have consulted a doctor only to find out that their hormone levels are perfectly normal.
Yeah, though hormone level issues tend to come with other health problems that'd lead to doctor visits about em anyway. It'd be interesting to see. I only know much about this from trying to help a few questioning people, one who might have been asexual or just bisexual and cripplingly-shy, thus feeling confused. He found out about the asexual community, and I eventually lost touch, so I don't know how that worked out. Some comments from asexuals here actually do seem to be just having some other orientation and not having a desire for physical intimacy. Which'd make it a pretty broad category. Plenty of trans people aren't very sexual because their own bodies aren't what they're wired for in some ways, for instance, whoever they're with. And plenty of Aspies aren't big on physical contact either, for another example. So I suppose some defining of terms may be in order.
Many have actually gotten their hormones checked, and found they are actually normal, and that hormonal therapy does nothing.
And some said exactly the same to gay and transgendered people. Not fancying sex is very different to not being sexually attracted to someone one.
How so? Just because you can't understand it doesn't make it "very different".
Sister, your haus is so funky, why don't you get your own hormones checked!
Look for part two! We get into the science tomorrow!
That's one of the most common misconceptions thrown out--that it has something to do with our libido. Actually many of us have normal or high sex drives. It's about sexual attraction, not sexual arousal or libido. Meaning it is a description of who we're sexually attracted to (no one). Telling us we just really need a doctor is pretty dismissive, so I'd ask that anyone who's thinking of saying this please do a little research before saying "I don't understand this, so you might actually be sick, and maybe you should see a doctor." Please also keep in mind that some asexual people are okay with sex, just like some gay people can have sex with people who aren't their same gender and still enjoy the experience even if they aren't attracted to the partner. It happens, and asexual people are no different (though some of us also of course do not have sex). Thanks!
I thought asexuality was a lack of a sex drive, so who or what turns you on if "no one" does? This question is not meant sarcastically I was wrong about what I thought asexuality was and would like to learn more.
Well, apparently there is more to come... so stay tuned! :-)
That's one of the most common misconceptions thrown out--that it has something to do with our libido. Actually many of us have normal or high sex drives. It's about sexual attraction, not sexual arousal or libido. Meaning it is a description of who we're sexually attracted to (no one). Telling us we just really need a doctor is pretty dismissive, so I'd ask that you please do a little research before saying "I don't understand this, so you might actually be sick, and maybe you should see a doctor." Thanks!
Hrm, Ivy, I seem to be hearing two different versions of self-described asexuals, then, some are saying they have another *orientation* and no libido to speak of, and some are saying what you are, plenty of libido and not being attracted to anyone, so it does seem there's some variation there among people who describe themselves as asexual. (Of course it's dismissive to *presume someone just needs a doctor, we should all know *that,* ...But there really are conditions and symptoms and side-effects of other things that can also result in a loss or lack of sexual interest or comfort with physicality. Not too surprising that that's the first thing non-asexuals would think might be thinking if they suddenly found themselves without attractions. I mean, I'm usually running short of appropriate hormones, myself, but that comes with a much bigger chronic health problem: gals get all our testosterone from some already-overtaxed-in-my-case adrenal glands. You wouldn't want that, and all. )
Some do have no libido as well. It's just not what defines a person as asexual. (I don't feel that I have a sex drive either. But I know many asexual people do.) I think there's also confusion about what "sexual attraction" even is, because I personally would describe my whole orientation as "not wanting to have sex" but that's not really the crux of it for some asexual people. It's an expression of who you're attracted to sexually--which, for asexuals, is no one--that defines an orientation. Whether you have sex or masturbate is a behavior. Plenty of non-asexual people have no sex or don't masturbate, but still find people sexually attractive. As for conditions that are associated with lack of sexual interest or sex drive, absolutely, they exist, but as you said, they have other effects besides sexual interest if they're hormonally related. Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder, for instance, tends not to get diagnosed unless it represents a change in how a person experiences desire and unless the person is distressed about it. Having a lifelong lack of attraction is not HSDD. It does make sense that non-asexual people would imagine it for *themselves* and think it uncomfortable or alarming, but we're not asking them to think of it as "if it were them." It's not. It's us.
I, and many other aces, have indeed been checked on that. My T is higher than average, plus I have ADHD which usually leads to hypersexuality. There's nothing wrong with me. And just so you know, the suggestion of something wrong like that is offensive to aces.
It's offensive to anybody with half a brain.
It has nothing to do with "wanting to be" ... it isn't a choice as you seem to be implying. It's just like every other "non-heterosexual" sexuality.... we were born this way. Something in our genetic code. When I was in high school, I had zero desire to date. I finally tried relationships and all that in my early 20's. Nothing spectacular. I had sex. And every time, I wondered what the big fuss was about with all my friends. I thought I was broken. I saw doctors, I did the tests. Everything is normal. I see a guy and think he's attractive, but I have no desire to "do anything" with him. Same, but even less attraction, for women. The myths, much like what you're stating, persist and that's what this article is for. To dispel those myths. This is WHO I AM. It isn't a choice. It's a part of me. Always has been, always will be. Same goes for all the other Aces out there. Try educating yourself about who we are before making comments like this.
From one ace to another - well said!

As a side note though, I don't think the OP was trying to be hurtful or condemning. I certainly understand your impulse though - we are often double judged - first by society in general, and then within the gay community itself (I am assuming you are gay or bi, and please forgive me if you are not). But I don't think the OP was judging us, but rather trying to offer some heartfelt advice. And I believe she wants to become educated or else she wouldn't have read this article, much less commented. So hopefully she will continue to follow this short series. And I am planning to tell my own story as soon as I can find the words.

Peace and love to you Amanda! And I'm proud to be your #30 fan!
I am wondering whether there is more than one size fits all--maybe many asexual persons next felt attracted to anyone; maybe some never want to have sex; maybe others had their sexual development arrested at an early age because of sexual abuse (not saying this is the only way to become asexual, or that every person who is sexually abused will become that, only that it may be one path to asexuality) and are not interested in sex nor attracted to anyone sexually. Maybe for some it is genetic, and for some it is environmental, and for some in is a combination of the two.
I am not telling you who YOU are--I don't know you you are, and it is fine for you to be however and whomever you want to be. I'm just wondering about the 'this is the way it is for all'...because sometimes these generalizations end up excluding some who may not fit that 'all' but are asexual nonetheless.
Just saying.
OR, they COULD just be asexual.

MINUS your idea that they are somehow defective.

There ARE other valid sexual orientations besides heterosexuality. And just because they aren't a heterosexual orientation, doesn't mean something is wrong.

Oy. What a supremacist attitude.
Do you feel like yours need to be checked too?
yeah, not broken ... don't need fixed just to fit into a society that favors a certain way.
Since I have never heard of this before and don't know a lot about it, I was reading this with a more biological view. I agree, I thought maybe hormones, but more likely something neurological. It doesn't mean someone is "broken" (ignore that person). To me, it is interesting because being asexual goes against biology and our innate need to survive through reproduction. It'll be interesting to see how this continues to come up in our culture, especially with the strides made in the LGBT community.
I find myself wondering if this could be a biological reaction to overpopulation. Natural, no, not broken, but maybe an adaptation.
It could be! Just as homosexuality might be Nature's response to overpopulation.
We are all being made to feel inadequate if we are not sexually active. I never bought into that paradigm. I am beyond it.
To me, the idea that people should want sex all the time is the unbalanced view. And I am saying that as a father of 6, if that tells you something... If you take two steps back and look at the sexual act, it is rather ridiculous, really. I think we have blown sex up into way more than it actually is, and that has caused humanity a great deal of unhappiness.
Sometimes sister, silence is golden!
The first step is understanding the difference between a hormone and a mineral.

You cannot hear a mineral.
sisiterfunkhaus, you will no doubt get nasty comments from people who didn't fully read your comment. They will not have read/understood the part that said "if people want to be asexual, more power to them. But, if they are interested in not being asexual, a medical work-up might help some of them."

Your comment is likely only borne out of "gosh, this sex thing is really fun... maybe some of you want to enjoy it the way I am too?". If it turns out that medical science cannot possibly turn aesexual people into sexual people, then so be it. if it turns out that not one aesexual person would like to further investigate why they aren't sexual, nor would they ever want to change if it were possible because they definitely know they prefer their current state, then so be it.
Have you checked your estrogen lately, sister?, you might be a quart low.
To answer your question, I am one asexual person who did have my hormone levels checked multiple times. In fact, I've had a complete blood workup five times in my 50+ years, trying to discover what was "wrong" with me. Now that I understand my true sexual nature (asexual), I'm through with tests and thinking of myself as broken. Finally, I can accept myself as I am.
It is NOT a hormone imbalance. Low testosterone effects libido. Many asexuals have a working libido, just not sexual attraction to direct that libido at a person. Some have sex (many through compromise with their partner), some enjoy orgasm, some enjoy masturbation. And many asexuals have been pushed by parents and such to go to doctors to get "fixed" just as homosexuals have had done to them and doctors could find nothing wrong with them physically. Of course, some parents then deemed their children mentally ill and pushed therapy to "fix it". Sound familiar?

Asexuals are not broken. They are not ill. They do not need fixed.
lol. I am asexual now because of my lack of sexual desire.....I am old, not sexy and it is probably lack of homones. I did not choose this asexuality....it just happened.
I must agree with you. I had much sexual desire when I was under 30 then it has gradually decrease (now 50 yrs old). If I didn't have a husband I would probably choose to not have sex because of my lack of desire.
Boy did you start a fire storm. See what you did. You asked a logical question but instead of getting a reasonable explanation, you were attacked by many individuals who could not believe that you made such a suggestion to what may be a medical problem.
This shows me how many of these people are very insecure to whatever this is. This is the typical way comments like yours are addressed by some people.
For those of you who are playing defense or who are just overly sensitive, try explaining your situation as opposed to going on the attack. Attacking people with legitimate questions will not do your cause any good.
And by the way, most people don't care one way or the other if you are asexual.
A 'medical work-up'? You are the type of person who's a GIANT part of the problem. There's NOTHING wrong with us. Our hormones are just fine, thank you.
Are you trying to say "fix them" like they did with LGBT?
Once again. People who have sexual desires, etc. simply cannot comprehend someone who does not. Do you honestly think that people who are not emotionally experiencing what everyone else around them is would not have themselves medically checked out, if they could afford it?
I tip my hat to anyone who finds themselves a part of this group. It's difficult being outside of what our society aggressively pushes as "normal" and I salut anyone who's had the challenge to come to terms with it.

Sexuality is a powerful thing and not only is it distracting, it is divisive. I can only imagine what else I could have achieved with the energy I spent satisfying my sexual nature over the years.

Truly understanding asexuality, from the position of a sexual person is probably an impossibility... But I understand that it is likely as pervasive and undeniable as my homosexuality for me. As such, while the concept fills me with questions, I also know that for any person who identifies as asexual, there needs to be respect and understanding that this is the path they are traveling and be allowed to travel it free from judgement.
That was very well said. Good points.
PERFECTLY said!

It’s really simple.  I found that after years in pursuit of a loving relationship I had taken a brake in disgust.  After a few year I realized I wasn't missing the sex and upon deeper self review I came to understand that most of the sex I had was because I was looking for love.  Then I realized I was looking for love because I was afraid to go through life single as if a spouse would make it all better.  When I realized I was over 40 yo and doing well.  So now, I'm asexual and very content.

As a Gray-A: Someone who experiences sexual attraction but it's very very minimal/muted (say 1 on a scale from 1-10 if a number was ascribed to it) thank you for not judging us.
Everybody is on a journey of their own. A journey which makes sense to them and which may not make any sense what so ever to others. It's challenging enough to be working at understanding what's going on inside yourself without half the world suggesting you're broken in some way.

In my opinion, we're all bit players in each other's life path. The people you will encounter can either see you as an obstacle to overcome or an assistant. I'd rather score as many positive scores on my punch card as I can manage.

Life here is tough enough without beating on each other for stuff we don't properly understand.
As an aside, I find it rather unfortunate that whom ever assembled the categorization grid you refer to when you mention "Grey-A" chose a name which would suggest lack of colour or vitality...

IMHO the absence of a strong sexual urge would not make a person a less vibrant person by definition... If anything I would assume that the energies spent on sexuality would be transferred to other interest, which would not make a "Grey-A" person... Grey.
Odd, I've been celibate for almost 11 years now and I did this for exactly the reasons you lamented.

People still can't believe I'm not interested, woman don't take it well when they are interested in me either, they seem to think I'm gay or something else.
Someone famous once said the reason men conquer nations and build pyramids is to get laid.

But I put this out there, if true that men did this for sexual reasons (breeding rights?) then what happens to civilization when you no longer have that sex drive?
No more pyramids?
Nicely said, although for me I don't see sexuality as a distracting thing that has any negative consequences (that is, what good could I have achieved if I wasn't preoccupied with sex a lot....). Sex is the very thing that makes me the most [insert positive attribute that matters to me here]. It is an important and significant way I show my love and affection to the woman in my life. I don't begrudge anybody deemed asexual, but I am very curious what it would be like to not have sexual urges every day, sometimes all day. I suppose there is a spectrum though, with 0% sexual urges fairly rare.
Well as in all things, I think we're all somewhere along a sliding continuum in this life... Few of us are at either ends of the spectrum, and that's probably where life get a little more complicated when you do find yourself at one of the extremes.

I think most of us go through phases when our sexuality goes a bit dormant... and other times, at least for me, when it feels inescapable.

Regardless, for someone who identifies as asexual (something I would assume comes after much consideration) it must be like one less thing on your plate to deal with.
I had in mind to blog the same thing till I read yours. Agree one hundred percent. But can you imagine how many people would be put out of work if every one went that way. Another American financial crash. lol Just sign me eighty.
I agree, sex is a lot of things, but divisive and distracting are NOT two of them!!!! You REALLY need some new partners !!!!
I object to your claim that sexuality is divisive. People are divisive, not sexuality.
Does the term "too much information" mean anything to you at all? No one gives a damn about how energy you have spent sleeping around.
As a gay man, I'm very excited about this! I have not met any aces (I love that term btw), and I've never really learned much about them except through wikipedia. But you are my fellow members in the LGBTQIA community! I know that this will be absolutely divine decadence!
LGBTQIA? that's a bit too much don't you think, I really don't think that asexual are part of the lgbt community, I don't think they want to be part of the community, they're clearly not interested in sex nor sexually related activities
Speaking from experience, you are incorrect in your assumption.
Can you give me more details? I'm genuinely interested in knowing more....I just don't think that asexual have anything in common with LGBT people...by definition , they don't like sex..and whether you like it or not, gay culture is about sex...and last time I checked asexuality is not actively being persecuted by society...so why would they wan to be part of a community that revolves around sex?
First, of course, aces still seek relationships, intimacy, trust, love. Just like real people. Second, they still have preferences as to who they seek these with or from , etc. So think of asexuality as an independent variable from orientation. So you have aces who are gay or straight as the case may be.
EWAC, you seem to be focusing solely on the sex part of the equation.  Please allow yourself the opportunity to see beyond this one small aspect of sexual identity.  Asexual people still identify as being hetero, bi or homosexual. We are still attracted to people just not sexual.  Maybe this will help...While I have identified as a gay male since my earliest recollections I also know that I do not have a burning desire to have a physically sexual relationship with another man.  This is not to say I never had sex nor does it mean that I will not in the future if I choose to do so.  It simply means that I do not need or have the sexual drive.  On the medical/emotional side, I have a normal testosterone count and am emotionally stable.  Presently I am in a committed, monogamous relationship with a man I truly love.  He too is asexual and we are most fortunate to have found each other is a world that hyper-sexualizes virtually every aspect of life.  There is a place for everyone this planet.  We just need to stop the need to defining other people in our image.
Thank you, that's all I wanted to know... I truly did not understand what asexual meant... I actually thought that asexuals don't go into relationships, I appreciate the info
You're welcome.  Thank you for keeping an open mind.
How do you feel about terms like "homo-romantic"?
I couldn't have said it better if I'd tried!

And congratulations! I wish you both many MANY more happy years together!!
Just speaking for myself, I like being in a group that is fairly understanding. And I like being able to read about successful coming-out stories when I know mine has to wait until I will be able to move out.
I'm facepalming hard right now.
not everybody in the lgbt community is all about sex or those activities. I'm gay therefor a part of the community. I won't have sex unless with a partner
There's a lot more to LGBT and such issues than *sex.* If that's what this were about, gay men and lesbians would have zero in common.

Actually much of the bigotry we all face is about 'failure to be straight enough,' ....not necessarily cause anyone's sending off 'gay signals' or actually seen to be or actually 'doiing gay sex' but in fact, for failure to act or seem to be *heterosexual* enough.

To a large extent, 'aces' get treated as though they must be 'gay for many of the same reasons we are. They may not have relationships to oppress, as such, but if they're actually a sexual orientation of their own, they get trouble for that not being a straight one.
Very well stated, Lass.
But they are not persecuted legally for what they are. They can marry another asexual person and have all the heterosexual privilege they want. Even if asexual is a sexual orientation, those who have it are not legally oppressed in any way.
It's not just about marriage, either. In fact, if asexual people want to have a life-partnership of that sort, it's *still* the law being used to tell them who they can do it *with,* ...mandating heterosexuality and all. If they're perceived as gay for *not* being in any relationships or displaying heterosexual cues, and then discriminated against over that, they kinda do have some skin in the game, actually.
I can see that point some.  But they do not face the legal issues LGBT people do.  They may be perceived as gay--and oh, yes, that's an issue but they aren't.  So they have some slight skin in the game but nothing compared to LGBT people who are facing death in certain corners of the world and legal persecution in the USA.
Oh, yes, because homoromantic and biromantic asexuals absolutely do not exist*, and even if they did, you'd beel justified in showing the door to them, because, clearly, loving the person who is the same gender as you are is not gay enough. You have to do the sex to be really gay!!!

*FYI: They do.
I said legally.  There are no laws banning asexuals from marriage.  Now you are stating that asexual people are not only asexual but also gay and bisexual.  Then definitions must be redefined because being gay or lesbian is being attracted to the same sex and bisexual is being attracted to both.  Asexual is feeling no desire per this article.  So are we talking about a sexual orientation or simply a level of desire?  How can you be gay and asexual when asexual means no sexual desire and gay is attracted to the same gender?  I would appreciate your insight.
The queer community is not about sex, it's about "community of differences", Differences that mean you're an outsider to the straights.
Actually lots of asexual people identify as queer (and some have same-sex romantic attractions and/or might be transgender or gender nonconforming). And some think asexuality is queer since it does involve an outsider experience based on sexual attraction. It's up to individuals whether they want to identify as queer, and it's up to individual queer organizations whether they'd like to extend their support to people who identify as asexual (or whether they'd like to include allies, etc.). I'm not sure what purpose you'd have in deciding when it's "too much" when it comes to helping people of minority sexualities. The acronym does get clunky if you try to represent all kinds of individual identities, of course, which is why some people are preferring "GSM" (gender/sexuality minorities) or "GSRM" (gender/sexuality/romantic minorities) or even "QUILTBAG" (queer/undecided/intersex/lesbian/trans*/bisexual/asexual or allies/gay).
I don't like the word sexual minority...I think in the future, most staright people will acknowledge that they are bisexual...a lot of scientists think so...I just really don't like forcefully lumping people together...why can't we be the "sexually diverse" ?  LGBTQIA is just too much and you have to see that most of these letters don't even talk to each other except during pride paardes
You're right! We we don't talk to each other. We need to! We need to stand united! We need to be able to communicate with each other, no matter what religion, race, ethnicity, nationality. We were given an encompassing label that many find offensive. We need to be on the offense by forming an army of non-heteros and hetero allies. We have to congregate as one giant military like division that will tell the world we are no different from everybody else because we are all different. Not one person is the same. Even twins have different fingerprints. We have to come out as whatever we identify as, whether it's gay, lesbian, asexual, transgendered, anything non-hetero. We need a modern day Harvey Milk who acts more like MLK. We need a leader. We need someone to follow. We have icons, but we need a living person who will march into Washington and speak into the nation.
"QUILTBAG" is my new favorite acronym now! I hadn't heard of it. It brings to mind patchwork, of course, but I also immediately thought of the AIDS Memorial Quilt at the National Mall, which is kinda cool.
I would be one of those. No romantic attractions, but gender is...complicated. I've never really found a good label for the gender side of things, but as long as I'm sucking down air there's time to sort it out, assuming it even needs sorting. I'm kind of good just leaving it as 'queer'.
A bit much? As if the 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th letters were juuuuust right...
It is about being inclusive. Maybe they are not interested in sexually related activities but they are self identified as a type of sexuality that is away from the majority of people, therefore, like us, they are battling issues of discrimination, phobia's, and uneducated individuals. We should all try and be more encompassing of all minorities because the only way we are going to eliminate the stigmas is together.
The asexuals face no legal persecution whatsoever.
So an asexual man who falls in love with another man can get a portable marriage with another man in the entire US?
Asexual people state that asexuality is a sexual orientation.  There are no laws barring asexual people from marriage nor are churches blaming asexuals for hurricanes, shootings, etc.  Unmarried asexuals are treated as single heterosexuals, in other words--heterosexual privilege applies--unless the asexual man or woman is perceived as homosexual and that is a perception.  Now are you stating there are lesbian and gay and bisexual asexuals?  If that's the case, then definitions for all have to be changed because asexual equals no sexual desire per this article and lesbian or gay or bisexual DOES include attraction and desire.  
There are homoromantic asexuals who are interested in same sex relationships without the sex. :)
LGBT is more about rights than sex, don't you think?
The community is not about sex or sexual activities. You don't need communities for that. It's about coming together in acceptance, unity and a whole lot more.
From what I have read, asexuals can still form romantic relationships and have a gay or straight attraction that is not sexual. I think asexual people are a sexual minority that can benefit from inclusion in the LGBT alphabet soup, regardless of who they cuddle with.
actually many are activists in our community and have been in our pride parades. There too are sexual minority, why shouldn't they be welcome?
gay man here.. i agree. i would imagine they would feel they are outside anything that involves sexual relationships.. hats off to having dignity for asexual people
Wow - I never knew that I had to be into sex or sexually related activities to be a gay man and considered LBGT. What do you think people do all day? Just sit around having sex? I like it too, but it does not define my being gay.
THANK YOU! I'm tired of being asked, "Are you gay?" just because I don't WANT to have sex with some idiot man (or anything else, if you need to know). AVEN can't afford to become associated too closely with the LGBT community. It will make them just one more 'in the closet' group.
But there is a connection because they are a discriminated against minority. It is an isolated feeling to be any of the subjects of LGBTQIA unless you can find like-minded people. I'm borderline ACE and beat myself up for the past 60 years because I thought I was flawed. I felt like a bad wife (i'm now a widow) and beat myself up for not being what my husband deserved. But it is who I am and in 60 years have not found a way to change it. Just reading this article today has taken a huge weight off my shoulders that I have been carrying around my whole life. Knowing there are more out there like me is one of the most wonderful feelings I've had in decades. I'm not alone anymore. That is the connection, at least in my mind.
I'm sorry if I sounded inconsiderate, I'm truly sorry for the pain you went through 
Lord, because we need more abbreviations under our banner. LGBTQIA is ridiculous, lol. We aren't a halfway home for wayward sexualities.
Wow, very inclusive of you. How odd to see someone from the LGBT community speak from such a privileged position. Maybe you are too young to remember a time when being an out homosexual was met with violence or maybe you don't care. Your comment reminds me of folks who forget the fight for equality doesn't stop with them.
Well, now you know why the word 'homonormativity' was coined. Silver lining and all that.
what would you consider a 'wayward' sexuality?
"Halfway home for wayward sexualities."

Thank you so much for that phrase! I was wondering the same...I mean, we already have a hard enough time getting along to add more to the mix.
I looked at that and thought, "Man, that's a BAD Scrabble rack..."
I just call them all gay, but I will make an exception for aces.
Just use weirdo for short.
LOL at your halfway home comment. Now I need to go clean up the coffee I spat onto my laptop while laughing.
LOL! "A halfway home for wayward sexualities". That is hilarious ;)
Laughed out loud.
Every time they add another letter I cringe. We're like the wayward freaks umbrella organization. Being asexual would seem to me to be the exact opposite of sexuality - but gay sex doesn't define us as people and their being asexual doesn't define them either.
yes you are.
One letter less ridiculous than LGBTQI. I find these acronyms dehumanizing and annoying. And aside from manners, who decided the L should precede the G? LOL!
What is his day job, dreaming up acronyms for obscure gov't. agencies?
sorry, but lesbians a gay men don't have much in common, studies have shown that other than when fighting for rights, gays and lesbians rarely interact...and yes being gay is much more than just sex, but the central identity issue is sex, if there was no same sex attraction, there would be no gay community
You must be a youngster, because in the 1980s, when gay men were dying of AIDS it was often their dear Lesbian friends that were pushing them around in their wheelchairs and nursing them and being kind to them, standing by their side. I have some glorious lesbian friends that I have a LOT in common with. Same tastes in movies, video games, books, hobbies, etc. Why wouldn't we interact or be friends?
that's true, I tend to see that older gay men and lesbians have a much closer relationship, they're always doing things together...my generation (i'm 24) gay men and lesbian tend to be separate, each having their own groups and own events
"Divine decadence"? Pretty sure you are missing the point entirely.
I'm sorry, but WHY THE HELL would you just go and automatically assume that aces really want to be a part of any other group? Like one person said, is this supposedly the group where ALL "sexual outcasts" go? The very fact that you seem to just want to gather up anyone who isn't "straight" by some weird definition of yours makes it seem more like you are making yourselves outcasts. Don't you want to be thought of as equals, or would you prefer to be thought of as being on the fringes of society?

I have a lot of friends in the LGBTQ community, and I'm pretty sure they would say the same thing. You seem to be having just as much trouble wrapping your head around the very thought of asexuality as many heteros do when it comes to homosexuality and transgendered people.
Sorry for being inclusive to sexual minorities in a predominant heterosexual world where many heteros don't accept people who are different from them. I'm sure you've never experienced that in your life, which makes sense from your sentiments.
That's true. Why assume when you can ask? You could ask me, for instance, instead of making assumptions of your own (as you do in your second paragraph).
Isn't that a bit of a false dichotomy there, Katy? Or do you believe that equality is only for the subset of the LGBT community that conforms to mainstream-appearance, and that the rest need to be either hammered into straight-passing molds or ostracised?

For myself, I want the question of 'mainstream or fringe' to be kept distinct from the issue of "equal or not."
Let's just go with queer, can we do that? And can I identify as queer even though I'm basically a straight cis-gendered sexual person? Because I hate the hegemony? Plz, guys?

(I'm attempting to come off as silly... I guess by definition I'd be considered an LGBTQIABCDEFG "ally" but I also like the notion of throwing away the binaries altogether. Can I also I identify as queer, if only because of my philosophy on life and not my dictionary-defined orientation? #deepthoughts)
My point is that LGB (and I suppose we can include T, although most post-op transsexuals abandon the gay community in favor of living a "heterosexual life") community shouldn't be a catch-all for anyone who doesn't fit in. If we want to talk about inclusiveness and inviting all under our banner, remember in the early years of the movement, pedophiles tried to hitch hike on our movement as well (and were promptly voted off the island). I think we should focus on our community's issues, rather than inviting every PC-termed variation out there to parlay with us. No T, no Shade.
Our community, LGBT et al, should be open to anyone whose sexual or gender identities cause them social, personal, or professional issues--or just want to experience the camaraderie of those who don't judge. Not everyone needs to join, but what are we about if not for mutual support and celebration?
These instantly come to mind when I hear "Asexuals don't experience persecution". While it may not be physical violence, murders, assaults, and "denial of rights."

It is bullying.

http://i.imgur.com/ibGOhyO.jpg
http://queereka.com/files/2012/04/dan_savage_anti_asexual.jpg
Amen!
Does Dan Savage persecute Asexuals?
Dan Savage has said some very inappropriate and possibly persecutes things towards the asexual community. I do choose to give Mr. Savage the benefit of the doubt and believe that it is purely due to being misinformed about the topic.

However, such a man in his position should not be misinformed. A lot of youth struggling with sexuality no of Mr. Savage and turn to him for support, if they think they may be asexual and he says some of the things he has said it can feel like being exiled from the community that is supposed to be supportive of others.

Think of a youth struggling with sexuality being bullied at school, and then turns to the LGBT community for understanding and acceptance. Asexual, or not should that youth be bullied from inside the LGBT community? Is that fair?

No, it's not.

I don't have a full script of the things Dan Savage has said in regards to asexuality; you can hear some of them in the documentary (A)sexual.

One that really sticks out for me is.

"An asexual has no right to enter into a relationship with a sexual person."

(Paraphrased from his exact words).
Its always very wrong when someone who is a member of a marginalized group marginalizes someone else.  Not that its ever right to marginalize a person, but I find it especially tragic when someone who IS persecuted persecutes others.

Its disappointing to know that Dan Savage has spoken this way out of ignorance.  I hope he has since educated himself.  Also, I think he is wrong,  I am definitely a sexual person, BUT not so much that sex is the be all end all thing for me.  If I met an asexual man and the two of us hit it off and fell in love, I would be happy to be with him as long as he liked cuddling and snuggling and holding hands and kissing. I could live without sex.  Affection and closeness is what I like most.
That's it exactly! As gay asexuals, WHERE do we find comfort and safety when we are being judged and bullied by our very own community?
Hopefully the community will grow and be more welcoming. It is truly sad when a community that has faced prejudice and discrimination then turns and discriminates another community.
A community within a community, in this case. It reminds me of several scenes from Alex Haley's "Queen". She was too white to be black, and too black to be white.  
why are asexuals part of the gay community? wow.
sweet japanese jesus! LGBTQIA? really? where did the QIA come from. aren't we going a little too far with the abbreviations?
Queer/Questioning, intersex, asexual. And no. We need to include every single sexual minority. We have to show WASPs whose boss.
well, i see your point about the waspeses, but at this rate it'll soon turn into a dyslexic version of the alphabet. :P
I think it's great that that they form a community, claim their non-sexual identity, be proud of who they are, etc. I just don't see why they have to be lumped in with us. Every variation of gender and sexual expression (or I guess in this case, unexpression) doesn't need to fall under our banner (shall we add an F for fetishists while we are at it?). It just dilutes things. A community is formed by a like group coming together. We have enough of a time finding common ground in the LGBT tent as is (contrary to popular belief, we are not a homogenous community whatsoever, despite what the homo in homosexual may imply) . Throwing in what I coined as "wayward sexualities" just adds more division to the mix. Build your own tent, and find other groups more related to you to caucus with (how about those fetishists?).
Totally misses the point. Asexual people are by definition NOT interested in sex. Lumping them in ANY community that is defined by sexual behavior is a problem. Its why I've always had a problem with the T as well. Transgender has little or nothing to do with sexual attraction. A transgender person may be heterosexual or homosexual. It may be confused because of the trans nature of the individual but that confusion is on the part of the outsider more than the individual.
Ugh. Those people are NOT part of our community. I harbor no ill will against them but there are no laws that target them, there are no penalties for not having sex... they are people... fine... but they are NOT us.
The community is about supporting those who have a sexual orientation o gender identity outside the norm. An asexual still faces prejudice and lack of understanding due to their lack of sexual attraction. Also, some asexuals still feel romantic attractions, and can be romantically attracted to people of the same gender.
Yes, exactly! Thank you! :)

Also, for future reference, MOST asexuals actually feel romantic attraction (heteroromantic, homoromantic, or bi/panromantic attraction) and want a relationship with somebody.
Thanks for the correction. Most of the asexuals I have met were aromantic, but that is probably coincidence.
That is just stupid. Asexuals are not sexual in any way. No one is persecuting asexuals. We can't just add in every random minority group to the gay banner, and act like it isn't ridiculous
Thank you!

But you'd be surprised to find out how many within our community do not share your views. Hopefully this series on HP will help to explain some things.

Fan #80!
I don't think anyone here is "turning their back" on asexuals or disparaging them in any way. Why do you have to jump to the extreme? Feigning oppression? We have simply said that we have enough causes on our plate right now, and don't think that we should adopt anymore groups under our banner. That doesn't mean they can't start their own community, their own coalition, etc. And it doesn't mean I think anything less of them. My point has been throughout this thread, that there simply isn't any more room in our tent for more alphabets.
You were doing ok ... until the "absolutely divine decadence" bs. Perhaps you need to read up on what asexual means.
I mean learning about will be for me Divine Decadence. Ever seen Cabaret starring the one and only Liza with a Z?
LGBT stands for let george bush try. How did that work out for ya?...What's the QIA? Queers in action? What?
Mmmmmmm . . . I don't think they're interested, filmproduction. Absolutely divine decadence? You present as much of a problem to them as anyone.
LGBTQIA? Another few letters in the evolving sexuality alphabet. Good grief! I suppose HP is working on an Asexual Voices section now.
There is no LGBTQIA community. Yet again, a sexual person who does not comprehend those who do not emotionally desire sex.
I comprehend the idea of sexual minorities. I comprehend the fact that not many people accept non-heterosexuals into their social circles. It's about inclusion. I'm guessing you ALWAYS were included, lucky you.
Actually no... asexuals are NEVER really included... because no sexual person gets it. The game that asexuals play is letting heterosexuals believe they are gay... and letting gays think that they are heterosexuals. Therefore, there is never any real inclusion. Some bite the bullet, so to speak, and pretend to be what they are not, just for the sake of having companionship... just having friends... because even amongst a group of men or a group of women friends, what is almost certainly to become a topic - sex.... either the girls become absorbed in talk about boyfriends and dating... and have you or haven't you? To teen girls, there will inevitably be a period in which that's the only thing that matters.... The men and boys conversations inevitably turn toward skirt chasing and scoring. The asexual has no comprehension of those emotions that so absorbs the others. It's not a fun topic. Some pretend, some feel that's hypocrisy. Moreover, if you risk developing a close friendship (gay or straight) there is, at some point, the strong possibility that the other person will try to make it a sexual relationship. An asexual person can take that step to keep the close companionship... and the sexual times turn to resentment.... and the partner feels the lack of real response... because it's not pleasant for the asexual... or the asexual can stop it there and that close friendship won't survive.
Are you asexual? Because if you are I take your word on it. If you're not, then why are YOU giving an in depth analysis that does not include PERSONAL experience? If you're not asexual, then don't explain it to someone who is not.
I am... and have know it since I was 7. When I was 10, I told my parents you'll never have grandchildren and I'll never marry (because I understood what marriage meant). I was lucky. My parents accepted that... It removed that fear that parents have about dating daughters.... because I told them when I was about 12, you don't need to worry because the 1 thing I hate above all is hypocrisy. I won't pretend interest or respond sexually just to have a friend or to go along with the gang... because in the end, it can mean hurting the other person more than I myself am hurt... because they see rejection... and cannot understand that it is not a rejection of them or of their whole self. I also, somewhat suspect, that my father may have had asexual leanings. He definitely wanted the companionship of my mother, but there were so many things I saw in his behaviors that I see in my own. I never thought to ask my mom. I wish I had.
I accept you as one of my fellow GSD (Gender and Sexual Diversities) members. LGBTQIA is waaaaay too long lol. Not everyone (which I'm really surprised about) do not accept you as a fellow member. You must understand that I do. I am proud to call you family because no matter what happens, you must understand that you are loved and accepted by at least one person. I may not know you, I may have never seen your face, I don't even know you're real name, but I love you because you accept yourself and is willing to share the world who you are. I'm sorry if I seemed over the top but that's who I am. And when I say love, I mean the love of friends and family. My friends love me, they protect me. My closest friends are all straight, and I'm the only gay guy. But during my time of turmoil and heartache, they were there to comfort me. That's the life I share with you. We all get rejected, and we all reject, but we have to reject through love, whether it's love for others or love for ourselves.
I thank you for your caring. As people more and more come to understand that asexuality exists and is not a hormonal issue or the result of a bad relationship, grief, abuse, perhaps "aces" will feel more free to drop the pretense and games. However, I'm not really sure "aces" belong in a "gender and sexual diversities" group... tho' I can accept that appellation better than just being lumped in with LGBTQIA. The problem is anyone who has always had the desire for sex... the need for it.... and the desire for a loving relationship that involves an active, pleasurable sexual life cannot really comprehend someone who does not feel that. Some "aces" make up relationships or make use of those reasons above... bad relationship... a death of a fiancée.... even a rape... or religious vows.... Then they compartmentalize.... there are work friends.... club friends... school friends... but very few friends that span different compartments... that way questions don't get asked... and pressures are avoided. I have 2 close friends who have been allowed into my private life... because neither one has ever asked about my relationship status... or tried to fix me up with a date... or speculated to someone else why I don't date (that's a biggie)... They've never suggested medical or psychological help. They've just not gone there. One is a female friend from college. I was her maid of honor. The other is a 30-year-old man, whom I've known since he was 3 and I was
I've always thought that sex was something people do. So I had  a ton of it. Sex with people from the internet, Grindr, bars and clubs. But I never truly enjoyed it. The best sex I've ever had was with my ex-bf the second time after we broke up because we talked before hand and it was amazing! I need to make an emotional connection. I like to kiss abecause it's a sign of affection, but I never liked being active or passive. I made a vow of celibacy to focus on work, and I've never been happier. Yes, I masturbate to gay porn, but I'm content with my decision. Does this mean that I'm a gay asexual? Or does it mean that I have gone passed the physical attraction and need emotional, psychological, intellectual stimulation in order to enjoy sex? P.S. my ex-bf and I are very close friends.
You need to figure it out for yourself. There are all variations. Play it by ear. If you are happier w/o sexual involvement, then avoid sexual involvement for a while and see how it goes. From my own experiences and from what female friends have told me about their special relationships, there are 2 types... the sex that makes your head explode.... but that may or may not be with someone whom you intend to commit to.... then there's the sex that completes you. Not only is it usually good, but it feels right... it feels perfect - physically, psychologically, emotionally. Unfortunately, even those relationships may not last, but those are the ones that women dream of lasting or dream of finding again. I wouldn't know because for me the sex is the thing that drives a wedge in the relationship... because it doesn't give me the feelings that they describe... it doesn't give me a feeling at all... other than the physical sensations, which are not always pleasant w/o the emotional component.
Here's something else that happens with asexuals that maybe sexual people can sense. I've watched "sex" turn on with 2 people in conversation.... gay or straight. I see it happen.... there's an emotional and physical flirtation that goes on that I don't think most people are even aware of as it happens to them. It seems to be an extra step upward from just enjoying a conversation. It's when they *really* enjoy the conversation or they begin to have a feeling that they need to back away. An observant person can watch this happen. That extra step never happens with an asexual. The other person's sexual intuition picks up on this... and often... conversation over. The connection is gone.... and that other person never is very friendly again... because they have felt a rejection w/o understanding that it's not about them... it's that the response that they are expecting or hoping for simply does not exist in that person. Most asexuals will tell you that beyond parental, sibling, or the most accepting of friendships (very rare), all relationships have a sexual component.... and I don't mean actually having sex... but sexuality is present... often simply as a touchstone or commonality between mere friends  of the same sex. I'd be interested to know how many asexuals can honestly claim to have had a "BFF". I'll wager they all have friends who are compartmentalized... friends for different aspects of their lives.... but who are not all-inclusive.
I fail to see how anyone can be "excited" that they have zero sexual attraction to anyone (gay/straight/bi). In fact, as a gift from God or whomever your faith lies, I think of it as lonely not to express sexuality in a relationship....just sayin.
I'm excited because I don't anything about asexuality and I want to learn based upon their personal experience. And your lonely comment is similar to my mother when I first tried to come out to her when I was 14. I was lonely in high school because was no one else was like me. Go to college, I have a very large circle of gay friends. I'm not lonely because I love my friends. Love is an emotion that transcends beyond physical attraction. If you love, you're not lonely.
A lack of interest in sex is hardly "decadence." In fact, it's a pretty good candidate for the opposite.
I meant learning about it. Besides,who are you to judge on the "decadence" of one's sexuality? Who are you to make such a call on somebody? Who are YOU?
Thank you, for 52 years I have been told things such as "You must have been molested as a child" to "You must have a hormonal imbalance" I have struggled to fit in , to be normal. I just want to thank you for bringing light to this subject. I may never use the monocle of Asexual because anyone outside the norm tends to get persecuted by society.Recently I met a man who was gracious and polite but declined his advances because I did not want to deal with the physical aspect. Wow, I wish this was written in the seventies! Thank you is all I can say.
Well, that's one thing the LGBT community has in common with you there, *we've* historically been told we're LGBT cause we were molested or 'recruited' ...or that hormones would make us 'normal.' (They got off that cause the anti-gay people have been pushing this 'sinful choice' angle and all, but I heard it as a kid. )
We've been told it's a sin as well, actually. I have personally been told that I'm going to hell for my asexuality.
Heh, I thought they only reserved that for women not wanting to have sex with men, but, never did expect them to make sense. :)
You aren't going to hell period as there isn't such a place. You are perfectly beautiful the way you are.
I agree. I found it hilarious, since even in the bible hell isn't a place you get sent as punishment. And by the definition of the word used then, sheol, that the people then knew, even Jesus went to hell, it made me laugh a lot.
I hope you can still laugh, when you are there...
Seeing as, first, it doesn't exist, second, it's not a place you get sent as punishment, and third, the word translated hell references the physical location on earth that mankind is buried, and since I would have to be dead to go there at all, AND since the bible says that "the dead are conscious of nothing at all" (note, this means no everlasting soul) then I won't be able to laugh because I'll be dead. Please learn your bible facts before trying to condemn me from it for anything.
"Be fruitful and multiply" is the common doctrine. So yeah, I can see where religious fundies would think you're a sinner.

It's a shame the bigger religion tends to get, the less humanizing it becomes. It's like... it starts with a good idea, then somehow becomes really warped.
You chose it. Just kidding. Seems your asexuality would make you pure and holy. You should become a shaman or voodoo priest. Make it part of your sales pitch that you've "transcended the needs of human flesh and desire". You'd think the fundies would make you a saint and highlight you living a life full of the jesus.
I'm already religious, but that's not the point I want to talk about. From the other aces I've talked to, "asexual" and "pure" are not even close to equal. We tend to have dirty minds just like anyone else. Just because we don't desire sex doesn't mean we don't have any or understand it.
I think you are blowing smoke, super dork.
 I'm being truthful on this. You should play cards against humanity with us sometime.
Now, that's unexpected. So thanks for passing along that information.

Isn't it ironic that gay people like me are often told by religious conservatives that celibacy is our only acceptable option? I never took them seriously because I suspect that wouldn't make them happy either. Easier to concentrate on whether I'm happy because that, at least, I can control.

The thing that struck me about this article was the commonality of feeling like you must be the only person like you in the world. It's different for gay folks now, but that's pretty much what it was like growing up in the South in the 1970's.

That feeling of, "Oh, my gosh, it's not just ME," is a liberating one with which I can strongly identify despite the issues being different.
And scientific proof of the hatred against hatred is here. It goes even further than that against homosexuals. http://bit.ly/11vO5bz
In what context would someone tell you that? What did they base their conviction on?
That's pretty moronic, considering that in the Bible sexual abstinence is recommended by Paul in the NT. Who better to do just that than an asexual person?
I think they want you to be sexually-*repressed,* and 'tempted.' not happily indifferent to sex. :)
Yep. Can't have religion without repression, temptation and guilt! ;-)
That is the weirdest and most hypocritical thing to say..and just shows the utterly conflicting and shameful relationship that religion has with sexuality (especially the christian religion)--where to HAVE sexual feelings is considered a sin, to ACT on sexual feelings is a sin, and now to NOT HAVE sexual feelings is a sin?
These people really ought to make up their mind...
Unless (and I suspect that this is what is REALLY going on with the religious views regarding sexuality--and other things), the issue is not sexuality at all, but CONTROL and SHAMING for the sake of control.
If you can keep people feeling like they are lacking, wrong, needing forgiveness, essentially sinners and dependent on constant reassurance from the powers that be...then you have control of them.
And religious institutions--especially the Catholic church, but others, too--are known to want as much control as possible....

Telling you that you'd go to hell for NOT having sexual feelings when to HAVE sexual feelings sends one to hell, is a perfect example of the lose-lose and total illogical aspects of many religious doctrines.
Dont listen to that--be authentic
I don't let the haters get me down, after all they are the ones living sad, pathetic lives.
Really? My words here, but Christ said somewhere in the Bible that some don't burn with lust, and they can be of more service to God. Why would anyone judge it anyway??
That's ridiculous. Another word for it is a eunich who have been around since biblical times. You can't sin that way if you're not committing the act!
That's outrageous! Anyone who has even basic biblical knowledge would know that New Testament scripture says it's best to remain single but if sexual abstinence isn't possible, then marry. You're certainly not "going to hell" for being asexual.
You aren't going to hell...in fact you aren't going anywhere.
What scripture could they possibly use for that? The only thing I can recall is that an Apostle (I think it was Paul) said if you can refrain from having sex you will be able to serve God better or words to that affect.
Maybe some people just aren't comfortable with the mental images we form in our minds when reading or hearing about some activity or thing. Like when we hear words like, cannibalism or decapitation, or burn to death.. We form a brief mental picture. Try to NOT picture a lemon....see? I might guess that a gay man might not care to think about having sex with a woman, several times in his daily thoughts. If I don't openly harass or abuse Gay people, but choose not to socialize with them, what is the harm?
Or the '80s. It was tough, wasn't it, trying to come to terms with being different without having a vocabulary for sorting it through? I can't say I did a very good job of it. And when I first came across the idea of asexuality as an orientation I didn't really pay attention to it because I'd gotten used to the notion of me being uniquely screwed up. But I kept coming back to it and eventually embraced the term and got my head on the right way 'round.
I know what you mean. In the seventies, people teased me all the time and called me a-sexual, monosexual and I was afraid to let anyone see. It wasn't that I didn't like or have sexual feelings, it was just better to give them to myself, rather than be touched by someone else. Now, I avoid sexual encounters. It is nice to know I am not the only one!
Thank you, for years people teased me and called me a-sexual and monosexual back in the 70's and I was afraid to let people know. I hid behind relationships that never worked out. It was better for me to experience sex on my own than to get involved. Even when I first started working for BRO, no one really understood me. It is nice to know there is finally a support group I can turn to.
OMGOD!!! THIS IS REALLY ME! I never thought that there are people out there feel the same as i do.

I've fallen in love to girls but not really sexually attracted to them, I love guys physically but really not in emotional level and never, also, see myself having sex to them but I consider myself gay.

I thought I have a disease or something that makes me don't want to touch other person's body or even kiss. It always eww me. Now I know I'm asexual. Thank God I run into this article. I've been thinking about that a little lately.
You look pretty young. You might find that "right person" who makes you feel comfortable enough to take that next step. I wouldn't banish yourself to life without sex yet.
Very young people often know they're gay or straight. There's no reason to tell an asexual person they shouldn't identify as asexual just because you believe them to be young. What's the magic threshold you have to cross before you're old enough? I'm thirty-five and people are still telling me I'm too young to know. I imagine this will continue until I go through menopause and then people will tell me it's just because I'm too old. For the record, "banishing yourself to life without sex" isn't accurate, because some asexual people do have sex, and choosing to call yourself asexual isn't a vow or an unbreakable promise. It's a label. We use it to describe not feeling sexual attraction. If that changes and we start feeling sexual attraction, we also use a different label, like anyone would. Please don't misunderstand it as a dangerous decision people are making without being fully informed. It is a description. People should use it if it fits.
And yet, you're telling someone not to tell someone something...while you tell people something. *sigh* what a burden it must be to have all the answers!
Read it again, because I didn't say "don't tell someone something." (I did say there's no reason to. But I've never ordered someone not to speak. I do however recommend that they don't if they're saying something that's actually misleading or irrelevant or offensive.) I'm not sure what it is about "YOU CAN'T LIMIT MY FREEDOM TO SPEAK" or "BUT IT IS MY OPINION" that comes out as a defense when I try to explain why someone's declared position on a topic is ignorant.

Your snotty comment about having all the answers is noted. Considering I'm one of the people who helped with the research on this article and I've published on the subject half a dozen times and I'm known as one of the world's foremost asexuality activists, I think it's safe to say I probably do know a lot more about this topic than your average drive-by commenter. If you don't like that I'm giving very relevant perspectives on this topic, you do not have to take my advice.
Hello! I'm certain you mean well, and it's very kind of you to be concerned. May I just say, however, that it is somewhat insulting to aces when people say that you "just need to find the right person." We have been this way our whole lives, and, no matter the age we realized there was a word for who we are, it just really isn't about finding the "right person" for the vast majority of us-- There simply IS no "right person" that we feel sexually attracted to. It would be like saying to someone who identifies as straight that they "just haven't found the right person" to make them sexually attracted to someone of the same gender. It feels a little bit like a part of who we are is belittled when someone says we just need to find the right person, so I'm sure we'd all appreciate it if you didn't respond in such a manner from now on. :)

And also, aces aren't banishing themselves to a life without sex by identifying as asexual! Plenty of aces have sex for various reasons-- to have kids, or because they're with a partner that isn't asexual, or just for the pleasure of it. Being asexual doesn't mean you can never have sex again, it just means you aren't sexually attracted to anyone! :)

Have a nice day!

In all honesty, some may have felt that way at age 10, others at age 50.  My point is most young males feel as Luther stated he feels.  It only means that he has NOT reached his full understanding of what his sexuality is or is not.  That is what "maturity" is for.  He may be hetero, he may be same sex, he may be asexual - isn't the point to let him come to that conclusion honestly without prejudice for or against any form of sexuality.  We often dream and say a lot of things when we are young that we never mean by the time we are 30.




 

Fanned and Faved!!
(Hope this doesn't post twice! Internet's been odd.)

Hello! I'm certain you mean well, and it's very kind of you to be concerned. May I just say, however, that it is somewhat insulting to aces when people say that you "just need to find the right person." We have been this way our whole lives, and, no matter the age we realized there was a word for who we are, it just really isn't about finding the "right person" for the vast majority of us-- There simply IS no "right person" that we feel sexually attracted to. It would be like saying to someone who identifies as straight that they "just haven't found the right person" to make them sexually attracted to someone of the same gender. It feels a little bit like a part of who we are is belittled when someone says we just need to find the right person, so I'm sure we'd all appreciate it if you didn't respond in such a manner from now on. :)

And also, aces aren't banishing themselves to a life without sex by identifying as asexual! Plenty of aces have sex for various reasons-- to have kids, or because they're with a partner that isn't asexual, or just for the pleasure of it. Being asexual doesn't mean you can never have sex again, it just means you aren't sexually attracted to anyone! :)

Have a nice day!
Or maybe he's finally found something that identifies what he's going through? Many people know they are gay from a very young age, why is this any different? Don't discredit his experience by saying there is someone magical out there who may come along and change what he perceives to be his sexual orientation. Not only is it ignorant of what asexuality actually is, it just perpetuates the idea that asexuals need to "find someone" that leads to shame and loneliness in the first place.
That is a very condescending attitude. He is fully aware of himself. Anyone who speaks with such clarity obviously knows who he is. Sure, ANYTHING can happen as people age and that is all well and good, but don't minimize his self awareness.
Sage advice. He's very young and it's most likely easier to avoid than face all of your own insecurities and ...well, we've all been that age. Good luck to the kid, I'm not a person who attaches to anyone. I've never wanted a partner. I do like sex, though.
He'll figure it out as he goes along. Please stop telling him what he should and shouldn't do.
It's a free country my friend. I have the right to give the kid some advice if I want to . If you don't like what I have to say, then you don't have to read my posts!
"So you think you're a lesbian? You probably just haven't met the right guy yet."

That's pretty much exactly what you sound like.
Well, then, you're hearing me wrong . All I'm saying to the guy is that he can keep his options open as a human being. He may choose to spend the rest of his life as an Asexual or he may not. People have choices, was my only point to him! Don't be so sensitive, and by the way, some lesbians have been known to have relationships with BOTH men and women! Just ask Anne Heche, Ellen's former squeeze!
I think it is impossible for a sexual person to get it. It is not that Asexuals don't or can't have sex. Everything physical works. It's just that there is no pleasure in it... no emotional desire or need. For most of these people there will never have been a childhood crush. It's not about comfort... countless asexuals through the ages have faked it either as straight or gay just for the sake of companionship and family. However, the sexual part of the relationship has been either hell, because they actually find it revolting, or it has been a nothing.... an act to be endured..... Needless to say, the partner has not found the sexual part of the marriage or relationship to be very satisfying.
You explained that well.
I think maybe the worst part is that emotional pain when an "ace" has tried to fake it. He or she loves and cares for their partner, but the emotional connection involved in sexual desire is just not there. Once upon a time, before the sexual revolution, one can read in old letters and journals a spouse writing that their husband or wife doesn't care much for sex. They seemed more accepting of it then - perhaps, they assumed that their asexual spouse was gay. However, since the sexual revolution when sex came to be freely talked about and the LGBT community emerged, it's become more difficult. The sexual partner assumes that it's their fault... the performance isn't good enough... or that there's an affair. Even if the asexual partner tells them, they want to fix it. Their sure they can fix it... but it's the rare one who can continue the relationship w/o sex. Most asexuals like petting, closeness, cuddling, but it does not give them the sexual feeling that others get. It's just what it is an intimate platonic relationship. Unfortunately, the sexual person ends up feeling rejected, deficient, or completely unsatisfied with just cuddling and being a friend-brother-sister, etc. So there's pain on all sides. 
Congrats on realizing you're asexual! I came to the same realization a little under a year ago. If you feel like reading up on things more, AVEN's wiki is a great place to start: http://www.asexuality.org/wiki/index.php?title=Main_Page
There's also the Tumblr community and, I'm certain, other social media sites that are good resources if you look under the "asexual" tag and such. :) Best of luck!
"I love guys physically"

That's called sexual attraction. You're gay.
Not necessarily. I'm physically attracted to women. That doesn't mean I'm sexually attracted to anyone. The difference is that you can want to be physically close to someone (touching, hugging, cuddling) but have no desire to have sex or do anything beyond physical touch with them. I'm a cuddleslut, but I'm asexual. The two are very different.
Biology 101. Learn it.
Thanks, but I already know all that. But biology has nothing to do with this issue. Stop being so thick-headed, open up your mind, and realize that not one of us took on the label of asexuality without a lot of thought about it, a lot of self doubt, and a long time of thinking maybe we were broken and feeling like there was something wrong with us.
Simply because I've taken your views into consideration and dismissed them, does not mean I am closed minded. I means your argument doesn't stand up.
Oh Superdork42, I love you!! You stated it EXACTLY!! The perfect words to describe me and my life for 60 years!! I now feel I have been able to give myself persmission to stop beating myself down for my lack of sexual feelings. I LOVE some people and I am attracted just like you say. Attracted to everything but the actual act of sex.
I was married (now widowed), have 4 children, and 6 grandchildren. thankfully my husband loved me in spite of it all. But I always felt like a horrible wife, especially because my husband would have loved to be very sexual. But he stated to the world that he loved ME, he wanted ME to be his wife and the mother of his children. I thank God for him and miss him terribly.
I want a relationship with someone so bad but how do you find a man that will accept the fact that you don't want to jump in bed with him? I'm so damn lonely, it hurts sometimes.
I thank you so much for your comment/explanation in your post. You have helped to give me some peace.
I love guys physically too.... the hand holding, the cuddling, etc. That is physical.

"Physical" doesn't always equate to sex and sexual actions. There are many ways one can become physical with another without resorting to sexual activity.
Sounds similar to my situation. I don't desire to have sex with either gender, but I like spending time with men more then women. I will say that my idea of sex has changed slightly over the last few years, but the most important thing to keep is an open mind. Remember this is life and anything is possible. Pay no attention to the naysayers and focus on your own interests. Not what society says you should be interested in.
you should not be under any pressure to have any kind of sex if you are not ready. Its your life. Live it by your rules.
I love discovery stories like yours. Congrats on finding yourself. I'm the ace in the article who discovered asexuality through the imgur picture.
you ever thought that you just need more time to realize what you like. Stop looking for the next bandwagon. Stop trying so hard to be different.
Kid..here's the 411 : YOU IS GAY!!
You are DEFINATELY not alone, Luther. And yes, there are many more like you.

I only recently discovered this myself.
Yeah because you know, when a teenager says "Aw, I've been feeling different and wrong without understanding what was happening to me, and what I read here might actually be an answer, that feels great!" ... the best reaction is "No dude, don't use that word, just keeping vaguely feeling out of place, maybe some day that will change, so in the meantime just suck it up and don't put words on your experience." :/

I think you guys have no idea how alienating it can be to have no word to understand or describe yourself. Even more so at the age where you're supposed to be constructing your adult self.
Not having that burden of feeling defective without knowing how to even express it might do wonders for your actual health. Both mental and physical.

For most of us, especially the ones who weren't very self-assured and strong, finding AVEN and the very *word* asexual has been such a lightning-shock, like the whole world was spun around and the pieces finally clicked together...

Please don't try to sabotage that kind of needed relief, for the sole sake of feeling snarky on the web.
"Adolescence crisis" stuff is only funny when you went through it without real trouble. It can be pretty damaging, so please don't toy with these questions.
you found youre new nich, congratulations
I am excited to see that Huffington Post is going to have a series of articles on asexuality. As an asexual male myself, it seems silly to some but acceptance as an asexual is something that can be hard to come by in many different ways!
You mean you have NEVER, ever had the desire to have sex with someone?
That's what asexual means, yes.

No, it means that you do not and don't plan to.  It does not mean you have never.

That's like the opposite of me. Sometimes I feel like I'm still 14. Yikes.
Yes, that is an accurate statement.
My guess is that you are heterosexual, because lawd knows we gays are sick and tired of being asked, "You mean you NEVER have had the desire to have sex with men/women?"
Some members of the opposite sex I know I could be asexual with, but looking like Jennifer Aniston, or Shanon Stone, not way in hell. To each his own. Whatever floats your boat
As an asexual person, nope, not really. I mean, some people, to me, are interested in other people and love to be in loving relationships, but I can live without sex. Doesn't really interest me.
excluding a couple attempts at sexual relationships mostly failures because well it just wasn't there I understand this my mom repeatedly told me that she would accept me if I came out of the closet she assumed I was a lesbian why I dont know as she herself went at least 30 years without a partner nor the desire to have one. But I found another boy asexual neither of us are sexual with each other and have no desire to but well we can cuddle and are close in the way some partners are even if our love isn't sexual or built on desire.
But you do choke the chicken, spank the monkey, churn the butter, right? Why don't you just call yourselves "masterbaters anonymous" (MB's) and be done with it. Masterbation I know, asexuality makes me confused.
I mean, it's not really anything you should ever ask. Ever. It's not really any of your business to ask an asexual person such a question, no reason to.
However, allow me to answer for you; I am not mad or anything, just trying to let you know asexuals get asked this *all* the time, as if there is something wrong with not being sexual (Oh, so you *must* masturbate)
Okay, I'm rambling.
Yes. I do, on the rare occasion; I'm in a relationship, a sexual relationship; and don't have any desire to masturbate or have sex, it's purely a physical act which entails no sexual attraction.
Not all asexuals masturbate, and not all asexuals enter into sexual relationships. We are all very diverse within the community.
Make sure to watch the future articles, they will provide far more detail in a much more readable and understandable way.
Feel free to reply to me if you have other questions, I will be happy to answer them for you :)
Simple question? Because masturbation doesn't indicate your sexual attraction? Nor do all asexuals masturbate.

Asexuality is a definition of sexuality, not a definition of action.

Being gay means you are attracted to the male sex, not that you have sex with men.

To answer your (very personal, and inappropriate question): http://i.imgur.com/ibGOhyO.jpg #11

I am in a sexual, and very functional, healthy and excellent relationship for over 2 years now. The key is (surprise, surprise) communication.

Make sure to read the other articles in this series! I'm certain this topic will be covered :)
Appears I've made two similar comments twice (which I have, since the original didn't show up). May as well ignore whichever you choose. The latter is better worded.

Seems Huffington Post may be having some problems tonight.
That really was a childish comment. There really is no need to basically pick on asexuals like some junior high bully.
Wow... do you go around saying things like that to straight people? Or gay people? It's not really your business what physical acts someone who is asexual does or does not do... it's about recognizing it as an orientation on a spectrum and respecting its legitimacy and being respectful to the community.

Or you know, come up with some more masturbation euphemisms, whatever floats your boat.
Sorry that was directed at Dieter Zerressen, not Lobbie.......
Okay, spill!
Do you enjoy sex at all?
Do you have orgasms?
Do you ever get aroused? Hard?
@mikelove

I don't enjoy sex at all. It does nothing for me.

I've had orgasms, if a response like a mild sneeze in strong sunlight is an orgasm. My experience of orgasm is that it's uninteresting and unworthy of my time.

I don't get aroused. I have no interest in masturbation.
Thank you for being so open. It's an interesting topic.
Enjoy your day!
Mike
I'll answer for you as well, as every asexual is different :)

Q1:

I do not enjoy sex on an emotional level, not one single bit. Actually, I find it odd, gross, and unsatisfying emotionally. There is no emotional bond, emotional interest, arousal, etc for me. No incentive to have sex, no want to have sex, I could easily (very easily) go without it for the rest of my life.

However, I do have sex, so there has to be a reason for that I suppose. Well, for one I love my partner, and I respect him to absolutely no end. I understand he has needs, and I respect those to the best of my abilities.

Secondly, for me sex does physically feel good. That's a good thing, after all; if it didn't I'm sure a lot more humans would not be having sex. Physically the body does operate in the same way.

tl;dr: Sort of, it's okay I guess physically. No, not at all emotionally.

Q2:

Yes. That's what physically feels good.

Q3:

Aroused? No. Not in the sense of "I would like to have sex with her/him." or "He/she is so hot!" etc.

Hard? Yes. through physical means I am able to achieve an erection, although I have no interest in doing anything with it. I do it purely out of love of my partner, through means of the utmost important level of communication.

Not all asexuals fit a book of rules :) We are all different!
Asexuality is just another from of sexuality. Live and let live.
That's like saying bald is a hair style.

well if you can still grow hair then yeah it would be.  Only if you can't grow hair on your head anymore is it a condition.  But if you can grow hair on the sides and not the top - then yeah being completely bald would be a hair style.  Or a hairless style.

Actually, no. Hairstyles are choices. Also, bradenton is correct, it's another orientation.
No, it's not. A sexual orientation is defined as a person's sexual identity in relation to the gender to which they are attracted. If you are not attracted to any gender, you have no orientation.
Then what about those with no gender? Are you saying that they cannot have a sexual orientation? Sexuality itself is so big that it can't be explained simply and still include everyone. Asexuality is as big as sexuality.
Gender and sexual orientation are two different subjects. Another failed argument.
If you have no hair, it is;-)
Having shaved off a full head of hair for years… It is.
Are you being serious? Because if so, you lack even basic reasoning skills.
I think I've quoted a fact, engaged reason, and posted a supportable conclusion.

You, on the other hand, have made a ridiculous analogy and defended it with a hypocritical ad hominem attack on a stranger.
Uhuh. So tell me, how many different hair styles can you make with a bald head?
One hairstyle is still a hairstyle.
And what kind of hairstyle involves no hair?
What kind of tea involves no tea leaves?
None.
I never understand responses like this. Wouldn't the answer to a question like 'what kind of hairstyle did person A have?' be something along the lines of 'they were bald'? It's like how zero is still considered a number.
Yes, Zero is a number. However a complete lack of hair does not constitute have a "hair" style. You don't understand because you need to brush up on your reasoning skills.
But if it answers the question, in the same manner one would answer for any other hair style, why can't it be considered a style of hair? It's the same with asexuality. If 'no one' answers the question 'who are you sexually attracted to?' then why can't it be considered a type of sexuality? The way zero is considered a number.
Because the subjects are not related. A hair style needs hair, otherwise it's just a style. And a lack of a sexual orientation does not constitute and orientation.
Actually, I have an orientation. It's an orientation of none. Like the stately zero. :)
Uhuh. And can you show me on a compass where it points to nowhere?
lol, pun intended I'm sure
you so funny!!!!
So much for chamomile and all the rest.

Boy, that was easy. Too easy. Boring easy.
Herbal Teas are not in fact a Tea. I would suggest you look up the definition of tea: A hot drink made by infusing the dried, crushed leaves of the tea plant in boiling water.

That refutation was easy. Boring easy.
lol...exactly
Bahahaha, thats funny!
Bald is a hairstyle, no? LOL!
good one!
lol
I would view it as just the opposite...
awesome bit...and let me just add, all too many people confuse sex with love...sex is good, but love is better!!
Miss Sarah,

you need a moderate amount of both ( ideally ) that is .
Some people need both. Not everyone needs both.
"Love is in the air everywhere I Iook around" .
Take sex for sex. Nothing beats a mind shattering orgasm, except maybe a lobster tail with butter on it.
I completely believe you can have a loving and long lasting relationship without sex. More power to them Being close to someone and not requiring sex isnt a bad thing
I think that's an important point, in general.
For any sexual orientation or choice (and some are choices), love may or may not be part of the equation.
I would not be surprised if some would think that because a person may not be interested in sex, this means they are not interested in intimacy (read: not sexual intimacy, but PERSONAL intimacy and EMOTIONAL intimacy--the being close to another person, being vulnerable and loving with another person, etc). Or unable to form relationships. Or unable to love deeply. Or whatever.
Reality is, there are plenty people who are very sexually active and yet don't do well on the loving part. Many people who are sexually active but do not form intimate relationships (intimate physical contact, yes, but not real intimacy).
So sexuality and love are not the same.
Or dependent on each other.
I'm sure that for many people who love each other, sex can contribute and deepen and add a dimension to their love and intimacy.
Sex does not make love (even if people call it 'to make love').
Love does not mean sex.
How about love with sex - even better.
It seems like a lot of people just don't "get this". I get it. When I was trying to discover my own sexuality, I tried dating an asexual woman who was also trying to discover hers. Only, I was trying to see if I was bisexual and she was just trying to see if she was sexual! Needless to say, it didn't work out but I remember her telling me that she just didn't get it. She couldn't understand why she just couldn't feel the same way everyone else did about sex. I offered to her that she might be asexual (something I had just read about) and...after I explained what that was...she perked up. THAT made so much more sense to her than anything else anyone has ever told her, including her therapist. We've lost touch in the last decade, but I hope she's doing well now, wherever she is. :)
Geesh how funny.
As an aromantic asexual, this is really, really great to read. I'm glad that the reddit post worked out, and I'm glad people want to hear more about being asexual. Wonder if they plan on doing something on aromantics?

Great post!
And yes, my hormones are just dandy
It would definitely be interesting to see if they do a bit on aros/the ins and outs of romantic attraction! I feel that may confuse those who are just learning about asexuality and the whole difference between sexual/romantic attraction, but if it's written right I'm sure it'll help immensely!
I'd like to see a well-written article on it too, but I'm so happy with this that I don't mind waiting
Say more, please. Does this mean you have never been sexually / romantically attracted to any one at any point in your life?
It does indeed! I've never experienced any attraction to anyone or anything in my entire life. I've never had a crush or 'liked' someone, and I've never thought "Ooh, they're cute/handsome/attractive"
I have absolutely no idea how it feels to be attracted to someone.
(This is not useful when my friends ask me for relationship advice. It'd be like asking a penguin how to fly.)
Feel free to AMA!
Thanks! It boggles my mind (not negatively, just... mind-bogglingly), since I have a hard time imagining what it must be like. But yes, I can imagine how puzzling it must be for you to be asked for relationship advice. What DO you say?

And what about pure aesthetic appreciation / attraction -- e.g., looking at someone and acknowledging their beauty without a sexual tinge? For example, I can gape (yes :)) at a beautiful person (of either gender) and experience an aesthetic pleasure without sexual attraction, but I would admit that the person is attractive.
I'm an aromantic asexual too, and no I have never been sexually or romantically attracted to anyone at any point in my life, just as a heterosexual woman may have never been sexually or romantically attracted to a woman at any point in their lives. I have platonic friendships and I am close to my family, but I have never had a significant other. I have been asexual since I can remember, when everyone at school was obsessed with sex I didn't understand what all the fuss was about. When a boy asked me out I thought it was just like being BFFs. My hormones work just fine, I am perfectly healthy, I have friends, I am a functioning adult. I just don't find people sexually or romantically attractive.
These comments are great to read, as is this story. Midsummer, F & F!
More acceptance is a great thing, looking forward to learning more!

Guardyanangel, F&F!
Thank you so much Ivy, that was informative and I look forward to the continuing series.

F&F!
Oh? To be a bit snarky myself, like LGBT, where do you think the vast majority came from? The Easter Bunny?

To be more serious, as long as there are children being born, there will always be LGBTQIA people. It's just a part of the natural range of expression of the human genome.
And my silly snarky post AGAIN was supposed to show up in response to a different comment posted by Scarletrose.

HuffPost, PLEASE fix the commenting on your iPhone app!
Some of these people seem to not like people at all, or even be interested in other people. Being asexual seems, by definition, to result in being very self centered (virtually by definition...).I am a straight female but I find both men and women attractive, appealing and interesting - though my sexual activity is confined to men; as an older person, my sex drive has diminished a bit, so I can imagine living a life without sex and though it is a very satisfying life, I would never want to give up the sexual life I lived.
I understand what you mean by 'self-centred', as in not really caring too much about sharing relationships with other people. I am interested in other people, but not on the same emotional level as sexual or romantic people. Understand that other asexuals can and do see attractiveness in other people, but I'm in a bit of a 'league of my own'.

I like being with others on a frienship/strictly platonic level, so I can definitely see why it would seem lonely to those who have been/will be in love.
These people need to get their hormones levels checked.
Or you just need to get over yourself and mind your own business.
If people are happy being celibate then more power to them.  But getting your thyroid checked isn't a bad idea either.  
Did you not read the part that specifically says asexual is NOT the same thing as celibacy???
celibacy is not the same as asexuality. Did you not read the article? Think before you act.
I never knew the thyroid is what causes sexual attraction. Do people who are sexual attracted to the same gender have different thyroids than people who are sexually attracted to a different gender? How about bi/pansexuals? Are their thyroids a mix of the two?
Our bodies are nothing but chemical stew.  Lack of sex drive can be caused by lots of things.  These folks are doing themselves no favors by throwing up their hands and saying oh well, this is my sexual orientation.
You do realize I typed 'sexual attraction' and not' sex drive' and that the two are different things, right? Please try to read comments more carefully in the future.
I don't care enough about the topic to pour over your comments.  If people want to remove themselves from the gene pool and live like pandas in captivity, it doesn't change my life in any way. 
Actually, many asexuals have children. What they don't have is sexual attraction to any gender.
Sex is as varied as people are. There are degrees of sexuality from completely gay to completely straight with a huge chunk in the middle, with bi-sexuals as the center point. Then you get the sex drive. Being from zero to 100. Some, like asexuals, have zero sex drive, and there are those who are constantly seeking it. And, again, with a huge chunk of people somewhere in between.
Why close minded people have to seem that everything is black and white, off or on. We live with a million shades of gray.
I have met identical twins where one was gay and another was straight. One was in the theater and thin, the other a jock and muscular. They were almost impossible to tell apart our freshman year. By our senior year, it was very easy.
New book: Fifty Shades of Gay.
I have had mine checked...they are normal. I am normal.
or maybe you put way to much importance on the act of sex.
It's pretty important.
Why?
It might be an easily addressed medical issue. 
Been there done that!
I did, still nothing. Just asexual and aromantic. I got almost everything checked, but it is just me!
You need to check your heteronormative privilege at the door.
These people need to be left alone to live their lives however they damn well please. As long as you enjoy your own sexuality, what do you care?
I don't care, people can love or not love whoever they want, I'm not judging anyone else's sex life or lack thereof.  But I'm not convinced that lack of sex drive is a sexual orientation.
Why do YOU have to be convinced of anything as long as it's not your sex drive or lack thereof?
I don't, it's just my opinion. 
A word of caution to the folks posting comments suggesting that an asexual person "should" to have their hormones checked or that asexuality can be "fixed". While I appreciate that the postings I have read so far seem to be positively worded, please remember that the same was/is said about homosexuality. I believe the world would be so much better off if we simply stopped needing to classify our neighbor's sexuality in order to feel more comfortable in our own skin.
Fair enough. Although you can't really blame them. Sex can just be really, really awesome and people may be concerned some asexual people are needlessly missing out on it.

Not that one can't live a 100% fullfilling life without sex, mind you. But I can understand the concerns.
"people may be concerned some asexual people are needlessly missing out on it"

As long as people are enjoying sex themselves, why should they be 'concerned' with what other people do--or don't do--as long as they're happy? And it's really no one's business anyway.
Because I think it is only natural for most people to care about other people's happiness as well. Which is something different from actually having a say in how they lead their lives, obviously. 

And I'm not saying asexual people can't be happy without, but maybe people think they can be happier with. 

My point was that although misguided, most comments about 'fixing' asexuality  come with good intentions.
"I think it is only natural for most people to care about other people's happiness as well."

I never got the impression that these people were unhappy unless other people tried to convince them that they were. It's up to THEM to decide what makes them happy, not you or me.
Of course it's up to them, but since when is stating an opinion or offering advice outlawed?
Because religion cause people to hate. It's not an issue unless you are a religious freak like christians.
Being religious does not necessarily make you a Christian. If I disagree with you or your ideas, doesn't mean I hate you, and if someone truly hates, they are probably not a Christian even if they say they are. Christ taught about love.
InedaName, if it's no one's business or they don't want people to be concerned ...then there shouldn't be an article trying to talk about what it means, why, etc. Of course everyone one wants to be accepted and recognized for who they are....that's human. This group says they are asexual....not non-human.....
What is there to be concerned about? They don't have sex for whatever reasons. No cause for concern.
While I can accept when my friends or family express such concerns, I'm a little more skeptical when it's complete strangers. Under that context, it's difficult to distinguish between legitimate concern and the same brand of presumptive dismissal that the LGBT community has historically faced from mainstream 'straight' society (and, in the case of the latter two, even from within the queer community itself.)

So I think it should be at least understandable when those confronted with such 'remedies' respond to the misguided aspect before the (alleged) good intentions.
Why are asexual people "looking" for each other? I thought the whole point of being asexual is that you don't want or need someone else?. Pathetic, but to each his own.
"I thought the whole point of being asexual is that you don't want or need someone else?"

Uhm... no. The whole 'point' (as if it is a matter of intent) is that asexuals are not sexually attracted to other people. That doesn't mean they are incapable of, or without need for, love, trust, friendship, support, fun, connecting with other people, fun, etc. There are even asexual people who are still romantically involved with someone, relationships do not revolve solely around sex.

And it certainly doesn't mean they are pathetic for it.
I'm not sure why you'd associate "pathetic" with other people for any reason, but it's especially bizarre to me that people looking for others like themselves sounds unreasonable to you. People seek connection with similar folks for all kinds of reasons. You know asexual people aren't claiming to be robots, right? Because not only do many of them want romantic relationships despite not feeling sexual attraction, but nearly all people want understanding and community at some point in their lives. I just don't see how anyone could say "the point" of being asexual somehow has anything to do with not wanting or needing anyone else.
Listen. I don't care. I just don't happen to believe them. There's something John Wayne Gacy about being asexual; same goes for that celibate crowd. We are human beings. We are supposed to be sociable - well, except for Republicans, but I digress. Pathetic might be too strong - how about just plain "sad".
Oh okay. I guess there is nothing really to say if you're pretty much admitting that certain other people's lifestyles are both too irrelevant to you and too foreign to your experience to deserve respect.
Geez, come off of your idealist cloud. There are lots of people out there who are a waste of good oxygen. Glenn Beck and Sarah Palin are two good examples. "Celibate" priests are another. Not everything or everyone is sugar and spice and everything nice. yuk.
I don't think it's "idealistic" to ask people to give us basic human respect instead of mocking us, especially after reading an article that does a good job explaining why we need community and awareness. But if you simply must invent perspectives and beliefs we don't hold and assign them to us (um, who said anything about how everything needs to be sickly levels of nice?), you can continue to do that to make yourself feel better, and I have no doubt that you will.
Of the many things disturbing about this post, the most glaring in my opinion is the idea that "sociable" necessarily means "sexual." Do you end up having sex every time you socialize?
Well when I was 25, yes! At least that was the goal. Ask your two fans about you know what and the bees. Grow up.
Married 23 years, been "non-sexual" for 3, suppose this is a form of "asexuality", displeases wife who is almost nymphomaniac but she doesn't get it from me. Sex is totally overrated. Wish I was single again.
Sounds more like you are tired of the relationship you are in.
Nope, not at all tired of the relationship. Her Temporal Lobe Epilepsy, Multiplicity of Depression and Anxiety Disorders makes me stay because she is incapable of taking care of herself.
It's so great to see more awareness being spread about aces! I only recently realized I identified as an asexual, but it's really starting to feel like there are more people out there that understand how it feels and identify the same way and it's just brilliant. There's always more that can be said, of course, but I'm looking forward to seeing more and hopefully seeing more people become educated about the asexual community!
It must be one of the most hard to realize orientations out there. At least when you are homo- or bisexual, *something* is happening. I'm glad aces are becoming more visible, it may help some confused teens and adults find out who they are sooner.
It really is! I'd always wondered why I never hit the "horny teenager phase" the way my other friends did, and why it just never appealed to me and I just always thought I was WRONG for being the way I am. But I'm not wrong-- none of us are-- and I agree! Hopefully now that we're gaining visibility, others will be able to understand themselves better. :)
I think this is wonderful. Though I cannot fathom how it feels, neither can someone who identifies as an "ace" understand how I feel about sexuality. The power of shared experience is what can make life go from lonely and confusing to fulfilling and happy. I hope as we as a society continue to denounce sexual binaries, we will come to a place of understanding and equality.
Genuine, albeit a naive question:

Do asexual people face a lot of discrimination? High school doesn't seem like a fun place, but after that it must be relatively smooth sailing. I mean, aside from 'quiverfull'-like movements, the religious probably don't mind the resulting celibacy. And who cares what that way too prideful mother has to say about your lack of 'productivity'?
Hi! I've talked about this a little farther down, so hopefully this isn't too repetitive for people reading all the comment threads. A lot of the discrimination asexuals face is that we are simply told that we don't exist. We're told that what we feel is because of a hormonal imbalance/something physically or mentally wrong with us. We're told that there's no way we don't ever experience sexual attraction and that we just haven't met someone who inspires the feeling in us yet. Certain asexuals-- those who are demisexuals (incapable of being sexually attracted to someone until there is a strong emotional connection) or grey-asexuals (who aren't quite asexual but aren't quite sexual, either) are told that the way we are is just how everyone is with sex, when none of these things can be farther from the truth. So it isn't that we're necessarily hated for not being sexually attracted to others-- it's that we are told we are not real, either by people we know or by society at large, and that can be extremely difficult to deal with.
Yes. There is discrimination. It usually doesn't look the same as discrimination involving other sexual orientations, but part of the reason for that is that asexuality is so under the radar and not that many asexual people are even out. I believe one of the upcoming parts of this article--relying partly on my contributions--discusses discrimination and prejudice in depth, but in short, I could point you to stories about asexual couples being denied for adoption, asexual people being fired over their sexuality, and of course my personal examples involving dozens of rape threats and death threats (some of which bizarrely happened in person). We're at risk of corrective rape and tend to have some of the same elevated rates of depression and suicide that some of the LGBT community has. Hope that answers your question! Thanks for asking!
Thanks for that thoughtful question, Sjoerd! Speaking only for myself, middle/high school was difficult because everyone else was focusing so much energy on romantic/sexual pursuits that were in no way interesting to me. I hated the game Truth or Dare especially:

"What boy do you like?"
"No one."
"You HAVE to like ONE OF THEM, it's IMPOSSIBLE not to!"
"I don't, okay? I thought this was TRUTH or Dare, not Make-Up-a-Stupid-Secret-to-Appease-Your-So-Called-FRIENDS or Dare!"

Yeah, that makes you a lot of friends. (I suppose other people would just make up an answer, but I'm stubborn and wanted to be understood as I was.)

College was better because I found a group of fellow cerebral types who didn't date all that much (though none of them were asexual). Now, as an adult, I feel like I could easily come out at my very supportive workplace if I were gay, but I have this feeling that they'd be so sad for me if I said I was asexual, so I don't say anything. It's a more awkward conversation, anyway -- an asexual person can't just refer subtlely to a same-sex partner and make it clear that way. I'm sure they all think I'm gay anyway. *shrug*
I am 43 years old and just finding out about asexuality...I thought I was broken. I've been in several heterosexual relationships, have a 9 year old son from one of them, and not once was I truly sexually attracted to any of the men I've been with. I thought I was either weird or that there was something really wrong with me.

I'm happy as all get-out to find out that I'm NOT broken and that this is normal...for me. I've been 9 years without having sex and I don't miss it in the least. Now, if I could just find a man who only wants to kiss, cuddle and hold hands...I would be the happiest woman on earth.
So what is it called when one has a healthy interest in sex, but zero desire for a relationship?
That's "aromantic." Asexual people can be aromantic, but so can people who are not asexual. I wish that wasn't so shamed in our society.
Lol...promiscuous?
And here within the comments lies the exact paradox I wanted to highlight. Thanks, Ivy Decker and JP boi!
Im nterested in love, not in sex, does that mean I am asexual? I wish i could find someone like me
Some asexual people are romantically inclined. We can still fall in love without sexual attraction sometimes--if you feel romantically attracted to someone but not sexually, you're a romantic asexual person. There are lots and lots of romantic asexual people in the community. Check out AVEN, the asexual community on Tumblr, and the asexual blogs around the Internet; there are tons like you!
Firstly, I'm going to fan you for having just helped Gloria connect with a community she hadn't found up till now.

I do have a follow-up question though. Are romantic asexual people still attracted (in the romantic sense of the word, obviously) to a specific gender? In other words, is there such a thing as a hetero/homosexual, romantic asexual person?

It sounds like I'm trying to slap a label onto everyone, but really I'm just interested in how such things work.
Yes! There is such a thing as heteromantic/homoromantic/biromantic/etc. asexuals, as well as aromantic asexuals. There's a difference between romantic attraction and sexual attraction to people, and there are plenty of aces who are romantically attracted to one or the other gender, or both, or just about any orientation you can think of, as well as those who don't feel romantically attracted to people at all (aromanitcs.) Romantic orientation usually ends up becoming a way of asexuals further breaking down for themselves and others what they are inclined to, and there are plenty of asexuals in relationships with other aces in any combination of orientation. :)

It is a little bit of a grey area, with all these labels, and I know there are plenty who are just like "why bother labeling everything?" but for many they can find the labels help them better understand themselves, and that's just always a nice thing to have. :)

Thanks for your question!
Sometimes yes. Many asexual people who are romantically attracted to others find themselves only attracted to a sub-set of people, sometimes dependent on gender/gender presentation. (And sometimes it isn't.) The most standard expressions are heteroromantic, homoromantic, biromantic, polyromantic, and panromantic (as well as aromantic, like me--not romantically inclined), but some prefer to use terms that don't have anything to do with whether the gender they're attracted to is different from their own, like androromantic, gyneromantic, and the like. There are also non-romantic types of attraction. It sounds kinda complicated sometimes, but that's because for MOST people, all those romantic, sexual, sensual, aesthetic attractions point toward the same partners. When you don't experience one or more of those things, it does break down a little. Sometimes we have to be more analytical about it to understand because it doesn't work for us the same way it works for so many other people.
thanks Ivy, I live in France
Honest question here, Do asexuals masturbate? or is everything sexual gone??I guess I'm asking is everything sexual turned off for them. Anyone????
While it is considered to be a bigoted question to ask (personally) to an asexual [as it's personal and private], I understand the curiosity in the question.

Answer: Some asexuals masturbate, and some asexuals even have sex. Some asexuals may have a libido, may have no libido. Remember, asexuality is the lack of a sexual attraction to male or female, the body still very much works the same way; and sex (and masturbation), is also a physical act.
Heres the definition of Bigotry - Bigotry is the state of mind of a bigot: someone who, as a result of their prejudices, treats other people with hatred, contempt, and intolerance on the basis of a person's ethnicity, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, disability, socioeconomic status, or other characteristics.

Exactly where in my question do you get the qualities of a bigot?? I'm a proud gay man and I love us all. Save the bigot speech for some actual hate!!!!
Sorry, I was not saying you were a bigot at all.
Realize I said, it's considered a bigoted question. Not that it *was* a bigoted question.
I also provided a respectful and kind answer to you. Just trying to indicate you shouldn't go asking random asexuals such a question! Most of them do not like being asked such things.
I'm interested in seeing where this article series is going to go... Every time I have tried to learn about asexuality, I kept finding myself on tumblr on bizarrely aggressive blogs, some that take traits and preferences of sexually active people and render them asexual (once saw a self-proclaimed ace explain that what qualified her asexuality was not enjoying phallovaginal sex, but everything else... I mean, I'm not about to police someone's bed behaviour but I'm right in that boat with her, but I'm not an ace...? Or am I just wrong about being a lesbian?) so my research has been less enlightening and more confusing. I'll be happy to learn more about this!
I'm looking forward to reading more myself.

I think it really boils down to who you are sexually attracted to.

Straight people are sexually attracted to the opposite sex.

Gay and Lesbian are sexually attracted to the same sex.

Bisexual people are sexually attracted to both sexes, to varying degrees.

Asexual people are sexually attracted to neither sex.

All are human.

Just like sexual attraction, sex drive also has a range of expression.

Just because you are sexually attracted to the same or opposite sex does not mean you have a raging libido. As others have said in this section, just because you are not sexually attracted to either sex does not mean you DON'T have a libido.

Again, this is just how I currently understand it. I'm definitely looking forward to reading more to gain a better understanding.
From what I understand (and this is just from what I read on the AVEN site) asexual people do not have a sexual attraction to anyone, of either sex. There are romantic asexuals (those who want a romantic relationship but no sex) and aromantic asexuals (those who want neither a romantic nor a sexual relationship). I consider myself to be a heteroromantic asexual, meaning that I want a relationship with a man, but with no sex involved. Cuddling, kissing and hand-holding are fine.
Many of the asexuals commenting here claim to have normal hormone levels and normal libidos. Those just haven't met the right person yet, apparently. Completely separate from those who truly have no libido.
That's a pretty typical misinterpretation. But I guess if you can't imagine that anyone feels what this article is describing, there's not a whole lot that can make you think otherwise. For the record, gay people are often being told they just haven't met "the right" cross-gender partner and that's what's "wrong with them," so it's not that surprising that we hear the same thing from people who believe sexual attraction has to be possible for everyone.
You either have sexual feelings, or you don't. If you have sexual feelings, then you are not asexual, regardless of whether you *currently* aren't attracted to anybody in particular. Words have meanings.
Asexuality describes what's usually a lifelong experience of lack of attraction, sexually, to others. It's true that people can be mistaken, or have a sexually fluid identity (not just asexual people). But I don't see how "WORDS HAVE MEANINGS" has anything to do with what I said. You just said that people who have normal libido "just haven't met the right person." I guess to you that means if you can possibly get horny, there must be people out there who are sexually attractive to you? Since we understand sexual attraction and sexual arousal to be different things, you're oversimplifying by claiming that "sexual feelings" are something you either have or don't have, period the end, black and white. There are few things LESS black and white than human sexuality. Accepting diversity even if it describes an experience you don't personally understand would really be a good thing here.
Why is "unattracted" NOT a more accurate word for the situation being discussed than "asexual"? Just because of implication that one can become attracted? But I can say the very the same thing about the implication of becoming sexual.
People who are actually experiencing it settled on the term "asexual" to describe their orientation (which makes sense since it fits in very well with other descriptions of sexual orientation, like heterosexual, bisexual, homosexual, and the like). It is not meant to "imply that one can become attracted." I don't know why anyone would have a problem with a community deciding how to describe its experience, but this is the word and we're telling you what we mean by it. If you don't want to process that, don't want to respect it, or don't want to listen to us if we don't call ourselves what makes the most sense to you, I don't think there's anything else to say here.
Correction. SOME people decided they liked that word better, maybe because it is being used ambiguously.
Fascinating.

When two or more asexuals start spending time together, do they ever experience / develop any kind of attraction, sexual or not, to each other?
Supposedly there's a wide spectrum. Which kind of obviates the need for classifying the whole of the spectrum all together.
What do you mean?
I mean that "asexual", as a word, has a definite meaning, which is "not sexual". But there are those who want it to mean something else, namely ranging from "not sexual at all, maybe even anti-sexual" through "not as sexual as some", including "not sexual in quite the same way as most, for example aromantic".
Asexual, as a word, has a meaning, which is 'a lack of sexual attraction to any gender'. That's the widely recognized definition. Anti-sexual is different. (though you can be both asexual and anti-sexual) Aromantic is a romantic orientation, not a sexual one. (though, again, you can be both asexual and aromantic... you can also be any sexual orientation and aromantic, because sometimes sexual orientation and romantic orientation don't line up)

The spectrum that you speak of includes asexuality (which is no sexual attraction) and grey-asexuality (which is infrequent sexual attraction or possibly a disinterest in sex). The spectrum is there so that people who are closer to asexual than not can have a community that understands them.
Let's just call everyone s-exual, then, since zero is a number too.
This is something that I don't understand or know why some people are that way BUT I also don't know why I'm gay. I just am so aces are just the way they are. It is what it is.
I think you've hit it on the head (pardon the violent metaphor). We may not be able to relate to the experiences of others, but we don't need to do so. Those experiences do not become less vital or less legitimate for our inability to relate to them.
Please bear with me. I ask this question honestly and sincerely. Do asexual people identify as gay asexuals and straight asexuals? While not interested in sex, do they enjoy companionship more with opposite asexuals or gay asexuals. Or does it matter?
In short? Yes they certainly do!

The series of articles will surely get into these topics.

While most asexuals won't say "Gay asexual" (Although I have!) they will use the romantics.

Homoromantic
Heteromantic
Biromantic
Panromantic
Omniromantic
Aromantic
And imo, demiromantic as well.

For example, I (while being very complicated!) consider myself a complex spectrum within asexuality (between being aromantic and homoromantic), for ease of conversation I will commonly just tell people I'm asexual homoromantic, although I find myself disliking the term homoromantic for myself :P

However, it fits; and I guess if it fits I'll use it :)

Hope that answered your question.
LGBTQA ? Are we going to let the A's in our parade ?
Asexuals have been in LGBT pride parades for many years already.
Where? I've been to pride in Baltimore, DC, Chicago, and several other cities. I've never seen an Asexual float, or any group of asexual marchers
Maybe they simply don't feel like flaunting it.
San Francisco, Boston, Seattle, New York, London...
As AsexualityArchive already pointed out.

Why? Because asexuals run into people like you who don't think they should be welcomed by the GLBT community, including being bullied out of many events on occasion.

Why would anyone choose to go somewhere they aren't welcome? However, by just sitting back and doing nothing all one is doing is propogating the belief that it's okay to bully another person.

I don't understand your reasoning to not welcoming asexuals into the GLBT community, where exactly do you get that the GLBT community is not a community built on the acceptance and diversity of gender identity and sexuality issues?

I would really like to know where you see that!

All of the GLBT groups don't sit there giggling that they are only Gay/Lesbian/Bisexual/Transexual. They discuss issues of gender and sexual diversity in society.

Asexuality is very much a topic within these discussions.

Please tell me how it is not.

If you're going to say something a long the lines of "Because you're rights aren't being oppressed". Don't even bother, read the articles on Thursday and Friday instead.
I feel so alone...I suffer from a serious addiction and hope there's a group out there I can join .....I absolutely love : Money, Fast cars, Faster women, Beachfront Mansions, Fine wines, Expensive cigars, Lear Jets, Expensive restaurants and being famous......Can anyone reach out to me and offer the support I desperately need to feel whole again.
Find somebody with a camera, record all the stupid things you do on a daily basis, and your problems are solved
So, is being asexual now the official way to explain that you're ok with being single? Do we really need another label for people?
First: Why is this a problem for you?
Second: Why not do some research on the subject before you post again?
Whoa, I never said it was a problem. I was simply voicing my thoughts concerning the article, that is what the comment section is reserved for, posting comments relevant to the article.

I'm simply curious as to why asexuality needs to have such a prevalent role now. There have been asexual people for as long as humanity has been around. It seems to me that the entire idea of being asexual boils down to someone wanting to be single.
Asexuality has little to do with being single. Please do some research.
"It seems to me that the entire idea of being asexual boils down to someone wanting to be single."

There are two points on which that doesn't correspond with asexuality:

1. Intent/choice. Asexuals refrain from sex out of a genuine lack of sexual attraction. And that as is much a choice as it is for a straight man not to have sex with other men. i.e. it's not a choice at all.
2. Sex does not equal a relationship. Asexual people may not be sexually attracted to others, but they still experience feelings like love, trust, sympathy, etc. which enables them to form relationships just like anyone else, there's just no sex involved. (Vice versa, having sex with someone doesn't mean you're in a relationship either.)

What your description comes closer to would be celibacy, or 'happy single'.
Thanks for the clear descriptions!
Serious question--do Asexual people masturbate?
I retract the question I suppose it a private matter--I have always known that human sexuality is so complex and can be different in different people and I accept it all.
Thanks for being open to new concepts. To answer your original question...yes, some do.
If someone likes sex but only by himself and not with other people, would they be called asexual? What would they be called if not asexual? This is a question for the author or anyone familiar with the subject.
In all seriousness, that would depend if they were thinking about someone else during masturbation ;-)

Asexual doesn't necessarily mean a complete disinterest in sex. Aces are still capable of arousal, and masturbation can still be quite pleasant. It's just that (thoughts of) other people don't arouse them or make sex more pleasurable.

At least, that is how I understand it.
Do you mean something like masturbation? Because, yes, some aces masturbate-- lack of sexual attraction doesn't always mean you don't have a libido! So long as that person rarely or never feels sexual attraction to other people, they likely fall within the asexuality spectrum.

Thanks for your question and I hope that helps!
Thanks for your answer. It does male sense
Thanks for answering.
"AVEN started small but quickly ballooned..."

nyuck nyuck
Why are the cute ones always asexual? ; )
According to the definition of sexuality provided by AVEN, "Each asexual person experiences things like relationships, attraction and arousal somewhat differently."

I must admit that I have never met an ace before, and this is really the first time I have read anything like this about this matter, but I am curious: What, exactly, does arousal mean here? From my developing understanding, aces do not get aroused sexually. Is that incorrect?
Asexuals can become aroused (hard or wet, basically), they can still have a libido. What they don't feel is sexual attraction to any gender... when they see someone it never occurs to them that that person could be a potential sexual partner. Sort of any sexual desires they might have (which varies from person to person) aren't directed at or influenced by any specific people.
I think that it is great that asexual people can find other asexual people to form friendships and relationships with, just as.gay people do with other gay people. What I find sad is when gay people are critical, referring to them as "pathetic" or "sad" when they are very capable of forming deep and meaningful relationships. Perhaps even more successfully as sex drive is not a dominating motivator. I shake my head when gay people show intolerance and I ask myself "Have we learnt nothing from all of those years of bigotry?"
I couldn't agree with you more.

It's a shame that people are so intolerant of others, especially IN the LGBTQ community, it's hypocritical to say the least.

One of the most common reasons I've seen have been things like "You aren't discriminated against!" or other various arguments of why we should not be welcome within the LGBTQ community, or even talk about being asexual!

Yes, I've seriously been told (by a gay man nevertheless). "Dude, great; that's nice; but you don't need to go around flaunting that you're asexual. Keep it to yourself."
Jeez. It must feel very isolating sometimes to be outside of society's overstimulated, hypersexualized sphere. I'm celibate (an entirely different thing, I know) and in a relationship, and I know when that occasionally comes up most people are completely stumped by that. Hopefully increased contact with aces makes people pause and consider their own sexuality in context.
Wow, as a hedonist and a bisexual I'm having trouble processing this information, it's like the opposite you never knew existed. I wonder if they're more productive since I spend like 90% of my time thinking of or acting on sexual thoughts.
I see nothing abnormal about anyone not wanting sex. If you take two steps back and look at it, the act is rather ridiculous when you get down to it. You either want it or you don't. I am one of the ones who wants it, but why should everyone want what I want? I can easily see someone not wanting to get that close to other people.
That's a very live-and-let-live attitude and I'm glad you feel that way. It really does take all kinds and I'm not sure what makes some people insist that asexual people must be confused, wrong, sick, or immature if they don't feel sexually attracted to others. If only more people said "Hey, I'm this way, they're that way, and that's great."
What I find fascinating about them, and what I accept utterly, is the way many of them report falling in love, and the full romantic & aesthetic response, they are just not interested in the sexual act.  It is not my own nature, but I can sense an essential purity in many of them.  An almost child like innocence.  
Someone already married Eiffel Tower
You and me both darling!
It's about inclusion. We need more sexual minorities included because heterosexuality is the "normal" one. We are all normal, but sexuality is a continuum. By adding more sexualities, people will realize that heterosexuality is the only one that is "abnormal." Therefore we can be who we are, no questions ask. As for fetishes, we all have our kinks. Live and let live.
Fantastic. I'm 100% ACE. I have a normal sex life (with myself) and romantic attractions (to other women) but I don't want to have sex with anyone else. I am not without sex or romance. I just don't want sex and romance to go together. A LOT of people are like me. Especially women but men too. I'd love to socially mix with such people and would love to have a large ACE community and culture to mix with. I consider myself gay because I want relationships with women. But sex with other people does not have to be a part of everyone's life.
Shouldn't this article be in the nay, not the gay, voices, section?
This guy probably doesn't know that from the 19th century up until the 1960's the word "asexual" was a cover for people not wanting to acknowledge that Tchaikovsky, for example, was homosexual. Used to use it when speaking of Schubert, also. It was so taboo to use the word homosexual that "asexual" became a way of dodging the truth, and uncomfortable conversations.

I do not believe there are asexuals.They just haven't really "found" themselves yet sexually. But, of course, there are people who have less interest in sex generally, but that doesn't mean they are not gay, straight, or bisexual.
That last paragraph seems more than a bit unkind. It is not terribly unlike heterosexists who assert that gays and lesbians "just haven't found the right guy/girl;" or that bisexuality is just a cover for extreme sex addiction. With a single sweeping assertion you judge the experiences of thousands of asexuals meaningless and meritless.
I think you make a valid point. But I mostly wanted to address the use of the word in earlier times, when I do believe it was a way around of acknowledging homosexuality.

Whether there are true asexuals I do not know. i haven't heard the word used in decades.
I felt lost for years. Everywhere I looked, it seemed like everyone was into sex, except me. My coworkers, my friends, people on TV, my ex-girlfriend, even my friend who's a celibate virgin born-again Christian was into sex. And I wasn't. Every time they talked about sex, I felt like they were speaking a foreign language. I didn't hide from it, I didn't try to dodge anything. I tried to force myself into it. I tried to find something, ANYTHING, that would perk up my interest. Nothing. Nothing at all worked. "I'm not really interested in women, so maybe I'm gay, but I'm definitely not interested in guys so... What am I? Where do I belong?"
I felt lost. I felt alone. I felt broken.
And then I discovered asexuality and my world turned upside-down. Everything finally fell into place and made sense. There was a word that described me. There were other people who felt like I did.
When I found asexuality, I found myself.
We live in a sex-obsessed society and it takes a huge amount of courage to realize you can live without it. One can only imagine what could be accomplished without distractions: I'm surprised the CIA and FBI aren't seeking these people, they would be impervious to seduction.

This is a society where sexual response is how some people gauge their self worth: if they can't turn you on, they feel worthless. This is bound to bring about ugly accusations. Good luck to everyone who finds themselves to be asexual.
You might be surprised how many asexual people work for the CIA. ;)
Probably -- this article made me think of friends in relationships that didn't seem in trouble, but were sexually unfulfilling for one partner because the other wasn't into it.

The recent scandals with sex workers and agents made me think they could use more.
They all have sex. Come on... right?
I haven't had sex in more than ten years and I wasn't all that thrilled about it when I did. I don't miss it at all.
Well I am no one to judge! As long as your happy - that's all I care about!
Asexual? no sex, that would be the rightwinger holier-than-thou who have no sex because it is a sin...*
Not at all. We don't, by definition, associate our orientation with purity. Regardless of whether we have sex (and yes, some asexuals have sex), we aren't trying to say we're better than you or expressing a moral standpoint when we say we're asexual. Hope that clarifies!
I understand, I was being facetious making fun of the holier-than-thou bunch. Ivy
Yes, some people are very elitist and holier-than-thou about their attitude toward sex, but asexual isn't the term for that, and since people who are NOT being at all facetious say this exact thing to us consistently (or spin it positively to say we must be spiritually enlightened, which is also not necessarily true), I wanted to make it clear that "asexual" and "celibate with an elitist attitude" are not synonyms. I'm glad you understand.
I do understand, I was mocking the holier-than-thou, nothing against the asexual
You have to understand that being a purity elitist and all that is something that asexuals get accused of frequently. It was just joking for you, but for many of us it's another dismissal of our orientation we run into constantly.
Whenever I hear about asexuality (and it is a rather rare occurrence), my gut response is one of pity. I get so much fulfillment from my relationship and intimacy is so important to me, and I am inclined to feel bad for people who don't get to experience that. But then I think of this one time a, rather drunk, friend told me he feels 'so sorry that i don't get to enjoy having sex with women, and gays miss out on a wonderful natural feeling'. And I realize in this instance I am just as naive and probably come off just as ignorant.

I know we don't know a lot about the science of sexuality, but I feel like neuroscience does have a decent understanding of attraction. I would love to read about the brain chemistry. In colony/eusocial animals, only the queen and select males breed, the rest live out an asexual lifestyle- and there is nothing wrong with those individuals.
Just remember, though, that asexual people do often have relationships! Their fulfillment and intimacy just gets expressed differently, and may or may not involve sexual intercourse. Those of us who are also aromantic don't seek out partners the same way many others do, but we look for intimacy on our own terms too, and I'm glad you know that pitying us for inviting only the relationships we feel comfortable with/inclined toward is ultimately unnecessary. Thanks for being an open-minded person and an ally.
Never read or researched anything on asexuality before but it is something I always believed to be liberating and idealistic rather than being driven mad by women....which now I know is ignorant for multiple reasons. Shame really, after getting myself in another sticky stressful complicated situation this weekend.
So, I'm guessing now that I wasn't the only person watching The Big Bang Theory who got irritated at Amy for nagging Sheldon about sex?
Actually, there are a number of aces who do view Sheldon as asexual, and have been a bit concerned that the storyline with Amy will eventually lead to him being "fixed" by sex.
Seem like more narcissism to me. So you're not interested in sex. . . that creates what sort of challenge to you again? You're discriminated against in what way, again? Are you upset that sexually interested people don't want to date you or marry you because, unlike you, they''d like to have rich sexual life? Give everyone a break. Since the human race cannot go forward without sex, then people who are indeed asexual and have no sexual desires at all have some sort of physical or psychological problem and it might be uncurable. Doesn't seem that they care much about "curing" it in any event.
Please read the fourth article in this series. It addresses the challenges faced by asexuals.
Unless you go around wearing a sign saying you're asexual, society doesn't know and doesn't care so you couldn't possibly be discriminated against in any intentional way. If you get rejected in personal relationships because the other person is interested in a sexual relationship and you're not, that's not discrimination. I'm heterosexual but I am not interested in having sex with every woman I meet. That's not discrimination, it's a matter of taste or personal preference. And women have no obligation to be sexual with me just because I show interest in them. That's not discrimination.
"Unless you go around wearing a sign saying you're asexual, society doesn't know and doesn't care so you couldn't possibly be discriminated against in any intentional way."

Look, that might be true initially, but after a while people see things are different, and ask about it. I never intended to come out to my family, but things happened.

"If you get rejected in personal relationships because the other person is interested in a sexual relationship and you're not, that's not discrimination. ... That's not discrimination." (cut short because post limit)

Where did anyone claim that rejection is discrimination? I'm talking about the real rapes that happen, the actual discrimination that has stopped people from being approved to adopt a kid, or get a home loan. I'm talking about a friend of mine that was told by her mom that she'd accept her if she was a lesbian but not as an asexual. I'm talking about the actual abuse people use to try to "fix" us. The insults that get thrown around all our lives because we're different, even if we don't know why yet. The kind of badgering that led me to contemplate suicide several times and attempt it once despite having a respect for life and having had personal experience with the aftermath of suicide. Please go away, or actually read the articles before commenting again. Maybe you might learn a bit and not be so demeaning to others afterwards, but I doubt it.
Ever since I can remember, probably around 7or 8, I knew I was different form everybody else around me. When girls and boys started noticing each other in middle school, I had no interest in that kind of thing whatsoever. When people started hooking up in high school, I didn't really care for that kind of thing. Now I know there are others out there like me- I have no desire for any type of sexual relationship. I have had many romantic relationships, but sex wasn't what drove me to be in a relationship (and why some of them failed). I don't have anything against sex, but it just doesn't interest me like it does others. I am glad there are people out there who support those who may not have support anywhere else, like myself (I have a few lgbt friends who are understanding, but my family isn't understanding at all). Thank you so much, David Jay. Wish there were more people like you.
Welcome. We have cake.
WHAT...DO WE REALLY NEED ANOTHER CHOICE ABOUT SEX...JUST BE NORMAL...PRETTY EASY ONCE YOU TRY IT...
I am normal. Have been for years. Thanks for the suggestion.
EWE wish
Is it along the lines of 'just relax, you might actually enjoy it?'
Some people don't enjoy it. Not about ease or difficulty, but about interest and inclination.
A friend of mine once said: "Normal is a setting on a dish-washer"...
Psychologically, the definition of 'normal' is often there as long as well-being and function is not affected. One does not NEED to have sex for well-being and functioning; even if many WANT to and some seem to NEED to.

The "just be normal" is pretty telling about cluelessness...Would you tell a person who is short to "just be normal and grow more", or a tall person to "just be normal and stoop?"

I am not completely sure what asexuality means--and I suspect it may mean different things to different people--as far as their wish for sex, or need for sex, or interest in stimulation, or whatever--but I don't think that it is about 'trying it' to like it.

If they liked it, they'd try it...
AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA...so EWE are NOT normal...
I assume you are not referring to sheep.
Me? I don't know if I'm normal or not. Whether I can understand asexuality or not, or the people who are asexual or choose to be asexual (or celibate) or to be very sexually active, or to be swingers, or to use all manner of odd stuff to get themselves aroused, or 'enjoy' pain, or whatever--doesn't mean I live any of those lifestyles, only that I am aware that there is more to people than what my own life may be like.
If it is not normal to consider that there are lifestyles that aren't my own but are still acceptable and even healthy, then I guess I am not normal.
Then again, there are those who might say that to have blinders on and only believe that your experience is the only 'real way to live' may be the abnormally limiting view...
Asexual, as I have come to know the term refers to someone who enjoys having sex with any gender but has not emotional attachment to them. I am for example an asexual. I am a heterosexual who can have and enjoy sex with any gender but lack the ability to have an emotional bond with them such as women. hummm, maybe the way I learned it is incorrect though.
Asexual means someone who does not experience sexual attraction. What you're describing sounds like someone who does not experience romantic attraction, which is called "aromantic". It is possible to be an aromantic heterosexual, which means that although a person feels sexually attracted to a different gender, they don't necessarily want to have a romantic relationship with them. It's also possible that what you're describing is a heteroromantic pansexual, which is someone who is sexually attracted to any gender, but only wants romantic relationships with a different gender.
This graphic talks about some of this: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/06/19/asexual-spectrum_n_3428710.html?1371648467
wow, that's amazing information... Thanks so much, really :)
It sounds like the word you're looking for is aromantic.
Would a guy who likes sex once a month be considered Asexual?
More like, he's just not into you !!!!!
Isn't there a movie by the same name?..lol!
Let's not forget the "Occasionally-Sexually-Aroused" community, and the "I-Only-Like-Sex-With-Toys" community. The HuffPost LGBTQIAOSAOWT Voices section is now in the works.
Give it a break.....Creation made two sexes for a reason... Get a grip on yourself...
Try telling that to an intersex person.
David Jay has a documentary called Asexuality on Netflix.

After watching part of the asexual documentary I came to the conclusion that people who classify themselves as asexual have a weak sexual orientation.

They are not stimulated enough to want to have sex with people so, they do not want to sexually identify as straight or gay so not to attract unwanted sexual advances from others.
It's not actually "David Jay's" documentary (though he was the primary "character")--he didn't make it or produce it. I think it's kinda dismissive to assume after watching part of a documentary that other people who are describing their sexuality one way are "actually" something else that you understand better. I think it'd be awesome if you'd just trust people to describe their own experience. They're the ones experiencing it and it's by definition subjective, and there are a ton of people who feel that way. Doesn't really make a lot of sense to me that you'd wade in and say "Well . . . they SAY they feel this way, but I'm going to just decide they're in one of the categories I already understand and are not qualified to describe it properly." (For the record, I'm asexual and I experience a ton of unwanted sexual advances. It does not keep people away. If you think we identify as asexual to protect ourselves from advances we don't want, I think you should probably listen to us about our experiences, because that's not what it's like.)
I have to take offense to what you stated about having a weak sexual orientation. I have been in several heterosexual relationships (yes, with sex included)...they did absolutely nothing for me. I have absolutely no attraction to other women, so I am not homosexually inclined. I would love to find a man who doesn't want sex, but does want to kiss, cuddle, hold hands...all of the romantic stuff. I identify as a heteroromantic asexual woman. I don't want or need sex with a man...nor do I want or need sex with another woman (I want that even LESS than I want sex with a man). I am straight in the sense that I would be romantically attracted to a man...however, I am asexual in the sense that I don't want to have sex with one again.
Looking forward to the day when what people do (or don't do) in their bedrooms, alone or with other consenting adults, is nobody's business but their own. We are entirely too consumed with other people's intimate behavior. I am very happy that the Internet brought these people together so that they do not have to feel so marginalized.
Jane - Stop and think about it a moment. Sexuality is not just about what one does in the bedroom. It is pervasive, whether straight or LGBT. Sexual people don't notice. It's just there and normal. When one lacks that sexual component, you notice. How often, when with friends, do you discuss a relationship? You expect everyone in the conversation to get it. Asexuals have no point of reference. The above article states that they don't experience sexual attraction. Many confuse sexual attraction with sex drive. However, it is an emotion. It's what makes a person blush at a word or touch... or at a dirty joke. Asexuals never experience a crush. They blush from embarrassment, but not from emotional attraction. That sexual "thing" is also what tells you when something (a touch, in particular) feels wrong, whether you are the toucher or the touchee. Aces don't have that physical cue. For them, it's only learned and intellectual. I'm always slow to get the joke and quick to put my foot in my mouth, because sex is not the 1st thing on my mind. It's way down the list. But, with sexual people, it's the 1st thing that pops into the mind. they get the innuendo immediately. I worry that at least a few of the people accused of child molestation are asexuals who don't understand that something they do can be seen as sexual... totally NOT... so it's entirely learned and abstract.
More perversion. People are in mass confusion these day. They are coming up with anything. Don't they have something better to do their lives. Guess not. Everybody wants special rights/ attention for some off the wall made condition.
Well, I'm going to take a shot off the wall and assume you are religious.

How does asexuality computer with the following definition?

"The alteration of something from its original course, meaning, or state to a distortion or corruption of what was first intended.
Sexual behavior or desire that is considered abnormal or unacceptable."

The Bible certainly does not say "All those who do not have sexual intercourse, or sexual attraction shall be doomed to hell for lustful perversion."

If it does, please do correct me.

Or do you mean the "Go forth and procreate?"

So, are you then saying that the disabled/infertile are confused? Coming up with a disorder off their wall? Want special attention for it? Are pervese?

I just don't understand where you come from on this one, all are welcome to their own opinions, but calling asexuality a perversion is completely against the definition.
I gotta say - there are times I could care less about sex.....Im thinking its testosterone....need to get back to a regular gym routine/felt sexier when I wrked out 3-5x wk......it might be that, or that Life has other priorities....and sex isnt the most important thing....sometimes its a chore..not that Im a germ-a-phobe..but I prefer to bath prior.....so its a process, spontanaity isnt good for me when it comes to sex
Friend zoned.
I do not understand how asexual people are criticized. I have heard rude things being said about gay people and straight people, but I have never heard anyone say bad things about people who are not sexual.
Actually, sometimes asexual people are treated *as* gay people for failing to be *heterosexual.* Despite those demands for celibacy that LGBT people always hear directed at us, often the real problems arent' cause we're out there being 'gay sexual' ...it's cause we aren't coming off *straight sexual.*
http://i.imgur.com/ibGOhyO.jpg

There you go, I've heard nearly all of these things said to me.
I see what you are saying, but nobody has ever killed someone for being asexual. People are killed for being (or being perceived as) homosexual all the time.
Bullying leads to suicide in the very least. It is still an important topic.
How does this work? I mean with men? Do Asexual men never get chubbies?
(That was the safest word).
Yes A-sexual men and women still can get sexual with themselves and a certain amount do mastibate. However they don't have any need or want to stick it in someone else or have something stuck in them by someone else.
I wonder what religious homophobes have to say about this one..
David Jay is A-sexy!!
The man name David, pictured above, seems like such a wonderful, attractive, intelligent and honest person. Good for him. More power to him. However, the person in the video in the green shirt with the monotone voice seems really mixed up, and it was difficult to listen to them. The one thing that made them seem confused is what they called their significant other : He said "she's my girlfriend, my wife, my whatever".. No, she's not his wife, so that's a lie and it doesn't even seem like she is your girlfriend. This makes the person lack credibility. Are we supposed to understand this person? They don't even seem to understand themselves, nor how to communicate their ideas. Sorry. I will support the asexual community, but that video was annoying at best. They do not have sex. Okay, nothing wrong with that. I wish them well as they "come out" with this big revolution.
Yikes, that should have read "The man named David"...Sorry!
Thank you HP for bringing this issue up for a debate.
Why is this the headline article in "gay voices"? I can see that for people who are lonely because they want intimate non-sexual relationships that finding other folks like them is great. But what has it got to do with being gay?
I think it might be in "gay voices" if gay is everything other than heterosexual. Hope that helped.
I know, Stupid really!
It's called E-D-U-C-A-T-I-O-N as 1, they are part of our community more than the straight one and 2, we need to learn about other differences. Your comment shows that being educated is needed.
How do you work out that they are more part of our community than the heterosexual? If being gay is about sex then they don't belong, because they are defined by their lack of sexuality, so how that equates to same-sex attraction I have no idea. If being gay is about political rights, then they don't fit in because they are not fighting for any kinds of rights because they are not being denied any thing. If it is about finding like minded folk then they still don't fit in because gay people have sex. SO. Tell me, exactly, why asexuality has anything to do with being gay?
This article should have been written better. The first thing it needed was a definition of asexuality so we could understand the pain of the folks interviewed.
Well, there's a definition right under the picture of David Jay, so... *shrug* That's pretty close to the top.
You're right - I see that now. Guess I read too fast and wanted a more in-depth definition. But I suppose that's the point of having a series of articles.
That guy in top pic is so cute, it's hard to believe that he doesn't desire sex with someone. I'll bet plenty of people have desired to have sex with him! I'm not sexually active myself for fear of AIDS, and this new meningitis bacteria that's going around affecting mostly gay men. I don't hit it, but God knows I have the urge to FREQUENTLY! That's the struggle for me!
Asexual people have always been around. They are just usually called "married" people.
i hope nobody makes fun of these people because i know many straight ''married'' couples [with kids] who don't have sex with their spouses [or anyone] , and they put up a fake ~facade~ that they are.
I've participated in a number of conversations online with people who are asexual but don't have a way of understanding or defining it. Hopefully this will help people understand their lack of attractions. From the comments below me it seems already this has been very helpful to some people.
Thanks for including me in the article. It was great working with you, Dominique. I'd also add the following link at the bottom. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SEeGuCCQ_8w
I don't think asexuals will have much trouble fighting discrimination in this country. One of the roots of homophobia was simple disgust at the physical act of gay sex. With asexuals, there really is nothing to scare or disgust the straight community.
You make a very valid point-- maybe asexuality isn't a "disgusting" concept to straight people. However, I do feel that there will still be and are issues with discrimination. People say things like "oh you just haven't found the right person" or "that's just weird" or, with some asexuals (grey-asexuals and demis specifically) say that "that's just the way everyone feels." It isn't so much that we're hated for our lack of sexual attraction-- it's that we're thought of us not normal/broken/need to be fixed because for those who do experience sexual attraction, I'm certain it's as odd to think of life without it as it is for us aces to imagine a life with it. So there's a lot of issues with erasure and just simply being told we "don't exist," which is plenty discriminatory and hurtful to those of the asexuality community.
I understand. I didn't mean it to sound like I'm saying that it's a nonissue. I just feel like it can be more closely related to people who don't drink, for example, than to homosexuality. People seem to react the same way. They don't believe you or they think you're going through a phase or something. Once they realize that you are standing by it, they're weirded out.
I'd disagree with that (based on personal experience) because one of the first things people sometimes say to me if I declare my orientation is that they think I must not be human. To actually define *humanity* based on whether your sexuality works a certain way is pretty dismissive of us. It seems so alien and horrifying to some people that we don't experience certain things that they thought were a given, and immediately we're treated like we aren't full members of society, can't be included in "normal" conversations, must be lonely or sad or very very weird; we're called robots and amoebas; we're threatened with rape by people who believe experiencing sex would "fix" us or make us like it; we represent a threat to people who believe us not intrinsically valuing sexual attraction constitutes an attack on THEIR values. I literally cannot count the number of times these attitudes have been expressed to me in one-on-one conversations. You are absolutely right that it's not the same reaction straight people have to gay people. But we're not trying to make a contest out of whose outsider experience is worse; we're just trying to point out that we are in fact excluded from participation in ordinary society or sometimes attacked based on xenophobia or misunderstanding.
"We know that asexual people have been looking for each other for a long time, but it wasn’t until the Internet that we found each other,”

Well, you're not going to find each other at a singles bar.
Wait, so nobody turns them on? They just feel no sexual urges at all?
No, nobody turns us on. Some feel sexual urges, but they're not directed at any gender, it's more like a vague feeling of needing. It's referred to sometimes as a chore, or as "cleaning the pipes", but it's not something they feel like doing.
I'll be darned, that blows my mind.
Well then, stay tuned to the rest of the series, it'll blow your mind several times, I'd guess. Asexuality did it to me a bunch when I was exploring it myself.
Does this identity politics affirmation ever end?
Oh great. Another community to not be a part of.
I'm honestly getting tired of all this.

I had a room up for rent. Guy came by and looked at it, and said he was interested. I was just waiting on the rent. Got a phone call. Guy says "Hi, I'm a lawyer moving back from DC and I need a place to stay for a while". I think "okay, here's a good plan B just in case, sounds stable".

Guys says "I have one thing to tell you".

I say "what?"

"I'm gay"

"Yeah, I don't care"

"Well some people care"

"Yeah, it's not spelled out in the lease or anything"

"Well some people are uncomfortable"

Yes, I can see how when this is what you open with people would be uncomfortable (didn't say that).

I wondered in retrospect if he thought he didn't get a callback because he was gay, because he asked for one even if the other guy paid. Which I didn't do. It's like a job interview. I don't feel like when I alert you to having a potential someone lined up you're owed a phone call.

So this is how I feel. Stop making your sexuality so central to who you are and others won't care. I could give to sh**s I'm straight. It's not a defining aspect of who I am and if I all of the sudden was curious it wouldn't change me at all. My sexuality is less than one percent of who I am.
Well, at least it will save them a ton of money...
Another label for the collectivists to place onto the scales of social justice? Have sex. Don't have sex. Stop obsessing over what society tells you is "normal". Most of them are just trying to sell you something, anyway. Nothing is normal. Everything is normal. Living in a free society means that you get to decide. As long as you don't harm someone else, it doesn't matter. Enjoy the feeling of your own skin.
It sounds uncomplicatably awesome!
I'm only half-hearted about this but I can't even keep the acronym straight most of the time as it is. Can't we just say breeders and non-breeders? Is that too offensive? Is it not inclusive enough? Is it too broad? lol, our PC world is starting to have too many footnotes.
Fascinating subject and with absolutely no judgment I see this as a similar notation that I have ascribed to myself and some friends that I have as solosexual...meaning no desire to have traditional sex with anyone and only enjoy masturbation as the only sex that interest me. Like some asexuals, I have had sex partners in the past of both genders (mostly male) but prefer only sex gratification today. I think the similarities breakdown in the desire column.....as a solosexual, I do have or possibly have more consistent urges but not in response to attractions.
This really is an eye opener and really enjoyed reading at the AVEN site.
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) is asexual. I'm not against him being asexual but I am surprised he has made it this far in politics without ever even having had a partner. Especially since he's a republican. He should just come out and say he is, instead of putting up with constant questions about his sexuality.
Asexualitly might just be a more advanced state of being. A life without the burden of sexual urges and desires would be so much more simpler and peaceful!
I don't have anything against those with the condition but just because many people have it doesn't make it something to celebrate. True they don't know what they're missing and they aren't hurting anyone but there are many other conditions most of us don't use that rationale for. Plus sexual attraction often includes/leads to a greater level of intimacy.
Asexuality is not a "condition". It's a sexual orientation.
No it isn't a sexual orientation. It is being branded such. It is the lack of any sexual orientation. It is testimony to the prevalence of PC that the lack of  something would be termed a type of that something.
what's it called when you just grow tired of it all.....?
so much effort anymore it seems
Never getting your heart broken sounds heartbreaking.
Finally I think I know how it feels to be one of those carnivores who says to Freddsky (who really just doesn't enjoy eating meat and, when it comes to willpower, can resist anything but temptation) "Man, how do you do it? I could never give up having a burger. I just couldn't stand it." etc. Except that I don't plan to question or challenge anyone who isn't hot to trot...to trot...or even to be hot....maybe I should just listen.
Asexual people can have romantic relationships and that does involve getting your heart broken. Things other than sexual relationships, sexual attraction, and romantic relationships also result in heartbreak. No need to pity us for not having the experience. We're plenty heartbroken. Heh, right?
I do not believe not getting
a broken heart is pitiable, I said it sounded heartbreaking. I think these
are quite different emotional reactions. Neither pity nor envy would I permit to take up residence, even if they did come to call.
Regardless, you did suggest asexual people don't experience it, so I hope it's clearer now. :)
There is much to be said for a pure friendship, untrammeled by sexual usage. It is also nice to be thinking with one's mind rather than some other organ.
watch out with the asexuals
Unfortunately while this may seem natural, it isn't. This is because of contaminants like BPA that's in all of our water.
It makes sense to me that asexuality is another expression of the range of our sexual identity. I applaud AVEN . Life can be tough enough to get through without ongoing angst about our sexual / non-sexual selves + recognising + supporting each others experience makes so much sense.
Interesting article and movement--it's always good and healthy when people find a group that validates their experience and way of being in the world.

Ironically, I find the AVEN founder very attractive. :)
Just another backwards group.
I know some people like this. But does this mean no self pleasure? I can see they may not be attracted to anyone, but what about having sexual urges to, or by, themselves?
Some asexuals do masturbate, some don't, just like some heterosexuals do and some don't. Masturbation is part of the libido or sex drive, and has nothing to do with who you are/aren't sexually attracted to.
I know someone who describes herself as autosexual... she is not sexually attracted to others in general, but she enjoys the pleasure she gives herself very much.
plenty of people have sex with no emotional attachment and therefore experience no heartbreak... emotional attachment and sexual attraction are too completely different things... and they are not mutually exclusive.
I think society would be astonished at the number of people who have no interest in sex of any type. As a Gay man I have been the friend and confidant of many "straight" women throughout my life. Many of these women have told me that they had never had any interest in sex and indeed just went through the motions in order to please their boyfriend or husband. Perhaps this is the final closet that needs to have the hinges blown off the door.
I hate to be snarky because I'm glad this group has formed and found each other. However this is one genepool that will disappear very quickly.
Like homosexuality has done?

Maybe there is a society- or species-level functionality to having portions of the population NOT driven to the opposite sex, and that functionality is expressed genetically in the aggregate gene pool rather than in the individual.

Maybe sexual heteros are carrying this gene.
hmm good point
natures answer to over population
Holy shush kebab!

All this time I thought Lindsey Graham was a lesbian.
LGBTA...

Lettuce, grilled onions, bacon, tomato, avocado.

I hope that mnemonic device helps.
After the Mensa rejection, it's all downhill.
LOL
thanks for the laugh Kushibo
Actually that's a misrepresentation of how genes work. #1, asexual people do sometimes reproduce. #2, gay people are born in every generation and they are coming out of straight people; the same is true of asexual people. Variants like asexuality are not "dying out" because there is no reason to believe they're genetic.
Thats interesting. I thought it was all genetic, natural selection and all that.
Many physiological differences from the norm are not controlled by genes. Even if it has to do with your biology, that doesn't mean it's genetic or heritable. And with something like sexual orientation, human sexuality is very multifaceted and complex; I don't think what manifests as a person's sexual inclination is necessarily physically driven, even though in some people it will be more than others. A mixture of our experiences, our psychology, and our physical bodies will affect how we approach every aspect of our lives, including sexual relationships and attraction experiences.
I used to fantasize that if all the people in leadership positions in the world were asexual, there would be more justice and equality. Every decision will be based on merit, a lot of time saved not having to pursue sexual drive and lust. A perfect state of equilibrium.
I remember when I stumbled upon AVEN years and years ago. Such a great resource for people like me. A community that lets you know nothing is wrong with you.
I first self identified myself as asexual in '71. I do not think that I need to identify myself with any association or community. Certainly not with LGBT. Why would I? I have no sexual attraction. GET IT? I don't need a support group. I am not being oppressed. I don't like you. I have no desire to get hooked up with your friend. I don't want to get married. I don't like children. Do Not Touch Me. Do not order me to smile. I don't even care enough about you to make eye contact. I don't want you in my house. GET OFF MY LAWN!

I have known a couple people like this over my lifetime and honestly, I almost envy them. I think my life would have been much less stressful not having to live with "the drive". It's hard to explain, and no offense to my wife, but life must be much simpler not having to worry about things like this. Aside from the "why aren't you with anyone?", "why aren't you dating?", etc.

I'm on the opposite end of the sex spectrum. This definitely has piqued my curiosity. This would explain a couple of my friends. I wonder if they have come across this yet. To know that there is an entire community out there that "gets it", would be a wonderful thing.
When I was young, I would have been considered abnormal by the medical profession because I wasn't crazy for girls. Then they decided I was all right as long as I was crazy for guys. But they've still tended to label people as abnormal who aren't attracted either way. I feel sure that research will more and more confirm that the only thing "normal" is for there to be a mix of heterosexual, homosexual, and asexual people, just as it is normal for there to be a mix of right- and left-handed people.
As an asexual, I've been wondering when or if a discussion would be started so that asexuality can be recognized and accepted. I'm fine the way I am and while I respect others curiosity, just because we don't behave like the rest of the herd doesn't mean we're something to be analyzed with the intent of fixing us. Don't judge and if you don't "get it" just accept it. Nuff said.
The only thing left in this world is for people to marry their pets and inanimate objects.
This has already happened.
I think my ex wife was asexual Just hated sex and acted like it was punishment. We had a child and after she was born we never had sex again. She never dated a man or woman after we divorced and just spent her time raising our daughter.
A lot of asexual people marry and never know what they are. Luckily I found a woman who liked sex as much as I and we have been married for 32 years. Still friends with my ex since we have 2 grandchildren together.
Mr Jay, you must be aware of the lives you have saved/rescued/improved. No wonder you have such a beautiful grin in that photo. What a wonderful guy you must be.
This must be epidemic, at least that would explain my last few relationships
Asexual people have always existed and the danger for society is to let them
take a foothold because they will start lumping all genders together.
Gender and sexuality are different things.
Where did I say they were the same?
When you equated asexuality becoming an established thing with "lumping all genders together" that's where.
What does asexuality have to do with Stonewall? LGBT people are sexual human beings!
In the old days this would be called being frigid.
So some humans have no physical attraction towards other humans? How rare is that?
I saw his documentary on this topic. David Jay seemed very confused about his own feelings on the topic, still. How can a group of people identify as themselves under a certain name, if they all have different interpretations of its definition? I'm all for openness and self-exploration. Still not convinced asexuality is legitimate. Seems to me like there are just deeper issues regarding sexuality that need to be explored and by identifying as asexual, they may just be shielding themselves from facing those issues.

I don't mean to judge, though. Just a thought.

Gotta say... I
There's nothing wrong with a person who is not motivated every second of the day by sex or the th
I saw his documentary on this topic. David Jay seemed very confused about his own feelings on the topic, still. How can a group of people identify as themselves under a certain name, if they all have different interpretations of its definition? I'm all for openness and self-exploration. Still not convinced asexuality is legitimate. Seems to me like there are just deeper issues regarding sexuality that need to be explored and by identifying as asexual, they may just be shielding themselves from facing those issues.

I don't mean to judge, though. Just a thought.

Gotta say... I
I saw his documentary on this topic. David Jay seemed very confused about his own feelings on the topic, still. How can a group of people identify as themselves under a certain name, if they all have different interpretations of its definition? I'm all for openness and self-exploration. Still not convinced asexuality is legitimate. Seems to me like there are just deeper issues regarding sexuality that need to be explored and by identifying as asexual, they may just be shielding themselves from facing those issues.

I don't mean to judge, though. Just a thought.

Gotta say... I
oh no..........now we are going to have asexual boy and girl scouts and transponders and gays..........my head hurts...
Good article, but the link "this Imgur photograph" goes to a 1 x 1 jpg. Very suspicious.
As the ace mentioned there, here it is from a different site. http://lolsnaps.com/upload_pic/NewsworthyFriendzoning-88405.jpg
I saw his documentary on this topic. David Jay seemed very confused about his own feelings on the topic, still. How can a group of people identify as themselves under a certain name, if they all have different interpretations of its definition? I'm all for openness and self-exploration. Still not convinced asexuality is legitimate. Seems to me like there are just deeper issues regarding sexuality that need to be explored and by identifying as asexual, they may just be shielding themselves from facing those issues.

I don't mean to judge, though. Just a thought.

Gotta say... I
Most of them aren't actually asexual, but instead autosexual. They like sex and they like orgasms, they just prefer to have them alone.
And you draw this conclusion how?
Because I'm familiar with them, and most of them masturbate regularly.
I know a few asexual folks- and I always wondered....thanks for the help...at least a bit.
"aces"...smh, everybody wants to distinguish themselves with a cool name. Im sure they're just clamoring to be the "new gay". Maybe next we can have a group that only has sex with aliens, considering they crash land on earth.
Actually, people usually do want to have a word for an experience if that experience exists. There's no reason to scoff and be dismissive when someone wants a word so they can talk about their experience. Comparing asexual people's reasonable wish to connect with others like them to science fiction concepts is about as much of a slippery slope argument as those people who insist that gay marriage will lead to bestiality. I don't think I'll ever understand why some people react to hearing about asexuality with "UGH, they want to TALK ABOUT THEIR LIVES, why does everyone want to be special these days?"
One of my best friends is asexual I do not think he is aware of this community I can't wait to tell him, Thank you.
WOW! This "Maddox" is one confused chick!
Do these people have jobs? Could they spend more time obsessing about themselves?
I can see the marching parades now...blank flags and corduroy pants.
Our flag is actually pretty colorful. We've been in parades for years. It'd be cool if people stopped acting like we were ridiculous for wanting to be recognized as existing without being portrayed as "haha, these people want to march for the right to not do anything, they're ridiculous!"
But what about the corduroys?  :)
You got it, that's our uniform. ;)
He was right the first time. There is something wrong with him.
Sex is primal and primary. I thought i had become asexual. Eventually i found that I had a "sliver of pituitary remaining." Believe me I was glad to have the replacement hormone therapies. Other diseases can lead to lack of sexual attraction as well - for example, Parkinsons can lead to lack of sex drive for many years before diagnosis. I doubt that we have to make room for a new civil right.
Bit I don't think asexuals are gay by definition. Why is this article in the Gay Voices section?
Neither are transgender people (by definition) but they are often included in gay activism. Asexuality is similarly aligned, sometimes, even though some of the issues we face aren't the same.
Having been celibate for a period of my life, and during that time I was not obsessed with or at all missing sexual intimacy, I felt quite free from much of the social and personal anxiety that arises from the assumption that everyone needs a sexual partner.  But I never felt marginalized or prejudice. 
I have had two friends in my life who were asexual. I grew up with them and this was before "asexual" was a recognized group. My other friends and I came up with the term ourselves after some period of observation throughout high school and after. Eventually, we just lumped it into the category of heterosexual, homosexual, asexual, etc. It was only years later that it was "officially" recognized group and we started hearing about it in the media.
Since no or low sex drive can be a symptom of various illnesses, I don't see the harm in suggesting that asexual people get their hormone levels checked at least once. If there are imbalances, that's important medical info. If the hormone levels are fine, then go on and have a happy asexual life. It's your life, not society's. I know several asexual people (who got their hormones checked) that have had wonderful lives once they got it all sorted out and understood who they are.
What illnesses exist for which the only symptom is low sex drive? I don't know of any actually. There is no harm, in a general sense, in suggesting yes, people should take care of themselves and look into anything that seems suspicious. If that, for some people, includes "getting their hormones checked" for peace of mind, great. But at the end of the day, nobody else should get to say what we need to get checked, whose permission we have to have, what examinations and psychological evaluations and experimentations we "should" be required to subject ourselves to before other people will acknowledge that it's okay for us to describe our own feelings. Most people aren't as forgiving as you are in saying the only "test" we'd need before we'd be able to go about our asexual happy lives forever after is a hormone test. Some think we need to actively seek out multiple sex partners and just keep trying, trying, trying to be sexual until we find someone (along with medical treatments and psychological evaluations), and they are in fact NEVER satisfied with us saying "Hm, guess I'm just asexual!" So, to sum up, if anyone has reason to believe they are suffering from a hormone disorder that could be dangerous to them, by all means get checked out. But as long as other people don't dictate what medical procedures we need to be open to, I think we're good.
I understand where you are coming from, but I do think there is a genuine difference between "Your asexuality could possibly be a symptom, you might want to check that out, if only for your own health." and "You CAN'T be asexual, CHECK AGAIN!!!!"

Hetero- or homo-, or bisexual attractions are, unless caused by hyper-sexuality, always a true sexual orientation. Asexuality can be that as well, but only most of the time. Sometimes it actually is a symptom and I don't think it is wise to never even try to find before you spend the rest of your life as someone you actually aren't (note that I am not saying it will make your happier or anything, I know better than that).

To answer your initial question, low or no libido can be a consequence of low testosterone levels in men, for example. This in turn can be caused by a variety of conditions, some of which harmless, others quite dangerous (like testicular cancer). To dismiss the original commenter's suggestion is also to dismiss the possibility of medical conditions where they actually do sometimes exist.

As I said, there is a difference in the way people recommend 'getting checked' and their motivations, but I would be careful in how you respond to those that mean well and do not push it on you. No matter how frustrated you are about those who can't accept your asexuality or, despite their good intentions, are practically committing you against your will.
Great reply, I have never read such a concise informative plausible answer. Maybe she does not want to get checked out because she feels like she finally has a community/ something to identify with and is afraid that if she does find something wrong her whole identity will come crashing down like a house of cards.
You make a lot of assumptions. It's actually pretty horrible that you assume I "don't want to get checked out" because I'm clinging to a false identity that I must have been desperately happy to find after years of not knowing what's going on. Actually, I've been identifying as asexual for about twenty years (since long before the community existed), and was just pleasantly surprised to see others felt the same way; never had a problem knowing I didn't really fit in this way, because it didn't seem like a big deal to me. Even though I personally have been "checked out" (because my mother said exactly these things to me, when I was eighteen, and pushed me into getting "checked out"), and even though I personally maintain my health with regular checkups including bloodwork, I don't have anything physically wrong/different about my body that would lead to not experiencing sexual attraction, and it's been a lifelong experience for me. The problem is that everyone has their caveat and everyone expects us to "respect" it for the benefit of OUR health, when we say "can we PLEASE just stop immediately suggesting it might be a disorder, and thank you?"
Yes, there is a difference--in intent, in delivery, in tone--between people who are genuinely worried that you may have a medical condition and people who are harassing you. The problem is that the majority of the time ASEXUAL PEOPLE ARE NOT DESCRIBING LOW SEX DRIVE and no matter how many times we say that, people still say we are sick. When you actually do have low hormones, it manifests in many ways besides not feeling sexually interested. It is not "dismissing" the original commenter's suggestion that people can get diseases if I say that describing asexuality is not the same as describing an illness.

And the problem with "they mean well" is that it's still unhelpful to default to an assumption that we are talking about a physical problem when we describe really not finding other people attractive sexually. Gay people used to get this all the time, too--they'd have their physical health questioned, wondering if their hormones were out of whack, and because that is such a common response, they did indeed often get "treated." It didn't change who they were attracted to. Same with one of my friends who was told "You know, you may be sick," and when she saw a mental health practitioner and two doctors over more than 12 months, they put her on testosterone because they--again--assumed it was "low sex drive." Another person I know had this same thing happen and it wrecked her skin when she was put on hormones.
So to clarify, if you believe there might be something wrong with you physically and you wanna get checked out, great. But if your puberty was normal, your ability to get aroused is normal, and you have no other symptoms (describes the vast majority of asexual people), "get your hormones checked" represents a misunderstanding of what we are not experiencing, and yet it's so common for us to hear it that it's usually the "free space" on the bingo card. It's also a personal medical question that very few people besides someone's nearest and dearest should be asking. I think more education will help people understand that reacting to asexuality with "get checked" isn't appropriate, since it unnecessarily medicalizes an experience that is normal for 1% of the population. It's important to understand that we encounter people with different caveats who "mean well" but still expect us to respect and investigate their queries about our health. MOST of us wonder if something might be wrong with us. We need no help to consider whether this is the case. The world's already a hostile place for this identity. Low libido--even though that's not even what asexuality is--also doesn't happen as a lone symptom of a medical disorder.
So does sex not feel good for these asexual people?
Asexuality is about attraction, not ability to experience physical pleasure. It doesn't really matter whether or not it feels good. If a straight man is physically stimulated by a gay man, it's probably going to feel good. It doesn't mean that the straight man is attracted to the gay man, it means that parts that are designed to feel good when stimulated are doing their job. Sex toys feel good, but most people aren't attracted to their vibrator.
In my case, sex did feel good physically, but it was kinda boring and the whole thing just felt off somehow.
For some. For most it still does, it's just that they don't feel sexually attracted to other people. When they see someone, be they man or girl, they just don't see them as a potential bedpartner. For others still, they're simply not interested in sex (even with themselves) at all.

Imagine having sex with someone of the same gender (or, if you're gay, of the other gender). Not nice, is it? That's probably how it with both genders for most asexual people.
Will the Huffington Post now have a new section, entitle "Asexual Voices?" Sorry, but Obama will not pander to you.......not enough votes.
Thank you for this article. I need to share this with my best friend because I suspect his wife is asexual and she doesn't even realize it. I think she is unaware of this because she was raised in a strict religious household that prevented her from exploring her sexuality (or lack thereof) and is still part of the same religion. Then she gets married to my best friend (who was born into the religion but as recently left it) and they've had sex probably less than a dozen times in 8 years. He's had plenty of experience with sex from previous relationships so I know it isn't him. I know some of you will say he should get a divorce ( I mentioned that to him before because she won't go to counseling - her religion discourages seeking "worldy" advice) but they have a kid now and he will not get a divorce because of that. He wishes now that he never got married and he feels trapped in a sexless relationship. I hope she can come to terms with her own sexual identity, whatever that is, but the conservative christian beliefs she has hinders any progress I think.
This is a poor first article on the subject. After reading it, I thought, "So what?" The article does nothing to explain the universal applicability of the subject to the reader. Why should I care about asexuality?
Because someone wrote an article on it and is going to write articles on it for the next few days to write on the topic of asexuality to educate people about asexuality. The information is now out there in the public eye. Pursue the truth and learn something new, accept yourself and you'll accept others too.
Again, so what? In the first of a series of articles on the subject, the author failed to identify why anyone should care about the subject at all. Why read any of the subsequent articles on the subject if the author has not identified the relevance of the subject to the reader?

The mere existence of asexuals is not in and of itself newsworthy. Is medical and psychological research being conducted to better understand asexuality? Are asexuals being institutionally marginalized, oppressed, or persecuted?

One could write an article or a series of articles on any number of identifying traits, but if the author does not explain why the reader should care about the subject, then why would he read it?
at the risk of offending, being asexual sure seems like it would make life easier...
Without sex: I would rather be dead!
Ok. I am a bit confused and I'm trying to make sure I understand what it means to be asexual. I apologize if my question is inappropriate, or perhaps I am asking about things that are none of my business. I am asking NOW so that I do not inadvertently offend someone later in my ignorance.
Here goes, from what I'm understanding, an asexual relationship would be just like any other relationship in that there would be cuddling and hugging and kissing, just no interest in the actual sexual intimacy? Or would someone who is asexual not enjoy (or desire) ANY forms of physical intimacy? As in hugging, back pats, or other strictly friendly type gestures. Do they not enjoy ANY physical contact, or just that which is overtly sexual?
It's different with every asexual, just like it would be with any other orientation. Different people like different things. Some aren't into having sex, some will have sex if their partner likes or for the shared intimacy, some like having sex... there's just never sexual attraction involved. Some like all kinds of touching, some like none. It's really just a personal thing.
Here I thought it meant frigid.
Fascinating article which raises some important questions. Will asexuals seek out cohibitation with lifetime partners, as many gays and straights do? It will be interesting to see how this community develops and finds its identity.
Some do, some don't. Personally, I'm single and fine that way, but I know of some other aces who are in relationships.
I am an older man now, but when I was young and although gay functionally bisexual, I can assure you that I wasted countless hours adding up to months of my life in the rather successful but fleeting pursuit of sexual gratification. Yes, I had some enduring affairs and one very long term relationship, but considering what I've accomplished in my life I can only imagine what I could have achieved had I devoted even half of that time spend in the quest for sex on accomplishing the goals I had set for myself. I have no regrets. It is interesting to think about though. I wouldn't say I'm asxual now, but the needful desire for sex certainly doesn't rule me any more.
I am an older man now, but when I was young and although gay functionally bisexual, I can assure you that I wasted countless hours adding up to months of my life in the rather successful but fleeting pursuit of sexual gratification. Yes, I had some enduring affairs and one very long term relationship, but considering what I've accomplished in my life I can only imagine what I could have achieved had I devoted even half of that time spend in the quest for sex on accomplishing the goals I had set for myself. I have no regrets. It is interesting to think about though.
I suppose there are worse fates. Excessive sexual drive causes MANY problems, on many fronts. Strong sexual urges are very distracting, and affect judgement in the worst ways possible.
Why is this listed under the 'Gay Voices' section? Excuse me, if I'm wrong, but I'm fairly certain that asexuals are not any variation of 'gay' (LGBTQ). Are we adding them on the bandwagon now too? Just curious. Will I see them at pride this year?
I was wondering the same thing.
Asexual is represented in the full acronym by an "A". LGBTQQIP2SAA is one long-form of the community acronym, which tries to be as inclusive as possible. There are longer versions, of course.
Asexuals have been at many pride events for several years. This is not a recent turn of events.

Many LGBT communities accept asexuals already, such as PFlag (At least everyone I've seen).

First, many asexuals are in LGBT relationships; secondly, asexuality is a sexuality where a lot of youth struggle with it every day and seek acceptance. The LGBT groups are a great fit.

I made an argument about this earlier, I'll rehash it here.

As a youth who may be struggling with his sexuality, and is coming to terms with being asexual there aren't asexual groups everywhere in the world. In turn, he decides to turn to his local LGBT community with his issues (being bullied at school, etc.).

Now, should the LGBT community bully him as well? The LGBT community has bullied asexuals before in the past. (Coughs out 'Dan Savage').

Or should the LGBT community be there with open and accepting arms?

I understand that asexuality is not 'LGBT' inherently, however, it's struggling with ones sexuality, the persecution, the bullying, the self-acceptance, and the pain that brought the community together fighting for rights and acceptance in this world.

As an asexual myself, who is a member of his local LGBT community, the topic is brought up quite often of asexual acceptance (Seems silly don't it.) However, in such a sexualized society; going against it is considered abnormal.

Hope that helps, I'm running into the word limit now :)
Yeah, that's nonsensical and the very height of ridiculousness. If we're just going to extend the LGBt spectrum to include everyone except heterosexuals (though I'm sure you'd argue that they should be, or are already included), then the whole sense of community loses all purpose. 
The sense of the community is to discuss sexual diversity, and gender identity issues.

The sense of the community is to be there for those who are struggling with such issues when they need the community.

The sense of the community is to focus on the issues that sexual stereotypes, and gender issues bring to the workplace, schools, through government, and everyday social activity.

The sense of the community is to end discrimination based on sexual orientation, sexual diversity, and gender identities.

The sense of community is to be there for one another.

The sense of the community is support.

What do you think the sense of the GLBT community is? What do you discuss?

Is it to be an all exclusive group and restrict other people from being involved?

Why? Your semi-ad hominem attack is not helping in any way shape or form as well, and there was no reason to make it.
Do asexuals appreciate being told how smoking hot they are (because that Dave guy is pretty darn hot)? Or is it mildly annoying like when straight girls tell gay guys that "it is such a waste"?
Interesting question. ^___^ I don't mind physical compliments, as long as they're sensitively rendered and not delivered as an expectation for me to respond to them with romantic or sexual attention. But it's definitely offensive to me if someone implies that I am "a waste" because someone (presumably a straight man) has not claimed me for his own. What's more frustrating for me is that my desire to remain unattached romantically as well as abstinent because of my orientation is sometimes just plain interpreted as "single and available," and people assume I cannot possibly be happy single, so they will pursue, relentlessly sometimes. It's funny how they'd respect me and stop if I had a boyfriend, but if I'm single and there's no "reason" they can see for me not dating, they do not believe my stated preference is enough to leave me alone.
Well, I guess I'm asexual too...A-SEXUAL-MAN, that is! Thank God for dudes and big D's!!! Any questions?
Asexuals of the world, unite! You, well, have nothing to lose. . .
I am happy you have started this series . Not only would it reduce ignorance about asexuality , it may help people better understand themselves
I have questions. I know that some of the answers are going to be different from case to case, so saying whether it's possibly will do. 1) When someone says they're asexual, does that mean that they just have no sexual attractions, or that they are actually find sex repulsive? 2) Lacking sexual attractions, do asexuals have romantic attractions? 3) Do asexuals ever have sex as an expression of love, i.e. not for the physical sensation?
1. It means they don't have sexual attraction. Some asexuals are repulsed by sex, but not all. For those aces who are repulsed, many of them report that the repulsion they feel is limited to themselves, and that they do not have a problem with other people having sex. For me, personally, I do not find sex repulsive. 2. Many asexuals do experience romantic attraction. Those that do will often express a gender preference, and refer to themselves as "heteroromantic" or "homoromantic". Some asexuals do not experience romantic attraction, and call themselves "aromantic". It should be noted that these romantic orientations are not restricted to asexuals. It is possible for someone to be, for instance, an aromantic heterosexual, that is, someone who is sexually attracted to a different gender, but does not have any romantic attraction toward them. 3. Sometimes yes, sometimes no. The article from Wednesday ("Love, Romance ... in the Asexual Community") talks about this.
Ok, thanks a lot.  I have an asexual friend, but generally talking to friends about this sort of thing can get awkward in person.
The article does not define what an asexual person is.
I love ya buddy! But I am a bit confused - I have always felt that if two people loved each other, and the sex just wasn't there - that they should face their fears and go to sexual counseling together - how does this differ from a regular sexual problem? Lack of desire is also a common sex problem, isn't it? Common anti-depressant medicines "turn down" the sexual feelings a lot -
Perhaps we as a society should stop identifying ourselves based on what we do or do not do with our sex organs. By doing so, we point to anyone who isn't fitting a particular paradigm, be it set by Queen Victoria or Queen Beyonce, and make judgements. I'm a post-menopausal female who is being told I should have the same sex life now as when I was 20, and if I'm not, I should "see a doctor", my huband should "see a doctor", I should explore alternatives, on and on. We're so flooded by pressures to see sex as love or sex as the reason for living. I wish this group success as I'm sure it will help that person who needs affirmation.
Ever since I was a kid I knew we had asexual in nature. This is the very reason why I believe in homosexuality, too. We have gay in nature, too. Technically we are animals, too. Therefore, it makes no sense to me why animals would have certain sexual traits that humans wouldn't have. Also, I believe in monogamous humans because Penguins and other nature creatures mate for life. Unfortunately, some have multiple partners, too. People really should go outside and study nature. Siting in a church and having people with an agenda tell you about life by their biblical interpretation isn't based on fact. Nature is fact based.
On a positive note, these people don't have to worry about STD's.
Asexuals can still have sex since attraction isn't the same as behavior.
I'm so glad our society is willing to talk about things we once avoided. It was ignorance that made us that way. People used to turn red in the face over the word sex. Have a great weekend!
Ridiculous. Live your life. Quit defining yourself by what you do with your private parts.
I think an asexual individual might be good in the clergy.
so we have a new group of perverts,thats not news in america any more.
How is this a perversion?
You wanna know what I think? I think you're some kind of deviated prevert and you're organizing some kind of mutiny of preverts.
Having almost the opposite problem, I envy asexual people. I am a hundred pounds overweight to keep myself safe from others and myself. I don't remember not having a sexual identity (molestation may have contributed to that).
I have a question - and I'm not judging AT ALL, I'm curious. I've never heard of this before reading this article, so I'm wondering... do asexual people have relationships then? Or do you choose to live alone or with friends/roommates/pets? I mean no disrespect, and I would sincerely appreciate a helpful answer. Thank you!
I am asexual, and yes, I do have relationships, just not sexual ones. That isn't what drives me to be in a relationship at all. I do prefer to live alone with my pets because I haven't met anyone who is really understanding of me and my orientation.
So, ideally, you would like to find someone that identifies as asexual as well then right? Thank you so much for your response, I really appreciate it!
Sadly, asexual people are often labeled, "cold fish." Just because someone does not desire sexual relations, that does not make that person cold or unemotional.
And here am I thinking that asexual was exclusive to (platyhelminthes) flatworms,
and other assorted phylums. Little did I know!
Stupid biology class!
Very interesting article. To paraphrase Plato; a gift of your later years is the decrease in sex drive leading to more productive thought processes. Another interesting aspect of the topic is that there is a very prominent Ace in our current popular culture medium in the person of Dr. Sheldon Cooper (Big Bang Theory) who appears to be asexual. And his friends are trying to "fix" him in this respect, and seem to be having some limited success. Actually, I'm rather envious in some respects of this community, seems like a lot of aspects of life would be simplified.
Until recently, I didn't know what asexuality was. I used to know a girl who I now believe was asexual. I was confused back then when she was explaining her lack of sexual desire. I'm glad that the Huffington Post is having this series so I can educate myself and not say something hurtful out of ignorance to someone who is asexual.
Is there anything that doesn't have a "community"?
he actually thinks he his sane
Another branch of freakism, there has got to be an end to this madness......
Is it a woman after she has eaten wedding cake?
I think a lot of human beings have always felt this way. Historically marriage was predicated on the idea that sex is a responsibility one owes society. "Close your eyes and think of England."
There must be something lacking in your brain that you have no sexual feelings. It goes against nature. I support all human beings and their right to be sexual with who they want to be, straight, gay, and of course I support the asexuals but I cannot say that this is normal. Some neurons in your brain must not be firing.
Please see the second article in the series. It will address your exact concern.
Sex is wonderful, specially if you are doing it with someone you love and trust. I respect Asexuals though. Live and let live.
Just another mentally and emotionally confused group of people
You know what? I used to be supremely confused. Mentally and emotionally. I thought I was broken, that something was wrong in my very core, that I should just kill myself. I even attempted it once. But you know what changed? I discovered that I wasn't alone. I found that a lot of people feel like I do. In fact, it's over 3 million just in the USA. Do you think that that many people are as confused as you assume? Because I can tell you one thing, none of the asexuals I have had dealings with are at all.
There are millions of men and women who have no interest in sex. You never heard of the word "Apatheist" either...it's people with no interest in religion. They could care less if there is a god or not.
stupid ah
Heterosexual? Homosexual? Bisexual? Asexual? Why exactly do people feel the need for a "community" to support their sexuality?
Because for years I felt broken and alone because I was so different than everyone else I'd ever met. Finding out that asexuality was a thing and that there were other people out there who felt the same way I did was an incredible moment.
I WAS getting cheked out at the grocery store the other day the bagger asked if Ipreffered paper or plastic Isaid it made no difference to me because I considered myself BISACKUAL
oh for gods sake, enough with the labels. good grief,
can't wait for south park to do an episode on this haha
"I started using the word 'asexual' when I was about 13 or 14."

We know what the "a" stands for. Nasty, very nasty.
Asexuaal, You mean that is another work for Queer,
why is it called a sexual community when sex has nothing to do with it? LOL.. in the old days we called it simply a person who doesn't really like sex, frigid, or simply "leave me thehellalone," it sounds more like they are simply nonsexual. cool
Some people just don't require sex, or think it is necessary, or desirable. Our society is so focused on sex and sexuality selling products, etc.
I discovered my Asexuality the moment I first saw Hillary Clinton
Oh good god now what ?
Since we are supposed to be sexual beings with the purpose of multiplying the species, I submit that anyone who has no sexual attractions is defective.
Look at the second article in the series. It addresses your exact concern.
And are gay people and people who use birth control defective, too? Just checking.
It would be strange to date someone who is not sexually interested you in anyway. It would be like living with a best friend of the same sex.
please read the third article in the series. It covers romance in the asexual community. Trust me, though, we can be just as strongly interested in someone as anyone else.
I dont believe it. (I cant believe I'm typing this on the web, speaking of disbelief) but this is basically what disolved my marriage. I swear I thought i was pretty much the only one, other than certain subsets of people.
Going to try to find contact info for these guys.
Welcome, we have cake and hugs available. And the links at the bottom are a good starting place.
AVEN (asexuality.org), the #asexual or #asexuality tags on Tumblr, and reddit's /r/asexuality are good places to meet asexuals and learn about asexuality, and most of them are very good about answering any questions you might have.
AsexualityArchive.com has an extensive set of articles (and a free ebook) about various aspects of asexuality.
There are also a number of asexuality themed videos on YouTube. SwankIVY's channel and the Hot Pieces of Ace channel are good places to start there.
Anyone consider that sexuality is just one aspect of sensuality? Never heard of asexuality until now, and I am not asexual, but I as I ponder this I believe that aces can be sensual. People who are in touch with all of their senses can be very passionate and energetic about life and relationships.
Sensuality is a big part of who I am. I'm a cuddleslut.
I believe that my cousin is asexual. Did you know that the BBC show Sherlock has the title character written as an (aromantic) not too sure on that term, asexual?
So many people love the show based simply on this portrayal alone!
I think hormones, especially in women have a lot to do with it. That is why I don't judge women that are promiscuous, or not interested in sex. Our biological and chemical makeup is unique to us.
I, and many other aces, have had our hormones checked. Personally, mine are elevated. Adding in that I also have ADHD which tends to make people hypersexual, and you have compelling medical evidence that I should be very very sexual. But I'm asexual. Go figure. Also, go read the second article in the series. It covers the medical ans scientific proof that asexuality isn't proof of anything being wrong.
I think asexual is pretty normal and common. I saw something on Netflix about it months ago. I think people aren't afraid to speak out now. I think we are all unique and can't be labeled or defined by one specific set of evidence, rule, theory...... and I think it is awesome! I have been celibate for a long, long, time. I did some research on asexual but that didn't seem to describe me. I have to be emotionally invested and at least "think" I love that person before I can invest that intimate relationship. Nowadays you aren't going to find too many men willing to wait a few months, or so. Sad, bu true. So I get asexual people. I think it is cool! Have a good weekend
Hmm. That sounds similar to demisexuality. Not necessarily what you are, but demisexuals do have to have a certain level of relationship before they become sexual towards someone. Interesting that some people choose to live like that and some are born with that hardwired in.
I'll have to research that. I've never heard that term before. I've thought it could be psychological. I have serious trust issues stemming from my childhood. That might be why I need to develop a bond first. Trust has to exist first, for me. I've only had 2 sexual partners in my life. It has been so long it is probably the fear of intimacy at this point. I did a lot of research many years ago on meditation and how celibacy is a way to reach a higher spiritual elevation. You are more focused. Intimacy is an emotional distraction. Maybe that has just been my excuse....avoidance issues. lol
Just what we need,,,,,, another group of freaks trying to convince the normal people they're OK.....just different.
Unless I forgot my Biology, sex is a necessity to perpetuate a species.....How can you embrace a lifestyle, if embraced by all, would doom the species??????
While sex is necessary for a species to continue at a certain point, after a certain point it becomes less important to that function that all members of a species participate. At the current population levels, we don't have to worry about some people not procreating being a big issue. In fact we as a society would prefer some people not procreate. And at the same time, asexuals can have sex. It's not about behavior, it's about attraction. Please keep reading the series. It'll show you the answers to the questions you have.
If asexuality is considered something people are born with, rather than choose to be, I'm wondering what about people who are not attracted to other persons possibly because of sexual abuse history in childhood, which 'shut down' that aspect of their development? Not specifically an anxiety around sex, but a lack of sexual attraction.
Thoughts?
I heard the term in 1984.
I became asexual in 2008 as a result of changes in brain, following brain surgery to resect a brain tumor. Life is very different--not better or worse, just different.
...This is stupid. If you're asexual, it doesn't mean you don't experience sexual attraction. If you're asexual, it means you have sex with yourself. It's in science. Something about bacteria. Or a cell splits itself, into two cells...because it doesn't need a partner, to produce offspring. So it has sex WITH ITSELF. I learned that in 6th grade science class. Huffintonpost readers need to go back to the 6th grade.
uh oh, I'm gonna get bombarded with hate mail for this, but I think this guy has simply never met the one who floats his boat yet. I'm not buying it. We're like birds and mice and dogs, we were born horny and we die horny. Sorry, just being honest. This guy needs to get laid properly.
I have never found anyone sexually attractive. Ever. Not a coworker, not a classmate, not a celebrity, not a random person on the street. No one. Given that I've witnessed other people express attraction to more than one person in the space of a couple of minutes while sitting in a restaurant and I haven't experienced that ever, I think it's safe to assume that there's no one out there who'll do the trick. Or to satisfy you, would I have to cross all seven billion people on the planet off the list? Would that be enough?
Furthermore, I have been laid properly. Still asexual.
I recently read that 20% of all men have no, or almost no, sex drive. I'm sure it must be similar with women. With the advent of the "pill" a sense that people want sex 24/7 came with it. It's just not true. We're all different. So many people deny who they really are sexually. Some do want sex daily, and some monthly. Although there is certainly room to please one's partner/spouse. I knew a young woman who thought she had little sex drive. Then one night she met a man and that was it. Some are just much more particular. We aren't all the same.
Why would anyone who is sexual want to be w/ a asexual?
Because they love them.
Can someone enlighten me? I feel that sexuality is private regardless of sexual orientation. My brother in law was gay (a highjacked word) and was of the opinion that flaunting sexuality was in poor taste. Trash class. WHY do people find it necessary to display their orientation to the public? Is it low self esteem or a desire to get attention? Who cares what other people think?
How did your brother in law know he was gay? How did he know that he wasn't some messed up broken freak because he happened to like other people with matching equipment? How did he know that he wasn't the only one like that in the entire world?
He knew because someone else stood in front of the world and bravely said "This is how I feel. If you feel this way too, you are not broken. You are not alone."
Because David Jay and others like him stood in front of the world "This is how I feel", I know that I am not broken. I am not alone.
And so now, I feel compelled to pay it forward. Somewhere out there, there is someone who'll look at me when I say "This is how I feel". They are not broken. They are not alone.
uh oh, I'm gonna get bombarded with hate mail for this, but I think this guy has simply never met the one who floats his boat yet. I'm not buying it. We're like birds and mice and dogs, we were born horny and we die horny. Sorry, just being honest. This guy needs to get laid properly. He's super handsome and seems kind and good. He just needs to meet "the one" and then all is well.
Actually, there are many animals that spend their life asexually. They may procreate once in a lifetime or very rarely, and many times only one in a clan/pride/group will be sexually active, while the rest will not.
I guess it makes YOU feel better to think that this is just a matter of finding the 'right person' or the 'attractive enough person'. I'm wondering--what would it mean to YOU if you were around someone who found you completely unattractive--not in a negative way, but a completely neutral unimpressed unaroused way? Would that scare you?
I wonder if it would.

Whatever asexuality means--and I am not sure I understand it fully--I don't think it is about "needing to be laid properly".
Huh, I always referred to myself as asexual without realizing it was a whole community thing. Although, unlike the people in this article it means nothing to me that there are other asexual people out there. I guess I'm asocial as well. I find it a bit odd anyone would think they are the only person who has experienced something.
I'll bet it's pretty tough to get a date at the asexual conference.
You can give it a name and a definition but it's all a fallacy. Sexuality, like any other aspect of being human is really prone to flaw and brokenness. It's a brokenness of the fallen state of man. That's why people need God and it's what the human heart longs after, not really the physical pleasures (or not) of sex. In this man's own words he even admits he "Created" this definition. Such gender confusion by a pagan hedonistic world. But it's nothing new as pagan societies have existed centuries ago. We have a gender identity theft in a post modern thinking world.
Asexuality is not a gender identity. It's a sexual orientation. One which is, by the way, Jesus-approved. Matthew 19:12.
The eunuch Jesus spoke of, came to be that way by 3 different means and the last one is for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. If I were a bettin' gal, I'd say that the asexuals of today are not interested in doing it for the sake of the Lord's kingdom (remaining chaste). That would be naive to believe that, although if it makes you feel good, you can. Besides, that passage is by Jesus to his disciples to discuss God's allowable reasons for divorce.
What a weird article. First, "asexual" is not an obscure word. Second, asexual people is not an unusual concept. Third, just about everyone already knows that our world is oversexualized. Fourth, it's weird that someone would think they have to conform their sexuality to what virtually everyone knows is excess. Fifth, if you aren't interested in engaging in sex, why attempt sexual relations? Sixth, it's weird for people to define themselves by their sexuality. Seventh, it's weird that asexual people would assume they are homosexual.

Asexuality used to be well-known in Christianity. As much as possible, Christians are encouraged to be asexual, and even the New Testament talks about people who are asexual, either because God made them that way or because man made them that way. So, asexual people should not have a problem having their non-sexuality accepted in the Christian community. It's only in a world in which everyone is expected to be hyper-sexual that asexuals should have trouble finding a place.
I spent years in the nightclubs with my friends, watching them "score" while I usually went home alone, feeling left out in the cold. Then, one day, I stopped going out because I realized that I was just trying to fit in. I don't need sex or someone to love to be happy. If that makes me a freak then so be it.
Asexuality is just another name for a man who has been married longer than six months. It is forced upon him by his wife!
Congratulations! You are the 1000000th user to make that joke! CLICK HERE FOR YOUR REWARD!
If you think that's a joke, you are obviously NOT a married man.
Sometimes I feel like that but then realize it was the drugs.
Curious, have 'asexuals' never have engaged in self pleasuring? Or did once to see how the anatomy works but found it un-stimulating? Or does the internal wiring not work? As I read this I'm understanding it as they 'appear' to fit visual gender description but the internal wiring is off. Sort of like a car with chassis but missing a few parts for the motor and transmission.

Does this mean someone over 40 single and never married can claim they are an "Ace" and be given hiring preferences to get a job? I bet in todays economy there would be a lot more "Aces" than you think!

If I claim I am androgynous, asexual and ambidextrous can I get preferred rights and a better job than working as juggler at the circus?

If they have 'all the parts' of their respective gender than aren't they more aptly "ASD" - asexual sex drive - rather than asexual? Or are they the first multi celled complex bio organism that can self replicate?

Who knew we've been having cloned humans long before Lucy the sheep!
I think the choice of word to describe their situation purposely confusing.
The third article in this series actually has "Masturbation" in its title. Perhaps that would be enlightening for you to read.
Looking forward to read the series article. When searching internet I found wide variety of reasons / approaches of 'Aces' who 'self serviced'. So am interested in reading something which summarizes to gain a better understanding.

Interesting to find separation between purely "bio-physiological" needs and the "emotional / visual" - as well as the centuries worth of cultural social expectations - from what I did read. Fascinating arena of study to delineate the functioning of the 'creature' that is human kind.
Actually, it would be fascinating if a complete in depth study was done as to why people develop the way they do, especially with no desire to reproduce, a strong desire in species. Some books I have read that look at the development of the human brain and sexuality: THE RED QUEEN by Matt Ridley, THE FEMALE BRAIN and THE MALE BRAIN by Louann Brizendine, and WHY BEAUTIFUL PEOPLE HAVE MORE DAUGHTERS by the late Alan S. Miller and Satoshi Kanazawa. All look at the Nature vs Nurture effects.
SICK STUFF
Maybe some day people will realize there is no "normal" & let each person be who he or she is.
Well this is great, this is going to be the real challenge. How broad can the scope of people's willingness to respect other people decisions go? Because right now as we attempt to accept "marriage equality" ( and I used quotation marks on purpose) things like "virgin shaming" are popular.

So are we going to exchange one trend for the other like going from a Coach bag to Gucci bag? Or are we going to once and for all respect everyone as long as they aren't hurting anyone?

Bravo to the aces community for widening the dialogue.
I imagine 100 years ago, there would have been no need for such a term, or special group, as it is only today's world with such an obsessive focus on sexuality that 'makes' people think there is something wrong with them if they don't experience continuous sexual feelings.

I think the distortion is in the modern experience of sexuality, that, through advertising, media, and hype, has made hypersexuality the 'norm'.
So now they finally have a name for women who put on a wedding ring.
Ignorance is Bliss is no more apparent than in this story, where HuffPost has decided to categorize it, and the Agenda that is trying to redefine the meaning of the word. Asexuality means NO SEXUAL ATTRACTION TO ANYONE. Straight or Gay. However, just as with grouping Bisexual persons into their Marriage debate, the Gay Community is trying to adhere Asexuality to their Agenda. Ignorance. It isnt about Same-Sex Attraction... it is about the total lack of ANY sexual attraction.
Makes sense. Nature is a crazy thing. Amazing really how the world sort of works for balance despite our darndest efforts at excess and/or sparsity.

Almost as crazy is how we are all taught from very early on about "unique". No two things are identical, finger prints, snow flakes, there can be only one...wait that's Highlander...anyway. We revel in uniqueness and elevate "special" things and people. Then we freak right the heck out if somebody doesn't think, act, perceive or react in the "normal" way.

We aren't the brightest species are we?

Always lovely to hear that folks who were in need of one, came upon a community they can call home.
would love to be asexual with him.he is cute
Sex has always occupied too much of humanity's time and attention. If you think about how problems get started, I swear it's possible to trace everything back to sex (seriously!). As Lord Chesterfield said, "The pleasure is momentary, the position ridiculous, and the expense is damnable." Like wolf 123, I, too, would like to have back all that time that I wasted on sex and its attendant problems.
Sooooo,,,,,I can safely assume you're not getting any... LOL
I thought asexuality was a condition that occured in women shortly after saying "I do".
I admire people who don't feel they "have to be" a something, a this or that. It's like claiming to be a rebel and to be different, but ending up to look and act like 'everybody' else. IE: (No offense meant), Goths, hippies (of old), tough outlaw bikers, tattoo covered cage fighters, and Gangstas, ho hum, etc. Why put on a costume? Why so desperate to have an "identity" of some kind? Sometimes I think it's the hardest thing to just accept ourselves as we are and to hell with what other's may think. Maybe it's just easier to go with the flow and join a herd.
I am very happy to read this is "coming out" in the open so people like myself can
stop feeling so "deprived" or left out or whatever. Although my asexuality stems
from being very damaged as a child, it still helps to know there are others I can
at least talk to. I have been to therapy for years and AA and NA and have been
in recovery for 17 years. YAY Me! Thank you for starting a great community
called AVEN. I will be checking it out. Whatever the reason, it's ok to be who
you are.
Here's a news flash for you Maggie....You are left out and deprived !!!!!
For all of you out there who are not sure if you're actually Asexual. The AMA has recently done a study and here are their findings.....If Kate Upton comes to your door and you tell her to go away.....You are Asexual ...or DEAD !!!
People love labels to much.
So, it's just a fancy term for eunich then. Eunichs have been around since biblical times.
If all Priests were "someone who does not experience sexual attraction.", wouldn't that be nice?
SCHOOLS need to start talking about asexuality. They introduce sex in Kindergarten now, and kids think there's something wrong with them if they don't associated with the hetero or homosexual labeling. Worse, there are huge numbers of kids who have Asperger's that live their lives in a world of black and white, this or that, who because of their social "disorder" don't relate as well to other kids. Yet, they MUST be either homo or heterosexual, because that's how the teachers (and parents) say the world works. I know a few who have had sexual experiences that they hated, because they think they're gay and this is what they're supposed to be doing. When you say, "I think you're asexual," they tell you there's no such thing, because those in authority didn't tell them there is such a thing. Lives are destroyed when you introduce sexuality so early in childhood development (young boys especially are confused because they have no interest in girls for part of those years of "teaching") and when you leave out this important "group" of people who really have no interest in sex. None. And please don't try to "fix them." This is who they are. Now add it to your explanation of sexuality. You will be saving some kids a whole lot of grief. Demand that your schools incorporate it in their Sex Ed curriculum. NOW!
just another label in a society that demands there be no labels
I don't understand why someone would ridicule an asexual but I suppose there's always somebody ready and willing to pounce on something different from themselves.
I would become an instant asexual if I was surrounded by Republicans
Although I have never been plagued with that problem I see no problem with those that do have this problem. Leaves more for those that enjoy sexual relations.
HAHAHAHA, why does anyone who may think them selfs to maybe be a little off from the norm, hech who isnt,,FEEL THIS BIG DESIRE TO LABEL THEMSELFS AS A MEMBER OF A GROUP? what does it accomplish? haha, and when are they going to push for protected status under their civil right being violated? gotta be something in it for them,,,
Many marriages turn asexual after a while.
What does an asexual fantasize to while masturbating?
I don't fantasize about anything.
The third article in this series discusses the topic in more depth.
I am happy to see this out, its the closest description of what a lot of people feel like and cant share it because everyone finds labels and names for you. Is so discouraging to have pressure from all of your friends to be active like them when your a teenager and you don't want to. Some people enjoy the elation of being happy even more than focusing on libido.
That would be horrible.
There are thousands of menopausal and post-menopausal women out there who wish they could be asexual. But, alas, we are married and still have to tend to our husband's needs. Sigh.....
Not sure if this comment is PC but I think sex is more than just LUST..there is so much more to it that everyone should experience it in life. To be asexual takes that away from a person. I find that somewhat heart breaking.
While I agree that there can be more to sex than just lust, asexuality doesn't really take anything away, since you can't take something that wasn't there in the first place. And being asexual doesn't necessarily mean you don't still want intimacy, you just don't want the kind of intimacy that involves someone else's naughty bits.
This was a very interesting read. I have never heard of this form of sexuality outside of biology class. I wish David Jay all the best, and I sincerely hope the fundamentalists don't get on their soap box about this.
Wow, congrats on this article covering Aven ..and congrats to the Aven founder. I am just a Sociology student and have been intrigued about this subject matter and continuing on in the fall, I'm excited to learn more and write about it. This series will give me a more abundant resource rather than the 1/4 page that was written in the book in 1970! :p Nothing but respect and support for you all.
geezuz..another community? why all the labels..i can't get enuff sex from my wife, i'm male and wife's a female. I know you find that strange , but what label does that give me
It's often considered impolite to label other people, but the one I'd go with is "heterosexual". There are many websites and clubs and even some books dedicated to heterosexuality out there that you might want to look into. The most important thing to remember is that you are not alone! There are countless others who feel the same way you do.
I'm struggling with the "asexual transgender" (isn't that...an oxymoron?) and I laugh at the fact there is a "gay pride" Ad under the "Asexual" article.

Gay is not Asexual, and sex reassignment really goes against what Asexual really means at its root.....It's great they formed a group that apparently anyone can join, and they call it "Asexual" .. So we really have a diverse group celebrating something that at its core is not diverse at all....

I also find it interesting that it says "Asexuals experience sexual arousal and intimacy different from each other and other people." (paraphrased.)

isn't that the entirety of the Human Genome? So, we have a group for everyone, founded by Asexuals, for Asexuals, but no actual Asexuals join, or is it everyone is Asexual?

Can't we call this what it really is? People who have come together out of some mutual feeling of not wanting to be defined, this is almost the same thing as Transcendentalism.

All you college level kids Doing "American Identity." could use these articles to easily obtain an A. Of course, Grading these days has gone down the tube...everyone has to "get" and A. What ever happened to EARNING...but that's Another story.

I applaud Asexuals (ahem..everyone)
Asexuality is a sexual orientation, not a gender identity, and it has nothing to do with "sex reassignment". It's perfectly possible to be both asexual and transgender.
To be asexual and transgender is in no way oxymoronic. Just like AsexualityArchive stated asexuality refers to a person's sexual orientation while transgender refers to their gender identity, which are two very different things. If anything sexuality, and therefore asexuality, has more to do with the gender of the people you do (or don't) feel sexually attracted to. Transgender doesn't imply or exclude one from identifying with any particular sexual orientation.

As far as the asexual identity lacking sufficient definition, the articles point out that there is indeed a common trait shared by asexuals that isn't shared by sexuals, namely the fact that we don't have any drive or desire to have sex with another person. People who use the term aren't using it because they don't want to be defined, and generally it seems like quite the opposite is true. For myself, and it seems for many others, reading about asexuality and what the definition and concept really meant caused a lightbulb to pop on and for us to throw our hands in the air saying 'This! This describes me! Finally!' Not everyone fits or would be comfortable fitting under the asexual identity.
I can give a reasonably quick, sure way to tell if you are asexual. Ask yourself this: Have I ever blushed because someone I like has touched me or said something to me? It's not the same as a blush from shame or embarrassment, like a fall at center stage. If you have never blushed because of the presence of another person - you are asexual. If you never had a childhood crush - you are asexual. If you have had a crush, and have blushed.... The sexual emotion and desire is within you.... You are not asexual. As someone who has known that something was different since I was 7... and I understood pretty much what it was very early... and I refused to be a hypocrite or bring pain to myself or others.... I can say this.... all of the debate about who is and who is not asexual is happening because most asexuals take a very long time to figure out and admit to themselves what it different. Being asexual does not mean that you can't experience sex.... or experience arousal... that's a mechanical, physical thing. Asexuality is an absence of the emotions connected with sexual attraction. The explanation to themselves and from friends is: You just need to find the right person (straight or gay)... and when they don't, they make do... and the partner strays.
I never heard of this condition .What a shame this poor guy has never known the joys of a normal healthy sexual relationship and the closeness that it brings to a married couple.
The point of this article series is that it's not a shame. We want to be recognized and accepted for who we are and how we feel without pity or denial being cast our way.
A good round of therapy would help most of these delusionals.
Of course, because therapy to change one's sexual orientation virtually always has a positive outcome. Just ask Alan Chambers about his success rate! Oh... Wait...
It is okay to have whatever level of attraction, interest, and desire for sex that one has. It matters not if they couldn't care less about sex or care tremendously for it, if they experience sexual attraction for all people or for no one at all, or if they have a large desire for sex or no desire for sex - it is all 100% perfectly a-okay: http://a-okay.org/.

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Thank you so much for this series, HuffPo. In a culture where the "sexual revolution" has taken us full-circle from shaming and pathologizing having and wanting sex to shaming and pathologizing NOT having or wanting it, it continues to be of paramount importance for the media to humanize and highlight asexuals, lest people continue to think, much as they did with heterosexuality before gay awareness, that sexual attraction is a defining part of everyone's existence.
Perfectly said!

The sexual revolution of the 60s/70s was just part 1, so that our culture cold accept everyone's sexuality.

Part 2 of that sexual revolution is happening now with asexuals, where our culture begins to recognize that for some people sex isn't all that important, or wanted, at all.
I always thought I was a strange duck in a world that revolved around sexuality and the rituals that went with it. So nice to know that I am not alone. I never had a desire to marry and if I kissed someone all I could think about is how germy that is. I really tried to be normal and just now these past few years just decided to be myself. I really like people and friendships, just don't have a desire to have sex with them. I would also like to have a purely intellectual relationship with someone, but most people couldn't handle the limits of such a premise . I tried to have a boyfriend these past 5 years but I can't pretend anymore. It's not fair to him or myself. Are there really people like me? Am I normal?
I know what you mean. Never quite fit anywhere... Until I started reading these articles. :) Never fancied half-naked people. Liked guys putting on clothes, rather than taking them off. Still not sure exactly where I belong, but I think I may be getting closer.
Thanks for your comment, at least I'm not the only one in the world who feels this way!
Thank you Huffington Post. If it weren't for this series, I would still not know who I am.
See Henry , I told you so.
Well I am a neat freak, the thought of anyone elses
germs on me make me just panic. And the physical
anatomy is soo ugly Who designed that mess?lol
I grew up as a very beautiful woman or so I have been
told. And I tried to fit in like everyone else. But honestly
I had to get drunk to even get near to a man.It was horrible
4 marriages and three children later- I am now old an alone
accepting it and happy about it,,I have discovered I do not
have to be like everyone else.Asexual fits me to a tee.
they say Montgomery Clift was asexual as well.. but he had
strange antics.I can love stronger deeper and longer than
anyone.. just not with my body ! Keep the change you filthy
animal..LOL (from home alone) .
One pop culture example of asexuality being given positive and normalizing recognition is the the webcomic Girls with Slingshots, which has brought up several marginalized sexual subcultures along with the rest of its slice-of-life humor topics. I highly recommend it - socially conscious and just great humor.
Asexuality is a bit of a misnomer in many cases; there's actually a distinction between analloeroticism and true asexuality, wherein the former lacks sexual attraction to others but maintains a sex drive, while the latter lacks a sex drive in part or in full.
When I saw this diagram
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/06/19/asexual-spectrum_n_3428710.html

My first thought was that there is something wrong when specifying your sexual identity is more complex than ordering at Starbucks.
You really think it's that complicated? There's the 5 orientations (hetero, homo, bi, pan, and a), it's just that asexual people make a differentiation between their romantic orientation and their sexual orientation. Grey-a and demisexual are more or less subsets of asexuality. I don't like coffee so I can't really attest to the complexity of ordering at Starbucks, but this doesn't seem that complicated. Is there any way it might be able to be made clearer to you?
Sexuality is a very complex thing. So why shouldn't describing your identity be more complex than ordering at Starbucks? (Funny, that chart is barely scraping the surface of human sexuality.)
Thanks for including me in the article. It was great working with you, Dominique. I'd also add the following link at the bottom. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SEeGuCCQ_8w
to those saying asexuality is not a 'legitimate sexuality' or that 'noone cares' if people don't like sex or that asexuals 'don't face the same discrimination that LGBT people do', this is the EXACT discrimination we face; from sexual people who criticize/mock our lack of sexuality.

growing up, i didn't fit into any group. i felt alienated; not capable of being satisfied with straight/gay relationships. i felt like a freak, not normal... we live in a hypersexual world, and not being a part of that makes you a stranger. the fact that most of my sexual friends can't understand and think there's something wrong with me is PROOF that we need asexuality awareness. WE ARE REAL PEOPLE, WE DON'T LIKE/WANT TO HAVE SEX. EVER.

try telling a lover you don't want to have sex. watch them freak, watch how it falls apart. try telling your parents they will never have grandkids because you won't reproduce. watch them cringe in disgust. try explaining to a friend that a movie sex scene, or a hug that goes on for too long, or a song with sexual references makes you uncomfortable. watch how they roll
their eyes.

finding asexuality was not just finding my identity, but a comfort: i'm not a freak, i'm ok. imagine telling a homosexual to 'get over it' or 'noone cares' about their identity? it's not ok. neither is it ok to say that to asexuals. we deserve the same respect anyone else does.

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I don't get why this is a thing. Some people aren't interested in the weather, either.
It'd be nice if more people had attitudes like "so what, they like what they like, they're not interested in what they're not interested in." Sadly, in our experience, it's of enough interest to people enough of the time that plenty of people get peculiarly invested in trying to change us.
Do you come out that you choose not to be sexually active or something? I can understand looking for social outlets that allow you to meet people who are also asexual. It is important to be in a relationship with someone who is like minded so you don't have to worry about being pressured into something that you choose not to engage in. It is important for your safety that someone don't just think that you're not ready yet and that if they are patient with you, in time the sex will come. Whomever you're in a relationship with need to understand that sex will not be a part of the relationship. So I understand the importance of meeting people who are also asexual to avoid this misunderstanding from people who don't understand. Other than that, what is the fight about? Everyone has the right to choose to be sexually involved or not. I have been in an asexual marriage for over 12 yrs. now. That's between my husband and I. We don't discuss our personal business with anyone. Our life works for us, the dynamics of our marriage is between us. We wern't always asexual. We do have 4 children. This is our choice and we are still a young couple. It works for us. Initially,I never knew there was a label for us. I just don't see us protesting for the right to be asexual. It's not necessary. Am I missing something?
"Choose not to be sexually active" has nothing to do with being asexual. We don't experience sexual attraction. It is not a choice like abstinence. It's an orientation like being gay, straight, or bi.

Yes, what you're describing about asexual people in relationships does happen, and that's why communication is key no matter who you are or what kind of relationship you're in. More education about asexuality will probably help with that attitude whereby people insist that sex will eventually become part of the relationship no matter WHAT the person THINKS (if they are disinclined.)

As for "other than that, what is the fight about" and "we weren't always asexual," those are based on the misconception that asexual is the same as "not having sex." You are not "in an asexual marriage" unless the people in the marriage do not feel sexually attracted to anyone. "The fight" exists because we get told constantly that feeling the way we do means we're sick or need therapy or need to try multiple partners or dozens of other things, and that's the main message society gives asexual people as they're growing up. When you think no one feels the way you do AND everyone is pressuring you and treating you like there's something horribly wrong with you because of how you feel toward others, it can lead to depression, alienation, suicide, and many of the other terrible situations that people of minority orientations experience JUST because of their orientation.
I understand exactly that being asexual means no sexual interest, period. I didn't mean to imply that we don't just have sex with each other. Their are more asexual people in existence than you realize. I still believe that it's a personal matter and no one's business. I do understand that in meeting people, some who are not asexual might not understand, so therefore it's important to find a way to meet other asexual people so that the two in the relationship are on the same accord. It doesn't matter what anyone else think about the life you live. Unless you choose to disclose in depth to them, how you're living should be between you and your mate. My best friend couldn't understand when I first told her. She is the only one Who I disclosed to. I explained it to her. I can tell by some comments she make that she doesn't understand, but It doesn't make me want to go out and announce to the world that I have a right to be asexual at this point in my life. I have no sexual interest in anyone. Neither does my husband. It takes nothing away from our love for one another. We are committed to each other out of love.
maybe your husband is getting sex from somwhere else? something to consider! Or maybe he doesn't find you attractive?
Lol....not the case here.
Do people who aren't interested in the weather wonder what's wrong with them when someone says "Nice day, isn't it?" Do people who aren't interested in the weather feel physically broken whenever someone mentions Al Roker? Do people who aren't interested in the weather have people try to "fix" them by forcing them to watch the six hour double-Doppler loop?
People who aren't interested in the weather aren't over and over and over told that, if they don't somehow become interested in the weather, there's something fundamentally broken about them. That makes this a sort of very big important thing.
I'm a vegan, and people tell me all the time that I should eat meat. Can I belong in the gay movement as lgbtqtaV?
Do they ever force meat down your throat? (Interesting metaphor for how asexuals are treated isn't it?) Do they make you feel like there's something wrong with the very heart of you? Do thoughts of suicide play across your brain because of this feeling of internal wrongness? Are the other vegans hidden, hard to find? Please stop comparing some casual mention of meat by your friends to asexuality. You'll never be denied adoption because of it, you'll never be kicked out of your house for it or told my your mother that she refuses to accept that about you. All the examples I just gave have happened to and continue to happen to asexuals.
Being both asexual and vegan, i see the similarities in people's attitudes toward the two, at least in my own experience. Yes in high school i had people pin my arms at my sides while they forced meat into my mouth. I was indeed made to leave my parents house, at age 16, because i refused to eat meat with the rest of the family; 30 years later, they still have not accepted it. And i do find people becoming hostile, defending their sexuality and insisting how healthy it is etc, similar to the way meat eaters get hostile and defend their dietary habits as if they take my existence as a challenge to their lifestyle. And yes families have had CPS take their children away because they were being raised vegan and someone decided this was unhealthy and inappropriate for them. (Although i don't understand why anyone would deny adoption to someone for being asexual?) There is definitely a greater degree of rejection and contempt and hostility and mocking and accusations of abnormalcy toward asexuals than toward vegans, but i can certainly see many parallels. Having said all that, the previous remark about belonging in the "gay movement" did seem mocking and not at all sincere.
YES to all your questions!
It's a gift and you should realize that. The middle of the bell curve is not a very interesting place to be anyway.
Then don't discuss your business with people. All you can do when you meet someone is tell them so they know what not to expect. These days there are social media sites for everything. Find a site where you can meet people like minded. No one else have to know the personal details of your life.
"No one else have[sic] to know the personal details of your life."

And no one else should think that we give a hoot what they think.
But yet you chose to respond. Learn how to practice actions that's consistent with the words you speak. Just continue to ignore that which you do not want to hear. Problem solved. Have a good day.
Do people who aren't interested in the weather feel confused and alone when someone says "Nice day, isn't it?"
Do people who aren't interested in the weather feel physically broken any time their friends gather around and discuss Al Roker?
Do people who aren't interested in the weather ever have someone force them to watch the six-hour double Doppler radar loop until they're "fixed"?
Thanks a lot, HuffPo commenting system! It's awesome that you made my original post disappear, making me think that it didn't go through. I love double posting things!
It's "a thing" because we exist. Get used to it.
Probably because many of them end up marrying people who ARE interested in sex, usually after leading them on and not being honest, and then guilting the person with a typical sex drive and shaming them as if they're some sort of pervert like "what's the big deal anyway don't you looooooooooove me?" type talk. No one cares if an asexual is up front, says they don't have any interest in sex, and then don't have it. I will admit I find it a bit like a blind person saying they have no interest in seeing, and wonder how many of the women are on hormonal birth control (for period regulation or acne) but whatever. Not my problem.
@Wendy: If it's not your problem, why do you feel compelled to open your mouth and give your quite irrelevant and uneducated opinion about it? Do you get so passive aggressive with your doctor and pretend that you know as much as someone that's been to med school? Do you do it to the 5-star chefs in Vegas?

If you would perhaps stop talking for a second (I can tell you love the sound of your own voice) and maybe learn something, you'd find out pretty quickly that hormones have f--- all to do with asexuality and that, yes, many of us have been tested because people like you, and the wider toxic culture that validates you so, told us that we're better off being pathologized than being happy and healthy. Now tell me, why are you so bothered by the very idea that someone might differ from you in any way?
This is "a thing" because asexuals can often suffer abuse - from harassment to gaslighting to flat out beatings - because far too many people cannot grasp that some people lack sexual desires. They aren't "normal" in the view of many, and some even go so far as to decide they're somehow broken and need "fixed." Try for a moment to imagine having to live your life like that, and then see if you still wonder why this is "a thing." If you still don't get it, I'm not sure you ever will.
Asexuals can continue being asexual, and the rest of us will continue not caring, and society will continue not doing anything that harms asexuals in any way. It seems as if the articles about Asexuality this week are trying to paint some kind of parallel between these people and us in the LGBT community. We're all human, and they happen to also not technically be heterosexuals, and that's about as similar as it gets. I wish them well in "acheiving greater visibility" but people need to stop acting as if asexuals are facing down some great struggle for equality or something.
You not seeing doesn't mean it isn't true. When you get told that you aren't dealing with reality, that your sexuality doesn't exist, you need therapy or "It's a simple as a trip to the Doctor to get your horomones checked" It might not be the same struggle as a lesbian or homosexual but our struggles are just as valid. They are different but struggles nontheless. Thank you for erasing that.
"that your sexuality doesn't exist, you....". Isn't that what asexuality is? I am confused!
But you get my point, you just wish to erase us and claim we aren't real.
You're a lot worse than confused, my friend!
I think what the original poster is trying to get at is there is no legal struggle related to asexuality. No one is legislating laws targeting asexuals. I understand it could be difficult to form intimate relationships with others, especially if attempting a relationship with someone who desires sex. But comparing it to gays, lesbians, and transgenders -- who are legally targeted in such a way that aims to inflict both social stigma and financial hardship -- is simply not valid.
Don't forget that they are not gay either. With all due respect, I don't think they are humans at all.
Oh, I do hope your post is trying to be funny/sarcastic. If not, you are not a nice person.
You should realize tht being asexual doesn't exclude being gay. I myself am homoromantc asexual. There are hetreoromantics, biromantics, panromantics and aromantics etc.

And there is discrimination, the comments of 'if you only had sex you would love it." sexual abuse and rape. Lesbians hvae to worry about rape, by males who think that "if you only screwed a guy you wouldn't be gay anymore." Trans men and women have to fear rape as well. So do we.
I agree with the poster. What right is denied to an Asexual person? Just name one, please.
The straight moral majority will take them if the gays won't...Nonsexual attraction is not a sin..so we don't have a problem with it.
No one has a problem with it! That's the whole point.
I was "correctively" raped. My rapist was let off because I "shouldn't have been so proud" of my asexuality....I was "teasing" my rapist, and that (because he was my boyfriend) he was "taking what he felt was rightfully his." I "should have expected that" when I entered a relationship "knowing [I] couldn't deliver."
I was constantly told that I was useless as a female, because what's the point of a woman if not for sex? Asexuals have different struggles than other LGBT people but they are JUST as valid.
How convenient that your story is word for word exactly like the shock-and-awe tragedy used earlier last week to show that once in a blue moon an asexual person does experience some kind of negativity.
I stand by my point. Also, it's awful when anyone is raped, but considering that you're a women, and that 1 out of 3 women in the WORLD are victims of sexual violence, I would not insist the cause was your aseuxality.
Discrimination comes in two forms: institutional and internalized. As a sexual panromantic, I would argue that my asexual friends face a lot of internalized stigma and discrimination. Additionally, even though there might not be laws targeted at the ace community specifically, they do face institutionalized discrimination, especially from a healthcare perspective—just look at the DSM if you don't believe me.

Besides, the LGBTQ+ community doesn't really benefit from playing oppression olympics. On that note—rjxkcd—why are you dismissing littlemissacegirl's story? Rape is a tragedy that no one should have to go to, regardless of their gender or sexual orientation.

Although as a highly sexual person, it was hard for me to understand my asexual friends' perspectives at first, I figure that the ace community deserves just as much attention, respect, and rights as any other community that falls under the LGBTQ+ umbrella.
I'm not sure if you do not understand our perspective, because you're so eager to be accomodating, or what. NO ONE is denying asexuals any attention, respect, or rights. Even IF they were being denied those things, it does not make them LGBT. They do not fall under the LGBT umbrella any more than heterosexuals do.
Personal incredulity makes your post hold about as much water as a fishing net. Congratulations on your post not even making it past a 6th grade teacher grading essays.

"I don't get it, so I'm going to pretend that everyone else in the world doesn't, and that there is no scientific basis for it." You're the one that's got a neurosis, not us. You belong with the nuts yammering on about the moon being hollow.
You couldn't understand might comment, so you wrote one that made no sense, and looks like it was the failure of some kind of 2nd grade English class project? Sad.
I understand exactly what asexuality is, and I still stand by my opinion. I, also, still find anyone comparing their differentness to the hardship and struggles of people like me in the LGBT community. Ther assertion that asexuals are facing the same issues as the LGBT community is like saying Blacks facing racism is the same as being left-handed.
Ditto. "Aces" should be the anchorites of the sexual community, the ones cut off from the work in the trenches. It doesn't help that they're unable or unwilling to define asexuality: does masturbating mean you're not asexual? Is asexuality apathy, withdrawal, or desire coupled with an inability to "close the deal" with anyone? An asexual bar? Isn't that *any* neutral place of public interaction?

Too many of these people are trying to make themselves sound like Data, but acting otherwise; it has all the marks of a movement searching for a grievance, rather than the reverse.
Asexuality on a basic is defined as not feeling sexual attraction to another person. It is not apathy, it is no withdrawal, and it is not desire coupled with an inability to "close the deal." They do not *want* to close the deal, as they do not want sex. However, like all things related to sexuality, asexuality is a spectrum. Each asexual defines their asexuality differently, but the common theme is that they feel less sexual attraction to people than sexual people do.
"No one has a problem with it" is largely untrue. When telling someone that you're asexual, people often get very angry and decide that they want to "fix" you, even threatening to rape you in order to do so. They feel as though you just haven't had sex with the right person in order to start wanting sex. Many people don't see asexuality as valid and that is a problem. No asexuals are not legally denied rights as homosexuals are, but they are being denied the acceptance that it is a real orientation.
I've observed from the comments sections that the contributors to this series are actively participating in the discussions so: Thank you for this series. It's been wonderful food for though, and may even help me to understand someone I love better.
Thanks, that's neato. I'm pretty vocal when asexuality gets discussed in the media, even if I wasn't interviewed. But thank you for letting us know that these issues are being appreciated and understood by reasonable, open-minded people. There have always been and will always be vocal detractors, too, until it just becomes so shameful to be that ignorant that they don't really feel comfortable saying it out loud anymore and it will become unpopular to admit you refuse to acknowledge or support someone else's identity. We're always moving toward more education and more opportunity/understanding for everyone, and we need leaders for movements, but we also need supporters who aren't personally part of our community to help us start moving into the mainstream. As I said in one of the articles I wrote and published, an important aspect of being an asexual community ally is to be one even if there are no asexuals around to hear it. (Mostly having to do with calling out and striking down suggestions like "all humans want sex" or relationship advice that assumes all romantic relationships include sex or they're dysfunctional.) Thanks for your words! They mean a lot!
When I was an applied math postdoc at Princeton, my friend and colleague D. was asexual. We had lots of heart to heart talks together. I think he sympathized with LGBT's because he felt oppressed by other people's expectations. We both came from narrow-minded red state towns and were grateful to be away from our families and the pressure to date and marry. D., an atheist, was from extremely rural Illinois and called his extremely religious classmates "Children of the Corn."

I am gay, but prudish about my own personal life but no one else's.

I miss D.
I don't really think most asexual people get persecuted very much or at all. Asexual people do not want to have sex with anyone of either gender. In our society, it is perfectly acceptable to reject sexual advances from other people. While the religious right condemns homosexuality as supposedly evil, asexual people don't engage in any sexual acts that anyone else can condemn as supposedly being evil. The only real anger that I think asexual people are likely to occur is anger from other people who aren't asexual and who want to have sex with them. I suppose there is a bit of social expectation that people have some degree of sexual desire towards others, and some people might be incredulous if they find out someone else is asexual. But look at politics, people get in trouble for sex scandals, they don't get in trouble for not-having-sex scandals. Nothing about asexuality could ever be remotely scandalous, it is the exact opposite of what people would find scandalous. Throughout history, plenty of old bachelors and old maids who never married and never had any children lived out their lives in an asexual manner, usually with little or no scandal. It's really not a big deal. In fact, perhaps asexuals are the ones who have it easiest, because sex is more trouble than it's worth for lots of people who are sexual and want it anyway, plus asexuals don't have to worry about STDs or contributing to overpopulation. Less worries in life.
There are a number of religious groups that condemn asexuality as going against the directive to "Be Fruitful and Multiply".
well....stop being religious. problem solved.
I think you're a little bit wrong. In conservative states and rural areas, the pressure to date and to marry is very strong. I am gay and from rural Louisiana; those were two of the most important reasons I can't live there. Of course, the fact that I have a Ph.D. in applied math and ambition would make living in Louisiana difficult.
If you'd walked in my shoes you'd know differently. It's actually been the fundamentalist Christians that have given me the most grief about being asexual, that were the least accepting, and even sometimes outright hateful. Perhaps years ago, the bachelor and maiden aunt was somewhat respectable, but today's more conservative Christianity is afraid of even that. Pro-natalist sentiment is at an all-time high in these communities, and gender-stereotyping as well. An asexual man or woman is often regarded with suspicion as either being the dreaded feared homosexual in hiding, or a person denying his or her God given imperative to breed more Christians. Virginity is really only cherished in the pre-marriage years. It is to be expected that you WILL get married. I grew up in a Protestant town, so there was no special reverence for Catholic celibate men. A pastor was respected if he was married--nothing suspicious there. An unmarried, undating woman is trouble.
Thank you so much for this series! I'm sure this helped loads to educate more people about asexuality and I hope some might even accept it as a "normal thing" and not scoff at us. Every article is a step to more awareness among the general population and help that more kids realize asexuality exists before starting to think something is wrong with them, or they are broken.

Furthermore I appreciate the overall rational and matter-of-fact tone of this series, lacking the often seen "omg do you see this, can you believe this exists?!" sentiment.
Why should anyone other than the one you meet who is like minded even know that you are asexual? That's personal business. Not even my sister and I discuss our intimate lives with our husbands. Guess what, one of us is in an asexual marriage. No one knows this but my husband and I.I guess I just gave it away. I just don't see this as a cause or a need to link up with the LGBT. It's our personal life.
You're absolutely right! Of course it's our personal life! That's how it should be! And you can say the exact same for being gay, lesbian, trans etc. You ask, why have any movement at all when it's all our personal life and nobody needs to care but ourselves. I wished it were like that, but that's not how it is. People get discriminated, beat up and killed for being gay/lesbian all over the world, even though it's none of the business of anyone. Asexuals get raped and ridiculed for saying 'no' to sex. It's nobody's business until the first guy gets dismissed and feels offended and thinks it's his right to "teach" the girl how "nice" sex can be. So, yes, I think it's good to raise awareness and I don't understand why we aren't supposed to be linked to LGBT. If there weren't any problems, we wouldn't need to raise awareness. We're not doing this because it's fun. We're doing this because people all over the world are miserable, alone and are told to check their hormones. My family doesn't know either and only a few friends know, because they bugged me why I never date and didn't accept the reason "because I don't want to".

I am very very happy for you and your husband, because you have found each other and are happy with each other. That's what I wish for everyone of us. I hope you'll both have a long any happy life together
Thank you. Don't get me wrong, when it comes to the LGBT community, if anyone is being discriminated against because of how they live, then I absolutely understand fighting for your rights. No one should be discriminated against no matter what. After reading what you just described, just that quickly, I now see the need to bring awarness to the rest of society about being asexual. No one should be raped for being who they are. My heart goes out to anyone who had to suffer such a fate. I guess I was just looking at it from my life, because I have a husband, I never had to deal with someone thinking that taking me against my will, will is all I need. If it prevents anyone from being harmed, by all means, bringing attention to this way of life serves an important purpose. Best wishes to you. Take care.
is he gay asexual, homoromantic abisexual, or straight hemi- asexual?
We're a straight couple.
Great video. I liked these people a lot.

The pendulum may be starting to swing the other way. From a surfeit and glut of sexuality, forced on everyone - to sexuality becoming less imperative and more private.

I wish I had this information when I was young and wondered if I was "normal". I have a low sex drive and could have put sex off until my mid-twenties.
If you are a male asexual, how do you know you are gay? You are SEXUALLY ATTRACTED to males!
That's probably true, although I wouldn't know.  I'm a heterosexual female (despite having my hero, Dr. McCoy, as an avatar).
You seem to be a nice person :)
Attraction can be more than just sexual. But that would require putting some thought behind it.
"...some thought..." From you or me?
If you have to ask, probably you.
I'm a female heterosexual, so I don't know the answer to your question. But I respect your opinion on the subject.
Simple. They have a romantic attraction to the same sex, just no desire to make that relationship sexual.
Asexuals are not aromantics. An asexual can have romantic or aesthetic attraction to either gender, or both.
If you aren't interested in sexual activities there's nothing wrong with that.
I have been reading this series and learning a lot. Thank you to those who have written and also to those who have answered my questions in the comment section.

I am honestly just trying to understand better, but I am still having a difficult time understanding the difference between asexuality and someone who simply has a very low sexual drive.

Was there an article that I missed or would someone mind elaborating for me a bit?
I think the article series actually did a pretty good job explaining that asexuality is "lack of sexual attraction," but has zero to do with your libido. Asexual people can have a low, medium, or high sex drive, like anyone else. Maybe there's relevant information to answer your question in the article about masturbation, etc.?
You're not alone, a lot of people have trouble seeing the difference. The thing to remember though is that asexuality has nothing to do with sex drive. Some asexuals have very high sex drives and enjoy having lots of sex. Asexuality only refers to not being sexually attracted to people. So asexuals don't ever look at someone and want to have sex with them because they are hot. That doesn't mean we don't like sex or want sex. Sexuality and sex drive are separate things. Granted there are a lot of asexuals who also have little or no sex drive (myself included) but there are just as many who do like sex.
"some asexuals...high sex drives and enjoy having lots of sex" yet they are not " sexually attracted to people" I am not attracted sexually to chairs, so why would I have sex with a chair?
Typically, someone with a low sex drive may still be attracted to people, but they're not compelled to act on it. Asexuals aren't attracted to anyone.
From what I understood, from some of the material out there, is that some asexuals may do things (such as masturbate)--just a physical action/release. However, unlike those who are sexually attracted to other people, they aren't fantasizing about anyone. (You don't really need to feel sexually attracted to anyone else, or chairs, to masturbate. In some cases, it just takes a lot of friction. However, there are those who won't get a response, at all... Friction, or no friction).
Green circle - Attraction is not needed for physical enjoyment. You may not be sexually attracted to your vibrator, but you enjoy the sensations it gives you (example). Asexuals are able to physically enjoy the sensation of orgasm or sex (well, some are, others lack libido as well), but lack the sexual attraction towards other people.
The vibrator analogy really helped me to understand a bit more.  Thank you :)
I'll step onto the minefield by saying...it's not like there is a history or intolerance, hatred, discrimination, or prejudice against ACEs. To compare the ACE "movement" to the LGB and T movements is really a stretch.
I understand your point. As an ace myself, I don't feel totally comfortable with the comparison to discrimination faced by LGBT people. That said, it doesn't mean we don't face ANY intolerance, hatred, etc. We do. It's a matter of degree. Asexuality wasn't illegal and aces weren't hunted down the way gays have been; asexuality simply isn't acknowledged to exist. And yes, I'd much rather be part of a group that struggles with invisibility than one facing active persecution -- but it's also true that there IS violence commited against asexuals, and that being invisible does come with problems as well, even if they are not to the level of gay persecution.

Seems like there's no need for this argument if only the discussion could have a litlte more nuance, instead of portraying it as black and white.
Did you read the other articles? Not all the discrimination is quite as bad, but that's because the others came out first and took the brunt of it, but there has been so-called "corrective" rape of asexuals just like there has been of the L, G, and B sections too, and there's been other things. There was an entire article in this series that addresses your exact issue.
Why can't sexual people accept the fact that some of us just DO NOT like sex. Never have and never will. It's a weird strange act.
It's been a good week, and I enjoyed speaking with (most of) the commentors. I'm very glad to see that more people have come to understand what it means to be asexual, and I hope that the people who have been harsh about the articles have a little more to think about now. Thank you Dominique and everyone else at the Huffington Post who made this possible!
As is everything in nature, there is always a wide range on spectrum of what we like and dislike, obsess over or are indifferent to. So it is not surprising when it comes to sex the human appetite ranges from over indulgence to total indifference . And so what? Whether you have sex twice a day, twice a week, twice a month, twice a year or twice in a decade this is your own personal preference and is nobody else's business. As long as you are not hurting anyone, your sexual preference and sexual frequency is no concern to those who feel they have to go around codifying, labeling, naming and boxing people into categories so that they can know how to treat them.
Do asexual individuals lack a sexual orientation? or are they heterosexual and homosexual individuals simply uninterested in sex?

All the individuals in the Huff Post Live discussion seem to be gay. Are there asexual heterosexuals?
Asexual people can be straight, bi or gay. And these are the people they seek out for friendship and companionship but not for sex.
Asexuality IS a asexual orientation. The other articles in this series go into greater detail about this.
While at least 2 stated they had non-sexual, intimate relationships with the same-sex, I thought they all seemed gay simply because they had gay mannerisms and exhibited gender non-conformity.
That is probably because it is in the gay voices section and there is a lot of debate regarding whether they should be included in the LGBT umbrella term.
I am a heteroromantic asexual, and there are many of us.
Without actually going to a dictionary - different brands of which offer differing, vague answers - I have yet to have anyone explain to me in simple terms what "transgender" and "asexual" really mean.

Lots of articles about it. None define it. They just talk about it. A lot.

Anyone want to educate me? I feel I should know, but I don't know if this is a physical thing, a mental thing, a social thing or something else I don't understand.

For instance. I am a man. My husband is a man. We love each other and are married. I am a gay - or if you prefer - homosexual man. Easy. Simple. Concise.

In those same kinds of terms, can anyone define "asexual" or "transgender"?

(not to be confused with transvestite or drag queen as I'm quite familiar with both of those).
Asexual - Not sexually attracted to any gender or set of genders. Can be romantically interested, along with a whole host of other attractions.

I have no experience in defining transgender consisely but there is, in my limited knowledge and feel free to correct me transgender people, a difference between transsexual, where there's a physical nonspecificity of the body, and transgender, where the person inside the body is of a gender that does not match the body they were born into.
Thank you, that does help, a little bit. 8-)
A male transgender person believes and feels to be a female. For example, pretend that you, a gay man, all of a sudden woke up with a female body. How would you feel? I think you would start to freak out, and would do and try anything to get back to what you know your true self to be. If you could not accomplish this, you would start to get depressed or suicidal until you started hormonal treatments to get you male body back, minus your penis, but in your case, you would not notice the difference too much. LOL
What? Was that some sort of insult?
Word of advice to asexuals, if someone asks you on a date, let them know upfront your orientation. As a hetero. male, nothing is more discouraging to ask someone on a date, go on the date and then be told "I just like you as a friend"..this goes to all hetero females out there also...if you aren't attracted to the asker then politely say "I'm not interested" or "I'm only interested as a friend". It may be a callus thing to say, but most guys will not ask a girl on a date to be friends...that's what other guys are for, it's because we find you attractive and want to get to know you better.. Also, if you are dating someone else and you go on a date with some other dude, then you are considering dumping your boyfriend. If you aren't, then refuse. I wouldn't want my girlfriend to go out with another guy. If she would, then she is not loyal..let her go.
I'd happily date an asexual. I'm gay but extremely prudish.
How can asexuals even try to understand what sexuality is, since they don't have the mental capacity to understand the concept of sexual attraction. So how can they understand what asexuality is?
These men and women are going to have the hardest time separating themselves from that other umbrella term, "genderqueer".
to those saying asexuality is not a 'legitimate sexuality' or that 'noone cares' if people don't like sex or that asexuals 'don't face the same discrimination that LGBT people do', this is the EXACT discrimination we face; from sexual people who criticize/mock our lack of sexuality.

growing up, i didn't fit into any group. i felt alienated; not capable of being satisfied with straight/gay relationships. i felt like a freak, not normal... we live in a hypersexual world, and not being a part of that makes you a stranger. the fact that most of my sexual friends can't understand and think there's something wrong with me is PROOF that we need asexuality awareness. WE ARE REAL PEOPLE, WE DON'T LIKE/WANT TO HAVE SEX. EVER.

try telling a lover you don't want to have sex. watch them freak, watch how it falls apart. try telling your parents they will never have grandkids because you won't reproduce. watch them cringe in disgust. try explaining to a friend that a movie sex scene, or a hug that goes on for too long, or a song with sexual references makes you uncomfortable. watch how they roll
their eyes.

finding asexuality was not just finding my identity, but a comfort: i'm not a freak, i'm ok. imagine telling a homosexual to 'get over it' or 'noone cares' about their identity? it's not ok. neither is it ok to say that to asexuals. we deserve the same respect anyone else does.

----------

I actually want to point out before dozens come in here to take to the comments (and in reply to the article).

To state that asexuals shouldn't be welcome in the LGBT because their discrimination isn't as bad, or is non existent just goes to further the discrimination against them (and even justify it!).

It's basically like saying...

"Since your discrimination isn't real, or isn't as bad as real members of the LGBT you shouldn't be welcome in the LGBT community!"

Any discrimination is bad, regardless of the other negative events that already take place against the LGBT doesn't mean that because it's "not as bad" they shouldn't be welcome.

It's a silly, and pointless argument.

You have a set of allies standing on the side lines looking for all of the same things you are. The acceptance and equality of sexual diversity and gender identities.

To remain separate from one another is a pointless battle that leads to nothing but bickering among two similar groups.

Asexuals still struggle with acceptance of themselves and their sexual identity, something many LGBT persons struggle with and look for acceptance in any community willing to accept them.

To have the LGBT cast out an asexual struggling with his sexual identity is terrible an unjustifiable.
Thank you!!!
I say we get rid of LGBT and call ourselves GSD ( Gender and Sexuality Differences). The white straight male has been the most predominant historical figure. Therefore they feel like they're losing their power when minorities are voicing out. We may all identify as gay or bi trans, lesbian, asexual, whatever! But we have to stay together to be united against White Straight Male Supremacy in order to ensure that our future is secure from the tyranny of bigotry, racism, and sexism.
White straight male here, and I KNOW i'm not supreme to anything. I have no real power to lose. We don't have to rail against other PEOPLE... we have to fight LAWS and systems that are discriminatory. Creating straw boogeymen out of the "others" is exactly what you're fighting against. Many of us white straight guys are on your side.
To define ourselves as different from "straight white male[s]" gives them the power to define us. It accepts their self definition as normal, with the implication that anyone who isn't straight, white, and male is abnormal.
What's silly and pointless is trying to assert that a lack of orientation is an orientation.
What is my sexual orientation, then? Please help me figure out what box I am supposed to check on the form?
If I don't have an orientation at all, does that mean straight or gay people only have half an orientation? After all, since only one gender does it for them, they're pretty much half like me.
I have an orientation. It's pointing at no one.
If you claim to be asexual, then yes, you have no orientation. That does not mean gay or straight people have "half" an orientation. You need to work on your reasoning skills.

Saying you have an orientation that points to no one, is like saying you have a compass that points nowhere.
no it makes sense to me. They aren't attracted to any one gender, that in itself is an orientation.
When people think of a heteronormative relationship, it's a sexual one between a cis man and a cis woman. People assume that people aren't asexual, as in they are attracted to a gender, or many, and they have sex. Just like how people assume that a man will be attracted to a woman, unless he fits the "gay" stereotype. Just like people assume that everyone that they are talking to is cis, if the person passes. Or like with intersex, how people assume you were either born male, or female. Or that your genitals are exactly the same as someone else who was MAAB/FAAB.
Agent, you are thinking in a line one one end is hetero and the other is homo, that is not the case. Orientation can only be considered as a wheel. It is just like thinking atheist can have religion. Orientation doesn't require sexual attraction. Aces are just as orientated as a bisexual or pansexual.
Wrong. I guess I have to repeat. Saying asexuals' orientation points to no one is like saying a compass points to nowhere. Asexuals simply don't have a compass.
No you are incorrect. They are on the compass. You have on a compass opposite to north don't you? Why would there be no opposite to sexual on that compass? Sexuallity is so complex, that our analogies probably can't do it justice. However you can't just remove any one part of it. And you probably need  or seven compasses and a lot dart boards to solve the whole thing, but I'm guessing we'd still come up short.
North is an orientation. The opposite of north is an orientation. So once again, tell me, what orientation is nowhere?
You aren't paying attention. You are failing to grasp that not being sexual is an orientation. Just as being attracted to one gender is an orientation. Or multiple genders. Attraction isn't a requirement of orientation. Just part of the orientation compass/spectrum/what have you.
Once again: "not being sexual" (libido) has nothing to do with sexual orientation. I'm not failing to grasp what you're saying, I'm dismissing it. And yes, attraction is a requirement of sexual orientation. It is THEE requirement of sexual orientation.
Sexual Orientation is the term given based on someones sexual attraction.

Asexuals do not have a sexual attraction.

The sexual orientation known as "asexuality" is the lack of sexual attraction.

Sexual orientation != sexual attraction

Rather sexual orientation is the identity (label) given based on sexual attraction.

So, correct asexuals do not have a sexual attraction. The name for not having a sexual attraction is asexuality. Asexuality is an orientation.

As for you "Really? By what Authority?"

By the authority of what a community has come to a consensus as for a definition?

Definition of Queer:

Dictionary - 1. Deviating from the expected or normal; strange: a queer situation.

PFlag - Think of queer as an umbrella term. It includes anyone who a) wants to identify as queer and b) who feels somehow outside of the societal norms in regards to gender, sexuality or/and even politics.

Wikipedia - Queer is an umbrella term for sexual and gender minorities that are not heterosexual, hetero-normative, or gender-binary.

University of Michigan - Used as an umbrella identity term encompassing lesbian, questioning people, gay men, bisexuals, non-labeling people, transgender folks, and anyone else who does not strictly identify as heterosexual.

These were just grabbed right off of the top results for "Definition of Queer" Google search.
Dude. You can keep on with your rhetoric all you like, it won't make it true. Lack of sexual orientation is not a sexual orientation. I'm not sure how more plainly or simply it can be stated.

"By the authority of what a community has come to a consensus as for a definition"

Not my community. So what you're actually saying is its colloquialism, not a definition. And by that I would agree.

Wikipedia - Queer Umbrella - the term is generally controversial because it was reappropriated to an extent in the 1990s from its use as an anti-gay epithet. Furthermore, some LGBT people disapprove of using queer as a catch-all because they consider it offensive, derisive or self-deprecating given its continuous use as a form of hate speech. Other LGBT people may avoid queer
because they associate it with political radicalism, or simply because
they perceive it as the faddish slang of a "younger generation."

That's your version of a consensus?
Then let's at least agree to disagree!
"Sexual orientation is an enduring personal quality that inclines people to feel romantic or sexual attraction (or a combination of these) to persons of the opposite sex or gender, the same sex or gender, or to both sexes or more than one gender. These attractions are generally subsumed under heterosexuality, homosexuality, and bisexuality,[1][2] while asexuality (the lack of romantic or sexual attraction to others) is sometimes identified as the fourth category.[3][4][5][6]"
I can call it an orientation, just as you can call it not an orientation.
As "sometimes" is in it's place.
As I respect your opinion on whether or not you want to personally call it an orientation, I expect you to respect me in calling it my sexual orientation, and my sexual identity.
It's as simple as that.
An orientation of no is not the same as no orientation. A child who doesn't understand sexuality and hasn't hit puberty could be said to have no orientation (though this is not proven) but an adult who has gone through puberty and says "I'm not attracted to anyone" has an orientation of no. Do you see the difference? Just as an Atheist, believes there is no God, because an Atheist has the ability to comprehend what God is supposed to be, and chooses to think God doesn't exist. A no-theist would be someone who can't comprehend what God is supposed to be and therefor can't believe, do to a lack of ability.
As someone who is asexual, I can understand what you're trying to say. At one point in my life, when asked about my orientation, I just responded with "None", as that was the easiest thing to say without having too many assumptions thrown at me. I'm with AndyBunnySalas about seeing it as more for organizational purposes.

However, I wanted to correct you on the whole "'not being sexual' (libido)" bit. While it's true that libido has nothing to do with sexual orientation, it also has nothing to do with being asexual, if that's what you're implying here. You can have a high libido that's also not oriented at anyone. (That is, if we're assuming sex drive = libido. You said yourself in another comment that you can have zero sex drive, and still be attracted to a sex, which is true. I'm just pointing out the inverse here.)
I strongly disagree. I am an asexual and I own several compasses. I've got the direction pointy kind and the circle drawy kind. I've even got a moral compass with a declination of around 11.7 degrees west.
Many people describe it as a sexual orientation of "no" vs. "no sexual orientation." That's okay, though, a lot of people have a hard time processing it and have trouble accepting things outside their experience. It is, in fact, a position on relating to the world sexually, and it is, in fact, persecuted, because no matter how you slice it, the dominant culture presses you to be straight and punishes you if you aren't.

If it makes you feel more comfortable to say asexual people do not deserve your respect or resources because their problems are not (perceived to be) your problems, I kinda have no choice but to assume you're trying to exclude others because you don't believe or don't CARE that we are also hurt by heteronormative attitudes. I'd really appreciate it if you didn't imitate that heteronormative culture by telling us we're ridiculous for asking for respect for our orientation.
Thanks for admonishing me for things I never said nor implied. I'm simply stating facts. If you wish to take an emotional subjective offense to that. Not my problem.
"What's silly and pointless is trying to assert that a lack of orientation is an orientation."

That's what you said. You are saying I am silly and pointless for "trying to assert" that my orientation is an orientation. And after you explicitly say my sexual orientation is not an orientation, you also say it is "silly and pointless" to argue that it IS an orientation, and when I explain to you in pretty good detail why it is an orientation and why you should not respond to us with dismissive, mocking attitudes, you tried to do the "you're overreacting" thing. You do realize people do that a lot, right? That if they say something offensive and we call them out, they derail by saying our reaction is inappropriately "emotional" rather than acknowledging that their misrepresentation was inappropriate in the first place?

The "simply stating facts" thing is laughable too. Oh, it's just an objective fact that my orientation isn't an orientation, despite the fact that the people who identify that way regularly say it is.

Your refusal to listen to the population whose opinion and experience is relevant (and definitive of a subjective experience) is what is not MY problem. People are disrespectful all the time and you're just another one.
Appeals to populous are irrelevant. As are emotional rants. Yes, it is silly to make a logical fallacy, regardless of who makes it.

Simply because people wish to refer to something that its not, does not make it true. You are the same kind of person who would call a non-belief and belief system. Not collecting stamps a hobby. And so on.

So, yes, it's just an objective fact that your orientation isn't an orientation,
despite the fact that the people who incorrectly identify that way regularly.
Your dismissal of my argument as "an emotional rant" (though very typical) notwithstanding, you're still pretty bad at making this argument. Now, when you answer a test question and one of the answers is "none of the above," that's graded and perceived differently than just not answering the question, right? That's the difference between a sexual orientation of "no" and not having one at all.

"Sexual orientation" means how you experience attraction to others sexually. "I'm not attracted to anyone" is STILL AN ANSWER TO THAT QUESTION. You'd be right if we were arguing about whether asexuality was "an experience of sexual attraction." But we're not. An orientation is a way of answering that question. Like bald is not a hair color, but it IS a way of answering "what is on your head?" Like atheism is not a religion, but it IS a way of answering "what do you believe about God?" Having nothing in your bank account isn't the same as having no bank account. Etc. Asexuality is not an experience of sexual attraction, but it is an orientation--an answer to "who are you attracted to?" "I don't have a perspective on that" is a different answer from "My perspective is that no one is attractive."

People DO use "your sexual orientation isn't even an orientation" as a way to exclude us and pretend we're ridiculous based on misunderstandings of semantics like yours, so yes, this matters.
Your dismissal of my argument as "an emotional rant" (though very typical) notwithstanding, you're still pretty bad at making this argument. Now, when you answer a test question and one of the answers is "none of the above," that's graded and perceived differently than just not answering the question, right? That's the difference between a sexual orientation of "no" and not having one at all.
"Sexual orientation" means how you experience attraction to others sexually. "I'm not attracted to anyone" is STILL AN ANSWER TO THAT QUESTION. You'd be right if we were arguing about whether asexuality was "an experience of sexual attraction." But we're not. An orientation is a way of answering that question. Like bald is not a hair color, but it IS a way of answering "what is on your head?" Like atheism is not a religion, but it IS a way of answering "what do you believe about God?" Having nothing in your bank account isn't the same as having no bank account. Etc. Asexuality is not an experience of sexual attraction, but it is an orientation--an answer to "who are you attracted to?" "I don't have a perspective on that" is a different answer from "My perspective is that no one is attractive."
People DO use "your sexual orientation isn't even an orientation" as a way to exclude us and pretend we're ridiculous based on misunderstandings of semantics like yours, so yes, this matters.
"Sexual orientation" means how you experience attraction to others sexually. "I'm not attracted to anyone" is STILL AN ANSWER TO THAT QUESTION. You'd be right if we were arguing about whether asexuality was "an experience of sexual attraction." But we're not. An orientation is a way of answering that question. Like bald is not a hair color, but it IS a way of answering "what is on your head?" Like atheism is not a religion, but it IS a way of answering "what do you believe about God?" Having nothing in your bank account isn't the same as having no bank account. Etc. Asexuality is not an experience of sexual attraction, but it is an orientation--an answer to "who are you attracted to?" "I don't have a perspective on that" is a different answer from "My perspective is that no one is attractive."

People DO use "your sexual orientation isn't even an orientation" as a way to exclude us and pretend we're ridiculous based on misunderstandings of semantics like yours, so yes, this matters.
Is it an orientation or zero sex drive?
You can have zero sex drive, and still be attracted to a sex.
Even *if* you want to classify it as "not an orientation" it still falls under the queer umbrella. Unless you want to claim having no sexual orientation is hetero-normative.
No, it doesn't fit under the hetero-normative, neither does it fit under the queer umbrella. Just because you don't fit under one, doesn't automatically mean you fit under the other. That's called a false dichotomy fella.
The queer umbrella is *defined as* those that are not hetero-normative or gender binary.
Really? defined by what authority?
I am gay. I don't self identify as queer because the word "queer" is vulgar.
Hello,

I am Ace, I am also queer. I am queer thinking and I am also queer in practice as I have queer-platonic relationships with any gender or sex if I like them. I am also very active in the BDSM community. I read and agree with queer theory, I am a member of queer and feminist groups and support the non-normative ideals of the queer movement. I just don't have or want sex.

Please tell me how on earth those last few words negates the ones before it. The False dichotomy is the one you are describing where there is sexual or (essentially) oblivion.
It's like saying that atheism is a system of belief.
Correct.
Wrong.

You are correct in saying atheism is not a system of belief...

However...

Asexuality is the name for lacking sexual attraction. Having no sexual attraction is called asexuality. The orientation is the word used to describe how the person experiences sexual attraction (In this case none).

This is very similar to the word 'atheism'

The term is used to describe which deities you believe in, Christianity for believing in 'God', Hindu for the various deities, Norse for believing in the Norse gods, and atheism for believing in none.

So, atheism is the name for lacking a belief of deities!

Asexuality is the name for lacking sexual attraction!

I understand where you come from, but there is missing terminology here. Asexuals can't lack a sexual orientation; because sexual orientation is used to describe ones sexual attraction! Heterosexual describes someone attracted to the opposite gender.

I hope that helps a little!
I understand what you mean. I think that, for organizational purposes, asexualism would be put in the "Sexual orientation" category, just like atheism gets put in the "Religion" category, but neither one truly belongs there. They each deserve a separate group.
This is how I think of it as in a questionnaire way:

"Question 6. Are you asexual? If yes, skip to question 9. If no, continue with question 7.

Question 7. What is your sexual orientation? __________"
While I have mixed feelings I kind of have to agree. The reason I go back and forth is likely because until I started seeing these stories in the last week I honestly had never even know there was an "Asexual community."

My honsest intitail thought was Geez how many letters are we going to have to add to the acronym LGBT, we are now having people suggest LGBTQ, LGBTA, LGBTQI, or LGBTQIA, it gets pretty darn confusing. But then when I thought about it I realized one of the things that many have a problem with is they think all LGBT people are pretty much the same when we are actually more diverse than anyone knows. Maybe including them, and the Queer and the Intersex will help people see this a diverse group of people who are all similiar let extremely diverse, and it could actually benefit everybody represented. Plus look at the way many gay men and Lesbians still think about Bisexuals or Transgenders, often mocking them. We demonstrate more and more the prejudice we are trying to fight.
I couldn't agree more with everything you just said. While I get the hesitation, and agree that as a group they may be better served standing on their own in a lot of ways. They do fall under the umbrella that was raised years ago. We're a diverse group of people who don't fall into the boxes that society has set out for sexuality. Maybe adding the letter isn't necessary, maybe it is. But accepting Asexuals as a part of our community is definitely necessary.
You make a good point. (I like that the article mentioned that transgender people weren't always included, and that the LGB community responded to their wish for inclusion with "well what next??"--gotta love those slippery slope arguments!)

I don't think any group that feels threatened or uncomfortable because of the presence of someone else should be pushed into including them. So I'm in support of exclusive groups when needed--just like asexual people sometimes do want their own spaces, but would like the acceptance and support of the larger community (and we want to contribute, too, especially since MANY of us are gay and/or trans* as well!). I think the problem with saying "asexuals aren't enough like us so they will talk over us and co-opt our experience" is that plenty of people with relative privilege within the LGBT community end up unknowingly talking over other members of the community (e.g., you see/hear a LOT more from cis gay white men than you do from trans* gay black women, but nobody says those guys need to be excluded to lift up others; they just address problematic individuals if necessary, and could do it to anyone, including asexual people, who are behaving in counterproductive ways).
That is the funny thing about the "LGBT community" it is more of an "alliance" than a "community" in my view.  We all have our own groups that fight a common cause that we call a community.  It is kinda like living in a town, that is part of a county, that is part of a state etc. 
 
I sometimes jokingly say lesbians and gays are like vampires and wearvolves, they come together to fight the good fight, but then we often go our seperate ways :)
I think that's a great way to look at it actually. And it's similar to how trans* people end up interacting; they're part of the soup, but when it comes to most of the rest of the community which is focused so much on orientation, they're dealing with gender issues, and then on top of that the FtMs as a community have an *entirely* different experience from MtFs. (You know, like how violence is more likely to affect MtFs, and how they have very different options for surgery and navigating the pressures/prejudices particular to their gender, etc.)

Having your own community while being part of a larger one is the way to go in my opinion.
Well stated.
Lobie, I did not hear anyone claim asexuals should be unwelcome because they haven't been discriminated against enough. What I heard (and don't necessarily agree with) is that what distinguishes gays and lesbians is that they have suffered discrimination because of who they are sexually attracted to. The question I hear people like Dan Savage asking is why to include people who have suffered discrimination for some other reason (fat people, short people, asexuals).
Well, I understand what you are saying; while I don't have a comment to provide you with I have experienced someone tell me very specifically "You aren't discriminated like gays and lesbains! Stop trying to steal the spotlight, asexuals aren't killed or systematically hated!".

Luckily, where I come from (Canada) there's very little of the above as it is! Which is wonderful, and I hope that will be the whole world someday.

Anyway, I digress.

If you want to look at it that way, asexuals are discriminated against because they are attracted to no one. However, I get the point of it being an odd way of facing the argument, and I understand the conceptualization that they aren't sexually attracted to a gender.

But again, that doesn't make the discrimination different. They are discriminated based on their sexual attraction (which so happens to be none).
Asexuals experience sexual orientation discrimination, just as LGB people do. T people experience a different kind of disrimination as well as orientation discrimination.
Discrimination on basis of sexual orientation is different enough from what LGBT people go through that it's being lumped in with lookism and whatnot? That's really weird. Because asexual people have coming-out experiences, are harassed for their orientation (or based on misunderstandings of it), sometimes struggle in their relationships or struggle to find relationships from a tiny dating pool, and deal with religious objections to their orientation. It's really, really, really similar in a LOT of ways, though I think the gay community is focused more on pride (because they're shamed) while the asexual community is focused more on visibility (because they're erased). I think it's a HUGE stretch to claim asexuals are being silly by wanting inclusion by comparing their experience--based on sexual orientation--with such a broad misrepresentation of what people need support for ("so basically you think the LGBT community should include anyone who's dealt with harassment or sad life situations for any reason at all?").
As I said, I don't necessarily agree with sentiments like those of Dan Savage, but I felt Lobie has mischaracterized them as a sort of "I'm more discriminated than you" argument. I personally believe that what used to be the gay rights movement is now big enough and strong enough to be inclusive of all sexual minorities, including asexuals. But I can also sympathize with those who came to the gay movement when it was more of a lifeline and less of a big party that everyone wants an invitation to. I can see their point (even if I disagree with it) that the alphabet soup at the end of the LGBT monicker eventually becomes silly and that it is--more to the point--eventually ignored by those who need to hear from it. I can see how they fear a movement that tries to do everything and include everyone, may eventually become so diluted that it helps no one at all. Some of those folks seem to me like survivors on a liferaft, asking how many more folks they can invite to climb on until the thing sinks.
To be perfectly honest, I don't believe anyone who would otherwise be supportive of us would look at what we call ourselves and say "Oh, wait, that's silly, never mind, no."

In other words, if someone has a problem with the LGBT+ community, it's probably NOT because they included certain letters instead of leaving them off. It's a straw man for them--they pretend that's really the reason they can't take us seriously, when they were predisposed to not take us seriously and were looking for a way to justify it that doesn't have to sound like "I'm a xenophobe." (We get it in the ace community too, from people who literally say they can't acknowledge us as real because we use the word "asexual," which is "already taken" as a form of reproduction. Guess we can't have tall people, either, since tall is a word for a coffee size and that's just too confusing--someone might think a guy is coffee!)
Hmm, I think I see your point but, it just doesn't go along with my own experience. Perhaps the best example is straight folks who sincerely support laws that protect gays and lesbians, but who see transgendered people as quite different and not necessarily "deserving" of protection or inclusion. There are a fair number who support what they see as "gay rights", but who see the ever-changing acronym as a signal that the movement has been taken over by elements that are more concerned with categorization and self-important political correctness than with actual progress. These are, perhaps, many of the same folks who have grown weary of other minority groups who change their preferred names every five years and disparage those allies who haven't kept up with the latest designation.
P.S., that "asexual reproduction" is a good one, much like the 'phobes who say we can only be gay if we're... festive.
There's certainly truth in the fact that communities which formed for survival bristle a little when the mission statement switches to pride or visibility (while still allowing for survival support if necessary). But "your identity isn't real or isn't relevant to me and you're not being hurt for it so get out of my space" is one of the attitudes that is splashed around the comments on all of these articles, so it is there. I'm fine if an individual or a group doesn't want me for any reason, but saying I would be wrong to want support or am actually an insult to them/a drain on their attention and resources just by existing and pushing for visibility is a bitter pill to swallow, and an unexpected one from a group that faces othering and discrimination.
Yup. That's why I think the attitude that there's only so much room on the liferaft is short-sighted. The fact is that there is power in numbers, and if there's anything the last three decades have taught gay folks, it's that we can't do it alone. The more the merrier (and the more the safer and more effective), imho.
I would hope we all stop interfering with other people's sexual preferences or lack thereof and just be big one big happy country. Of course we'll have to wait until the moon is in the 7th House and Jupiter aligns with Mars; but one can dream.
How is not having sex struggling with sexual identity?
Did you read the articles? Asexuality has absolutely nothing to do with "not having sex".
Asexualism seems more like the sexual manifestation of a personality disorder than anything else. I'd say probably schizoid. Maybe even a coping or defense mechanism to deal with erotophobia.

Bottom line: it's not normal.
I think what's not normal is that you are coming back day after day trying your very best to misrepresent asexuality in flagrant ignorance of what the articles are about, and then acting like we're the ones who want attention. Sad, your obsession with throwing us under the bus.
As I have heard this same comment in discussions about gay people, of which I am one, I took the opportunity to check with my Unabridged Bigot-English Dictionary:
"it's not normal" = "I don't like it"
You've heard that gay people have erotophobia?
Where? 
No, I have heard people claim that what they dislike or disagree with is "not normal".
Is depression normal? Is schizophrenia normal? Is coprophilia normal? 
Just because you want to feel like your condition is normal (if you lack sexual attraction), does not make it so to the rest of society.  I'd hate to be the one to tell you how it is, but that's the truth.  
... just because you say so.
It's not because I say so, it's because society says so.  
I have heard this same comment ,"it's not normal" = "I don't like it" before. It usually comes from people who are so angered by something that they don't want to look any deeper into it to see if their initial judgement was right or not...to see if maybe there is some valid reason for the view that was heard and not liked.
"I don't like it" = "I refuse to consider this opposing view and dismissing it with a glib toss off line is easier and less risky than actual consideration."
Please tell me, where did you receive your advanced degree in clinical psychology?
No, you're right.  Asexualism in a sexually reproducing species is 100% normal.  I forgot. 
PJarorbi, you have every right to believe whatever you choose to believe. My only concern is that you feel free to throw about clinical terminology that you clearly know nothing about. It's one thing to look up big, important-sounding words on the internet and another to actually know when to use them appropriately. Bottom line, you do not have the qualifications to diagnose an asexual individual.
Tell me how what I wrote is incorrect.  
Please, I'd love to see what you have to write.  
Utilizing the DSM V please tell me how you came to the conclusion that anyone who defines as asexual exhibits sufficient criteria for a diagnosis of:
1. (Any) personality disorder
2. Schizoid
3. Erotophobia
The University of His Own Backside? He'd better not be queer. The irony would be too much to take.
Bottom line : Your wrong.

It is not a symptom of personality disorder or some other mental illness. It is not a defense mechanism against erotophobia. There are some asexuals like myself who find sex disgusting and still other asexuals who don't mind having sex at all. We are not all antisexual so please don't spread ignorance and do some research.
"who don't mind having sex at all"
An asexual who has sex is not asexual.  FYI.  
"An asexual who has sex is not asexual. FYI."

Actually, FYI, an asexual is a person who feels no sexual attraction. The act of having sex with somebody doesn't turn an asexual into a sexual.

According to your definition, all virgins are asexuals. Also, you can't be a gay virgin. Furthermore, if a gay man has had sex with a woman, he's not gay (despite how he identifies himself), he is a bisexual, or a closeted heterosexual.

Thanks for clearing that for us.
You're so confused that you've reversed things in your head.  A virgin is not asexual because he or she has not had sex.  However, a person who claims to be asexual is a liar if they are engaging in sex.  
I'm glad to hear that, once again, I am 'abnormal'. Should I check myself into the local mental facility, or should I go join a circus sideshow? Come one and come all to look at a girl who isn't interested in sex! A real freak!

I do not have schizoid personality disorder, I do not have hormone issues, I am not erotophobic, and I am most certainly not abnormal. Do you always assume that people who do not fit into your gold-star-standard of 'normal' have mental issues? Do you look at lesbians and say, "Oh, she must've been sexually abused, all women should like men"
Do you look at men who don't care for 'manly' things as mommies boys, or people with mental and hormonal imbalances?

Grow up.
"I am most certainly not abnormal."
I beg to differ.  If you are asexual, you are (like it or not) abnormal.  
Are gay people abnormal as well? What constitutes 'normal' for you? White, american people who are Christian and straight?
Do you think I'm white? or a Christian? or straight?
I don't know, and it doesn't matter. Are people less 'normal' for any of the things I listed? No.
You're a psychologist? I certainly hope not.
Why? 
Question? Do you think depressed people deny that they have a disorder? How about schizophrenics? Or addicts? 
The problem is that you can't see the forest through the trees.  Asexualism is not normative behavior.  That doesn't make it good.  That doesn't make it bad.  But it's not normal  Hell, it could be viewed as a very positive attribute to certain professions - like people who are isolated for a long period of time like astronauts.  
If you mean normal as in common (which I doubt), then who gives a damn if it is normal. If you mean normal as in right or correct then who are you to make such a call?
Asexual sounds more like Anhedonia

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anhedonia
Lacking sexual attraction does not mean any of the following:

Incapability to engage in sexual intercourse. A homosexual can still engage in sex with a member of the opposite sex.

Inability to become aroused. Arousal is a physical feature of humans, although commonly caused by emotional responses and stimuli.

Don't think you know everything about a sexual orientation without researching it.

I am asexual, I have never, ever in my life experienced sexual or physical attraction to anyone.

I have only once experienced romantic attraction at the age of 21 to someone whom I built a close emotional bond with, he is now my partner (for 2+ years).

He is a sexual person, and through communication we engage in a sexual (and very healthy) relationship.

Don't claim you know someone better than themselves. You don't know me better than I know myself, I've known who I am for the past 23 years, I know very well what I have done with my life, what/who I find sexually attractive, and everything.

You don't know me one bit.

Claiming that asexuals (who lack sexual attraction) can't have sex. Is wrong, misinformed, and arrogant.
While I'm not a mental health professional, I remember lots of things from my psych. nursing course. In order to truly be a mental illness, it has to cause the individual distress. That doesn't seem to be the case here; their distress comes not from the expression of their sexuality but from having to deal with other people's reaction to it. That's totally different. You should also consult a DSM manual on psychiatric disorders before you try to label them schizoid; not having sex with people doesn't suggest that they aren't interested or capable of forming meaningful relationships with other people. I recognize that you may be part of the medical community, and I'm hoping that mental health is outside of your scope of practice- not because I'm afraid of being corrected, but because I'm afraid of how your views would translate into such a practice.
Schizoid, like most disorders, is a spectrum of disease.  Some includes sexual manifestations such as asexuality, some do not.  
Basically, all these definition are man-made, so when it comes down to it, can and will change over time.  
And as far as distress goes, you're partially correct.  The new DSM emphasizes that distress be included in the definition of disorders.  That's why certain things, while abnormal in society, have been removed from the DSM.
So the question is "Does asexualism cause distress?"
And I would say that it does.  Any extreme deviation from society norms is likely to cause distress.  The asexual person may try to rationalize the belief that he or she does not experience sexual attraction, but the very knowledge of being so different is inherently stressful.   This leads to things like higher rates of drug abuse and suicide.  If that's not a distress, I don't know what is.  
You need more than one symptom in order to be diagnosed with a disorder. Asexuality alone does not equal schizoid. Can you prove that asexuals have higher rates of drug abuse and suicide? That they are inherently unhappy because of their situation? No? Then your entire argument is all conjecture and none of this "truth" that you seem to believe it is.
"Can you prove that asexuals have higher rates of drug abuse and suicide?"
No, I can't. The occurrence of assesualism has been so small that it has been pretty much neglected as a field of research.  
However, my anecdotal evidence would prove that I'm correct.  But, I understand you're not willing to listen to my experiences, so I'll just assume that you think I'm a "nut" and  LGBT person who isn't willing to accept a minority group into the mix.  
"Normal" is not a value judgment (though some people use it as one), so I will not presume judgment in that word and agree that, hey, asexuality doesn't fit at the center of the bell curve.

But I've just looked up schizoid personality disorder, and that doesn't sound at all like me or any of the other asexuals I know, all of whom are pretty social people, often above average in their non-sexual socializing (because they tend to devote more time and energy to such relationships, not generally having sexual ones).

Bottom line: they're just like other people, except they don't find themselves sexually attracted to anyone. That's it. That's all you know about someone who identifies as asexual. The rest is assumption.

Ever heard of the scientific method? You made a hypothesis, but you didn't do the experiment and I assure you the data won't fit your presumption. Think outside your box if you can manage it.
Most people don't want to be classified as anything but normal.  I get that.  Do you think most schizophrenics think that they should be diagnosed with a mental disorder? Of course not.  But if you've talked to a schizophrenic, you'd know something is not quite right.  
But a characteristic of overt schizoid personality type is, in fact, asexualism.  I don't think I'm stating anything new here. 
What you do with that is your call.  Some people embrace personality disorders.  Narcissistic people can be the most successful business people.  I suggest you embrace your disorder.  
Think. I'm gathering that it's hard for you, but try to think a little bit. You cite one characteristic. I'm sure someone who knew you well enough to know your quirks could find more than one characteristic of yours that fit antisocial / narcississtic / borderline / etc. personality disorder. Go back and read your notes from psychology class. There are many other traits listed there under the schizoid personality type, none of which are present in any asexual I know. (Presumably I don't know anyone like that because they don't put themselves out there to be met easily.) Have you ever heard of a Venn diagram? In the large circle of asexuals, schizoids are a small circle contained within. Try sketching it out on paper; see if that helps.

Oh, I promise you, there are other things about me that are "not normal" -- the great thing is, I find that to be so about every person who I get to know well enough. And one abnormal thing about you is that you are a troll. I get that, so I should stop bating you, but you just make it so easy. I've often wondered what kind of personality disorders lead people to enjoy trolling. I hope this kind of behavior doesn't manifest in response to challenges you can't handle in your off-line life. I with you the best in grappling with those.
You wrote all that.  Yet you still wish to know why you are asexual and 99% is not.  
Pots and kettles.
Have fun knowing that you are different.  Abnormally so.  
By the way, I like being a "troll."  It makes people like you be somewhat accountable  for the absurd notions you think.  
In response to PJarobi's comment of 1:36 a.m.: Thanks, I will. And I like being ace, so good to know we're both happy. :) Also, I appreciate the chance to demonstrate to younger aces all the holes in the arguments that bullies will hurl against them.

Young aces: Let's recap, so we don't miss the lessons here. Remember that people like this can't grasp the scientific method or Venn diagrams (or won't, because it ruins the high they get from bullying you). Remember that especially when the facts are against them, they will seek to turn your very act of standing up to them against you, as when they insinuate that refusing to take their bullying makes you unattractive, even as they go trolling about bullying multiple people at once. One may wonder how their behavior could ever be seen as attractive and, further, muse over whether these people have trouble "getting any" themselves. (Here we are reminded of one of the nice parts of not needing any to begin with. And of course, we are merely using their unscientific presumptions to demonstrate how inane they are.)

Stay true to yourself, kids. Not everyone needs to crowd around the center of the bell curve.
Pointing out someones mental illness is not bullying.
I feel pretty confident that most people would consider telling someone they have a serious personality disorder for which they do not exhibit the symptoms is bullying.
Your time machine must be programmed to 1955,

You best run along. Joe McCarthy is waiting for you.
"However, my anecdotal evidence would prove that I'm correct." Seriously? You offer anecdotal evidence as a proof for your 'scientific' theory? Please, that in itself proved that a) you are no scientist, and b) (luckily for your hypothetical patients) not practising psychology/psychiatry in any capacity outside trolling the internet.

Also, if we accept anecdotical evidence as a proof of scientific theory, I could posit that birds are lighter than air. After all, I see them flying every day!
Are you mad because I've pointing out one of the underlying causes of asexualism? That it is considered a disorder? And that it is abnormal?
I hear "it's not normal" from homophobes regarding Lesbians, Gays and Bisexuals, and being busy talking about how it doesn't help the humans reproduce with children. I hear it from people when they talk about Transgender people. Often times people say this in conjunction to dehumanizing, devaluing people along with taking away their rights, or ignoring their part of the argument.
Who's to say what's normal? Is it normal for animals to be typing on the keyboard? Not according to your definition of normal, and yet us humans are busy typing out arguments on a keyboard. Something that is far from "normal" for animals.
I am sorry but I tend to agree with Dan Savage's POV on this. Why should a group of people who have no desire or urges to have sex be included with the LGBT Community?

Does the LGBT Community need to become a mixed bag of people whenever we are not sure where to classify them? By saying any of this I do not discount their own personal plights I just do not see the correlation. Do we now have to label ourselves the LGBTA Community? What's next?

Personally I have been surprised to see so many articles on this subject under the gay voices section of the HP, obviously someone is trying very hard to get us to make this correlation.

I will gladly be an ally of the ACE Community but do not believe we all need to be lumped together.
Hear hear
Dan Savage is an Anglo, privileged, non-activist.

There's no surprise that he wants to keep his toys...
Thanks for showing that you're a white man hater.
No, when I look at white men, I don't even see them as men...or as white.  I'm totally "white blind" and "male blind" LOL

You're a troll.  Now those I don't like.

You might have gotten a whole lost close if you called me either a class warrior or someone who is a "hater" of privilege that is assumed and left unchecked.
Sell it however you liked. I'm still not buying the goods. Cheers.
What goods is that, are you trying to tell me all we disagree on is that Asexuals shouldn't be part of the community?!?!?!?!
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Lobie/lgbt-asexual_n_3385530_262711445.html
Dan Savage used to be quite trans-phobic in his columns, before his editors prevailed upon him to be more inclusive, too.
The Q in LGBTQ stands for queer. Queer is an identity inclusive of all those who, for one reason or another, stand outside of the bounds of traditional/societally typical identities. Everyone who feels like their identity places them outside the mainstream should be part of the community.
I thought that was questioning and the group as a whole is the queer part.
My previous comment to you was meant to go here. So I'll just link it!

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Lobie/lgbt-asexual_n_3385530_262736427.html
Well then, TIL.
I thought the "Q" stood for "Questioning".
So perhaps we should boil the whole acronym down to the letter "Q". The thing is getting out of control and becoming cumbersome.
I agree wholeheartedly.
I'd like to know how someone who is not with anyone is being discriminated against.
I think it's quite simple, ....being non-heteronormative, they experience oppression and invisibility for being 'queer.'

I've said it before, but I was aware that when I was oppressed for queerness at young ages, it was far more about failing to behave *heterosexual* enough, not like I was actively being all that 'gay.' (never mind having sex at that age) Being LGBT isn't only and all about *sex.* I thought that was part of the point.
Some asexuals prefer to have romantic relationships with the same or both sexes. So there is a correlation as there are asexuals who also identify as homoromantic or biromantic in that they want romantic relationships with the same/both sexes. Surely , it wouldn't be hard to see the connection between asexual and homosexual communities now that you know this.
Then they fit in the Bi Category.
The short answer is because they are pressured to have heterosexual relations just like those with different sexual urges are. The discrimination has a different scope, but it parallels.
LGBTQ culture is in part an attempt to render classification meaningless. Xenophobia requires an "other" to demonize. One way to combat this is to redefine the minority in such a way that it becomes so large, ubiquitous, and fluid that discrimination becomes impossible. When "we are everywhere," bigots spin in place like tops and are forced either to let go of prejudice or retreat into various resource-starved conceptual ghettos, like Christianism.

By the time the acronym becomes too long to remember, it'll no longer be necessary. I offer the example of multi-racialism. I live in a city where racism is fast becoming impractical as defining the race of many individuals is difficult or impossible.
It doesn't really matter what you or Savage think. You're a loud but tiny minority on this as far as I can tell. You can think your exclusionary thoughts as mightily as you wish, but you can't work your will on anyone at all. And that is particularly the case where younger people are concerned. You're on the losing side of a generational divide. And you're opinions are in direct conflict with my lived experiences, so I shall blithely dismiss you and believe my 'lying' eyes.
You're spot on. It's like they're saying "we need more numbers so let's now include asexuals."
I agree from the asexual POV. For non-asexuals, sex pervades every aspect of life... every relationship has sexuality interwoven... whether it's the parent who wants grandchildren... and wants their daughter to find the right man.... or the sibling or friend who keeps trying to fix someone up with a great gal or guy. Every friendship (except the very rare friend who just doesn't go there) has some sexual connection.... talking about boys, or scoring, etc. Sexual people do not notice this... and they often connect a tepid interest or lack of response (and I don't mean to a sexual advance) as a personal rejection. It's often just that the asexual person lacks the emotional experience to discuss matters. They don't know what their friend is feeling... and maybe never will. So to mix asexuality into communities that have sex as their focus, is mixing oil and water. Heterosexuals and LGBT share a comprehension of "sexuality"... everything from feeling a blush when near someone you like... to the crush... to feeling an "ewww" when near someone that makes them feel sexually creepy. Asexuals lack those antennae. LGBT has been discriminated against, but asexuals have often risked that discrimination to let others assume they were LGBT... and when with LGBTs, they've let them assume they were heterosexual... all in an attempt avoid sexual issues. LGBT have faced discrimination, but have they self-isolated? Have they experienced that quiet dropping of friendships (no matter the orientation) because they cannot understand?
Thank you, Scholastica8. I really appreciate your summation. :)
This article has made me lose a lot of respect for Savage.
I thought this was someone's idea of satire. " ...many aces have a "coming out" period and struggle with discrimination and alienation. "

Can someone tell me how ACE are treated differently under the law?
There's a difference between "not discriminated against by the law" and "not discriminated at all". Read this. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/06/20/asexual-discrimination_n_3380551.html?1371733068
So, let me see here. Asexuals are discriminated against how? I have never run across a boss firing someone for not having sex. Never heard anyone getting kicked out of an apartment for not having sex. Most parents and officals would be thrilled with folks not having sex. And most of the folks I know (gay and straight) spend very little time detailing their sex lives to groups, crowds, bosses, family and friends and so I have no idea who is and who is not having sex. So I guess I just must be missing something here. Yeah it can make you feel different and maybe awkward, but I feel that way about being short.
Did you read yesterdays article?

That covered asexual discrimination.

There seems to be some misinterpretation of the term discrimination. People seem to think of it as a systematic of legal action taking against a group of people, while that *is* discrimination it isn't the definition.

The definition of discrimination is the unjust or prejudicial treatment of different categories of people or things, esp. on the grounds of race, age, or sex.

Which many asexuals face!

Some asexuals have been threatened by their parents, and had to retract that they were "just joking"

I have more than once ran into discriminatory comments and hatred towards my sexuality. I have been sexually assaulted due to my sexuality, I have received dozens of negative comments both online and in real life based on my sexuality.
Well, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/06/20/asexual-discrimination_n_3380551.html?1371733068 and while you may not have heard of it, we have. There was a kid, not even 18 yet, that came out as ace to their family and got kicked out onto the street for it. Another, a friend of mine, was told by her mom that she doesn't accept her as ace, but that lesbian would be fine. It happens. But since in many ways we are the silent sexuality, it doesn't get talked about. But not talking about something doesn't make it go away, does it?
Kicked out for being asexual? For not wanting to have sex w/ anyone-- and more unbelievably, being told that it would be better if they were lesbian?

1. How old are you, and...
2. Do you really expect any adult w/ half of a brain to believe your little story?
I fail to see what my age has to do with anything, but I'm 27. And yes, I do believe someone with as little as half a brain to believe it because it's happened. Anything less than that might have a bit of trouble.
I'm a vegan, and my mom got very mad at me because I would not eat her pork ribs and meat lasagna. She said to eat or get out. She still doesn't accept me or understand s me.
Perhaps we live in a tall-obsessed culture but there is an acceptance that being short is not your fault. Maybe it's just the luck of the draw, some people are short, some are asexual, but neither is wrong or needs to be fixed.

What you're missing is the incredible isolation, depression and confusion asexuals may experience navigating a sex-obsessed culture. Being told your not normal and facing incredibly dismissive attitudes sure feels like discrimination.

And while you may not hear stories about someone being fired or denied housing for being asexual, that would be perfectly legal. This is why the LGBTQ community is a perfect fit for asexuals and should be welcomed.
It doesn't seem like a good fit to me. What planet are you on that you think LGBTQ people want to hang out with people who are not interested in sex? Why would Asexuals even want to be with a bunch of horny gay people?
Lets see some asexuals are gay or bi in that they want romantic relationships with the same or both sexes. Does not matter that they are not having sex with their said loved one , all the public will see is a fag and thus they would suffer the same abuse as homosexuals. Does that clear things up for you ?
Do you know what a psychopath is? it's an individual that lacks empathy/emotions, so in order for them lo live in society, they mimic emotions without truly understanding them. I believe asexuality might be a type of psychopathology.
INTRO TO THE TOPIC OF DISCRIMINATION AGAINST ASEXUALS

Part 1

Although asexuals essentially lack a sex drive in terms of having sexual relations with others, many do feel romantic attraction. This romantic attraction falls on a spectrum quite like sexuality does. They can have fluttery hearts for the same sex (homo-romantic), the opposite sex (hetero-romantic), both sexes (bi-romantic), or everything encompassing and in between (pan-romantic).

Which brings us to Discrimination Exhibit A: when the asexual person ends up with a sexual person. This is a very frequent thing from what I have seen. The problem is, much of our society's concept of a "relationship" revolves around sex. So, naturally the sexual person is inclined to exhibit their sexuality. "If you love me, why won't you have sex with me" is a motif in this scenario. The sexual feels insecure in the relationship because their partner isn't receptive towards their advances, and the asexual is insecure because they can't give the person they love what that person desires. While I have read that this often results in bargaining, it isn't much of a stretch until coercion becomes involved.

Next up is Discrimination Exhibit B: when people take issue with the asexual not reproducing. On the outside, a lot of this comes with the "be fruitful and multiply or else" crowd (not to be confused with the "live graciously and faithfully" crowd, who often get unfairly lumped in with the aforementioned bastards).

((CONTINUED))
Part 2

Discrimination Exhibit B continued: But primarily, the main source of pressure comes from inside the household—namely, the parents. You might recognize, if you happen to be a GLB who was/is closeted to your family, what ends up sounding like a constant stream of “why aren’t you giving me grandchildren”. You might notice how this directly parallels the discrimination faced by the GLBs—except in this instance the people discriminating against them can’t say that their actions are “sinful” (that is, unless the asexual has a same sex romantic partner who has bargained for sex). But the flip side of that coin is that the people discriminating against them ultimately see them as more “fixable”. They think that all they need to do is persuade them to have heterosexual sex once/enough times, that they will be “cured” and join “normal” humanity. This can take the form of the discriminating individual suggesting that the asexual take “medicine” for their “condition”, or say something like “just try it; you’ll like it” and escalate from there.

Which brings us to Discrimination Exhibit C: the sexual attempts to coerce the asexual into sexual relations. Stemming from the idea that all that the asexual has to do to be “cured” is to have heterosexual sex, some discriminating individuals, much like the overzealous romantic partner, attempt to verbally or physically coerce the asexual into having heterosexual sex.

((CONTINUED))
Part 3

Discrimination Exhibit C continued: This is the big red button; the thing which strikes fear into many asexuals. This is rape, which the rapist may attempt to justify in their heads by insisting that they were “just trying to help” the asexual be “normal”, and assuming that the asexual would be wowed by their amazing sexual prowess and end up enjoying it in the end, despite being forced into the act. Or the rapist might be the sort who views it as putting the asexual in “their proper place”; a position submissive to the rapist’s will (which is what rape is REALLY about, no matter how one attempts to sugar coat and justify it). This can be a stranger, someone the asexual knows, or most horrifically, the romantic partner of the asexual—not only because it is a betrayal by that person, but also because the rapist and society may attempt to justify it in the same way the rape of wives by husbands has been justified in the past—with the presumption that sex automatically comes with the relationship and that sex is the right of the dominant person in the relationship to demand.

Which unfortunately leads us to Discrimination Exhibit D: the presumption that if the asexual is not inclined to have sex, they do not really love someone or are incapable of actual love. Because sex is so firmly rooted in the public’s consciousness as being an intrinsic part of a romantic relationship,

((CONTINUED))
Part 4/FINAL

Discrimination Exhibit D continued: many are inclined to believe that asexuals do not have or are incapable of having relationships, or that all of their romantic relationships are inherently inferior—which exempting the difficulties of a relationship involving a sexual and an asexual as mentioned in Exhibit A, is not true. Additionally, an asexual who loves someone of the same sex is just as restricted from marrying them as a homosexual, bisexual, or pansexual, and is just as restricted in terms of receiving the rights that come with it.

In summary, although discrimination against asexuals might not be as broad in scope as it is against LGBT, it parallels the discrimination faced by LGBT and can be damaging, if not intense in nature. Which is why LGBT ought to welcome them, and not fall into the “divide and conquer” tactic their oppressors have ingeniously but predictably employed, which is to first separate the ‘gay rights’ movement from the “civil rights” and “women’s rights” movements, followed by isolating the transgenders and asexuals from the ‘cisgendered’ sexuals. Don’t fall into the trap.

That aside, I will give you some time to read over all these things while I deliberate on whether I will stick around this site, as I have discovered through writing this that Huffington Post's comment system infuriates me to the point of my desiring to throw something against a wall.
We should include heterosexuals that never want to get married, yet their parents always bug them that they should marry and have kids. These men abd women just want to have sexual fun with no strings attached. SLGBTBAV. V is for vegan because I feel the same descrimination as gays. Always people trying to make me eat meat.
Although I have an appreciation for satire, I have to say your comparison with veganism falls short. I hold serious doubts that anyone has earnestly suggested to any vegan that they cure their vegan ways by having heterosexual sex. And while I do think that some people aren't suited for having children, I don’t think that these hypothetical heterosexual individuals are being told to cure their ways by having heterosexual sex— the scenario suggests that they’re already having it. The pressure to settle down and produce babies (through heterosexual sex) does indeed parallel on one point, but being that it parallels only on the single point it would be better for the hypothetical heterosexuals to join with the “womens’ rights” movement instead, as the issue of forced reproduction is more intensely focused upon there (and yes, I would suggest for males, too; naming and labels would be difficult, but it is still a better fit). Of course, for all I know the two movements might merge one day, as they do have some overlap in key areas.

By the way, as I myself have a sufficient amount of anger, I would suggest you get some help. It is one thing to house vitriol, and another to spread it out over public forums in order to gratify oneself. Also, kindly leave the medical diagnoses to the medical professionals. If you're fixated on the idea of asexuality being correlated to a personality disorder, you might even consider asking one.
Perfect response!
Just because someone is asexual does not automatically mean they don't have sex. Some DO have sex. "Asexual" means that they aren't sexually attracted to any gender. It has nothing to do with whether they have sex or not. If their romantic partner is not asexual, they may end up having sex with them because their partner wants to. (Hell, an asexual person may even decide to do it just for the sake of doing something. The reason doesn't matter here.) Sometimes their romantic partner may happen to be the same gender, too. That doesn't make the asexual person gay. However, that's how others might see them.
Lets see:

1) Threats of corrective rape. 2) Parents are mostly NOT happy, some even disown if you come out as asexual. Or you get constant pressure to be "normal." Sent to a psychiatrist to get "fixed". 3) Most places where I have worked people talk about their sex lives. If you do not join in, you get excluded from the social groups. If you do join in, you get blasted for your orientation. If you choose to be excluded, you loose raises etc for not schmoozing. 4) Social circles can exclude you. Friends can shun you. Religious people can call you a sinner, unnatural, etc. 5) Relationships are difficult. Some aces have had partners say "that is fine, we don't need to have sex" and then waited until they were living together and asleep and took what they were not given.

Is it as bad as what homosexuals get? No. Is it still bad? YES! People love CELIBATE people, but those who don't fight against it are "unnatural" and mentally ill. Think of all the times virgin has been an ultimate insult. Think of how people view a 40 year old who isn't married. Etc etc.

And yeah we feel broken, different, alone. That is one of the main reasons for awareness. To know there are others and it is OK! You aren't ill as the world says. You have people who support you.
If your reason for denying inclusion of asexuals in our community is based solely on SEX, then I fail to see how you're much different than those anti-gay bigots who only see homosexuals through the prism of SEX.

It's precisely because we've been persecuted that we need to be more inclusive of other groups...an asexual person didn't choose to be that way any more than I chose to be homosexual.
even though i support asexual people in their struggle for acceptance, I have to say that I don't think they belong in the lgbt community...we are loosing our identity, asexuality isnt the same as being gay, it just isnt, they should be supported by the lgbt community but i dont think it should be LGBTA, there will be no end
there are gay and bi asexuals. They just don't necessary care to have sex with the same/both sexes. So how does that equal losing your identity ?
What? How does that even make sense? There are asexuals (people who have no sexual urges) who are gay (attracted to the same gender)? This is the kind of stupid fluff which is why the Asexual community does not belong in the LGBT community.
Because they are biromantic, and not bisexual, but a lot of bisexuals are also biromantic. Or are homoromantic but not homosexual, however homosexuals are usually homoromantic. It's not about the sex, but the relationship itself.
if they're gay or bi then that's why they're part of the LGBT community. not every identity falls under that umbrella.
Being bi isn't the same as being gay. Neither is trans. Should we reduce it to the LG community then?

It's fine, as a bi person, I'm quite happy to include the asexuals under whatever umbrella I might be lumped it.
trans and gay identities have been together since the beginning and do actually experience some overlap in terms of discrimination. though trans people are made unwelcome in LGBT communities a lot more often than bi people so I think the first part of your comment is disingenuous.
Being the Lesbian isn't always the same as being gay in this world, so maybe it should just be the Gay men club. Let's see how much they can actually do without the rest of us.
This, so hard :D
Frankly, I'm not sure if I want to be part of an acronym that whines about how it's discriminated all the time,and then turns around and does the same thing.
The big reason why the many communities united, was to gain power to bring progress. There was probably someone from every letter there at stonewall during the riots. Together they made the police look bad. Together they stood up. "United we stand. Divided we fall."
Being gay isn't the same thing as being trans but it's still a part of LGBT(etc). Also just a note on 'losing our identity', there have been multiple variations including QUILTBAG which includes asexual people.

LGBT(etc) is an umbrella term for everybody whose sexuality or gender identity are something other than heterosexual or cisgender.
We are not loosing our identity; we never had a solid one to begin with. Not all gay men are fashion designers, not all lesbians are lumber jacks. We are a part of the world culture, and we contribute many things to it, but there is no such thing as erosion of culture. There is only change. And some people are afraid of change.
*hugs asexual people* You are most welcome
You are like a shining light in the darkness in this thread, it's good to see.
:D Thanks, fortunately I'm not the only one 
That's true. In my experience, people like you are the rule. People like Dan Savage are the exception (and I bet that just burns him no end).
I'm with you Ashlieeee; we could use a vowel.
This alphabet soup of acceptance is starting to get a bit silly.
Eh, once you put a Q on there it pretty much covers everyone. The rest is just more specificity.
"LGBT alphabet soup" is right. Now there is Q for questioning. Which is just a mixed up Bisexual that will turn to L or G or commit to B. Once they commit, they aren't Q anymore. Now let's add A for someone who has no sexual attraction. We are becoming kinda ridiculous.
Maybe we should just change it to Non-heterosexual or Queer. Solves the problem.
i like that more
"Questioning isn't a 'mixed up Bisexual', they are not sure what they are, so they are exploring themselves. I was questioning for a while before I found out about asexuality, but I could never have been called bisexual. And it you want to simplify it, refer to it as, not the acronym, but the real name of the group, one that is all-inclusive no matter how many get added, "the queer community" okay?
I think "The Queer community is perfect
I'm having trouble with the idea that inclusivity and support for less popular orientations is "ridiculous," Matthew.

I also have trouble with the way you're suggesting "questioning" people are confused bisexual people (uh, there's a lot of ways to be questioning). It's really unnecessarily reductionist, isn't it?

Why is it "ridiculous" is what I'm wondering. I see a LOT of people saying exactly this--about how the acronym is getting long and that's somehow making it weird or silly or impossible to take seriously. I thought "queer" was kind of the umbrella term for anyone who is not heteronormative in gender or sexual orientation. We do have some things in common with each other that we don't have in common with people who want us to be straight and hurt us if we're not, regardless of how that manifests and what they actually do to shame and attack us. Is the growing line of numbers literally what people are protesting here as "silly," or is it that they really do want to draw a line on where they're going to stop acknowledging any new sexual minorities? Doing that despite knowing they exist makes me think it's a slippery slope argument ("what's next, include the A?"), which homophobes use against gay marriage all the time ("what's next, marrying animals?").
Don't take things so seriouly Ivy. I support everyone and everyone should be included of course. What I wrote was meant to be funny. Kinda poking fun of ourselves. We are becoming ridiculous. I think we need an all inclusive word.
Tell me LGBTQA is kinda ridiculous.
The Q usually stands for 'queer,' actually, but ...Questioning doesn't mean a 'mixed-up bisexual.' Though it's pretty common for bisexuals to have to spend some time knowing ourselves, perhaps having a few adult relationships, especially when the context is one of bi invisibility and 'Are you straight or gay?' And especially if you aren't particularly libidinous, it's not always so straightforward. A lot of questioning people seem to even turn out to be aces.
Hey I think we should go for the whole alphabet. Let's see we have A which is Asexual, B which is bisexual, c which is.... the fact that we keep adding just goes to show how truly diverse human sexuality and gender is.
Stop acting like you know what an asexual individual goes through. You don't, and neither do I. When did we decide to become the type of people that discriminated against us and continue to over the years? When did we decide that it was alright to slap people willing to be our friends and allies in the face?

Your hurting our cause and theirs by using the same justifications that have been used against us. How dare you! I'll take an ACE ally over an elitist ally any day and everyday.
I'm all for equal rights for everyone, regardless of what their sexuality is.

Open question: when do we stop adding letters and new labels? Never? Should every sexual orientation that is not straight be lumped together?

Also, to me the term 'ace' seems a bit corny. "Mark McClemont, a 49-year-old homoromantic ace who lives in Reading, England, added that the ace community has learned so much from the LGBT movements that have come before it."

A homoromantic ace?
It is a little on the cheesy side, yeah? But I've kinda gotten used to it. The thing is, "asexual" gets clunky beside "straight," "gay," and "bi." And obviously, saying "I'm A!" would be greeted with responses like "You're 'a' what?"

I do think all non-straight identities have some issues in common so in that sense lumping them together makes sense. I don't think it means any one of the identities that's included in the community has to lose its identity or compete with the others. I don't think anyone loses anything by being inclusive, though any group has the perfect right to be exclusive for the safety or perceived safety of its members should they feel uncomfortable in more diverse communities when discussing their specific issues. (Like, I wouldn't expect a trans* group to have people demand to be included even if they aren't trans* but they are LGB.)
Guess it just takes some getting used to
Ace, as in "Asexual" (Ace-x-ual).
Yep, get it.
The term "homoromantic ace" appears in red letters in the article because if you click on those letters, it will link you to a previous article that explains the meaning of this term, in case you were questioning what it meant. In some circumstances (negotiating a personal relationship with someone else, for example) it's a very useful term.

That said, I agree the endless letters seem silly at this point, as do the seemingly endless urges to categorize people into ever more distinct cubbyholes like "homoromantic ace". However, one person's silly is another person's necessary. If others feel the need to slap labels on themselves, it ain't really my business.
Agreed. But i'd have to say that other than being different from the majority in terms of orientation, I don't feel like I have a massive deal in common with the trans community for example, or the aces.. Not taking anything away from them, though!
I just refer to it as the queer community, that way it doesn't change as more people get included. That or LGBTetc.
Personally I don't like queer.. but that's just me.
I agree. It's never sat right with me either, but it's better than the never ending acronym.
And yeah, it is kind of corny, but then back in the day so was the term gay. It had been an old fashioned word for being happy before it got commandeered. I say we do the same. I personally love calling myself an ace. I even almost got a ring with ace playing cards all over it, and carry an ace of hearts playing card in my wallet that I've blacked out the heart on. It may be a little odd for now, but I think it'll come into it's own after a little bit of mainstream usage.
I happen to agree with you. I'm all for inclusion but where and when do we stop. We risk being so diluted that we can no longer have a cohesive movement. It kind of reminds me of the Occupation movements. There were so many diverse protesters involved, they lacked leadership and a collective goal. It seemed like a free-for-all.

It seems that we have to define what LGBT stands for. Are we for non-heteronormative sexualities- then add them. Or are we for standing up against hetero discrimination- then I think don't add them. Though I hate to define us as who is discriminated against more. "Aces" most definitely don't experience hate to the same degree. Definitely not.
Yes. The gay rights movement is about adults being free to love who they want, even if that means no one.

But, let's stop with the alphabet soup name.
You mean the 'sexual rights movement' not the 'gay rights movement' right?
The LGBT movement isn't just about sex, of course. But you know the homophobes would coerce us *all* into unwanted straight sex if they had their way, so of course 'sexual rights' are important common cause.
Something short and sweet, like Gender Inclusive, would be the next step, ... though "GI" might sound a bit butch.
Fair enough
asexuals have the right to not have sex already.
Well, taking this to the next logical step, shall we include straight people in the LGBTQ community?
Allow me to post you a comment I made here:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Lobie/lgbt-asexual_n_3385530_262736427.html
I fail to see that logical next step you speak of.
Really. We started with L and G. Then we added B for folks who go both ways. Then the T folk. Now we're adding As. The only group left to throw into this mix is straight folks, since that's all that's left. You got anything else?
LGBT asexuals are already in the LGBT community. the ones you're fighting for are the cis straight ones. good job
Exactly.
Yes! Yes! Why exclude any one? Don't you see? When we INCLUDE everyone, then no one is EXCLUDED, and we all see each other as equal. This is what the LGBTQ community wants from everyone else, so why not lead by example? I consider myself LGBTQ, and I am a heterosexual woman, married to and in a sexually active, monogamous relationship with my straight male husband. Will you exclude me from your organization based on my orientation?
Whats the fascination with being a "minority" or "protected class"? At one point in time, it wasnt so sensationalized and praised. It was a bummer to be part of that group. I know from experience because I live it every day in my brown skin. Its not something that I have to profess to the world and then force everyone to accept. I, like many others, just live it.

People spend so much time fighting for equal rights and to NOT be put into a box separate from society just so we all could put ourselves into our own self prescribed box. Ridiculous!!
You are forgetting history, friend. Remember the race riots and other things in the past that gave you the right to walk down the street and not be hated? Remember that they gave you the right to have whatever job, seat on the bus, or relationship you want, not through just letting the status quo stay, but by fighting tooth and nail for those rights, sometimes even being killed for it? While we may not have as strong a fight ahead of us, that is also because of those same people you need to thank. Because we're not the first minority to rise up and speak out we may have an easier time, but that doesn't mean we don't need to speak out and get people to accept us.
Youre very presumptous to tell me what I may be "forgetting" or who I need to thank. When it comes to my brown skin, I am looked at and judged by it in everything I do without prompting. When it comes to my sexuality, I neither define myself by it nor expect others to. It seems that too many people are getting attention for saying "Hey look at me, Im different and therefore special. So I deserve special treatment." 
 
If every human deserves the same rights and freedoms then why make a concerted effort to distinguish onesself from the masses by saying "Im different in this one very personal area of my life (my own lack of sexuality) and you all need to recognize it"?
Sorry, I should have said "you seem to be forgetting history"
'It seems that too many people are getting attention for saying "Hey look at me, Im different and therefore special. So I deserve special treatment." '
That's not what it's about , though. As the other articles in this series have shown, we don't get to simply exist. We are singled out for hatred, so we have to single ourselves out for acceptance to counter that.
How can a person be singled out "for hatred" based on something so personal like lack of sexuality without publicising the information themselves?

i.e: I cant hate on Joe Smith for being asexual because I dont know that he is. The only way I would know Joe Smith was asexual would be if he told me. (especially since its not a common topic)

So, if I dont want someone to judge me based off of some extremely personal piece of information (like my sexuality or that my mom was a drug addict), I dont share it with them.

Additionally, what purpose does it serve to share that information outside of ones support system? Aces arent campaigning for equal marriage rights, or military equality, or non gender specific bathrooms in schools, or racial equality, or job discrimination, or freedom to practice.

Are current laws going to infringe on someone's right to choose not to partner up? No.
Except again, it's first not a choice, and second, there are partnered asexuals. Otherwise, though, you're right on. People have been denied jobs, kicked out of a housing situation, denied adoption rights, etc. for being ace. But then again, hate never makes logical sense.
Well youve just demonstrated that partnering up is a choice because you stated that some Aces are partnered. So while they may all be Aces, some choose to be partnered up and some dont.
 
And thanks for the debate, I appreciate you sharing your knowledge with me. Knowledge is power.
The thing I meant wasn't a choice about was sexuality. That just happens and it has nothing to do with whether or not they do form into a couple or not. But yeah, you know what I meant, it's been said over and over in this series and even more in the comments.
This lesson in race politics and black history brought to you by a super white dude. Like they had to invent a whiter white to print pictures of me as a kid. :P
Not what this is about. What the LGBTQI community and civil rights movement isn't limited to people having gay sex, and it's been so for a long time. It's those of us treated in certain ways for not fitting heteronormative sex and gender demands, and asexuals certainly are treated so.

In a 'racial' analogy, just because Pacific Islanders are rarely singled out specifically for racism, and arent' African American, they still have life-challenges as 'non-white' people, right?
Ethnicity is an outward expression of who a person is in part. As I mentioned before, we all just live it. No one has a choice as to whether society has to deal with the issues of differing ethnicities. We have to deal with it because its there, in our face, every day.
 
The portion of the population that is not inclined to pursue sexual relationships with other people doesnt pose a need for activism. Asexuality isnt outwardly expressed so there is no way for another person to know unless told, its literally personal.
You're quite qrong there, actually. Look at the hostility they get on these very threads from the same people who are posting homophobia. Lesten to the actual asexual people describing their experiences. Hec, listen to *me* when I say I was queer-bashed long before I ever even *kissed* anyone. Never mind did any 'gay things'. failure to be *interested* in straight sex leads commonly to what assumptions. Even those churches that demand LGBT people be *celibate* don't think that's enough: people are supposed to be *heterosexual and then repressed.* :)
The problem starts with the classification of any group as a "sexual orientation". Yes, being gay means you are sexually aroused by members of your own sex. But there is so much more to it than just the sex. One may also share love, friendship and a life with that person. Asexual persons may find that they feel most comfortable having a close relationship with someone from the opposite sex, and others may feel that they feel happiest in the company of someone of the same sex. From what I read, there are straight Asexuals, bi Asexuals and Gay Asexuals. Therefore the bi and the gay Asexuals should be welcomed into the LGBT community.
Well, if you think about it that way, so be it. But to me, every sexuality is defined by who you are not attracted to having sex with. Heterosexual people are not sexually attracted to the same gender. Homosexuals are not interested in sex with anyone outside their own gender. Et cetera. In that light, we asexuals are exactly the same as any other orientation.
I'm asexual and always was - and doing without sex did not make me unhappy. I'm pretty old, and when I was young it was more "acceptable" to not have sex - some people were actually willingly chaste, so some people might have thought I was a prude, or waiting for marriage or something, but they didn't think I was "disordered" for not wanting to hop into bed with someone I'd known for about 10 hours. If I was going through this today in the time of the hookup, not sure how people deal with it.

Having said that, I'm struggling with what this "discrimination" is. You don't have a partner (although you certainly should have friends) and there is nothing at all obvious about your preferences unless you are carrying a sign that says "Asexual" -- and just why are you doing that?
Actually, especially where homophobia's not as pervasive but often more intense, I think kids are under a lot of pressure to 'prove' they're straight at younger ages, in order to avoid the stigma of seeming 'queer.' Just cause I'm not asexual doesn't mean I wasn't treated as queer for not acting hetero enough from pretty young ages.
Who paid for this documentary, what a total waste of time in fact the entire LGBTQIABCOLsLdND
(Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Queer, Intersex, Asexual, Ally, Bear, Cub, Otter, Leather sub, leather daddy,not sure, don't tell anyone and so on) Whew that's a mouthful (no pun intended to the asexys) community declarations have gotten out of hand its GAY, if that does not fit you start your own. And for the record all this is about the right to marriage and relationships and diversity. So your all covered, now you can thank us because unlike you, we the gay community never discriminated against you!!
"its GAY, if that does not fit you start your own"

That's where the rest of the letters came from, from people coming together in their own communities.

Not every person who is queer id's as gay. Learn to deal.
Deal with what, do you know how many time I have yelled get used to it and never once added well for "white gay males anyway" So if this is pick a fight with a old gay guy day, I am not having that sister something. It was written as a joke, a purely racist joke btw. because it could include sub minorities Gay Latinos, Gay Asians, queer transgenders, I mean the list is endless and only serves to show there is either a rainbow or there are a bunch of streamers of different cultures. Its your generation you get to pick now, we picked the rainbow, but the colors never mentioned a class of person. hot pink: sexualityred: lifeorange: healingyellow: sunlightgreen: natureturquoise: magic/artindigo/blue: serenity/harmonyviolet: spiritlater modifications were purely mechanical.
LGBT was created because a lot of us intersected with different identities, but also because together we are stronger than just the bis over here, the trans peeps over there, gays are here. Over by the river is the asexuals. It was once an alliance, but became a community over time, as our problems intersected with sex rights, gender equality, queer theory, being different, having a different sexuality. Trans people have faced similar problems that gay people do, and asexuals face similar problems as the rest do. To deny someone allegiance to a common cause, because they aren't like everyone else in some sense, is to discriminate which is was what the LGBT was once fighting against.
I think I am saying the same thing, but it has become the label that identifies the ideology. It seems more like they want the same things, but by separate label.
They want more inclusion. Considering that I'm part of the T, and we aren't really included in the LGBT community.  They would like to be another letter, as a symbol that they are part of the entire Alphabet soup.
I agree but they are Blanch they are! They have a letter do I need to follow the AP style sheet or my heart or just what I think will anger the least amount of people. But self esteem may be why you are not part of the LGBT community. Don't we get any credit for adding the T
... You do realize a lot of statistics and sources about LGBT people, aren't really inclusive of trans people. It's becoming as if LGBT really means LG and sometimes B. So far, I don't see much of the LG and sometimes B community even advocating for trans people. I get a lot of "stop tagging along". To honest, you are more likely to hear about a gay teen attempting suicide, than a transgender people who succeeded in his/her/ze's/their attempt to commit suicide. You are more likely to hear about a gay person being bashed than strings of anti-trans murders and rapes. Not to mention that, it's way more likely for a gay person to be able to report a rape caused by a police officer than it is for a trans woman to even be heard about being raped. It's also having to do with the fact that a lot of trans people have heard extremely transphobic remarks from the LG and sometimes B community. We don't feel included, because we often seem to be excluded. Adding a T to an acronym, is meaningless if we don't actually include the t in actions, and actually help them. It's more of a disservice than a service.
Both Transgender people and asexual people have to deal with invisibility, the point of adding a letter, was to show that Asexuals exist and they are part of the community. It's not about doing things that anger the least number of people, but what is actually right.
You! you're making me uncomfortable. I am a media I reflect the peoples choice no one has connected the media on this. its your responsibility. Are you saying the gay media has the responsibility? 
I'm not sure I get it.. What civil rights does an asexual person not have?
The only point of an LGBT community is to fight for civil rights? That's it?
Actually, yeah, that was the whole point of the LGBT community. We wanted rights. We still have to fight for rights. We faced and face inequality in the law and in society. I'm pretty sure Asexuals do not.
So you get nothing from being part of the LGBT community except for an organization that pursues civil rights, then.

No interpersonal support networks, suicide prevention organizations, or queer social events/bars. No solidarity, no sharing of resources, no education groups that help people with coming out and having a place to discuss issues.

None of that exists because LGBT exists solely to fight for civil rights?

No. These exist and they're helpful (and sometimes, in life-or-death situations, necessary) for LGBT people even though they don't involve pursuit of legal rights. Once civil rights are "equal," that's it, homophobia is over? Right, like racism was over when slavery was repealed and sexism was over when women got the right to vote. There are ALWAYS non-law-related reasons for like-minded people to want support from each other. Now let me tell you something about asexual experience.

The Trevor Project added asexual resources to its suicide prevention campaign because they were getting calls from suicidal asexuals. Asexual couples were denied adoption because Social Services said "If you are asexual you are not fit to be married." One asexual person in these comments discussed coming out and having to pretend it was a joke so their parents wouldn't kick them out. And a bunch of asexual people describe having people rape them to try to make them like sex.

Our problems don't have to look exactly like yours to be problems that need support. I hope you understand.
so asexuals have maternal instints, but don't want to use their body to have a kid? come on!!!!
"Come on" what? No, not all asexual people "have maternal instincts," but if they do want to have children, it's not your place to say they have to "use their own body" to have a kid. It's not your place to say anyone doesn't deserve to have children if they're not willing to become pregnant, for whatever reason they have. Not to mention that people who can't carry children (for instance, in straight cis couples, THE MAN) can still be parents without "using their own bodies" (and their instinct wouldn't be called "maternal"). Why the double standard when it has to do with asexual people?
Could you be considred an Android like Data in star trek. If that is true, then you are talking!
Well there are occasionally legal issues. Asexuals have been denied adoption, and lost child custody, and sued for not providing sufficient marital relations, and treated as deviants by psychiatric professionals who try to counsel or drug them out of their supposed repression. Asexuals have quite a bit in common with LGBT people, such as rejection from family members (especially parents who fear being deprived of grandchildren), high rates of depression and suicide, years of feeling dysfunctional and trying to change, pretending to fit in or being open about it and treated like freaks, the majority denying asexuality actually exists, or people trying to "fix" them via rape. It's immensely difficult for an asexual individual to establish a romantic partnership, so there's a lot of rejection and loneliness. Mainly it's the attitude of the general population, making them feel abnormal and less than human---and that's pretty much all around us, everywhere, constantly. It's mostly about the need to be accepted as fully human, not treated as deviants, having support and validation, and not feeling alone. And i doubt the LGBT community will cease to exist once the issue of legal rights is resolved. Social difficulties continue long after rights are technically established by law.
Well it's a pretty big part of it , yes!
I welcome the Asexual community into the wider non-fitting-into-traditional-gender-or-sex-roles community! I see it as just another expression of human sexuality. Even the lack thereof belongs on the scale of sexuality, just like the lack of religion belongs on a scale of religiosity.

Visibility is important, because it leads to more open conversation and hopefully education. I see it is akin to bisexuality, in that some of us "look straight" and as long as we're in a hetero relationship, people think we're straight, even though that isn't the case. Correct me if I'm wrong, but an ace not in a relationship could be seen as someone who is perpetually single and no one asks you about a sex life, which is nobody's business anyway! Or if two aces are in a relationship, people assume you're having sex. And there are many who identify as LGBT, and there are many aces who fall somewhere along an ace spectrum, correct?

While aces who fall into "normal" categories, i.e. looking straight, may not experience blatant discrimination like the LGBT community can (housing or employment, for example), just the fact that people question its very existence, or think that something's wrong with their hormones (there is a distinction between hyposexual and asexual), there was some trauma in childhood (sound familiar ?) shows that there is plenty of misinformation and potential for harm out there.

Let's not be exclusive, let's be inclusive!
Thanks for your understanding! You're not entirely wrong about aces who aren't in a relationship could be seen as perpetually single. That's actually 100% correct. It's just that there are problems that come along with being seen as perpetually single, and that's where the discrimination comes in. If you aren't seen to be following the path of love-marriage-kids (adopted or bio) in a timely fashion, people start to make assumptions. Oh, he's a loner. Kind of a weird guy. Maybe we should hire someone more personable? This can happen even when there's no legitimate reason to fire the ace and hire someone who is more "personable". Then if they knew the truth, it's all "get your hormones checked" and "there's something wrong with her."

Plus, how many times have you been out with friends and they ask you "so, are you dating anyone?" Aces who are not out to their friends have to struggle to come up with someone. Or, like mine, some friends have no boundaries and immediately jump to "So, is she good in bed? Are you cheating on her since you live 2000 miles apart?" Try coming up with answers to THOSE while slightly drunk without giving anything away! It seems to have become more and more acceptable to ask people about their sex life. Plus we have to deal with the constant not having sex= child-like equation. Even my own family has told me "you'll grow up someday."
here is my thought on this as a gay 24 yr old. not sure why really they would be included because LGBT refers to people who are ACTING on their sexual desires/identities.. asexuals are not sexual, they abstain. but on the other hand i semi see the thought process since they want inclusion as to fall under the umbrella of a group of people who face sexual discrimination.... BUT AGAIN they dont face sexual discrimination because they dont partake or engage in a sexual lifestyle... it'd be confusing to include in them but if they really want to come into the rainbow tent, i guess more the merrier....
And also,

"asexuals are not sexual, they abstain"

Also not true. Attraction is the only thing that defines asexuality, not behavior. Please read all the articles before you think you know better than those about whom the issues are a bit more up front.
If an asexual is having sex how are they at all different from a non asexual person?
Because asexuality isn't about the actions a person takes. Like any orientation, it's about attraction. For example, think of the gay men that for whatever reason perform the actions of a heterosexual man instead. Plus, for an asexual, we sometimes fall for sexual people. In my mind and many others, sex isn't necessarily a bad thing, we just don't feel it as a need, but is our SO does feel that way, it'd kind of be a bit selfish if we denied them something they need, wouldn't it? Of course then there's sex-averse and -repulsed asexuals, but that's a whole different point.
I think I'm getting it. I am a gay male, but when I go out with my female friends, which I have quasi-erotic attractions to, then that would make me a straight-pseudo-asexual-lesbian male gay asexual.!
Sexuality has nothing to do with sexual acts, just sexual attraction. I was gay before I did anything sexual with a guy, and discrimination against people exists regardless of whether they are sexually active. On that note, asexuality is a lack of sexual attraction, not sexual activity. They can still be heterosexually, homosexually, etc. active.
i dont mean abstain as in someone who is choosing celibacy, i mean abstain as is someone who is turned off by sexual activity
Asexual doesn't mean that either.  It's just a lack of sexual attraction.  It doesn't necessarily mean that you find sex repulsive, though some people do.  
There's enough room at the table for everyone (even straight people)! There is also power in numbers. I'm not sure, however, that asexuals' needs are always best served by being a part of lgbt. For one thing, if grouped together it is too easy for those unfamiliar with asexuality to see the world as 'normal,' and 'other,' and gross generalizations follow. This does a disservice to everyone.

While, historically, various groups have joined to accomplish specific goals, they retain their differences. These differences should be acknowledged and respected. To that end, it is high time for a HuffPo Asexual Voices page.
If someone chooses not to have sex, that is their prerogative, but are they really a "group"? I just don't see them as being discriminated against. I've really never heard anyone say: "You know, I just don't get those GD asexuals". Much Ado About Nothing, if you ask me.
Remember, asexuality isn't 'choosing to not have sex', it's a lack of sexual attraction to any gender. If you'd like to see people saying (the equivalent of) "You know, I just don't get those GD asexuals" try reading through the comments on these articles. There's lots of people who think asexuals are lying, sick, broken, or not human.
It is NOT part of the LGBT community. No one is denying any rights to people who choose not to have sex. Sexual acitvity should be a private matter (unless you're those two pigs who were caught having sex in a McDonald's bathroom). How is the fact that someone is not having sex relevant to anyone but the people not having sex? How would anyone know?
Frankly, before you claim that those lesbians who were assaulted and stabbed by homophobes were 'pigs' you ought to consider that it was someone *else* who claimed they were doing 'some kind of sexual activity'. Being LGBT isn't all about *having sex* to begin with. I was subject to homophobia and violence long before I'd even *kissed* a girl. Aces have relationships that would *still* mark them as targets for homophobia, actually. We should know well enough that 'I never see you with someone of the opposite sex' is one of the markers used to target LGBT people.
One of the arguments for marriage equality was the financial tax burden that is placed on unwed couples. The system is still set up to favor those who choose to partner up. So whether you're asexual, single, not interested in marriage... you're still being punished.
As a good-earning, single man and a non-homeowner, I certainly feel the sting of taxation.
I guess I just don't understand the threat posed by a group wanting to "redefine" our "traditional" acronym...
Of course Asexuals should be included in the LGBT(etc) community. Any suggestion otherwise makes no sense.

LGBT(etc) is an umbrella term for anybody who does not identify as heterosexual or cisgendered. It's truly is that simple.
If one bothers to pay attention to just how many LGBTQ* people also identify as asexual, demisexual, or gray-a, one would realize that the communities are already linked.
I hear you!

I've been a member of the local community in my town for a while now, of course I'm a member as asexual and very much welcomed there! We even discuss asexuality quite frequently.

However, yes! Many asexuals are in the LGBTQ+ community already!
No they shouldn't we don't need str8 people our group support yes claim to be part of us no.
Excuse me?

Did you even read the article(s)?

Asexuals are NOT "straight". Asexuality is the lack of sexual attraction, not the attraction to the opposite gender.

I for one am grey-romantic and in a relationship with another man.

Asexuality is not heterosexuality...
He probably meant to reply to a comment I saw earlier about also including straight people in LGBTetc because he saw it as "the next logical step" if we aces were included.
When you read an story about Asexual's and all you see is pictures of str8 people tends to make one think str8 ...I also find it very interesting that you say "Asexuality is the lack of sexual attraction" then tell me that you are in a relationship with a guy. I really dont understand.. I would like to know.
Sorry for a late reply, was out with friends this weekend.
If you read the article based on asexual relationships it should make more sense. There is romantic attraction, outside the realm of sexual attraction.
One can still be in a relationship with someone whom they are not sexually attracted to.
The key is communication.
Thanks, I just reread it an dyou are right it did make far more sense.
How the bloody hell is this even a thing? Honestly, if you're against such inclusion of Aces, then perhaps take a long, hard look at your life, and ask yourself: when did I become so hypocritical?
First of all, if you add the A, let's agree not to do it after the T. LGB T&A just sounds wrong. Otherwise, seems to me that the umbrella is already covering completely different yet widely discriminated against groups, so why not?
HAHAHA. I like that joke.
I support equal rights for all people however, gay is gay.
There are gay asexuals ya know. Only difference between them and a homosexual is they are not SEXUALLY attracted to the same sex
making asexuality about sexual attraction rather than lack of having sex or lack of libido makes no sense
how do gay asexuals know they are gay?
EVERYBODY who WANTS to belongs in the LGBT community.

Cut the crap!
Amen- It's so petty people want to belong to a club so badly. People are who they are- they are individuals, enough trying to be a "member" be yourself. A mature adult should have little interest in your sexual preference/ or lack of.
I don't bother labeling myself gay/ straight/ Bi. I've experemented with males and females, I'm open. Im myself. I don't feel the need to catagorize myself any further
Thank you, Bill! Amen.
I also have no problem with the more letters. And the fewer letters. Identify where you do. Those upset about the number of letters have certainly never attended any radical groups where people give their bonafides ...

I'm a cis-gendered, queer-identifed male pro-feminist, anti-racist, immigrant & prisoner rights advocate that identified as homo sapian
Many people are starting to use "GSRM", for "Gender, Sexuality, Romantic Minorities" or something like that. It's a way of being able to cover everyone, without having to deal with petty fights breaking out over "Adding another letter to LGBTQ*".
And if you don't want to use that, at least think of us as the ones who bring the vowels to the LGBTQ BBQ. (Along with Intersex people, of course.)
I either use "queer community" or LGBTetc.
LGBTQ

Lesbian, Gay, Bi, Trans...

The Q stands for actually "Queer or Questioning" both

Queer is the umbrella term for the GSD (GSRM).

Definition is exactly a gender/sexual minority that is not hetero-normative or gender binary.

The argument of not allowing asexuals in the LGBTQ seems to be under the assumption that another letter 'has to be added' for most cases.

What a strange argument!

Or somehow, that being asexual does not fall under the queer umbrella; i.e, they are hetero-normative/gender binary.

Which absolutely is not true.
OK, I'm gonna put my foot in it and say this whole dust-up sounds an awful lot like gender-based cross-talk between a mostly male LGBT "side" and a mostly female asexual "side". Yes, I know LGBT's ain't all male, but the ones doing most of the objecting here seem to be. And I know all asexuals ain't female, but look at most of the comments, the blog posts and the picture at the top of this article.

I heard the same things said in the early 80's, when there was a "gay" movement that needed lesbians and vice-versa: gay men had more political clout and social influence (it was the 80's and they were men, after all). And lesbians were, well, alive. They were not dropping like flies from a mysterious plague. We needed each other. We had to make it work.

But it didn't happen without endless discussions about "inclusion". Not without the lesbians going on ad nauseam about categorizing each other (as the "homoromantic aces" and so forth have done in this forum), and getting hurt feelings for not being invited into this clique or that, like 5th-grade girls on a playground.

And not without the gay men having their eyes glaze over when the lesbians wanted yet another meeting about yet another inclusiveness issue, and finally retreating into inaction, in the same way straight men sometimes retreat to their man-caves when the girl talk gets too deep.

Both "sides" had to give to make it work.
Asexual people have their own community. They have the asexual community. Just because a sexuality is abnormal, doesn't mean it fits as LGBT.
NO, and let's break up LGBT into separate groups. They don't belongs together, either. There are separate reasons, separate causes, separate goals. I don't want to be part of a sandwich or alphabet soup.
Asexuals should be included. This community is about accepting people that aren't "the norm". It's about standing up for each other and protecting each other. To say asexuals shouldn't be included because they don't face as much oppression as us is ridiculous and absurd.
There is this strange measure of relative acceptance that when 'aces' first broach the subject of their difference, the initial reaction is usually "then what are you, gay?" That even in self assessment, an ace may think of him or herself as gay or lesbian first before realizing and moving on to a-sexiness.

In as much as this happens, they should be considered part of the LGBT sexual diaspora. By definition anyone in a sexual minority that makes up 1% of sexual expression belongs with us.

And yes, the LGBT… acronym is growing and getting unwieldy. Can’t we all agree on one term that designates the diaspora with simple prefixes or suffixes to designate the specifics? I think its about time that we recognize that the diaspora, ’queer’ or whatever, is not the sole property of any one minority.
I think it would be helpful if people started viewing the LGBT "community" as what I think it really is, that being more of a "political alliance." We have an LGBT community center in the town I live in. Depending on the night of the week they have events for Gays, events for Lesbians, events for Bisexuals or events for Transgener people. And then some nights they have more general events that are inclusive of all.

We can fight a political fight together, but it does not mean we cannot also focus on our own smaller communites as well when we need to.

I also do see why some fear a rush of various groups to join now that the LGBT community has gained acceptance, it can seem to many that a flood gate has been opened now that we are winning many battles. Some people are just cautious due to how long we have been fighting and also because of the very tenous nature of many of our wins. I don't like how many lash out in response though, it is very similiar to how many reacted to including Transgender.
Frankly I think just the number of aces possible-aces that go through similar struggles *and* have to figure out what orientation they may be means they're *already* very often part of the community. I mean, there's been occasions where even talking extensively to someone who was probably an ace, it was really hard to tell the difference between him being asexual or just bisexual and painfully-shy. :)
Dan Savage has come around on the asexual thing. In fact, he's had David Jay on his show a few times.

Welcome to queerdom, Aces! It's good to find a home :).
And there are a lot of us queers that agree absolutely with your view point. I suspect we just tend not to speak up as much as the ones who disagree. Count me in as an ally and I'll be cheering AVEN along at the SF Pride Parade if I see you guys there again this year!
I would love to see anything from him about that. Have a link?
You are not welcome!
I don't really care either way... but, just thinking out loud here:

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender. Which one of these means Asexual?
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer/Questioning, Intersexed, Asexual. LGBTQIA. The queer umbrella is larger than you think.
I meant that if the moniker is LGBT , which is fairly specific in its terms, shouldnt there be a new moniker? maybe i'm reading into it too much.
I don't see how people could be against asexuals joining the LGBT community. Asexuals are treated as sick or repressing their sexuality. We are considered just as if not more bad than homosexuals and even stranger. People can understand how a guy can like a guy , even if they think it sinful but somehow no one can accept that maybe one cannot like either men or women in a sexual way.
I'm all for asexual inclusion. They share all kinds of experiences of being treated as 'queer' for not being heteronormative heterosexuals. Being trans isn't about having sex, either, but they still are subject to homophobia whoever they do or do not have sex with.

I don't seem to recall stopping being queer just cause my lady love's been far away for a long time.
I look forward to the day where people are not identified by their sexuality. When an asexual person is simply a person. When a transexual person is a person and can identify himself or herself by whatever preferred pronoun without scorn. When a gay marriage is just a marriage. Equality for ALL!!
I would tend to think that asexuality would be a subset for any group, be they ethnic, LGBT, gender based etc. I don't see someone's asexuality as being threatened or threatening. Like...I don't see people being against asexuals using their bathrooms or getting married, or buying a home. Maybe I need to expand my train of thought.
The interesting thing is, there have been examples of people that got kicked out of their house, were denied a home loan, denied adoption, and many other things because of it. Sure it makes no sense, but does blind hatred ever make any logical sense?
You're right...it doesn't make any logical sense. Humph...the world we live in.
yeah, come on in, just leave your religion at the door
Or even better, let's not try to dictate what they leave at the door.
sorry, have zero tolerance for religion, it's the bane of our existence. case you haven't noticed, all our wars are based on this difference. it's time for the belief in the supernatural to go the way of the dodo.
Well if you actually see what the bible says, the wars fought in its name are actually against its message. And so is hatred. And all the terrible things people have done in its name. But to each their own. Personally I'm religious, but it's weird how people some people think, isn't it?
When the goal is equality for all, how can we exclude one group? We need to re-brand to GSD immediately and save everyone the hassle.
Funny how the more successful the Gay community becomes the more letter get added.

When I first came out gay meant everyone with same sex attraction, it was inclusive. Then it became Gay and lesbian because lesbians wanted to be more visible which lead to a long period if the incredibly stupid "Gay men and lesbians". Then we needed to the T because the T's felt excluded. Same with the Bs

As soon as we started with the making a list rather than an inclusive word, the list became exclusive. If you were not on the list, you were not included.

Asexuals should never have had to ask to be put on the exclusive list because we never should have started with the exclusive list.
to
As an asexual, I don't particularly identify with the LGBT community -- but that's cool if others do. It depends on what the individuals in question are seeking from their identification and allegiance, and I would presume a lot of the tension on different goals here. If gay people are most interested in a movement that celebrates gay sexual relationships, I can see why they would not have any interest in having asexuals in their tent.

But if someone joins the community because they believe it celebrates experience outside of the sexual norm, then asexuals do seem like natural allies. I say that even while I as an asexual doesn't identify with the GLBT tent and am nothing but a supportive ally. This perhaps stems from my experience in college thinking I'd get understanding from gay kids when I said (not yet having discovered the asexual movement) that I just didn't care about sex at all and therefore I also didn't fit in, but they most frequently thought I was repressing being gay and therefore were not a good place to find support. Others' mileage will of course vary. But everyone brings their own baggage, needs, expectations, and areas of comfort to these kinds of groups.
Asexuals should be included under the queer umbrella, as they are a sexual minority. For me, queer means "not straight," which in turn means "not a cisgender, heterosexual, heteroromantic individual." If you fit that definition, welcome to the acronym.

On another note though, saying that asexuals are apart of the "LGBT" community is a bit wrong. Literally by definition, LGBT means "lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender." It's why if I'm referring to the whole queer community, I just refer to it as such or the LGBTQ community.
I usually say queer community or LGBTetc.
Okay, so everyone can join our queer community, except absolutely-100%-straight people? Literally EVERYONE can join our community EXCEPT straight people? Seriously....
Basically.  I'm not saying  that allies don't get a place in the acronym, because I do appreciate what they do, but by definition, they are not queer, just allies.  Straight people don't have to fight for the right to  express their gender or sexuality. 
And the reason for the inclusion is that our goals are virtually the same.  Gay people are not the only ones harmed by gay marriage being illegal and transgender individuals are not the only ones who have to worry about discrimination over gender identification and expression.  In general, we look to have everyone's gender and sexuality accepted by society as valid, not an illness, etc.  When we can get this culture past the binary concept of male and female, and that opposites attracting is the only way it should be, everyone lives in a better world.
"straight people don't have to fight for the right to express their gender or sexuality"... Tell that to my uncle Mike. He spends all day and night trying to express his sexuality and gender to his wife!
I see this as being similar to whole Transgender thing. You have a few people who want to be associated with the LGBT in much the way there were a few people who wanted to be labeled Transgender and attached to the LGBT. The problem is they never asked what the rest of us wanted they just they were just trying to be inclusive. Now almost twenty years later all the research is garbage because many of us won't take a Transgender survey and want nothing to do with either the LGBT or Transgender groups. If L and G's were smart they'd dropp the rest of the alphabet soup before it bites them hard them hard for the discrimination tht it is. You don't get to include people without heir consent and bully them when they reject like Transgender activists do. Te Transgender Umbrella is going to be dismantled because it is sex discrimination and a perverted form of reparative therapy.
If you want to be technical, based on the name "LGBT" the answer would appear to be no. But for what it's worth, I hate technicalities. As a heterosexual, I feel very much a part of my local LGBT community. I have many friends and a son in the community. I hang out with them in "their" bars and elsewhere, participate in activities like Pride, and in the fall when I return to school I will be joining the GSA (Gay-Straight Alliance) on campus. (I was invited by a young woman I met and befriended in one of my classes.) Bottom line, IMHO anyone who is gay friendly and supports gay (make that human) rights should be included in the LGBT community.

I have one question for any asexuals out there who might read this. Both my boyfriend and I have very very low sex drives. When we have sex it is very satisfying but we do only rarely. 99.9% of our relationship is based on the companionship and how comfortable we are with each other. We do snuggle and kiss but that is usually the extent of it. And it works great for us. We have been together nearly four years. My question is...would we be considered asexual or semi-asexual or anything with the "asexual" tag applied? Sex, while wonderful on occasion, has never been the be-all and end-all for either of us, even when we were younger (we are both now in our 50s).
Actually, that sounds rather normal. People tend to puff up the numbers a bit when talking to friends, as if it mattered. But for your ages it seems quite normal to have lower sexual activity than, say, horny teenagers.
Yes I know that NOW it might be "normal"...but I was never all that interested even in my youth. I never went through a "horny teenager" period. It just never was that big a deal to me. I got teased alot because of it, I was told that I "wasn't right" and even that I was lying because "in the teens and 20's EVERYONE is perpetually horny". But at least I didn't let that bother me...in that respect at least I was comfortable enough in my own skin to not care if anyone else thought I was a freak of nature.
No. Asexuals do not belong in the gay community. This all-inclusive nonsense needs to stop, fast. Every year we have to fight for basic rights and privileges, like marriage, freedom from discrimination, inclusion in civic duties, etc. The reason Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals, and Trans-people banded together was because we all faced, and still do face, the same prejudices in our society and in our laws.

Adding asexuals to the LGBT community would just make a mockery of things. As a gay man, the idea that someone who has no sexuality, and will face no discrimination in the law, or virtually anywhere, is sharing the same struggle as me is offensive.

People seem to have forgotten that the LGBT community isn't some circus where every minority group just belongs by default. We have actual issues to face. This desperation to absorb every other minority group in our own has to stop. It makes us look ridiculous, and undermines the seriousness of all the fights we still have to win for equality.
Anyone who needs support can belong to the LGBT community. Let's leave the inclusive communities to the religious, shall we..
Asexual people live and love just like everyone else, and they are another marginalized group that needs the acceptance and inclusion of the support networks that can help them to find each other and feel good about who they are. As gay man I strongly believe that we should encourage and embrace the diversity of all legal sexual minorities. It is about being true to yourself in the face of pressure to conform, and we all have that challenge in common.
Okay... and since when did the LGBT community turn into a support group for anyone and everyone who has ever felt not accepted by society? Asexual people are humans beings too, yeah, we already knew that. However, they're not gay. They're not discriminated against. There are no laws anywhere in the world that criminalize their very existence.

If they just need help and support, then they can use the help and support network they apparently already made for themselves (AVEN).
If you're a gay or trans asexual you're already part of the LGBT community. If you're a cis and straight asexual you've got the asexual community. IDK what the problem is.
Neither Gay nor Straight. They are asexual. C'mon HP.
I guess they could include asexuals and while there at it, include every sexual identity as well, including straight people. Asexuals who are gay, bisexual, or transgendered is a given. BUT there are many asexuals who are straight. And if you're going to include every sexual identity under the sun into the LGBT community, then you might as well include straight people. Although I would suggest changing the name from LGBT to HR, which stands for human race.
Both views are valid... I say let them come to the table, strength in numbers. But I totally get the point to where some one who has no sexual desire what-so-ever would not be forced to come out or ever have to alienate themselves because they'd rather be alone.
Thoughts: Can asexuals fall in love? Are asexuals homophobic? Do they masturbate? I would like to know the answers!
Some can, most aren't, many do.
After they fall in love, what happens next? what do they masturbate to?
After they fall in love, the move in together, get married, acquire children and/or pets, and eventually have a messy divorce, just like everyone else.
I personally masturbate to nothing. Others are able to have some form of fantasy. That's detailed in the third article in this series.
maybe we should include Data from star trek and other androids to the ace community. GLBTQAAA, Asexuals, Androids, Automatons
I feel for the plight of asexuals and any discrimination they experience. But I don't think we should lump them in with LGBT... I'm honestly surprised they'd want to be. Think of the parallel of atheists and minority religious groups. At some point atheists realized they didn't believe in any god and did not want to practice religion. They get discriminated against because of this. Does that mean atheist groups must be included with persecuted religious minorities in order to have a voice? When's the last time you saw atheists lumping themselves with wiccans or zoroastrians? Atheists recognize that no religion is very different than minority religion, and they have developed their own voice.
I'm not sure that many Asexuals would want to be included in the LGBT community. Part of the issue is that even amongst the LGBT community it is still all about sex. Like heterosexuals, all too often, the LGBT cannot comprehend those who lack the sexual desires or emotions. In fact, I've found that LGBTs are even less comprehending and understanding than heterosexuals. One thing that happens, is that gestures and common statements are often taken as tinged with a sexual undertone. However, that is not the intention of asexuals, who are not feeling the sexuality... and therefore do not comprehend that gestures and phrases can be misunderstood. Sometimes, this can even lead asexuals to trouble because they lack the emotional cues that something is "different". They have to intellectually learn what others sense emotionally... and those who sense such things emotionally, cannot comprehend that others do not have such antennae.
A new acronym: Androids, Asexuals, Automatons... AAA
I am just trying fathom a health human being under the age of 50 not having any sexual desires?? Maybe I need more education on this topic, and I am not being disrespectful at all, I am more curious than anything.. It just seems to me there would be a medical reason for no libido or sexual desire, physical or mental. We are animals and should have that internal mechanism. This the whole reason way homosexuality is just as normal as heterosexuality... its human!
*why a healthy
Asexuality is a lack of sexual attraction, not having no libido.
I agree that asexuals face a lot of ignorance and discrimination, but I don't see why anything more than an FAQ is needed to rectify the misunderstandings. Its not like ppl actively hate asexuals; they just dont get them.
Because people look at FAQs and articles like this series and watch videos on youtube from asexual people on the subject and they refuse to learn.
OK. Where do we put the "A"? On the end? Is just the "A" enough or do we need to include all the letters for the subcategories like 'hetero-normative' and 'homo-normative'? What are we up to now; LGBTQA? I know I'm missing some. I just can't keep track anymore. If this is to turn into a movement that covers all sexualities, shouldn't we add an "S" for straight? Or maybe we could simplify the whole thing and just use the letter "H" for human.
it sucks, how actually distant we can be from each other within our own community...hope for better
To borrow a very useful term from John Irving, I think that everyone who qualifies as a "sexual suspect" should be included under the Rainbow. That means that anyone who gets the old stink eye because of how they express themselves sexually is fighting the same fight.

Sadly, in a culture that is predominantly sex negative that's a wide segment of the population. The first thing the LGBTQ(A?)WTF? community needs to do is police the discrimination that exists within itself. Maybe, just maybe, we need to focus less on adding letters to an already overburdened abbreviation and more on being an inclusive community.

So much energy being wasted on who's sleeping with whom and how they're doing it... Grow up America. Just grow up.
Asexuals aren't sexually suspect though. No one cares about a person that does not have any kind of actual sex ever.
I have to disagree. The asexual, like anyone who deviates from the supposed "norm" will at least get the old raised eyebrow when they come out of the "closet."
Let me tell you something that happened to me. I was on a site once and put asexuality in my bio. Then one day a person started a conversation with me. But instead of a greeting like a normal human would expect, he started with "You are NOT asexual." Then in our conversation, I told him that was rude, but he never took it back. In another minute or so, he said that I was going to go to hell for my asexuality. I asked him why and he said asexuality is against nature. Real swell guy. Then after another minute or so, in which he refused to listen to anything I had to say, he ended the conversation by saying that he refused to talk anymore to me because I believed in fairy tales. He, and many others, went out of his way to make a point to discriminate against asexuality. People care enough to be jerks when they don't have to, and people care enough to stand up when that is going on. Just because you don't doesn't mean nobody does.
Asexuals are a part of the sexual minority community. Period.

For any other sexual minority to say otherwise is hypocritical.
BTW. There are a lot of cute asexual guys with whom I wouldn't mind having a "homoromantic" relationship.
Don't tell anyone how seldom you have sex and no one will know. Boom. Instant equal standing with your fellow straight people, or gay people, or bi people who have lots of sex—who presumably (hopefully) are not sharing their sex frequency info with strangers either.
Have you ever been out to lunch with coworkers or friends, and the conversation turns to conquests or hot-or-not comments about the waitstaff? You can only dodge those sorts of conversations so many times before people start to wonder what's up.
No. Never. Not even close. No one has ever asked me about the sex I have, and I have never asked anyone else either.

Anyone who feels bad about having lunch with voracious, salivating, sex-obsessed people might want to find a better group of friends to spend time with.
Well then congrats on being one of very few. I have as friends many religious and conservative friends as far as sexuality goes, and yet the subject still comes up. It happens a lot to others, and besides, asexuality isn't about not having sex, it's about not being sexually attracted to anyone. They're not the same thing, so your comment about "Don't tell anyone how seldom you have sex and no one will know." doesn't apply. There are sexual people that don't have sex for various reasons, there are asexual people that do for various reasons.
Remember that just because it doesn't happen to you, that doesn't mean that it doesn't happen to anyone else.
It's crazy that people are fighting to create discrimination and oppression where none exists.
It does exist. Did you even read the other articles? Especially this one? http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/06/20/asexual-discrimination_n_3380551.html?1371733068
I am starting to think this is ridiculous. LGBT will turn into LGBTQAI etc. there are too many people wanting their own special little niche. Why don't we just say queer or gay and stop with this political correctness? Asexuals are born that way thats fine I am glad they are open with that now but is asexuality really such an issue it requires a week to examine it?
I think asexuals should be included but the name needs to evolve from LGBT to some name indicating sexual minorities.
Everyone should be welcome to exist as they are, I think the issue probably is that most LGBT groups are groups who specialize in gaining equal legal rights for couplings that don't have them.

A man and woman who don't want to have sex with each other still can get married, that's not to say they don't face any prejudice it's just not in the wheelhouse of any major LGBT group.
this whole LGBT thing has always really bothered me

it is like Hetero sexuals decided ...."we're hetero sexual and everyone else fits into the other category

it is so simplistic....just like their mindset there's us and there's them in one nice package

but the reality is bisexuals have just about as much in common with heterosexuals as they do with homosexuals......so they should be a separate group

transgender people have about as much in common with heterosexuals and homosexuals as they do with bald eagles an elephant's....they should be a separate group

lumping together lesbians and gays I can understand because both are attracted to the same sex....

what about cross dressers they tend to be heterosexual men they have about as much in common with gay men as they do with straight men they should be a separate group

so you see why its confuse me why the Hetersexuals have just decided and maybe the gay community has too...that it is much easier to just make one category for heterosexuals and one category for anything or everyone else

but in reality the diversity of human sexuality is much more than such a black and white analysis
Exactly. If the act of sex is not the defining factor in being LGBTQ (or in sexual orientation generally), then asexuals should only be included to the extent that they identify also as LGBTQ. So, if you're a cis woman, for instance, who loves women emotionally/wants to be with a woman and identifies as lesbian, bi, or queer, but you're also asexual, then you're included automatically. But why would an asexual who is straight be included? They're just a straight person who doesn't have sex.

It's kind of weird how the asexual community uses the "it's not about sex" line as a reason that they should be included, when in fact it's for that very reason that asexuality should not even be seen as an orientation in need of inclusion.
We should come up with an entirely new system: The cartesian system! I am gay, semi horny, so my coordinates are (5, -5), asexuals, since nothing in this world is absolute (QUANTUM THEORY) would be, (-300, -75), Bisexuals, (1,-1), heterosexuals, (244, 288). Happy?
That's essentially what Storms' Model is.
First off, I don't have much knowledge about asexualism. I do not want to defend anyone, but I may ask "stupid questions." How is this different than people who decide to have not to have intercourse in a marriage or abstinence as a single individual?
Because asexuality isn't a choice? And it's not about not having sex? Asexuals don't choose to not experience sexual attraction to any gender, just like heterosexuals don't choose to not experience sexual attraction to the same gender.
Well, now do I feel like a dork. Of course, that makes sense. I just need to think a bit more. Thanks for answering my question. I also, meant defend, but offend.
I don't get the inclusion fight. It seems like its becoming the LGb..~t community. I'll stick up for anyone whose bullied why would you put up barriers when your trying to bring them down?
Hmm, as of right now I don't think that asexuals should be part of the LGBTQ community. Although, as someone mentioned earlier that including the 'Q' already pretty much covers everyone. The LGBT community is basically rallying for people attracted to the same sex or in the case of Trans people attracted to the same sex of their original sex (unless you're trans and gay in a way that you're attracted to the sex you've changed to; I wouldn't rule out such intricate variations). Anyhow, by saying that I don't believe they're part of the LGBT community I do not ignore the discrimination against them, I know it exists. However, I think the asexual community should have its own agenda. Please correct me if I'm wrong, but aren't most asexual people straight anyway? Also, why such a need to be part of LGBT instead of standing on their own? Is it because the LGBTQ community is already strongly established and it's easier for asexuals to be under their wing? I wouldn't speak against the idea if they were included, just to make it clear, I just don't understand the need to be included in that specific community.
LGBTetc is for anyone outside the heteronormative identity. Plain and simple. But you are somewhat right about asexuality needing to also stand on it's own. After all, the other communities inside the LGBTetc umbrella all have their own standing too. But to get there we need to be more visible, and with all the hate going around we need a bit of help from the alternate sexualities that came out before us.
Because asexual people are not mainstream, I can see where they might like to have company. But asexuality doesn't really fit in with those who have sex, regardless of straight or gay. I am thus torn and refraining from advocating one way or the other until I read or hear something which makes sense.
LGBTetc is about non-normative sexual and gender identities. That fits is, so it makes sense to me. You won't see me at a parade, but that's for other reasons.
The "LGBTQ" community is composed of people who self-select to be with others with whom they feel comfortable. The only issue I can see if when and if someone who is asexual wants more support than they can get from a LGBTQ group. I suspect that one can self-identify as LGB or T or Q--and also be asexual.
Mark McClemont, a 49-year-old homoromantic ace who lives in Reading, England, added that the ace community has learned so much from the LGBT movements that have come before it.

"Gay people have really had it the hardest of all. From verbal abuse to being killed, they've been put under so much fire for expressing their sexuality. They've suffered a lot, they've paved the way," he said.

Stonewall, the Compton Cafeteria Riots and a host of other movements were started by and involved Trans persons of color, just about every movement involved POC's and Trans persons of all races and yet here again Trans people are thrown under the bus and their deaths are erased, right along with Lesbians and Bisexuals and Intersex persons.

Apparently according to this man in England Transgender people aren't murdered, or denied housing or jobs, or charged with felonious crimes when defending their very life. Yes we live above the rest of society up there with the 1%er's. We are so lucky and privileged and it's the gay people who have suffered the most.

While any death because of hate is a tragedy, excluding subsets only shows how much people see (don't see) those subsets, in a sense "LBTI's" are non-existent. Thanks Mark McClement!
I am not as familiar with those who identify as asexual, but I do understand at least, that because one does not want to have sex, does not mean they don't want to be in love and fall in love. I imagine that asexual people can fall in love and be in relationships with any gender, any sexual orientation. Which includes gay asexuals, lesbian asexuals, transgender asexuals, intersex asexuals, queer asexuals. They want inclusion in the LGBT, where the T is still almost silent for the most part. The fight for gay marriage rests on the argument on being free to love whoever they want, which also means they can have sex with whoever they want. Asexuals want the same, they just want to be recognized they don't want/need the sex part.
Hi, My name is Abram and I'm an asexual. I happen to agree that we should not be included in the LGBT movement for three reasons. First of all the literal, we have an severely diminished or non-existent sex drive not an "alternate" sexualty. We are outside sexuality. Second of all is social, being a member of LGBT community will give us a sense of legitimacy which is not an attractive notion nor a reason to join any group. Last of all is protection of the group, we are new and are just realizing and adjusting to a fact that we now have a community, which is *fantastic* by the way. We need to stand on on own two feet.
I am not sure that I fully understand what A Sexual is. But I can understand that they must go through the whole coming out, and trying to figure out what is wrong with them like any one in the LGBT community. I always thought that there was something wrong with me (because every one around me were hetro.) and im sure they do go through people treating them badly, say a really hot woman who is A Sexual and a hetro man wants to be with them they may become very nasty towards that woman because she is not intrested in them. so I say why not Include them with the LGBT because they are different from others .LGBTQA sounds fine to me.
In a nutshell at it's core the definition of asexuality is someone that doesn't experience any sexual attraction for either gender. Romantic attraction is different, we think of the two as separate. I suggest you look at the AVEN wiki if you really want to understand.
I am asexual and I say whatever floats people's boats is fine. If we become part of the LGBT that is fine, but I don't think it is going to kill us all if we aren't. We are a community full of amazing and strong people and we definitely have the power to stand on our own two feet.

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Nobody deserves to be raped, for any reason. I find the entire idea of 'corrective rape' horrible and demeaning.
Completely agree! It's a horrific paradox that the only group of people who might learn from "corrective rape" are the proponents of "corrective rape"
I'm against rape of any kind, but yes, the proponents might learn how horrific it is if they were the victims , and might think twice next time before insulting ace individuals.
I don't think that people would do this if they hadent of see porn and other types of sexual stimulation first. I rerally think crimes would drop is porn was not sold or other sexual stimulation items that are out there.
It is absurd to believe that if we removed all porn that rape and deviant sex in society would cease. Some people use porn as an outlet to satisfy themselves so as not to go out and cheat or otherwise and others as a marital aid to spice up their sex lives. People also rape and murder in societies where sex outside of marriage and violent movies are taboo and priests as pedophiles when they are supposed to be chaste .

Any sane person should be able to discern reality from fantasy and as a child I used to laugh during a horror movie but if the same thing happened in reality I'd have been saddened and sickened by it.
Rape, doesn't correct anything! It shouldn't happen to anyone! Period.
Josh's comment made some sense in that a person who thinks corrective rape is a good thing, needs to understand the trama they inflict on another human being. Sometimes there are people who will only "get it" is if it is done to them. Some people have no natural empathy, as you can see from this very topic. I agree with you, but I also see Josh's point.
depends upon how good a judge of character the woman is - unless it is a spontaneous violent assault.
Rape "corrects" asexuality in exactly the same way that being forced to read the bible "corrects" atheism.
Exactly
There's no "corrective rape", it simply does not exist. Only battery and felony punishable with a quarter of a century in jail!!!
The only people who have something wrong with them are those that rape, bully or feel the right to inflict their beliefs and values on others through force.
Where did it state that she was raped as opposed to his only trying to kiss her and merely licking her face? If that's rape then all of the women who tried to kiss me or lick my face without consent throughout the years are also guilty of rape! He made a move and was rebuffed and so just get over it.

When women force themselves on men it's deemed innocent and cute but when a guy does it especially when men are expected to be the aggressor, it's intolerable.
I never said she was raped, and you very well know what rape means. I have a lesbian friend who was 'correctively raped' and it hurt her badly, without 'correcting' anything.Just because the woman in the article wasn't actually raped does not make my statement any less true. I believe no one, woman, man, or otherwise should force themselves on another person, as rape/assault is awful and should never be condoned. I apologise if you took my comment in the wrong light.
Point being though, this happens...whether it be her or some other woman or man they actually get raped by people ignorant enough to think that they are doing anyone a favor.
The point is that this woman is crying over spilled milk that's did not even spill. I suspect that she's more upset with his not understanding after she'd poured her heart out to him and thus she's hurt.

Some people only understand something when they themselves experience it such as a death in the family or the GOP Senator who was against gay rights until he found out that his son was gay. Sometimes we do the dumbest things in trying to help others and parents are no exception in dealing with their children.
you think it happens 10 times a year? I doubt it.
What's worse is that people who rape rarely get punished, the law is very lenient on rape, this is why not many people who get raped come out and try to get justice...this shouldn't happen.. people who agree with rape shouldn't be confident enough to say it, if the government uses our stuff to spy on us then these sort of thinking should be used to monitor potential rapers.
I find it horrible that people are still not getting it. Rape is a violent crime where the motivating factor is humiliation and control. Sex is just the rapist's weapon of choice. He wasn't trying to "fix" her, he was trying to humiliate and control her.
Every sane human does.
Dear Miss Shakespeare, Dear Desdemona, since arriving in this country, about 25 years ago, I have always been completely mystified with the omnipresence of "rape" pushed by the American Feminists on the American People. They seem to think only of "rape". Do they think of murder, of mayhem, of prison brutality, of authoritarian parents who force their offspring to hold a sign saying, "I am a thief", or "I am lazy", or else, do they think of the people completely tortured around the World? No! It is "rape, rape, rape!". But if nobody should indeed be done anything against their will, and I fully agree, we must also consider the many other problems that exist in the World. I was raped myself, when I was 26, and you know what? Some people have done far worse to me, and much more deeply, than an unwelcome little piece of flesh into another, for 10 minutes. ENOUGH, already!!!!!!
I do focus on things other than rape, but those discussions do not pertain to this article. If I went off on everything I have deep feelings and opinions about (the prison system, racism, bigotry, gun control, poverty, mental health, torture, factories, globalism, banks, murder, homelessness, etc.) this comment and discussion would go on forever and ever. I do not mean to make it seem like rape is the only important thing (there are much greater, more harmful things I could be discussing!) so I apologize for making things other than rape appear to be trivial, that was not my intention. I also apologize for the length of that sentence, my grammar is awful today. I would also like to inform you that I am neither American or a feminist. I do admit that lately all I have seen articles on is rape, and I would like to see more articles on other issues. 
Thank you for pointing it out.(also Ms.Shakespeare? I do like the sound of that!)
Dear Miss Shakepeare, Thank You, very kindly, very sincerely! You are right, so many horrible things are going on in our Brave New World, If the discussion which you started went on forever and ever, it would be an excellent thing, indeed! I am a male, but a Feminist also. Yet, the American Feminist Movement, I clamour, is NOT Feminist: it is a Trojan Horse, designed to make people of both genders suffer, and be obedient. A huge part of what these ugly women (there are ugly men indeed as well!) do, is polarize women on being "victims" of the male gender, and to send as many members of it to prison as they can, and for as many years as possible. Being raped is not good, of course! But truly, this is basically all they ever talk about. REAL Feminists were George Sand, the Brontes, (the first page of "Jane Eyre" is very clear!), Flora Tristan the Great, Simone de Beauvoir, Simone Weil, and presently, Elisabeth Badinter, These are the ones I know, and I hope more are around. About American Feminism, maybe could you read "The Bostonians", by Henry James? You will see two very different types there: Miss Birdseye, and the sinister Olive Chancellor. Guess who won, Miss Sahekespeare? More on that, more on everything, please? And by the way, my name is Arthur Rimbaud. I adore your Tragedies, and your Sonnets!
Great comment, Jeff!

Also among the modern feminists, we can include: Camille Paglia and Susie Bright. Madame Georges Sand was a brilliant addition.
Thank you, my Xak!!
It's good to hear from you, Mr.Rimbaud! I will have to look for a copy of "The Bostonians", it sounds like something I would enjoy reading. I am glad to see that you too have noticed a distinction between 'feminists' and 'american feminists'. Instead of trying for equal rights for everyone, the modern-day feminist movement seems more concerned with themselves than the other people who are also suffering. I find that lately, men are being made out to be 'evil' or 'oppressive' when really they have just as many problems as we women do. There are many societal issues that need to be resolved, regardless of gender. Instead of focussing on the problems of one gender, why not focus on problems that affect us all? We cannot say we want gender equality if we are only working towards equality towards one of the genders.
And with that, I should probably stop. It is too early to be bothering people, and I know my comments can be a little (or a lot) rude in the early mornings.
Thank you for all of the suggestions, I must look for them!
Miss Shakespeare, you are a Real Woman: kind, noble, and good, you seek to improve our Human Condition, as Monsieur Andre Malraux would have phrased it. This is the purpose of True Feminism, the quest for True Equality. Rude, you? How could you even be, being profoundly Noble, and also so High? Using Noble Causes, and twisting them around, is as old as the World, but the American Feminists, led by consciously evil but brilliant women, are part of a number of ugly movements, alas, that became ferociously aggressive, in the 1850's. American Feminism was infected by them at the end of the 1800's, and this is the reason why they are not seeking Peace, and Love, but Anger, Revenge, and Rage, and Hate. I wish I were wrong, Miss Shakespeare! However, if you analyze that novement, particularly since the awful 1980's, there appears quickly that there is a bad, very bad intention there, and that women, as well as men, are its intended and well planned victims. Also, please check Lilith, the Official Matron of that movement: that, is itself, will tell you more, than I can even ever say.
I will have to check Lilith, thank you! You have been an incredible wealth of information, and it's very refreshing to have a civil discussion that doesn't end in petty insults on the internet. It was excellent to have a conversation with someone as polite and knowledgeable as yourself, Mr. Rimbaud, thank you for taking the time to talk with me!
Dearest Miss Shakespeare, I apologize very sincerely for not responding more quickly to you. Please do not see a disinterest in me regarding your wonderful Spirit and Mind, what happened is the ever lasting prosecution from my older sibling, Lady Macbeth, who with the centuries has been growing even darker inside, and harms for no reason whatsoever, waits for her birth brother's death from terminal Hepatitis C by delaying my parents' inheritance resolution forever, while being herself a doctoress in one of the most select neighbrohoods of one of the very most select cities in the World. The Judicial System there is so slow, so bad, and so extraordinarily detached from human situations, that it is letting that Atrocity delay the resolution forever. One thing, Miss Shakespeare, is that your Lady Macbeth, awful and she was, still had SOME remorse. This one, has none, whatsoever. I was unaware of the existence, in Humankind, of such determined and glacial monsters. Life has taught me that if they are indeed rare, they still do exist, here and there, and most of the time completely unnoticed, behind a conventional and even elegant appearance. The Best, let us talk soon!
Agreed. Personally I believe all rapists should be killed.
I really do think rapists should be punished in some way, but I do not think death should ever be the only solution.
Unfortunately, what punishment is there, unless American prisons become more like Russia's Black Dolphin? (Though I think we kinda need that)
I agree and I've never heard of asexuals.
Well up until about a year and a half ago I hadn't either, I just assumed I was a bit off or something.
Republican creed.
'corrective rape' would not only be horrible and demeaning , it would illegal.
I find the entire concept of 'corrective rape' to be an unlikely occurrence.
Would like to see stats on it. Especially since the author of this piece frames a man's attempt to kiss her (which could well have been based on romantic feelings for her) as 'sexual assault'!
Which is why it likely hardly ever happens; probably no more likely than rape between heterosexuals, or homosexuals, or hetero-to-homosexual or the reverse.
I agree.That is insane. People need to just leave other people alone.
I completely agree. Rape is an act of violence not passion, period.
I admit I had no idea what asexuality was until very recently. But it saddens me that those in the community have to organize rallies to be heard and accepted. I love that the visibility is growing, but what is it that people don't understand? I consider myself an extremely sexual person so I can't say I understand, but I feel that in some ways I can relate. Our society dismisses anything different. We attack the sexually expressive and those to whom sex is not a part of who they are. So which is it? To be considered "normal" a person must be sexually active 2-5 times a week, with certain types of people, in certain practices??? If a book series of all things can single-handedly bring BDSM to the mainstream who the heck is anyone to judge the sexual appetite (or lack of) of another? The idea of corrective rape is so monumentally disturbing. Those who believe this is viable in any way are the ones who need some correction. In this world we are all different. Why not allow that diversity enhance the beauty of our humanity?
That's right. I wish more people were like you--that they didn't assume that asexual people are trying to insult sex or take it away from other people. It's really refreshing to see someone say what you've said here--that you're a sexual person and you can't understand it from your own perspective, but you don't believe other people need to be made more like you in order to be okay. I have no desire to make non-asexual people like me either, so we have that in common. :)
I don't understand it, and I don't care to. People's sexual preferences mean nothing to me. I think it should all be a non-issue. I don't think anyone else has a place to judge what ANYONE does in the bedroom, in their living room, or hanging upside down with a ballgag in their mouths. I just don't really think sexuality is something to be accepted or rejected. It's personal and it isn't up to anyone but the people who are doing it. I guess by the fact that I don't care/object to other people's romantic and sexual lives means that I actually accept it. But in reality, I've very neutral to it all. I just don't judge people on that kind of thing.
That's the right attitude. WHO CARES what other people do, as long as its not hurting or effecting anybody.
The difficulty I see starts with using an asexual lifestyle to define a "community". That isolates, differentiates and categorizes in a way that may help with a "group identity", but sacrifices a sense of belonging to the greater society of humanity. To emphasize differences rather than similarities will never be a unifying practice. Not presenting any cure for discrimination or prevention plan to curb assault, just making an observation. The incidents described in the post are examples of inappropriate behavior and lack of social conscience, without regard to the identity of the target of the words or actions.
sisiter,I had written something almost like your response earlier and erased it. I completely agree: I am neutral because 1) what someone does in private is private; and 2) what someone does in private is none of my business even when they don't care if I know or not. Wouldn't it be nice if we just accepted someone based on what we see, rather than having to know all their secrets? I'm thinking if everyone knew everyone else's secrets, and judged accordingly, there would be precious few of us who would have alot of friends.
I totally agree with you!
Good point sister. I'm getting really tired of people thinking their sexual preference needs to be shared with the world. I don't take a poll at work, church, or anyplace else, asking if and who you had sex with last night. If you don't want to have sex, that's your choice, but why do you feel you need to tell anyone about that? Your sexual habits need to stay in your own bedroom. Just because the 'net allows you to share doesn't mean you should. Keep it to yourself and it will be a non-factor in your relationships.
Neither do I. That's why I wish people would quit talking about their sex lives and leave it in the bedroom (or whatever part of their home they prefer)! Maybe if people stopped trying to shove it down other people's throats with parades, rallies, blogs, bumper stickers, etc., we could all focus on more important things than who wants to have sex with whom. Or, in this case who doesn't want to have sex with whom.
Very interesting take. I am also puzzled at the human will to divide, separate, dictate, isolate, force and control. It is all violence. All 'movements' do this and they are all violent. All special interests and power mongers share the violence, however subtle or overt, and seek to silence their opposition. Humanity is all a creation of life and until each individual can see this in himself without condemnation, he will see others as the enemy. In fact, the enemy is within and he is us, as we deny our inherent and divine origins and creations of the Creator, all equal in His eyes. We live in a hell of our own creation and of our own choosing. All of this obsession with one aspect of humanity is self centered and violent in and of itself.
The problem that I have is when gay and other groups push their ideas on me.. I have had this happen many times. I don't care either, but acting like I should be gay just because theu are is wrong to me.
That's what Conservatives have said all along. Keep private private & public public. Ask don't tell works in every situation.
You can add me to the list of sexual people who are fine with asexuals and don't need them to be more like me to be "OK". :)
I've known what "asexual" was for a long time (the "a" gives it away). I've also heard people say they they didn't understand how someone could be not interested in sex, but never have I heard anyone insult it or try to take it away from anyone else. I don't think anyone actually cares if someone else isn't interested in sex.The rape comments are tacky at the very least, but maybe someone was trying to make a joke. This excludes, of course, the fool who wishes rape on someone. I have to think he is the exception to the rule and is obnoxious to everyone.
Ivy, I accept you for who you are but I find it hard to believe you have no sexual desires. Most people who lack sexual desire have physical problems. Celibates have sexual desires. Thomas Merton was a very famous Trapist Monk that lived for decades as a celibate. Prior to becoming a monk, he was a hedonist. To each their own! Good Luck.
That's fine, you can "find it hard to believe" all you like, but you don't have to accept that this is the way life is for some people who actually aren't sick. The article does discuss that people who identify as asexual have been subjected to some scientific study and some portion of the population just is that way despite having no "physical problems" as you said. Feel free to look up the research (Anthony Bogaert and Lori Brotto are key names, among others) if you would like to see actual documentation in a scientific context. I think it's a pretty common misconception that "most people who lack sexual desire have physical problems," and I do wonder if your belief that that is so is actually based on scientific research . . . because "most people who X are Y" is usually a pretty strong statement that is used to pathologize people like me and it does make it harder for us to get treatment or acknowledgment for legitimate, unrelated problems we may have. Thanks!
I guess I just think I don't have to understand or not understand it. Understanding implies judging and that's not either my right or my concern. Each person should just be able to live their own life as they see fit as long as they aren't hurting anybody else. When I meet someone I never give a thought, one way or another, about their sexual orientation. Now perhaps that would be different if I was looking for a sexual partner (I've been married for 59 years) but, even then, based on the memory of my youth I feel I'd just forget about it if they indicated a lack of interest.
I saw the previous article regarding this subject, (apparently missed the first two), and I am saddened to hear of the discrimination and violence being perpetrated on members of this community. With everything seemingly tied into it's sexual context anymore in our culture, we have become the biggest sexual busybodies in the history of mankind. It truly brings pain to my heart to hear of "corrective rape" in this or any other circumstance. I won't ask what they were thinking, because this is not a case where the thought process is being used. I have been previously unaware of the plight of these people, but now that I am I will try and advocate for this community. As I had posted previously, there are many very positive things that can come of this being your NATURAL inclination, (doesn't happen to have been mine), and I cannot think of something that would be less offensive then someone who says, 'sex? Thanks, not interested'. Hope that as time goes on you encounter less discrimination. Good luck going forward.
I feel for what you are going through. It's ridiculous for people to make assumptions about what they think you should feel or be. You are brave. Articulate.

The corrective rape attitude is frightening and makes me very angry. I've read about incidents worldwide perpetrated on lesbians. For truth, I wasn't aware that there were asexual communities. I've read that there are asexual individuals in different species, including mammals. Which we also happen to be.

Hope things change for the better for you, in regard to not having to be afraid of the those who fear your difference from them.
Thanks. (This particular incident is the only one like it that's happened to me explicitly, happily, and it was when I was 19, and I'm past 30 now.) I'm not afraid for the most part, which is why I keep talking about it, but I think people who have less privilege than I do are more victimized by it to this very day, and I want to help in any way I can to get that little bit closer to getting rid of that attitude. I'm glad you support us.
I Accept everyone for who they are all that matters to me is personality. If your a good person your a welcome person to me we can hang out have fun what ever. Ive always thought Personailty is the only thing to judge someone on Everything else i accept as normal & needing to be respected.
We are all different although we have surviving in common. About the only time we need to come together is when the right to exist it threatened. Sex is no reason to correct anyone. So I also support this group and I'm sure that it is not a bad thing at all to not have to go through the emotions of sex too early or at all. I love sex, but I'm convinced that I could have gone a long way without it. People are fools and those who think they are helping by raping someone, they need to be treated like the criminal they are.
Ivy, I don't think anything wrong with being asexual, I have a husband who was asexual and didn't know it, trying to fit the sexual expectations of a marriage, and causing both of us unmeasurable misery. We ended up of course in sexless, but a very affectionate, friendship marriage. I denounced my sexuality, because I truly love him, and sex for me also became absolete. I am capable of sexual intimace, but have no need for it anymore on a carnal level. Said this, I have to state, that I did not have need to "become" a voice to advocate or correct sexual orientation for anyone. The expression of Love has many forms, and sexuality serves not just procreation, but also one's passion about life, or even comfort. To be sexual, and express in such a way or not, apart from sexual orientation, is an individual choice. To go out with a sexual person and expect he she will not have sex on their mind during an intimate dinner, is unjustified. Why are you pressing the issue of your sexual or non-sexual preference, if you have no desire for it? I go out with friends, both male and female, and have a great time, sex hardly mentioned, unless specific discussion needed about some pending issue. Don't date sexually charged partners, and don't bring up your asexuality as a dinner conversation topic.
I'm glad you don't think there's anything "wrong" with being asexual, and that you have some personal experience with it that you worked through to find happiness. As for me, I don't know if you misunderstood something I wrote, but I don't date anyone (so I don't have a problem with "dating sexually charged partners"), and the mention of "bringing asexuality up as a dinner conversation topic" does imply that it's my bringing it up that's the problem (after which the inappropriate interrogations including personal questions and the dismissive and hateful comments that ensue are considered just a natural consequence of mentioning it). Hate doesn't happen because I bring it up. Hate happens because people are hateful, and that's the problem, not the fact that I might be willing to discuss it at dinner or anywhere else. However, if you think I must be the one who brings it up for it to get BROUGHT up, you're mistaken. Sex and relationships are central to most people's lives, and as a mid-thirties woman who is not married, not dating, and completely happy about it, the "why???" question IS pitched to me in normal conversation all the time. Please do respect me enough to acknowledge that I live in this society and I am an active participant in a functional social circle in which sex and relationships ARE, naturally, going to come up now and then.
Thank you for your answere -- I guess, you too missed my point; I simply don't think people hate others for their sexual or non-sexual orientations, I only believe it is a personal, private business, and when it becomes publicly demending and selfrightous, it irks those, who try to live their lives best they know how to. I ask you -- Why would someone, who is not interested in intimate touching and expression, would want to discuss it on any level, and try to make others accept as "normal"? For most it is not normal, but could care less, if it suits you. Celibacy is not new... LOVE is the only energy, which needs expression in us, hormons serve the fuils. After making the choice of becoming non-sexual, sex is not an issue for me anymore, I owe no one any explanation. The "activism" is, what I find unnecessary regarding this topic. Sex is not all that important, but relationships seem to be, intimate or otherwise, to humankind. Within the relationship, one can find the right resonance with each other, or leave... Body-chemistry and brain-function has a lot to do with human sexuality. Consciousness and levels of awareness comes with it. Today's humanity is largery tested. One of the tests is the essence of procreation, the other is: becoming aware of our existence on multi-dimentions levels. We can not change others, only change ourselves, as every change begins with us.
The problem with "who cares what you do in private" is that it forces certain types of relationships to be closeted and other people's relationships to be presented everywhere as the norm. No, I wouldn't have any interest in discussing the specific details of what intimate touch I like with a general audience, but yes, people need to know that many types of intimacy are okay. If you look at the questions and comments on this very article, you will see a ton of people who want us to try X, assume we haven't tried Y, tell us we need therapy, and treat us like we're sick. IF THIS KNOWLEDGE THAT WE EXIST IS NOT AVAILABLE IN THE PUBLIC DISCOURSE, those assumptions about people like us TAKE ROOT and result in damaging experiences: asexual people being "treated" by doctors with hormones they don't need (it happened to my friend); asexual people being shamed into believing they should want sex they don't want but feel disempowered to reject; asexual people who cannot FIND intimacy on their terms because no one is letting them know anyone feels the same. If you say awareness efforts are unimportant just because they are irrelevant to YOU and you really think no one is hurt by "let's just all love how we want," you're refusing to recognize that people are being denied full lives based on misconceptions that only awareness can erase.
I agree with most you have just said, I too mentioned 'awareness' as essential...
I did NOT suggest hormons to be introduced, only, that they are fundamental part of the sex drive (of all creatures, not just humans.) All sexual expressions had been recorded for thousands of years, just read the love of Gilgamesh for Enkidu in a Sumerian epic. Homosexuality, asexuality, bisexuality etc. has been part of the human experience, as long as we've existed. I did not say, or deny awareness issues are unimportant, only, that maybe the way people are going about it is creating more harm, than good for the cause. I've walked gay-pride parade, which left me with distaste, and NOT becuse they were gay, but because the way they acted. If heterosexuals would behaved in such a way, they'd be arrested pronto. -- In this world, we have "stereotypes, and aberrations". It is no accident, why a certain "norm" has developed over the ages, answering to a basic design in need. The new wave of largely different human spectrum is awakening to a new consciousness. But LOVE is still our most important energetic reality to act upon. To separate emotions from body expressions, is what causing this monumental confusion of our times.
Very, very true. I've been told I have the libido of a teenage boy, so no, I can't honestly say I "understand" either, but another's sex drive, high, low or nonexistant, is none of my business, unless we're contemplating a romantic relationship. Even then, it's not my place or problem to decide if the other person is "right" or not.
Exactly!! I don't need to fully understand to get it. I get that their bodies are different than mine. I get that some people see them as freaks. (Those people are uninformed or just plain hateful) I get that a person's sex drive, lack of, or anything in the middle is no concern of mine. Unless as you mention I intend to be romantically involved with that person. My philosophy has always been, harm none. After that be you, be happy!
I really agree,it should be a personal thing. I have done both ways and sex just does nothing for me one way or another. I don't fault people that want it,or people that don't,its just not something I enjoy or feel a need for.
Inspiring Question ~ "Why not allow that diversity enhance the beauty of our humanity?"
"Our society" ???? NO-people in our society , try to remember that you (and I) are a part of that "society". This is the same thought that allows organizations to perpetrate ill behaviors , because it is "the army" ", the government", "the union" , you get the point. It is people not some nondescript organization.
I see your point. Mine was simply that the majority of people (aka "society") condemn what they deem abnormal. Of course not everyone feels this way. But sadly it is often the loudest and largest group that we refer to when discussing "society".
im a heterosexual male, but i know exactly what asexual people are about...and i think anyone who pretends otherwise is being kind of shortsighted. the same exact feelings of intimacy that you have for other humans (whether they be man or woman) is the exact feelings that asexuals DONT have. it's not complicated, nor is it something that should be hidden or "kept in the bedroom." all of us hetero's/ bi's/ homo's like to share our feelings concerning sexuality, so why should asexuals be any different? everyone wants to feel they belong and that they have a community -- ESPECIALLY if they belong to a select group where they don't run into people of their "kind" that often. people need to start realizing that people all over the world are all compelled by some hidden force to feel, think and act the way that they do. we're creatures of circumstance who are playing roles in this life, but at the end of the day, we're all the same -- regardless of what our nature compels us to do/ not do. this is harder to understand in those of us who are compelled to hurt others or act in ways that society deems 'bad' or 'evil', but at the end of the day, even these people are just acting out their own nature. we all need to start understanding that who/ what we are on a superficial level was, for the most part, prechosen for us.
F&F What a thoughtful compassionate comment. I agree 100%. Vive la difference! I too have only recently heard of asexuality - so their visibility program is obviously working! Yes, the barriers they encounter are par for anyone who dares to be different. And like you the concept of corrective rape horrifies me.
Wow, very well written.

Sadly, I think what you wrote is true though: most people actually DO consider people 'normal' only if they have sex two to five times a week with certain types of people. I've never understood why people get so bent out of shape over other people's preferences -- be they sexual, political, religious or whatever. To not be able to relate to it is one thing; but to get so bent ouf shape about something that you get very angry, speak out publicly against it and even support ideas like "corrective rape"... The only explanation I can come up with is that people fear things they are threatened by. And they are threatened by it because on some level, they identify with it. For instance, it's usually the ultra-Republican, all-American "straight" men who oppose gay marriage and rant about the sanctity of the American family who wind up getting caught with their pants down, so to speak: propositioning young men for sex while their trophy wives are at home with the kids.
Thank you so much! I think people fear what they do not understand or are brought up to hate. Not all who fear identify, though there is a large number who do. People feel it is their duty to impart their beliefs on the next generation, even if those beliefs are unproven or hateful. Of course we want to teach our children what we know, but to take away the concept of critical thinking, such was the case in the most recent GOP platform, we are stagnating our society. It is my belief that a society built on acceptance and the convergence of ideas and backgrounds is only going to become stronger.
'.....an anonymous user wrote, "[A]sexuality is not a thing. You are just ugly and no one wanted to date you, so you made up a thing to cuddle your lonely self as you cry into your pillow. Also, I hope you get raped. It has a dual benefit, you'll get laid finally AND put you into your place as well.".....'

Sounds so very, very 'xtian' to me, at least the ones I seem to run into to.

Dear haters: Please pick on me. I am a 25-year retired Army Master Sergeant with three combat tours, wounded in action twice and decorated numerous times for valor, including a Bronze Star for Valor under fire. Instead of picking on those who are unable or unwilling to defend themselves, give me a go. I'll gladly tell you how to reach me.

Trust me - you'll go to ICU.
"...an anonymous user wrote"

Just as valid as when Fox News uses the phrase "Some people say..." to make their biased opinions seem more legitimate.
No, it'd subtly different. You can actually go to her blog, and see that someone wrote that, but didn't want to leave their name. So, there is attribution but it's to an anonymous source.

The "some people say" technique forgoes attribution to make a point seem true or to make it seem like a legitimate issue whether it is or not.
Then you might have said "someone on her blogspot wrote..."
Seriously? I bet you could find the link to it on tumblr if you looked.
Well, in this case there were people interviewed that preferred to not be named, and thus are a real source but prefer privacy, so I fail to see how that makes their experience less credible. For instance, in the first article, I was mentioned but not by name. Are you telling me that my experience as used there is less valid than that of Julie in this one just because my name wasn't used? Stop trying to discredit peoples experience and minimize asexuality. You have been someone that has had negative things to say after every article in this series so far, and despite the resources staring you in the face, you keep it up. Please go away and don't comment again, all of your comments are bad and you should feel bad.
Nice diatribe. Has nothing to do with what I wrote, but nice diatribe all the same. How about you go away and stop commenting. Let's see if either of our requests will go heeded, since I have about as much respect for your comments as you do for mine.
funny you are criticizing someone for going off topic when you havent written one comment that is on topic. did you even read the article? if you had then you would have known the anonymous comment was in response to her blog post. any other irrelevant comments you need to nitpik now?
He was quoting from the article and then commenting on that quote.
Which was addressed quite awhile ago. Keep up.
Ah, you explained why you leveled criticism at the one who quoted it rather than the one who wrote it?  Good to know. 
Trying to make up for your ignorance by resorting to a personal attack. Good to know.
You felt personally attacked, did you?  Huh.  Weird.  Anyway, have a jolly good night.  :)
Not like MSNBC.
Ummm, what?
Not really. An actual user who did not give their real name actually did post that. "Some people say" is a lie Fox uses to make up stories with. I hope you understand the difference.
While true, Fox media has been harped on plenty already. Could you spot bias in other News and Media stations? If you think you could, name some more sometime. This gets old and it's losing it's punch.
And CNN doesn't? There are more people on CNN & PMSNBC with agendas than Fox & they have no counter points. When Fox says "some people say," it's almost always to a person defending the opposite view and they want to bring out that opinion. That's why they're number one in cable.
Sorry but I don't believe you. Most people who come on here spouting out unasked for information are normally attention seekers. That aside, I like your "sounds very christian" comment. Explain how you made Master Sergeant at 25.
I was active duty for 25 years.  I didn't make MSgt until I had 21 years of service.  Apologize for the miscommunication.  
were you the one who wrote that in the first place?
Join at 17. thats 8 years. Army promotes quickly. Entirely possible, and often done by certain folks good at their jobs. :p
What the heck are you smoking, Dan?
The guy said, "I was active duty for 25 years. I didn't make MSgt until I had 21 years of service."
If he joined at 17 and you ADD 21 years, he was 38 years old when he made MSgt. and got out of the service at age 42.
I merely misread it? But anyway.
If you go 25 years in the AIR FORCE and only make Master Seargent, you're below average.

If you go 25 years in the ARMY and only make MSgt, then you're the biggest screwup in the history of the known universe.

I mean, it is what it is.
"I am a 25-year retired Army Master Sergeant."

Read again.
Did I comment again, or something? This was already explained to me, thanks for nothing.
He didn't make master at 25, believe me i thought he said that too, he's a retired Master Sergeant that was in for 25 years
Perhaps 25 years refers to his length of service in the military. It would seem logical.
Alessandro, my first take was just like yours, but I re-read it and reckless was saying he had 25 years in, and came out a Master Sergeant, not that he was a 25 year old M/S. Otherwise he would have been a "master sergeant prodigy". ;)
you don't need to believe him, it was posted in the 8th paragraph or so...
He's not 25. He served 25 years in the military.
the hell the that have to do with christian?
Is this English?
i was half asleep when i typed that
No worries. It happens to us all.
he didn't make Master Sargent at 25 he's a liar lol
MSgt. Reckless served in the US Army for 25 years, and then retired.
Signed,
Also A Veteran
I get it, dude. I read it as a 25 year old, not 25 years of service.
Signed,
Also A Veteran.
Not a problem! only one error- I am very far from being a 'dude' ;-) but I get it!
Oh snap. I should have read your name...My apologies, ma'am.
It's OK!! Apology accepted!
I went to an about site for promotion requirements in the US Army. He could be telling the truth about retireing (I assume medically) if he had joined the army at 18 years of age.
"Master Sergeant/First Sergeant (E-8) - 8 years" time in service requirements. The website did state that it was highly unlikely to make the second highest enlisted rank in that amount of time, but it is possible, especially within a special operations warfare unit.
He didn't make Master Sergeant at age 25, he said he was a retired Master Sergeant with 25 years of service.
The Master Sergeant didn't say he was 25, he said he was 25 years retired. Which means he's been retired for 25 years. Read slower next time.
Thank you so much for explaining that to me. It's not like several other people commented the exact same response, explaining the exact same thing, 7 or 8 DAYS ago. Boy am I glad you came along...What's worse is that HP doesn't display the responses to comments, making it impossible to see for yourself when someone makes a similar comment, ensuring you don't have to...Only if.
You're meeting the wrong "Christians."

Please don't make the mistake of advocating the understanding of one group while pigeon-holing another.

Real Christians don't talk like that, and it makes me sad that people can call themselves Christians and still behave like that. I'm sorry you've had a bad experience, because the "ones you've met" are hypocrites and liars, exactly the kind of religious fanatics Jesus made a sport out of debunking and calling out when he was alive.
Samanfa: I must confess that I grew up in a fundamentalist Jehovah Witness home. I was thrown away at age 16 and managed my own until age 18 at which time I joined the Army. I stayed 25 years (even though living a gay compartmentalized life). I completed three combat tours, wounded twice in action and decorated for valor on numerous occasions. I came out to the Captain who processed my discharge and disability paperwork.

Granted, my experience with christianity has been awful. I have met very few who are truly willing to accept and tolerate; most either wish to convert me or for me to simply go away. Amusing, seeing as I fought for their right to their beliefs.

I actually do admire the philosophy of Jesus, however I deny his divinity (my thing).

I now take care of the man who abused me so terribly (he has Alzheimers, congestive heart failure and many other maladies). I don't know what that makes me, but I can look at myself in the mirror every morning.

Thank you for your comments and response.
People who are truly Christians don't walk around beating their chest proclaiming it. They live it, and can be spotted because of their actions, not because of what they say.
One christian calling all the other christians not christian. Pots and kettles.
Did I at any point identify myself as a Christian? I was stating facts; Christianity teaches love, not hate. You don't need to be a Christian to observe that the teachings of Christianity (love) and the actions of some self-proclaimed Christians (hateful, citing the original comment) are incongruous.

Now, if you don't mind, I have more important things to worry about aside from your attempts at insightfulness, like celebrating my team's second straight NBA championship.

Next time you try to read between the lines, make sure you have your glasses on.
So any christian church you disagree with is not christian? Westboro loves jesus. I guess you don't call them christian. The NBA now runs bible study? Next time you pontificate about christians, try reading the lines, not between them. 
The problem is that these days there are more of the hypocrites and liars than of the other kind... sad but true.
This guy needs to be raped with a watermelon. For real.
I think I love you, reckless1021 :)
Not a hater. I agree with your points regarding rape... except for your conclusion that its Christian. (If those are "the ones you run into", you really need to get out more. Pretty narrow view, IMO)

Also interesting that you object to a violent act by offering to commit violence. You insult me and my religion by implying "Christians = rape", then threaten to send me to the ICU for "picking on you" (presumably by saying that I disagree with your "Christians = rape" BS.)

Sadly, it sounds to me like YOU might be the "hater" here. You're just baiting someone "Christian" to defend themselves against your slanderous diatribe as an excuse to flex yourself and be all scarey. I think you're counting way too heavily on that "turn the other cheek" business to keep you from being beaten up by somebody's religious grandmother.

The comment "hope you get raped" was way, way out of line, but so is your BadAss BS as a counter argument. 25 years retired Master Sergeant? Then we're about the same age. I strongly disagree with your blanket assertion and back-handed accusation. So consider yourself "picked on" by my objection.

Let me make it simple for you...
Why don't YOU stand in front of ME and say "Since you're a Christian, I think you're a rapist." Go ahead. Pick on me for my religion, hater.

I promise you won't be bored.
While I agree that he was out of line and hypocritical, I don't agree that you should get on his level, violence never solves anything and i'm pretty sure he won't learn anything from it. (not to mention Violence isn't christlike either)

But he really needs to stop being so high and mighty, this is the internet, being Master whatever means as much as being potato couch, sorry to break it to you.
You are quite correct. I was having a particularly bad couple of minutes when I wrote my reply. Normally, I would not have dignified his comment with a response. It was misdirected anger, and I do regret having done it.

Thank you for your gentle and obviously well intended "correction" (Not sure that's the right word, but its the best I can think of at the moment.)

Be well!
No problem , Although I Do understand Your frustration, Its sad that enough People would act in such a way that people see religious People as judgmental hateful people and that the rest of us get sucked down into that Category...
Something you disagree with? Must be a CHRISTIAN!!!!!!!!!!
While I enjoyed most of what you had to say and I myself have had very negative experiences with some Christians, I don't think it makes sense to assume that the rape-wisher was Christian, what about asexuality could Christians have a beef with on scriptural or moral grounds? Plus Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy, the vast majority of all Christendom, heaps honors and accolades and saint canonizations on those who have lived sexless and "pure" lives.

That being said, I am certainly not denying what Asexuals have gone through at the hands of bigots or that they are frequently disrespected. I know that there are plenty of those who fear what they do not understand and victimize asexuals. I mean even here at huffington post, when I type the plural word for "asexual" I get a red squiggly "misspelled" line under it as if its not a real word.
I agree that Christianity strongly advocates an asexual life, but in practice I have found many Christians are quite uncomfortable with ANY "unusual" traits.

But that said, no person even halfway serious about their religion would wish rape on someone. It is unfair to blame that on Christianity just because most people in our society happen to claim that label - and I say that as someone who vacillates between atheism and deism.
Christianity DOES NOT advocate an asexual life. They advocate abstinence for all who are unmarried and celibacy for *some* people. Asexuality is not the same as celibacy or abstinence. I was raised Christian and my identity has been met with disdain from Christian individuals as well.
I know where you're coming from - but the actions of most believers has little to do with what the Bible says.
The argument I have heard from christians about how my asexuality is "perverse, disgusting, immoral" and sending me to hell are the following 2 reasons, rehashed each time.

"God said to go forth and procreate!"

and

"God designed every human being to have sexual attraction and fall in love with people of the other sex! To go against how God has designed you is completely immoral! Turn away from your sinful lifestyle."

Rehashed in various sentences, but all boil down to those two points.
So I guess to them, sexual people who are never fortunate enough to find "the one" are hell bound too.  Its interesting that they ignore St. Paul's words encouraging celibacy and recommending marriage only to those who cannot control their lusts. 1 Corinthians 7 8-9 
which christians? Not to belittle asexuals, but i'm quite sure there are a good number of catholics that would welcome the idea of asexual priests, and nuns. As far as christians being rapist, well yah along with aitheist,muslims,hindus,muslims, and probably ever other culture class,creed short of a-sexuals.
I don't know their specific sects, generally when someone disproves of me I stop talking to them if possible.
It's been on a handful of occasions (in Canada), one of the people would definitely have been a fundamentalist.
Although I agree with you that it's disgusting I don't like your "sounds so very, very 'xtian' to me".

There are some extremists that are revolting but you are blaming the entirety of Christianity and equating all of them with the extremists when there are some decent people out there that doesn't deserve your hatred. You were in the army? Then I would hope that you would think you fought for people's rights. One of those rights should be to be allowed and respected for being who a person is as long as they are not harming another. Save your hatred for the individuals who are revolting, not for the entirety of a group who are not all the same.
I'm an "xtian" and don't know even the first one who thinks raping someone is a means to an end in any situation. I'm also an "xtian" who didn't need to join the service so I could feel tough and who doesn't give two fks how many medals you have. If you want respect friend you'd better learn to show some because people who feel the need to tell the world how tough they are come a dime a dozen. The strongest men I know are devout Christians who came from unspeakably violent lives with no structure and no weapons or unit to back them up. Men who found their peace with God but who are no stranger to the violence and worst acts of mankind. Reading your comment leads me to believe that you're a prime candidate to dance on the wrong minefield. Go count your medals and tell your war stories and let us go back to our faith without having to listen to someone like you insult or ridicule us for having it. It'll be a better world for both of us because of it.
Please do go back to your 'faith'.....you are on the losing side of history. 
Maybe I could stay on the internet all day making up war stories and threatening people from the safety of my computer like you. You're much better than Christians aren't you tough guy?
As a matter of fact, I am.
Maybe you'll get a medal if you try hard enough
I like how everybody is taking the quote of "x-tian" and taking that to mean Christian. If he had meant Christian, he would have said such. X-tians are those who claim to be Christian, but do not even remotely follow Christ. X-tians pick and choose which of the 660 Jewish laws they will and will not follow, based on the Old Testament and the teachings of a former Jewish rabbi (Paul), and choose NOT to follow the teachings in the 4 books included in their holy book that include the words of the deity they claim to follow. X-tians are not Christians. Those of you who ARE Christian, relax, he's not insulting you. If you saw insult in his reference, or in my explanation, then you are EXACTLY who he was talking about.
Thank you.
A MSGT at 25, eh? Thats an E-8, btw. You rock, dude. Jeez, it took me 12 years to become an E-6 and another 4yrs to make E-7. Guess I'm just ignern't.
You should tell us about how you were also a Ranger who eats Navy SEALS for breakfast while moonlighting as a USCG rescue swimmer on the weekends so we can all be REALLY, SUPER impressed! Golly!
It took me 21 years to make MSgt.  I was on active duty for 25 years.  I was in fact a Ranger for 16 of those years. 
Your sarcasm is appreciated.  Perhaps you should read more closely.  
My apologies. I admit, I didn't scroll down to catch your correction. There's a lot of liars out there who never even had the testes to wear the uniform who claim they did, and its an insult to you, me and every service member who has. Google " Stephen Burton, Palm Springs, CA. " I went to HS with this guy. His actions at our 20-yr reunion STILL get to me.
Again, my apologies. I'll spank myself thoroughly and soundly.
Peace.
No sweat friend.  I see and hear the same crap as well and find it disturbing to say the least.  
I know at least 3 people who made E-8 in 25 years. I know of one who made E-9 (Command Sergeant Major, if you're listening) in 25 years. I personally was an E-7 after 10, so maybe you were just slow or in the wrong field.
My rating had a high retention rate with no real civilian equivelent. I also spent 3 years working in an area out of my rating, which put me into a catch-22 with maintaining quals. 
So then you shouldn't really be mocking the guy when it IS possible that he attained the rank he said he attained, right?
His original post led me to infer that he was claiming to be a 25 YEAR OLD MSGT. Had you read further, you'd see where he'd corrected himself and I'd apologized, 2 days ago. So, do YOU now understand what happens when you, or I,  don't gather all the facts before jumping in with an attitude?
I think you might need to get your glasses checked. This is what he said "I am a 25-year retired Army Master Sergeant" What that means is that he was retired after 25 years at the rank of Master Sergeant. At no time did he say 25 Year OLD MSGT.
As a "xtian" as you refer to us, I have NO problem with asexuality. Paul of the bible even decided for a celibate lifestyle for himself and said "I wish you were like me in this" but understood some people needed relationships. I also love homosexuals, disagree with their lifestyle, but do not love them less than anyone else. I am a pastor and that is what I teach from the pulpit. May the rapists of ANY lifestyle group be brought to justice and may the punishments be more severe. My heart breaks for these innocent victims. By the way, a true military man does not threaten anonymous citizens, he defends the constitution, including the "haters" right to free speech. This from a veteran, honorably discharged and disabled.
MM1(SS), Proudly Served on the USS John. C. Calhoun SSBN 630
True Christians do not put down anyone. And really spiritual Christians, disciples of Jesus Christ , can be totally asexual. Like He was.
Reckless is right...you just made the same sort of foolish supposition and generalization of which the "anonymous user" was guilty. You are clearly of no benefit to the cause you pretend to support and might, more likely, be an interloper attempting to draw the ire of other trolls in a feeding frenzy. Just an idle observation...
The "Christians" you've run into are only in church for "fire insurance". They don't realize their plan is destined to backfire. I see asexuality as natural birth control as well as population control. Unfortunately, too many of the people who shouldn't reproduce aren't asexual.
I have a hard time believing you reckless, most combat vets that I know, which is several since I just retired after 26 years, don't discuss the number of tours or awards that they received while serving. That is the last thing that the real hero's I know have on their mind. Even when asked, they will temper it down, let alone someone like yourself who just openly brags about all of your glowing accomplishments, then you threaten people, you are deffently not who I want representing military vets across the country. If you truly did achieve the results you say, why not use your real name? Is it because you know that it can all be fact checked? I'm proud to be a Vet, and I dang sure didn't do it for any awards, I did it for the love of my Country, My Family, and My Brother who was out there with me.
Congratulations on your 25 years in the Army. Aren't master sergeants the ones who run around sreaming at everyone for no reason? I am glad you were good at it. Under fire, was that enemy or friendly. Sergeant is a great way to prepare to be a caring, considerate, friend in your later years. One question, why are you in the ICU?? I'll pray for you.
Ah, threats of physical violence on the internet. That's so 1995.
Why you hide behind an alias then?
So, here you are attacking "xtians" (most Xtians you meet are violent, hateful, proponents of rape? really?) and threatening physical violence against anonymous posters on HuffPost? Impressive.
I don't think anybody has to be afraid of someone who lies about his military service to make himself all big and bad. Are you in the Army Hall of Fame for being the youngest master sergeant (25?) ever? Won the bronze star for valor for what, picking imaginary fights on the internet? Not impressed.
I made MSgt after 21 years of service; did 25 years active duty total.  Read please.  I only state my resume for biographical purposes, no details; No lies.  
Dearest Saint, and 25 year-retired Army Master Seargeant with three combat tours, wounded in action twice, you are indeed a highly courageous man. However, a Saint, you are not, anymore than I am, alas. Those that cannot defend themselves are so many, and are in so many different situations of life, as you have to know, seeing everything you have done for all of us. The Haters are many, you are aware of that. Kindly then, from your experience and analytical intelligence, try and distinguish the true Executioners of Humankind, from those sincerely seeking to improve our lot here on Earth, imperfect as we may indeed be. We sure need your help, Sir, not your hostility. Enough with "the rape of women", odious rapes do take place, but you do know many are dumb misunderstadings by two dumb persons of opposite genders. Kindly spend some time fighting those regimes which, aided by Reagan, that Scourge of Humankind, dare say they are "Muslim", when Islam has NEVER behvaed like they do. Rapes occur every day, atrocious, and not always physical. By the way Sir, I am wounded too, being afflicted with terminal Hepattitis C, Virus 1A. The Wounded of this World abound, alas, and we do not enough help one another, please admit this, if you kindly will. Jeffrey
Christian myself, it seems to say, more or less, that the person simply isn't comfortable enough with their choices and lifestyle, and anything outside their own box begins to crumble their faith in themselves, so they have to attack it. Remember many hide behind a Christ they have made in their own image, to push their views and biases, but few simply follow, to me those are the true xtian's . Just my take.
What pathology is behind people's insistence that if someone is not "just like them", there is something wrong with that person? That seems counter-intuitive in a world that holds the potential to grow in awareness and understanding thanks to information widely available on the internet.

How dare anyone deny the truth of someone else's existence? Even more so, how dare anyone threaten to try to alter someone's truthful existence through violence, domination, force, rape? The person someone else is, the life they live, and the validity/essential value of her/him IS NOT FOR YOU TO DECIDE!!

News flash y'all - the differences between us are good things! Recognizing them, celebrating them even, lets us learn about all of life, not just your little corner of it. If you like what you are, and what your life is, that's great for you. But how can you even imagine that the only way for another person to like her/his life is to have one just like yours?

People who fail to appreciate the differences in other people cheat themselves of a full existence. People who think they have a right to try to (psychologically or emotionally) force someone to follow a path that mirrors theirs are pathological. Those who exert physical force in that attempt need to be incarcerated. THEY are the true social pariahs.
That's a wonderful post and thank you. There are lots of people--even here in these comments--insisting that intimacy is not possible without sex (because THEY have never experienced intimacy without sex and can't imagine it); that love is dysfunctional if it does not involve sex (because THEY would want sex with the person they love and can't imagine it otherwise); that our bodies must be dysfunctional if we don't pursue sex (usually presented as "IT'S BIOLOGY, WHICH IS ALWAYS BLACK AND WHITE," despite the academic research proving otherwise); and that despite all the ridiculous denial and erasure of our identity, we paradoxically have no need for awareness-raising efforts or support.

People will try to "fix" us less if they have heard what we're about. People will attack us less if they realize it's ignorant to try to change us. People who are asexual will grow up without internalizing horrible messages about how literally inhuman they must be if they don't feel what others feel if they encounter education and positive presentation of asexual people in the media and all around them. (Part of the reason I'm writing a book.)

Hopefully more people will begin thinking like you in the future. :)
I keep pushing for (and hoping for) a time when each of us is able to appreciate each other of us for the amazing human beings we are, and the amazing things we contribute to society, without worrying about, much less trying to control, various personal aspects of our lives. I really would like to see that in my lifetime. I'm very glad to know at least some others think and hope the same.
You said the magic word, AJayne: "personal". Sex is personal. If I don't tell anyone about my sex life and go about my merry way (I mean, after all, it is personal and only my business), then no one will try to control this aspect of my life.
As a simple matter of socializing, we tend to share our personal lives with those around us - friends, coworkers, etc. Our right to control our own lives should never require hiding them away. The ones "in the wrong" are those who believe they have a right to control others - not those who share information socially or in the media.
Faved.

However you line ", without worrying about, much less trying to control, various personal aspects of our lives"

Good luck getting the Islamic extremists that follow Shira law to go along with it.

Sorry to bring you back to reality.
Funny thing - I grew up in a Christian community that pushed asexuality as an ideal, although the community was simultaneously repulsed by anyone who actually lived up to their ideal - both in that respect and in many others.

People are strange.
Asexuality isn't abstinence, though. I've never heard of a Christian community that wanted everyone to not be sexually attracted to each other (but get married anyway and make love to have children anyway). I guess in some cases some people might be encouraged to purge themselves of desires? Which is also not asexuality? I'm not sure I understand what you mean about a community "pushing asexuality." Asexuality isn't a belief system or a behavior. (But yes, people are strange. . . . )
There's a Bible verse that says that to lust after a woman is the same as adultery, and trying to get an explanation it quickly becomes clear that attraction to the opposite sex (or the same sex, of course) is a great sin - unless one is married to the object of attraction, of course.

It is one of the contradictions within Christianity that is generally resolved by being ignored - so on the one hand as children we were repeatedly enjoined not to have any sexual attraction and yet the few of us who actually made a decent attempt at it were rebuffed as abnormal. I felt a lot of guilt as a child for the sin of sexual attraction, yet the community came to avoid me not because of that but because I did my best to overcome the "sin" of lust. They certainly did expect everyone to get married and have children - there was just a disconnect about how one was supposed to get married in the first place. The situation was made much worse because of the influence of feminist dogma of the time that made it clear that males should never acknowledge or compliment a female's beauty.

Of course, since then I have come to realize that most of the people promulgating those beliefs were never serious about them, and may not have even understood what they were saying. The same goes for most of religion in general
If a person has never experienced intimacy without sex, they are doing relationships VERY VERY VERY wrong. Intimacy needs are fulfilled through any of the following: engaging in mutually-enjoyed activities, cuddling, going on dates, time alone, deep, meaningful conversation, and even something as simple as sleeping in the same bed. At least, that's what I've found, as a sexually active person. There could be more, and I would appreciate any ideas on how to further work on my intimate relationship.
God Bless You, Ivy. I would be honored to be your friend.
I hope to find a therapist who will understand what you said in your post, I am who I am, please don't try to fix me!
I am a guy that enjoys a non-sexual relationship too. I think many more peope loose this is lfe. Where are the people that love and care? I don't see it as much as one time.
You can love without sex, but sex without love is anti-love and yet these same people have no problem with that. Look at the problems in the world since sexual "liberation." Disease is rampant. Everywhere you go people are trying to eroticize the atmosphere through ads, opinions, people on cell phones even. If people concentrated on "fixing" their own problems, there'd be a lot less trouble in the world.
Disagree. I wish people wouldn't shame and blame when it comes to sexuality. It's not up to you what other feelings have to be involved if another person wants to have sex. I agree that people should be responsible with their sex lives if they do not want to spread diseases . . . the same way they should be responsible with other ways they can spread diseases, like through lack of good hygiene--but I think it's pretty gross when people isolate one aspect of other people's lifestyle that they don't agree with and blame it for the world's problems. For anyone who's reading this, for the record, asexual people aren't a group that takes a stand against sex for others, and we don't by definition try to control, limit, or shame other people's sex lives.
There's nothing personal in my post, just generalizing, but these are real problems in the real world.
Straight guy here, and agree with you 100%. How can intimacy be possibly without sex? I think the real question of those who are sexual would be how is sex ever possibly without intimacy?.. Preservation of the Sacred, and the refusal to accept the cheap seem like noble and respectable qualities. Thank you for speaking what many of us think of as truth, so Clearly. Yes I am an old Southern Baptist, and see this lifestyle totally in line with my religious beliefs.
It has always been my perception that those who most forcefully demand conformity are very insecure and want everything around them to reinforce their worldview. You can never be wrong if there is only one path, or so they seem to believe. It is done with religion, sexuality, procreative choice, parenting techniques, etc. They take any individualism as a direct insult to their identity, because if you are not doing exactly as they do, you simply must think something is wrong with them. Sigh.
The hateful and deliberately ignorant things straight people say and do to aces doesn't surprise me. They don't have to think about sexuality or gender, and so they have a lot further to go to acquire understanding and acceptance of all of us who aren't just like them. What I find unfathomable is when we get it from gay people. I mean, seriously? You guys don't know better? OK, that's completely unfair. The overwhelming majority of gays and lesbians I've met and interacted with are completely accepting. It only takes one jerk to ruin your day. But, still...seriously? Take that old chestnut so dearly beloved by homophobes: homosexuality isn't really a thing, you were sexually abused as a child and you need therapy. This classic homophobic slur is also employed against aces. I've seen it at least once in the comments to these articles. But it's not just straight people who employ it against us. Gay people sometimes do as well. Not all that often, of course, but it happens. How screwed up is that?
It is called Xenophobia--fear of other, phobia of the 'other' who is not 'like oneself'.
Pathology indeed.
Rampant, it seems, but pathology nonetheless.

Those who choose to lead their lives asexually are not exhibiting pathology (as long as this is a choice and not something borne out of anxiety or abuse etc), but those who 'suggest rape' as a 'corrective measure' sure are the ones in need of SERIOUS HELP.
Thank you for the word.
All you say is true - but the fact remains that humanity is deeply flawed, and there are numerous people who seem unable to accept that others might have different preferences than themselves. Human beings love to form in-groups and out-groups, and love to hate.

That said, there are also many who do not delight in such games, and many for whom the hatred does not run deep. Oftentimes the haters are only trying to shore up their own social position by knocking down others. There is hope for humanity yet.
Very well put!
It's pervasive in our society. When you go to the doctor with statistical symptoms it's immediately assumed that you have what everyone else has without testing. A jury of your peers will convict you based on what they would have done in your situation and not what you would do or actually did. Unfortunately, people are lazy and it's far easier to generalize and assume everyone's the same than to think of people as individuals.
Tradition and cultures set norms- that's the short answer.
Sucks, cause it's never gonna happen...in our lifetime, for them, or anyone else with "different" attractions that people can't tolerate or understand, no matter what they may be. I'm right there with you though. People should start paying attention to what people do and how they act, rather than prod into their person life.
Look at what happened/happens to gays and lesbians, and especially trans people--that just seems to immediately raise "the murderer" in far too many people---sorry to hear that anyone who is open about being asexual gets such a negative reaction----that some think that raping them is going to be some freaking "cure!" That is just some very sad, ignorant, stupid and twisted thinking,

So sorry that this happened to you Ivy, at least you are working towards getting the knowledge about this out there and that its not something so out of the ordinary and surely being asexual does not mean that one is sick or somehow a less "desireable" or deserving person.
If someone else's differentness makes you feel angry or aggressive, the problem isn't with you them; it's with you.
I think you hit the nail on the head. I couldn't have said it any better.
if only the millions of people that live in this world could comprehend what so many are saying.
We scream 2013 and we're at the half way mark of leaving this year and still we have prejudice in all walks of life.
Amen
if that is how you feel then how can you hate clowns?
I fail to see why anyone would discriminate against or persecute asexuals. Is it because their sexual disinterest is seen an assault on some people's egos or what?
It's interesting that you bring that up!

It can be, I've heard from many asexuals that when they turn down moves towards them that the person becomes violent/aggressive thinking "What's wrong with me? How can't you find me attractive?"

That could play a role in a lot of violence.

Some of the other issues include people think that asexuals are out there to scrutinize or complain about other people having sex.

It's also not fully understood and that itself generates a certain level of 'fear' for lack of better words.

I'm certainly not an expert in these subjects; but hopefully that gathers some insight.
"I've heard from many asexuals that when they turn down moves towards them that the person becomes violent/aggressive thinking "What's wrong with me? How can't you find me attractive?"

I have experienced that many times. I stumbled on this series yesterday and saw the term "demisexual" for the first time, which definitely describes me, though I think the term is terrible aesthetically (it sounds like some sort of cult). If I had a nickel for every woman who has scowled because I wouldn't drool over her like it's my job. If they were big enough I think a few might have taken a swing at me.
There's also the fact that especially for women, there's a perception that we exist for the sexual gratification of others and that we're "wasting" ourselves by not having sex. Someone deserves to "have" us! (And it should be a man, naturally. Most likely, the exact man who is making this argument!) This happens to lesbians too--someone gets pissed off that they're not attracted to what they're "supposed to" be attracted to, and they decide well, it's just because she doesn't know how great the D is. It's been proven through studies on rapists that they often don't believe they are raping; they believe they are giving the rape victim something they actually want or have signaled that they wanted. They also project a lot and feel that if they personally are not happy without sex, there is no WAY another person can be happy without it. Hey, they're doing us a FAVOR! We'll thank them later!

But just to be clear, this is not just a problem for women, and corrective rape does NOT happen only to women. I think it's just more widespread because of women's more common experience of being regarded as a sexual commodity.

I'm glad you don't see why anyone would discriminate against us or persecute us. I wish most people felt it was as much of a non-issue as you seem to, because then they wouldn't do it.
I would like to say that my acceptance of other sexualities comes from being gay, but I know that's often not true (oh, the infighting in the queer community!).  My point on asexual people specifically though is that they're going to be, by the very nature of asexuality, inoffensive sexually.  One of the biggest complaints I hear about gay people is how we're always up in people's faces with our sexuality, which is obviously not true about asexuals.  Also, religious texts aren't against them, and it doesn't blur gender roles.
Because of all of that, I fail to see how anyone could take offense to asexuality any more than they could take offense to just anyone turning them down because they didn't find them attractive.
Well, we could be seen as ignoring "be fruitful and multiply" (which is somehow NOT leveled against infertile people or people who have sex past fertile times or people who have non-procreative sex knowingly).

I think it's sad that people assume being out about your orientation constitutes "being in people's faces." Nobody accuses straight people of being "in your face" if they mention their spouse and therefore imply their orientation, but God forbid a guy mentions his boyfriend. WHY ARE YOU FLAUNTING IT? Jeez. So ridiculous that people say this. Not to mention that the people who DON'T ever mention it and are quietly gay without drawing attention to their orientation get assumed straight.

But some people find asexuality offensive because they think it insults the sacredness, usefulness, or enjoyability of sex itself. WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE TO SAY THEY DON'T NEED SEX? THAT MAKES ME FEEL WEIRD ABOUT FEELING THAT I NEED IT! I say relax, guys, we don't want you to change anything.
People with a heteronormative worldview are rather annoying, aren't they?  I guess I understand asexuality better than most because I got the hormone rush that most people get in high school starting when I was 19.  So before that, I didn't really have much of an interest in sex, which was confusing as heck because I did have romantic attractions (to the same sex) and everyone around me was all about getting it on with people.  I actually identified as demisexual for awhile, until it became very clear that that my body chemistry had been shot to hell by my being sick for 5 years.  Not that I think most people have an issue with body chemistry, but that's how it was for me.
Sadly, people think crazy things and look for any kind of justification to hate a group they see as 'weird'.

I've been told by religious people that I'm going against the natural human course and the eyes of God. Seeing as God created each human to have sexual attraction for procreation, I have somehow gone against what he wants.

Therefore I am going to hell.

I've also heard the bible verse (Something like "go forth and procreate") used against me as well to justify the hatred.

Whenever anyone waves around that they are different (like asexuals being out by clothes/pins/etc.) people will always say "Why do you have to talk about your sexuality!"

I've had it happen a bunch of times.

Asexuality in itself doesn't blur gender roles, however; I've noticed a lot of gender blurring within the asexual community. I myself am agender and quite androgynous, and I know a lot of other asexuals feel one way or the other about gender roles in the community.

I hope that helps a bit :)
Everything helps, thanks. :)  What I don't understand about most religious arguments is that only really hardcore Catholics tend to adhere to the "go forth and procreate" parts of the Bible by forgoing birth control, etc.  Because of that, I have to agree with you that they probably just don't like different, which is very sad, because different is what makes the world beautiful and wondrous.
What these so called "Christians" do not understand is that God created asexuals as well as all the rest of us. Why? well you will have to ask God. In my book, homosexuals, transgender, asexuals, and people with special mental/physical challenges were created so the rest of us can learn tolerance, empathy, humility, and to love God unconditionally. To many of us operate in the "big ego". We need to stay in our "small ego".
I wonder how they studied that.
You sure are a bright person. Everyone should just do what's best for them as long as they aren't harming anyone else and no one else has a right to care or even express an opinion. It's your life. You only get one. You should certainly be able to live it however you please. I'm not too sure I agree with your statements on rapists. I think they're just insecure dangerous violent twisted people who would like to believe their own "excuses" for their behavior because they think it justifies their existence and actions. They can't be "cured" and they never change unless they become too old to pose a threat and, for a rapist, that means plenty old.
as a lesbian, I encountered this sort of attitude from men a LOT when I was younger. They thought all I needed was THEIR dick and I'd be fixed. I feel for you!
Even the Bible says there are eunuchs by birth and there are eunuchs by choice. John the Baptist, Apostle Paul and even Jesus lived celebate lives. Mahatma Ghandi did as well, really it's a personal choice & is a lifestyle that hurts nobody. No disease, no overpopulation, no abortions. People ridicule girls wearing purity rings while defending all kinds of things that actually hurt people & society. Queen Victoria was called "The Virgin Queen" because of her lifestyle. When two people (like Oprah & Gail or Whitney Houston & her best friend from childhood) stay close, people speculate about why they stay close & it's just wrong. I do worry that this very positive movement is being hijacked by gays, especially since this is huffpo. We all have suffered discrimination but that doesn't mean we have to be lumped together.
I understand that your perspective leads you to a religious interpretation of our identity, but please note that this is not about sexual purity or abstinence for us. It is also not something our community feels is being "hijacked by gays." Please don't spin it that way. Thanks.
It has nothing to do with anybody's identity. I'm talking about principles. I'm not spinning anything. You admit homosexuals are among the people who are negative about you (the movement, not "you.") & I found the same thing. Many people who demand respect and tolerance are not willing to give it, even if they say so publicly. If it's not about "abstinance," what are you talking about?
I believe you are right on the money with that.
Anyone who threatens violence on someone just because that someone is not interested in sex (at that moment, or with them, or never with anyone) is doing so as an act of domination stemming from an ego problem... Someone who is feeling secure in themselves, does not need to hurt others or step on others to feel 'better than'.
Those who fear asexual people (or any other definition of 'other'--gay people, other-religion people, other ethnicity people, you name it)--are showing their OWN biases and insecurity.
When it comes to sexuality, many people are SO over-focuses on it and insecure about it and conflicted about it and feel both shame and fascination, guilt and disgust and attraction to it; that they probably get enraged when they realize that there are those who don't share these struggles... They are, I think, JEALOUS!

And it may well be a kick below the belt to their sense of desirability. As if by not being interested in sex, that person is not interested in THEM, or their VALUE, or their BEING.
How sad and pathetic is that???

The weakest and most dysfunctional of those will threaten rape...not realizing just how much of their own miserable ego they are broadcasting through it. To confuse rage and control with sex is a problem in our society. Seems to me, the asexual people are not the ones who are confused...
Most of the time, members of the queer community are not the confused ones, unless they're misled by the heteronormative society.  I really just wish we could all get along though.  All of this is just so pointless.
That should be "whether s/he's hitting on a bar patron."
What do you mean?
That comment was as a correction to my longer comment.
I'm sorry, apparently huffpost deleted my comment. It boils down to the fact that asexuals can be gay, bi, lesbian, straight, transgender, etc. Just because someone does not have sex does not mean they don't form emotional romantic relationships, and queer asexuals are just as likely to be attacked for being queer as any sexually active queer person.
Some of my comments get deleted for no discernible reason, so I feel for you.  
I know that asexuals who experience homoromantic attractions or are transgender face the same issues that sexual people of that nature do.  I just don't understand why someone who is JUST asexual would have any problems.  I know that they do as well, but it makes zero sense to me. Also, I find "queer asexuals" to be rather redundant, since (at least at UF) asexuals are included under the queer umbrella.  
I don't want to disclude them from the queer identity, but I just wasn't sure what umbrella term to use for the rest of the LGBTQ community.
Yes. Among other things.
1. Anonymous people on the internet sometimes say hurtful things. They certainly have to me. And they certainly do all over HuffPost. But I struggle to see how this makes someone "afraid", as this article reports some asexuals are.

2. People try to kiss each other sometimes. Especially 19-year-olds. Some like it. Some don't. But I struggle to see how this is, as Julie Decker claimed, "quite scary".

3.Has Angela in the Tumblr forum ever been "harassed or assaulted" because she is asexual? Has it ever happened to anyone she knows or even to anyone she ever heard of? She does not say so. Yet she still claims "there is a real fear" of it.

4. I've read a lot of academic studies, including the one by the Brock University researchers. Frankly, I've found academic studies that talk about attitudes and perceptions (not about threats or violence) sometimes boring and sometimes interesting. But I've never found one to be "really scary", as David Jay says this one was for him.

Of course rape and harassment and assault are bad. And of course asexuals deserve understanding and respectful treatment from those they meet. But an article like this, that presents them as folks who are afraid of their own shadows, is unlikely to dispel any mistaken notions that they are "abnormal, unhappy and repressed."
I should probably add that as a prominent asexual activist who has been at this for something like fifteen years, anonymous hate is more than just a crappy comment here and there. I have personally been the victim of several organized stalking attempts perpetrated through the Internet, and two of them were severe enough that I had to pursue legal action (and the lawyer was pretty expensive).

One of them involved putting my full legal name on the Internet with asexuality-related mocking and repeated expressions that I was a pedophile (nice thing to find if my boss Googled me). Another one involved someone impersonating me and pretending to be willing to take questions about asexuality, after which he would respond with naked pictures he claimed were me and elitist statements about how asexual people are superior to others and weird comments about how I had been repeatedly hooked up to a "masturbation machine." (I don't know either.)

Also, the guy who licked my face followed up by continuing to contact me, inviting me over "to watch porn," telling me he could tell I wanted to have sex with him but was in denial, and saying my words were irrelevant because he could feel a sexual vibe between us. These are not harmless attitudes or just good fun on the Internet that I need to learn to take. They're outrageous.

Which is why I respond with outrage.
Thanks, Ivy, for the personal comments. They would have been valuable additions to this article. It's unfortunate that these or other examples were omitted, and that so many folks were presented as being "afraid" of things most people would not see as fearsome.
I don't think the wording was poorly chosen by the author, and I think assuming we're overreacting to a problem suggests a predisposition for not wanting to believe we HAVE a problem. And honestly I don't think the entire thing should have been taken up by my description of what the encounter was like. (For the record I didn't describe it as "sexual assault" during the conversation, but I do believe it was a violation of my personal space, and it's certainly in the neighborhood because the man who did it believed my words were irrelevant in light of his desires (which he was obviously projecting onto me). I think any action a person commits that makes it clear they think they are entitled to interact with our bodies in ways we have verbally rejected indicates a very large problem. And it is disproportionately directed against asexual people because it is believed we *cannot* know ourselves or *are not qualified* to describe our feelings if we do not want sex. That's a deal-breaker for some--they believe it is a cry for help (and they're always juuuust the person to fix it).
I'm a lesbian, not at all ace...but I'm sadly familiar with the whole corrective rape thing. When people say awful things on the internet, especially in droves, of course it can be scary. Just because gay people get killed for being gay and aces don't seem to get killed for being ace, doesn't mean they have no reason to be afraid. It's about perpetrating an attitude, that people can be "fixed" with sex. I got it so much when I was younger, men telling me I just hadn't had sex with THEM yet, like they have some kind of magical penis. In my opinion, it's the attitude that's scary, and the potential for escalation, like stalking.
Thank you for your well expressed experience, Tam Brooks. You're right, nobody should be trying to tell us when these attitudes are disturbing enough to legitimately be scared. Continuing to defend people for believing they have the right to force sex on us to correct some wrong reinforces the idea that we actually do owe it to the world to try to be a different sexual orientation before we identify as ace. (And in my experience, whatever you try is still never enough if you still identify as ace at the end. It always means you did not try the right person and you MUST keep looking. I don't know why these people are so invested in us changing orientations.)

And I've been stalked twice over this, requiring me to pursue legal protection. I had someone claim I was not shy about my body because of being asexual and posted nude shots of someone else, claiming they were me and putting my name on them. I've had disgusting "I will find you and MAKE you XYZ" e-mails sent me me. And people still react to this by saying the real problem is my reaction to the harassment, not the harassment. It's gross.

So I really appreciate your attitude. Thank you.
Anonymous hate is cowardice to the ninths.
The answers I will provide based on my *own* experiences.

1.)

Yes, indeed. I agree. People stay things online because they can, and a lot of times they are very harmful things.

Now that being said, for me it's never been the matter of once in a blue moon when the topic of asexuality has come up.

It's been every time the topic of asexuality has come up outside of asexual forums (such as AVEN) that there have been man hurtful, and terrible comments.

It's not as though, oh this one person on the Internet said this one mean thing.

It's that dozens (possibly hundreds) of people have said these hurtful things, or justify the rape of another individual based on their sexual orientation.

For example, my experiences online have been everything from...

"Hahaha, you're absolutely pathetic. Probably fat and ugly, so you can't find anyone! Maybe you're just gay though, honestly you may as well just kill yourself since you will be alone for life."

even to the positive

"That's cool, I would like to learn more about asexuality! I've never met an asexual before."

However, more often than not I experience negative comments.

While most aren't violent, I would say the minority are violent in nature.

The most common is from "asexuality isn't real" or "You just haven't met the right person" or "You just need to have sex!", etc.

-- The next answers should be shorter and in the next post :)
Thanks for trying to help me understand, Lobie. I still don't.  I'm gay. People say bad things to me on the internet. Lots of bad things. It concerns and upsets me, but it doesn't make me afraid. People also beat up gay folks. And kill us. Fairly frequently. THAT makes me afraid. If such a thing happens to asexuals because of their asexuality, then I think that would be a valuable addition to the information in the article, and might explain why nearly everyone in it says they're "afraid".
Thankfully asexuality is not generally thought of as something that makes people want to kill us (though gay and trans* asexual people exist and face the same prejudices). Obviously you've seen the evidence that we do experience violence on the basis of our sexual orientation, though (unless you'd say being raped isn't violence, which I think most people would not). The study linked in this article also describes documented discrimination against asexual people, and if I didn't think links might be labeled as spam I'd link you to Olivier Cormier-Otaño's discussion of Social Services denying asexual couples adoption because "if you are asexual you are not fit to be married," and more anecdotal discussions of people getting fired for coming out as asexual. However, I think you're also underestimating how much fear is involved in growing up in a world that tells you you cannot feel the way you do about sex or you are inhuman and you will die alone, and people *delight* in saying this to you, while NO resources seem to exist to say you are okay. For the record, though, we are not trying to create a hierarchy of whose oppression or discrimination hurts more or is more serious. There is room for all of this discussion to be had--there is no finite amount of "attention" the public must allocate to non-majority sexuality issues--so we can all have our turn at the mic.
"I think you're also underestimating how much fear is involved in growing up in a world that tells you you cannot feel the way you do about sex or you are inhuman and you will die alone"
-- I'm gay and 60 years old, Ivy. I know precisely what it feels like to grow up in a world that tells you those things. Thank you for explaining how these attitudes affect you, as well.
I'm glad you understand. I wish people didn't have to personally go through it to understand, too. I do see a lot of gay people say "YOU DON'T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT BEING GAY BASHED SO YOUR 'FEAR' IS IRRELEVANT AND YOU'RE HYSTERICAL" without understanding that we do frequently get shamed into silence and *that's* part of why you don't hear about people hurting us. I've also seen a few gay people comment that asexual people don't have to worry about getting kicked out of their homes if they come out, etc., and when someone commented that they came out as asexual and their parents freaked out so hard they had to reassure them it was a joke for three months before they calmed back down, nobody acknowledged it. It's like because the gay community's suffering is usually more physically violent and definitely more visible--and even more so with trans* folks--they figure asexual people can't/don't share any of these experiences on basis of their orientation. I think the best way to look at it is to realize--as you're saying you do--that some people will attack and try to destroy anything they determine to be non-heteronormative, and that definitely includes us. Thank you!
True, no ace has yet been tied to a fence and beaten to death. And while I hope that never happens, we can't rule out that it might someday as awareness of asexuality grows. Hate grows out of fear, and fear out of discomfort of the unfamiliar and the different. The specific differences don't really matter. A bigot focuses on whatever it is that grabs their attention, but bigotry itself is actually a fairly generalized, unfocused and above all opportunistic thing. There is no history of anti-ace violence as there is of anti-gay violence, but there's no reason to think it can't ever happen. "We're drawing attention to ourselves, Ms Shaw," the Brigadier said about Earth. Not all attention is a good thing. There are Daleks everywhere.
I'm overweight and people post horrific things about overweight people. It's like it is open season on us. If I took any of the comments seriously, I would have committed suicide from long ago. I just roll my eyes.
Why should there ever be any discussion of your sexuality outside of a forum where you make the choice to discuss it? It's your life, you aren't hurting anyone, and it just shouldn't be anyone else's business.
Problem is people make it their business. They think I am somehow missing out on important sections of life and have repeatedly tried to hook me up with persons.
2.

I believe it would be classified as scary by being forced into the actions. I have been forcefully kissed before, and while more took place after that direct event I did become fearful of things taking a turn from the worse.

Anything could have happened from physical assault, to full on rape. I'm sure the case and experience is similar with Decker; however, I can not and will not speak for her.

3.

Again, I can't answer for Angela only for myself.

I have ran into physical and other violence in the real world aside from online. I will say it's no where near as serious or common as online for me personally, but that still doesn't justify the actions taking place based solely on my sexual orientation.

4.

I don't feel that I can answer this myself, I have not read these articles/journals/studies.
There might be something to this.

I certainly believe that asexuals have every right to be themselves without needing to fear anyone - but from what little I have seen of the asexual community I do get the feeling that many are exceptionally fearful people.

Within my sexual minority, we face widespread bigotry and prejudice, attacks by vigilantes and law enforcement if we are found out - with collusion by the media; extremely long prison sentences and a public that loudly proclaims their wishes that we should all be raped in prison or killed in brutal and painful ways. We are fired from jobs and lose our homes at the behest of the government - all despite a conspicuous absence of our community causing any real harm (though a great deal of fantastical harm is claimed) - and yet I have not seen as much general fearfulness in our community as I have seen in my short forays among asexuals.

Although it must be said that the few females in our community exhibit greater fearfulness, and some asexual communities are overwhelmingly female - so that may be the difference.
Hey, this is Angela the person who initially discussed assault and rape threats towards asexual individuals.

Asexual people in general aren't afraid of their own shadows or living in constant fear unless placed in a hostile environment where assault and/or rape committed against them is likely because they assert that they are asexual. This article switched things around, I wrote the post on corrective rape IN RESPONSE TO that particular threat I received - which was not my first encounter with people like that.

Forcibly kissing people without their consent is still assault. Kissing might not seem scary but for other people it's still a violation to some people rather than a mere annoyance. Furthermore, people put into situations where they feel violated may become fearful or worried that the situation will escalate into something worse.

Asexuals may feel abnormal or unhappy because of their environment and societal pressures to conform to the heteronormative standard. Asexuals may feel fearful or afraid because of an environment that would condone violence against them. It's normal to feel that way in those situations. However, asexuals are not inherently abnormal, unhappy, repressed, fearful, etc. because they are asexual. Again, environment matters.

Now I have a rather tough skin but I'd prefer not to receive rape threats and live in a world where fellow asexuals have been harassed, threatened, and/or correctively raped. Thus the reason why I created the post which I had no clue was going to end up in these articles.
While people who are out as asexuals on the internet are more likely to receive all sorts of threats (especially "rape threats", which are disgusting), my experience is quite different. I've been out on the internet as a genderqueer panromantic ace, and have had mostly no problems with it.

IRL, and especially at the company I work things are quite different, though, and I still get condescending comments which imply I should be raped to understand how wonderful sex is. Mind you, hearing that from close people in a daily basis is not exactly something that makes me feel safe whenever I have to go out, and something that makes me specially worried at parties due to having a romantic attraction but not a sexual one — you get the feeling that the people you hang out with would rather let you get raped "for the great good".

So, I'd say psychological threats & violence can be as bad as physical one. Though they might affect people in rather different ways.
I hope this breaks the silence on the assumption in the previous articles that we as asexuals are somehow absolved and free of any discrimination.

Even some people said we deserve to be made fun of, bullied, etc.

I hope that everyone from the past three articles fully reads this. It gives a serious glance into the troubles the community has faced.

Dominique, you have become an inspiration for me.

Thank you.
I'm assuming that some of the positions thoroughly debunked in this article will show up in its comments. Le sigh.
And it already started. =/ I do like how in general though this is a much better comment section so far than yesterdays.
It would surprise me if the opposite happened, but I know the people who truly do care; and truly do want to learn will do so!

In the end, that's all that matters.

You can't teach those who don't want to listen.
I don't assume Asexuals need to be "absolved." You haven't done anything wrong. It's really a personal choice and it should be admired. Our culture is so backward sometimes. We complain about so many things that celebacy totally solves!
Well, I'm puzzled.

As a gay man, the overarching message I've been hearing from the...uh...umm...what shall I call them...let's say, the more judgmental members of the sexual mainstream, has been that if others don't do exactly as they do, they'd prefer those others do nothing at all.

Now, here come some people for whom even that isn't good enough. And they get aggressive and hostile over it, to boot!

See how much trouble refusing to mind one's own business and let others be who they are can cause?
Pretty much! And it's frustrating that sometimes the message to the gay community is that they should abstain from sex to avoid sin or immorality or whatever, but then they also think those of us who have a sexual orientation that does not tend to make us inclined toward sex are ALSO demonized ("haven't you heard of 'be fruitful and multiply'? Oh but I'm not going to dehumanize infertile people or people past menopause who have sex, and I'm going to ignore that many gay and asexual people have children!").

Sometimes people misunderstand asexual people as being "abstinent" and all about "not having sex," which they'll say actually damages the gay community because "be celibate" is the advice many of them were harassed and shamed with. But that's not what we're about at all, and I think our communities are natural allies in fighting what you mentioned--the refusal of others to stop minding our business for us.

High five for another person who recognizes "live and let live"!
Yes, the inconsistency puts a spotlight on the disingenuous nature of some of those criticisms.

I'm only just getting a handle on the Ace community, but it's becoming clear that confronting mainstream expectations and demands is the same for anyone whose sexuality might be considered "alternative:" it can be like dealing with the Borg ("You WILL be assimilated...resistance is futile").

Fortunately, it appears "Starfleet" will ultimately prevail once again.
Yep. The REAL message is "Just be straight, okay? How can it be a big deal? I like being straight!"

Not so easy for the rest of us.

They pretend they have biology, or society, or God on their side. But really I think in almost all cases they just don't like the idea that people aren't like them and they don't want to have to deal with it.

Had a funny chat on Facebook the other day regarding how being against others' orientations is like being pissed off that someone in front of you ordered a sandwich you don't like. And I likened it to insisting that others should not be able to eat what they want if it's vaguely possible that someone else might not like how it smells.

I ended it by saying, if I may be gross, "I don't care if ladies order the tuna or guys order the extra squirt of mayo, if you know what I mean."

LOL.
: D

Nice (racy) analogy.
I suppose I should help you out a little in getting a handle on us by pointing out that we tend to prefer Doctor Who. And Cybermen predate the Borg by a lot. Just so you know. ;)
Thanks, MM. I'm always willing to learn.

I'd honestly never heard of Cybermen, so did some quick research and...well, wouldya look at that! I read the description to my honey - an ST acolyte from waaaaay back - and before I finished, he interrupted with, "So they preceded the Borg!"

Fascinating.

I LOVE stuff like this.
Then you'll really love this: in the backstory to Revenge of the Cybermen, during the Cyber War it was discovered that Cybermen had a fatal weakness to gold (doesn't corrode and clogs up their respiratory systems), and the Cybermen were defeated when humans invented (get ready for it) the Glitter Gun.
Cute! Some early "code," perhaps? Hmmm.

In educating myself about the Cybermen, I couldn't help noticing that, in their early incarnation, they looked rather like The Tin Man (for whatever that's worth).
The general thought process, it seems, is that if you're not having sex, it should be a struggle. Celibacy should be difficult to achieve, but overcome for god's will or something like that. That's why gay people should be celibate because it would presumably be a struggle, but asexual people shouldn't be because it's not difficult for us. You made a god point about alternative sexualities, though. It's SO good to see that individuals in the LGBT community recognize the asexual community as fighting against the same fundamental issues.
You nailed it EXACTLY Ace Tater. It took me years to finally comprehend the seeming oxymoronic behavior and ideas I grew up around in my very fundamentalist Christian upbringing. Virginity was prized and treasured. But for a woman to actively assert that she never wishes to marry at all was a shocker. I felt as a teen that the church had two conflicting ideas--you should not want sex, but you should also want it, but not have sex. I came to realize that celibacy was a glorification of repression. Thus, the repressed straight teen, the repressed gay man is a good thing (well some Christians even hate celibate gays). The asexual NOT repressing his or her asexuality is bad.
Kissing is now sexual assault. Consider the bar officially lowered. Hell, let charge every nervous high school kid trying to get his or her first kiss to jail for sexual assault. Awesome.
The article doesn't say kissing is a sexual assault. However, if one does not want to be kissed; and turns down the gesture of a kiss is then kissed it *is* sexual assault.

Aside from that, the article states this:

--------

As she said goodbye to him that night, the man tried to kiss her. When she rejected his advance, he started to lick her face “like a dog," she said.

"'I just want to help you,' he called out to me as I walked away from his car," she explained.

---------

Do you really think the guy was in the right there, and no sexual assault took place?
Thanks. For the record, as the person this happened to, I can certainly say that this guy was more dangerous than he even seemed to be that night. He continued to contact me on the Internet after that happened, told me how I'd looked so good that night and that "I thought we were going to do it," and then when I told him that was absurd, he again said he did not believe people could be "non-sexual," and that furthermore he believed I was in fact attracted to him and could not admit it. He elaborated, saying I was "in denial" (which--I swear he said this--he said he could tell because he'd studied psychology in high school), and he said that no matter what my WORDS said, he was able to sense that I was attracted to him because of "a vibe." (My sister laughed when I told her about that. She said "The 'vibe' is his horniness, and no one is attached to it but him.) I blocked communication from him after that because telling women they do, in fact, feel sexually attracted to you no matter WHAT they say is the way rapists approach romantic interaction, and I was pretty skeeved out at that point.
I think she's exhajerating and borderline lieing in order to make her point.  How would you feel if your rejected kiss was labled as "sexually assault" by someone?
 
I guess I'm guilty of sexual assault.  I guess my previous girlfriends and boyfriend are guilty of sexual assault.  I guess my mom is guilty of sexual assault. 
 
And I bet you are guilty of sexual assault.
Excuse me?

You have no idea who I am, or what I have done. Don't ever claim I'm guilty of such a crime.

Let me put it this way; I have been sexually assaulted by another man, I told him I was not interested in sex with him, or kissing him. He grabbed me and kissed me anyway. He had absolutely no right to do that, absolutely... NO... RIGHT.

If you claim that isn't sexual assault then that is misinformed.

"a statutory offense that provides that it is a crime to knowingly cause another person to engage in an unwanted sexual act by force or threat"

In both Deckers case and my own the kiss was intended to be a sexual act, thus it falls under sexual assault and sexual harassment.

Don't ever claim you know better than the person who experienced such behaviour from another person and try to justify what they have experienced.

If my rejected kiss? Well, I'm asexual myself and I don't feel capable in answering this question rightfully.

If you have ever forced a kiss on anyone who was telling you, or told you to stop... Yes you sexually assaulted them.

How would you like it if some guy off the street went up to you and just tried to kiss you? Then when you pushed him away and said 'No' he grabs you and begins kissing you by force? Would you stand idly by and go "Oh, that was fun!"

I don't think so.
No, I wouldn't stand idly by. But I wouldn't pull the sexual assault card either. He'd get laid out, and that would be that. Man up instead of waving the victim card. Tell someone who was forcefully sodomized that your kiss was traumatic and scary.
You never even heard the full story did you, I just said a part of the assault that took place because I see no reason to discuss the assault in detail.
Oh, okay, I'm lying and exaggerating. You are AGAIN misrepresenting what happened to me as "just a rejected kiss." Do you not understand that this is what happened (and this is what is described in the article as happening)?

1. I had a conversation with the guy during the night about my asexuality, so he knew.
2. He still tried to kiss me. I said no.
3. After I said no to the kiss, he deliberately ignored my "no" and put his mouth on my face and began licking.
4. When I left immediately, he called after me "I just want to help you!"

Does that sound like "a rejected kiss" to you? Does that sound like he is the victim and I am the aggressor? Does that sound like I'm trying to get sympathy for something that wasn't bad at all?

Especially considering that this man followed up this encounter by sending me messages about how he knew I wanted it, I think it's pretty clear I'm not making things up. But here you're sympathizing with a dude who licks people after they said "no, I don't want to kiss you." That's nasty.
"Does that sound like I'm trying to get sympathy for something that wasn't bad at all?"
Yes, it does. You are a drama queen.  Get over yourself.  
Oh give me a break. A kiss is not sexual assault. If that were the case, most of the kids on playgrounds across the country would be registered sex offenders before they hit first grade. The author is a bit sensationalist implying that it is. Period. Talk to someone who was actually raped, and ask them if an awkward kiss is as bad as forced copulation.
Excuse me? Someone leaning over and licking my face after I said no is assault. Pretty disgusting that you're trying to act like the real problem here is me overreacting, not him putting his tongue on a girl after she emphatically, verbally expressed that she did not want to kiss.
He should not have even have kissed you knowing that you are asexual. What a disgusting man.
I certainly don't mind that he asked--some asexual people like kissing, after all--but looking back I don't even know why he asked if he was going to do it anyway. (I actually asked him, while I was getting out of the car, whether he was a dog. He replied "Well you wouldn't let me do it the right way!" Yeah man, guess that means you have to find some way, any way, for your mouth to interact with my body.)
Why didn't you lean away?
Sounds like you are making this whole thing up.  What's his name? Let's get him on the record. 
REALLY? It's "why didn't you avoid unwanted touching" rather than "he shouldn't have touched you when you didn't want him to"?

REALLY? It's "you have to prove that it happened before I even consider that it might have (and disrespect you in the meantime regardless)" rather than "whether a particular incident happened is irrelevant because we live in a culture that condones this?" (While you're condoning this?)

REALLY? It's "let's badger the person who experienced unwanted LICKING ON HER FACE after she verbally asked not to be touched and try to make her feel like it was her fault" rather than "let's acknowledge that people shouldn't touch each other without permission and ESPECIALLY not touch each other when the other person already said no"?

His name was Ken Mayor and the incident happened in Gainesville Florida in the late 1990s. It's been public for years. I recorded the IM conversation we had after the fact and it is posted on my website. I also read it in a YouTube video. But you'll continue to not accept that any of this helps my case because you have already said you believe I'm a liar, so what's to stop me from making up a name and creating the entire conversation out of a desperate need for attention and a desire to be special and seem coveted?

You're nothing new to me. You're just another rape culture apologist dismissing evidence as lies.
Disgusting.
Yes, it is disgusting that one would lie about "sexual assault" for attention.  
Never try to be cute.
I guess in your world it's the victim's responsibility to not experience unwanted touching rather than the perpetrator's responsibility to not touch people without their permission. "Why didn't YOU" XYZ is a very common response from people who believe those who want to touch other people's bodies can't be expected to obey basic decorum. I actually tried to answer your question about who he is, but I think my post got screened because it revealed personal information. (If it shows up later, I guess that's not the case.) It doesn't really matter if I tell you, though. Because you have already decided I cannot be telling the truth and somehow really like claiming people licked me without my permission based on some perceived joy I get out of victimhood. If you had his information, you'd claim I made it up. You've already said you don't believe anything I've said about my experience, so why would you accept the words of someone you've already painted as a liar and an attention-mongerer so you can protect your belief that men are allowed to touch women however they want and we must at least not hate it if we don't "lean away" (inside a car in close quarters in response to a sudden move, no less). I posted my conversation with this guy online and in a YouTube video, too, but if you saw it, you'd say I made THAT up too. You're a really horrible person.
What could be a bigger non story than asexuality. I figure far too many people on this earth + millions more men thanks to sex selective abortion = I will take any reduction in competition I can get.
Yeah really. People are being assaulted, sexually harassed, and discriminated against, and no one seems to notice because they're too busy claiming asexual people don't or can't exist. Why in the world would something terrifying happening to other people but that is not personally relevant to YOU need a story anyway? What a joke, right?

(For the sarcasm impaired: Yes, this was sarcasm.)
And here I was worried that these comments weren't becoming hateful enough. I'm relieved to see that the ignorant and intolerant and making themselves heard. (Also sarcasm, for the slow learners among us.)
No one has actually offered to physically come to my house and make me stop being asexual yet, but we've got two more articles to go.
So there's still time. *sigh* I'd bang my head on the desk in frustration, but it's bad for the desk.
eating chocolate produces the same endorphins as sexual activity... but it's far less messy.
Louisa, I've seen Belgian chocolate cakes being eaten in Belgium (Bruxelles, Liège [waffles], Mons etc) - I don't think anyone avoided getting into a mess!
No, it doesn't. It produces feelings of being in love. It has no effect on libido.
The chemical hormone that you get that "feeling in love" feeling from are endorphins, which are most prominent after sex (or during drug-induced states, like with chocolate).
Agent, just being reasonable here :), Louisa didn't say eating chocolate affected the libido, she said it produces the same endorphins as sexual activity. Not quite the same thing. But on the other hand, chocolate might produce feelings like being in love, too!
Actually, it's a yes and you missed the point.....
no feelings of being in love are a much much stronger deeper thing. sexual desires and sex itself is a thin layer on surface. I feel real bad for people who feel they are the same thing.
ah no wonder I don't like chocolate.
Clearly, you are not eating your chocolate the way I do.
Depends on how you eat the chocolate ;)
I've always felt that Chocolate is actually the true proof of the existence of God. If anything is divine, it is that. Of course, if you mix it with Hazelnut you get Nutella, elixir extraordinaire!
Yes, but too much sex won't give you diabetes.
eh.. I get it. It does seem like our culture puts entirely too much emphasis on sex! And as over-exposed as we are to it, it's easily a target for rebellion. When I was young, I had more than a few bad experiences, sexually and the whole concept turned me off for a long time. So I have to say that I understand the desire to remove the sexual component in relationships in seeking authenticity, and that can be very hard when others 1.don't understand it and 2. don't share the same desire. However, not to agree with 'anonymous', BUT, all the people in the picture are astonishingly ugly! LOL I'm sorry, but just because you aren't trying to have sex doesn't mean you can't put on some make-up and fix your hair.. for reals!
Really? This reads like you still don't see asexuality as a legitimate orientation. That everyone who's asexual just had a string of bad experiences and therefore wanted to cut sex out of their relationships. After all, YOU got better. If that's not the way you feel, I'm very open to being corrected on that matter.

These people were outside walking around in a parade all day. As something of a parade veteran, nobody wants makeup running down their face and hair all down their neck making everything more miserable than it has to be.

I also want to address your use of the word "rebellion." Asexuality isn't a rebellion against an oversexualized society. There's a large section of us, myself included, that would very much like to have sexual attraction to someone. This isn't something I decided to do because sex is so mainstream. This is something that I don't even want to be, but I'm slowly coming to terms that it won't change.
Oh for crying out loud! I was merely relating with a personal experience and making a joke... I guess because YOU have a "thing," I'm not allowed to have those... This is the prime example why people are so turned off when these types of "factions" pop up. They think, "oh great. another group of jerks to get offended at every little thing." My advice to you is, stop expecting everyone else to legitimize your 'deal,' Just do what you want to do and stop yelling at everyone whose opinion differs from your- new flash, every person is different and will never have an identical mind to yours. And if you do make it your mission to convince others that your orientation is legitimate, you will be more successful with tact, information and patients. After all, isn't the crux of this article's argument that people don't understand and respond with anger... but yet, that is what you have just done to me?
(continued)
My comments where based in my person experiences in dealing with people who could not understand why my every action and reaction was not motivated by sex. Why at times in my life, I felt as an outcast because I was not interested in dating or sex. But mostly, the awkward conversation that never got any easier, when that new friend you have made, makes a pass at you... and then you have to explain why you do not wish to make your relationship romantic, that it really 'wasn't them, it was you.' And then the ultimate crushing blow when they stop returning your calls- because they are just not interested in being your friend if sex is not involved. I understand why asexuals need communities, to find like minded people and build authentic kinships, but I do not understand people who respond to others' experiences with anger...when they are complaining that people respond to their life experience with anger and disrespect.
I'm as sexual or asexual as I feel like on any given day and I still feel no need to wear make up or fix my hair. Because that's a personal choice, not a prerequisite to existing. 9_9
I said I was willing to be corrected on the matter. I apologize if you felt I was reacting with anger. It's that so often asexuals are faced with the "oh, yeah I was asexual once and then I met my husband/wife" rhetoric on a near-constant basis. It felt like that's where you were going with it.

I don't envy you having to deal with many of the same things that asexuals have to deal with in regards to experience with personal relationships, but in a way I'm glad that you've have had some personal experiences that help you relate to others despite not sharing their sexual orientation.

The important thing is that everyone understand that asexuality is not something that comes and goes, not something that can be fixed through any means, and not something that people who fancy themselves trendy or rebellious pick up and set down when they're ready to settle down into a more mainstream life. Your comments leaned pretty heavily in that direction, but I'm glad to have been corrected as to what you were actually saying.
dude... I was making a joke. period.
I actually feel pity for asexuals. Physical intimacy is fantastic, and I'd find life so dull and empty without it. But, to each their own and regardless of what they want any attempt at physical contact without consent is abhorrent.
We don't need your pity, thanks. If you read the series, you'll find that asexuals are in fact quite happy being asexual and that physical intimacy and contact is possible without sex.
I've also heard the opposite: "god you're so lucky to not be tempted/tortured by cravings like I am!" (Which is kind of also a misrepresentation, but whatever.) The "to each his own" is probably the part of this that we'd all like to see you put at the forefront of your interactions with people unlike yourself. Sometimes people don't realize it, but the fact that you pity us does sometimes come out in your interaction, and we can see it. Doesn't really feel very good. Thank you for understanding.
Thanks for being mostly accepting, but I want to point out a couple things.
1: You can be physically intimate without sex.
2. Not all asexuals are against having sex with their partners. Some even enjoy it for a variety of reasons.
3. It doesn't really make sense for you to pity us because you personally would feel empty without sex. Both because of point number two and because asexuals who don't want sex aren't missing out on anything by not having sex. Except for a potentially very uncomfortable experience.

Anyway, don't take this as an attack. It's just something I felt should be said.
Ivy Decker may not be attracted to men (or women), but she sure is attracted to attention.
If anyone here is seeking attention it's you my friend.
Sadly, it seems that ignorance and fear of choice is alive and well among those who attack persons who make a CHOICE to lead their lives a certain way. Those who find the need to 'correct' (rape is an extreme and brutal example, but the many subtle--and not so subtle--ways that people can put down a person who chooses to be asexual, or try to 'persuade' or 'educate' or 'convince' or 'fix' or 'awaken'--are still invasive and uncalled for) are doing so because of THEIR insecurities.

If one is secure in their body and desirability and worthiness of care and connection; they will not need to put down another who may have made a different choice.

To be asexual is not a bad choice. It is not a dangerous choice. It is not a choice that puts anyone in danger or clashes with morality or religion. It is simply a DIFFERENT choice.
But there are those who are utterly phobic of 'different'.

And there are those who--narcissistically enough--get enraged by the mere thought that what is SO important to them, may be not at all important to someone else... As if that person's lack of interest in sex is a PERSONAL INSULT to the other person's attractiveness.
Which makes me wonder who is the 'broken one' needing of 'fixing'...

Those who write about 'needing a good rape' are double ignorant and they broadcast their insecurities and fears (and fantasies of someone 'giving them a good rape'?). How sad for them.
Your overall sentiment is appreciated.
One small note, though: Asexuality isn't a choice at all. It's just like any other sexual orientation, something you're born with.
I stand corrected.
I understand that for most people this may not be a choice, but simply be a state of being, something they are born with.
I was using the world 'choice' more as a freedom-to-be, as in a deliberate choice of one thing over the other; more as a 'choosing to follow what one's heart and body respects' than for 'choosing to be this way'--does that clarify?
That said, I understand how the word may be loaded.

I wonder if being asexual also includes those who choose to remain completely celibate--for all manner of reasons--and for whom this may be a choice, to some degree; if only as a way to respect their inclinations or preferences.
I don't mean someone who becomes a priest and forgoes sex, but a person who prefers to be celibate--not necessarily for lack of sex drive, but for lack of interest in using it or a personal choice.
Would they be included under asexual?
well how do you like that the lgbt being descriminitory against another group. turns out the lgbt has no tolerance for anyone who is not like them. what's that word they like to throw around- bigotry,hate speech,rights for them and no one else. looks like the lgbt is the fascist group now.
I would not blanket blame them all. I am sure there are many who do not see it that way.
Oh, that is just stupid. It is human nature to fear anything different from us. It doesn't make us fascists! Do you even know what I fascist is?? I seriously doubt it.
a group of people who think they rule over another group through fear or power.exalting themselves over others who are not in their group.homosexual Nazis.
Could not agree more.
If you could pick one celebrity not to have sex with, who would it be? I'd like to think that asexuals have crushes and fall in love. Their sex lives are up to them.
Asexuals do fall in love, love has nothing to do with sex or sexual attraction.

http://i.imgur.com/zlo2z.jpg
Actually for heterosexuals and homosexuals, crushes and romantic love tend to happen with the sex to which we're physically attracted. Thanks for the info.

I had an asexual friend in grad school who didn't believe in love, but that was because his parents were never in love.
I understand the point you're trying to make, but these different kinds of attractions are usually intermingled. Romantic love more often than not (save for in the case of asexuals, obviously) has something to do with sexual attraction.
"I'd like to think that asexuals have crushes and fall in love."

That's actually covered in a previous article of this series*. Some do, some don't. And the whole 'point' of being asexual is that you don't have a sex life ;)

*http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/06/19/asexual-relationships_n_3362206.html
"And the whole 'point' of being asexual is that you don't have a sex life"

Not at all. Some do and some don't have a sex life. The whole point of asexuality is not being sexually attracted to any gender or set of genders, but being attracted to people in other ways.
My bad. Tried to make it not too complicated, at the cost of accuracy. 
Thank you for posting this article. It's something I've seen so often and it's heart breaking to know people think like that. It's made me wary in who I tell about being asexual because I've heard tones like that.

But, I hope people start to learn more about asexuality from these articles and I hope they learn that asexuals are people just like everyone else.
I hope so too. Those of us who speak about asexuality publicly have to deal with LOADS of harassment. No one should have to accept that such things are just part of the package deal. Some asexual people just want to be asexual, not activists as well. They should be allowed to.

The book I'm writing will hopefully be picked up by a publisher (it's on submission) and then it'll be out there for people researching the orientation for their own benefit or on behalf of a loved one who is asexual.
They definitely do. I've tried to be quiet in person because when I do mention it, I've gotten some comments. I\'d like to be a little more vocal and be an activist, but I don't even know where I'd start and there's that part of me that doesn't want to hear the comments I've read. =/

I'd love to see the book once it's out. :)
I hope you'll get to. A handful of publishers are currently considering it and my agent believes it will sell. The link provided in the article shows the book's page on my website, and I'll be updating its publication status if it changes, so feel free to bookmark the site if you're interested in its progress!
Thank you so much!
I've never had a conversation with an identifying asexual so I'm just trying to understand this here...

Human sexuality has be an integral part of the human psyche for thousands and thousands and thousands of years. Usually when someone is disinterested in sex (and does not identify as asexual) it is because of some kind of emotionally/psychologically distressing or traumatic experience(s) with sex. Or something or someone just put them off from sex in general. While the biological components of sex do depend on genetics, sex is also highly psychological.

I guess what I'm trying to understand is HOW? (How is this possible and how does it work?)

Also, I'm interested to know how a relationship between a romantic asexual and a hetero/homo/bisexual would work? Or do asexuals just avoid romantic relationships with those interested in sex?

(Please don't call me ignorant or anything. Like I said, I've never known someone who was/is asexual and I think conversations are more helpful than googling it.)

On a side note, the rape culture in this society is effing disgusting.
I don't know on what grounds you say "usually" (when you say people are traumatized or emotionally/psychologically dysfunctional if they don't want sex). Based on what? Considering the academic research now coming to light indicates a good 1% of the population that doesn't experience sexual attraction, I think it's misleading to conclude that you know these people's experiences or mental state.

Human sexuality is indeed part of what has made us a success as a species. And yet in every generation (since the beginning) there have been gay people whose sexual inclinations do not push them easily toward reproduction. If evolution were so simple as to erase those who don't seek out reproductive sex--or sex at all--we wouldn't still have gay people (and asexual people) in the population today. Since failure to want sex is so quickly and commonly labeled as pathological, the commonality of the experience is often hidden because of fear of shame, the same way in many periods in history gay people had to hide.

Yes, asexual people do sometimes have relationships with non-asexuals. I have an article published and a video on YouTube about asexual relationships. (You can find them if you Google "asexual relationships" and my username, swankivy.)

Since you seem to be an honestly curious person, I trust that you'll be able to dig up great information about how asexual people function with a few well-placed search queries. Good luck!
I'm sorry; I should have said "in my experience." Also, I didn't call anyone dysfunctional. Like with everything else, with sex, there's usually something driving the way people behave. Maybe I'm misplaced in trying to attribute a general cause to a very complex and diverse issue, but I wasn't pretending to understand everyone's experiences or mental states. I will be looking that video up. Thanks for your help!
Thanks for clarifying and I understand where you're coming from! Usually people who say "people who don't want sex are usually suffering from X, Y, or Z" are out to "explain away" asexuality as "really" a disorder, so it's lovely that you don't mean it that way. And please feel free to contact me with any additional questions, because I think my contact info is pretty well available through anywhere you find me online.
No one really knows how. Why are homosexual people homosexual? Why are transgender people transgender? I don't have an answer for how it's possible any more than I have an answer for those others, but it works pretty much like you'd expect it to.

For me, there's no tingles when I see anyone, regardless of physical attractiveness. I'm capable of recognizing that some people are very attractive, but that's aesthetic attraction, which beautiful scenery and art falls into. I wouldn't want to have sex with an aesthetically attractive person any more than I would want to have sex with a painting.

Some asexuals do avoid romantic relationships with people interested in sex. The problem is that asexual doesn't mean aromantic and many of us still have a need for emotional intimacy that's most easily obtained from a romantic partner with the way today's society is structured, with partners winning out over friends all the time. With the need for a romantic partner and the difficulty of finding other asexuals to partner with, lots find themselves in relationships with people who aren't asexual.

Honestly there's a lot of wiggle room for participating in sex for asexuals. Some are capable and will do it and others will not. The first group may find success in having relationships with not-asexuals. The general trend is that as long as it's not too often, lots of asexuals can handle occasional sex. They just never feel sexually attracted to their partners and that can cause problems
I mean, I don't get tingly just looking at people either, but I get what you're saying. I'm glad you could confirm some of what I was wondering, because it struck me as possibly challenging to have a long-term romantic relationship exclusive of sex, especially in this society where romance and sex seem so inexorably linked. Thanks for your response!
samanfa, you are correct that disinterest in sex is "usually" due to an emotional disorder although, as you found, it's not PC here to say so.

About one in ten adults suffers from depression at some point in their life and about 70% of those lose interest in sex. There are other medical conditions (and drugs) that can cause a loss of interest in sex. But these are people who formerly had sexual desires and lost them, and who are often distressed by that loss.

This is a very different condition from asexuality, the normal human variant where people in most cases never had sexual interest in the first place and are for the most part not at all distressed by lacking it.
I don't think that there's really any reason for people to judge asexuals. You don't know what they've experienced with their feelings about sex, and it sounds like people can live fulfilling lives as asexuals. I don't know why anyone would want to put them down if they are happy with who they are. Now I'm a homosexual man and I really think that homosexuals need to take a second look before writing these people off as "inhuman" (which they absolutely aren't) because they share some of the same acceptance issues with gays. There is no problem with asexuals and we don't need to "fix them" as some have said. Can't we just try to make them happy with who they are? Why is that a problem?
You make my heart feel warm with your view on the issue. :D Also, veggies and starches are totally awesome.
Great article that casts light on something very few in the community would have known about.
But why talk about it if you're asexual? And open yourself up to discrimination? This is very different from being gay, where you (sort of) have to (eventually) identify yourself. I mean, I'm not saying to live in shame and hide from everyone, but I just don't see how the conversation comes up and how people get to know you're asexual.

Can I have your number?
No.
Why not?
Not interested.....(moving along)
If you think people don't make an issue of it and insert themselves into your business if you don't conform to what they think is normal, I guess you're lucky! As an aromantic asexual, I can assure you that people notice--right away--that I do not have a partner and they don't know how to deal with it. Usually, they assume I wish it were otherwise, and if they are attracted to me they might proposition me and if they are not attracted to me (or are otherwise promised to someone else) they sometimes assume I'll appreciate knowing their brother is single, etc. Do you know how many times I have been asked "Why NOT?" by a stranger, as if being in a relationship is the default? And for asexual people who do have relationships, perhaps they will be interpreted as gay or straight depending on who they're dating (much like bisexuals are assumed "either" gay or straight based on their partner's gender), but the negotiations in a relationship that doesn't proceed heteronormatively are difficult to handle, especially if you have no idea that asexual is a thing you can be and don't know why you can't seem to feel for your partner the way they do for you (just one of many reasons it needs to be talked about). It needs to be an available norm in the world. It can't be if no one who's asexual is visible.
Actually it would seem that way, but people eventually get to the point where they wonder why you haven't had a girlfriend/boyfriend/whatever or why your SO and you haven't done it. They keep at it until you finally are forced to tell them. So yes, actually, we do eventually get forced to tell people. And when we do, we would rather not be misunderstood or worse.
I guess I'm lucky and still have not been forced to tell anyone (although I did tell one of my friends because he's open about being asexual). Although I think you are mostly correct, you also have to remember that with more visibility we can reach out to more people who are asexual and who may think there is something wrong with them and we can help them see that there isn't and that there are people like them. Along with there more understanding due to more visibility!
Why talk about it? Because she's not alone. Many asexuals will be bullied and succumb to the message that they're broken. They live in fear and silence and submit to acts they do not desire because they're bombarded with messages like "This is what normal people do" and "You'll do this if you love me" and "You're broken if you don't want it". They do not have the courage to stand up and say "No, I do not want sex, and there is nothing wrong with me". They don't know that there's any other way. Without her and others like her, things would never change, and many asexuals would end up feeling broken in a miserable life.

Julie Decker is a hero and an inspiration to countless asexuals for what she does. People see her out there standing up to and endless stream of bullying and threats and ignorance and it gives them strength.
The very concept of "corrective rape" is absurd and offensive.
I think the issue is that you aren't a group. You aren't discriminated against because you are not different, there are no bans on people who do not desire to have sex doing anything. Also people think there is something wrong with you, because there kinda is, human beings are programmed to seek out partners, to lack this means you are missing a crucial part of the human experience, and pretty much every doctor will tell you a healthy sexual relationship with your partner is crucial to successful relationships. Asexuality if it exists and is not simply a byproduct of hormonal imbalance which reduced your libido so far that you lost all interest in mating is a disorder, not an orientation and once again, there are no bans on asexuals doing anything, people just think you are odd. That doesn't excuse the vile comments about rape or sexual assault either, don't get me wrong, but comparing the plight of the LBGT community with people who cannot even begin to understand sexual orientation or sexual desire is pretty short sighted, especially when the LBGT community has suffered real discrimination. Also take a biological anthropology class, try Sex and Gender studies, so you can actually have a clue what the scientist really have to say on the matter.
Or perhaps you could go read the second installment of this series, "Asexual Disorder? The Search For Ace Identity Is Part Recognition, Part Redefinition", published on Tuesday, where real live actual scientists (of the sex and gender studies variety) who are studying asexuality are interviewed about what they have to say on the matter. (Spoiler Alert: They believe we exist and don't dismiss our experiences.)
Do you know the definition of discrimination? Because asexuals do experience it; take a look through this article, take a look at the comments section for this and past articles, take a look at your own post.

Just because we're invisible, and you haven't personally seen the discrimination does not mean it doesn't exist.

Def'n of Discrimination: "Discrimination is the prejudicial and/or distinguishing treatment of an individual based on their actual or perceived membership in a certain group or category"

People treat me differently, and bully me frequently based on me being asexual; thus I'm discriminated against.

Then you (and many others) justify the hatred with things like...

"These people are pathertic!"

"They deserve to be bullied and made fun of!"

"This is pitiful, they are just mentall ill!"

Almost every comment made against asexuals has been made against homosexuals in the past.

Where have you seen an asexual, or any of these articles state that we are somehow more discriminated against than the LGBT community? Nowhere.

Comparisons are made on everything, it does not indicate that EVERYTHING is the same. It's simply comparing the experiences.

I've taken a sex and gender class (This year!) we discussed asexuality in full; the teacher believes it's a real sexual orientation.

Your basis of saying that we will be unable to live full and healthy lives is misinformed and ignorant.

Please don't ever claim you know my experiences better than myself, I've gone through serious bullying and problems due to being asexual.
I admit I don't really understand asexuality, having a very strong sexual attraction to the same sex, but I find making comments about raping asexuals (let alone the act of rape) to be totally disgusting. As far as I know, asexuals harm no one and they have every right to live their lives in peace and free from harm.
It's funny, I don't really understand what a "normal" sexual attracting is like (I kinda have some sexual attraction sometimes maybe? But that could also just be aesthetic and/or romantic attraction, it's kinda confusing lol). But I guess that's what's bound to happen when we're both different that way. Anyway I totally agree rape is disgusting and anyone who does it is a horrible person! Thanks for supporting us! (have some cake!) :)
Is this real or an elaborate satire of some sort? If you don't want to have sex, don't have sex. If you don't go around announcing you are broken, people are much less likely to try and fix you. I agree that no person should be assaulted, but I also think that a person of reproductive age with absolutely no interest in sex probably has an underlying psychological, emotional or indeed physiological problem to examine.
Thank you for taking time out of your busy day to comment on an article you didn't bother to read by both dismissing and pathologizing my identity and telling me to go in the corner and stop talking. Your ignorance and apathy are appreciated.
Really, 'a person of reproductive age' ? Please don't reduce my body to a device meant for reproduction. Thanks.

I am asexual. I do have medical conditions as well: I have severe anxiety, I have gluten and dairy intolerance, I have asthma, I have allergies. None of these have to do with me being asexual. There are non asexual people who have anxiety, food intolerances, asthma, allergies, etc., yet no one is looking for a pathological cause for their sexual orientation now are they? If I take my medicines and get therapy does that cure me of my asexuality? No it doesn't because again, they're not connected.

I just happen to be asexual and I don't need to be cured. My hormones are normal. My body functions just fine sexually. I just don't happen to experience sexual attraction to anyone, no matter their gender.
Asexuality, that's a new one...Sounds like the Bible is okay with it so, so am I. Although I am strongly hetero, if the desire is not there for sexual relationships...that's one less distraction. Think about it..no unwanted pregnancies which lead to,at times, abortion, no STD's, no ruined reputations, sexual purity(never a bad thing religiously), more time devoted to doing want you want to do. And you can still have friends. Now that sexually self-questioning teen now has a third option..asexuality. "Maybe the reason you don't like girls is because you are asexual". Gay doesn't always have to be the alternative.Right. Be who you are right and if that's asexual..so be it.
Asexuality isn't the Abstinence Club. We're not about protecting reputations or maintaining purity or any other outdated notions that do nothing but create shame and hurt people. I do not want my sexual orientation to be co-opted by religious groups who'll use it as a weapon in the fight against "The Gay".
That sexually self-questioning teen should find his own answers. Maybe he's asexual, sure. But maybe he doesn't like girls because he's gay and likes guys. I do not want him to feel compelled to hide his feelings and live a lie and claim that he's asexual because that's a more "socially acceptable" way to go. That's no different than telling him that he can be straight if he just tries hard enough. It's a hurtful practice that must end.
When I was questioning my sexuality, before I discovered asexuality, I did not say "I don't like women, therefore I'm gay". I said "I don't like women, could I be gay? ... Nope, don't like men, either. I guess I'm straight by default." I think many other aces had similar thoughts.
The point being that I doubt truly that the asexual will truly be accepted into the LGBT arena..as their point is advocation of a type of sexuality and acceptance of that sexuality by others. Being that, the religious community probably wouldn't have a problem with your orientation, you do not share the same challenges. Perhaps being asexual is a gift..as it keeps you away from sexual temptation such as fornication, adultery, and homosexuality as long as you don't give into peer pressure to act from gay or straight communities. The love you possess for others is not condemned as it is truly not a selfish, lustful, drive. As to asexual advocacy, telling others that they do not have to pick one side or another if they don't feel that way might be a good thing. Forcing a sexual relationship due to the peer pressure is not recommended and in the end both I think will suffer. Who's not to say that once the right person is found, that the drive will kick on? If that never happens..it's okay or if it does fine.
This is incorrect. Speaking as a Christian asexual, the Christian community is not more accepting and understanding. Heterosexual love and marriage are seen as essential and are considered "gifts" from God. Asexuals are not heterosexual and people in the church have accused me and other asexuals of being selfish and missing a crucial part of humanity. They advocate abstinence not asexuality. They advocate celibacy for priests and nuns, not asexuality. Aside from this, while some asexuals may define themselves as straight, neither I nor many asexuals identify as straight. Some asexuals identify as queer, especially due to their romantic orientation (homoromantic, biromantic, panromantic and sometimes aromantic individuals will identify as queer)
Curious, does kissing count as sexual contact to asexuals? As the rest of us straight or gay of would probably say no. However, it is a form of physical intimacy. I'm not talking about kissing grandmother on the cheek either.
It may for some individuals, others consider it as something sensual rather that sexual and sensuality and sexuality are separate things for some people. While kissing might not be seen as a sexual act, forcibly kissing someone in an aggressive manner may still be seen as sexual assault

It all depends on the individual though where 'kissing' falls under. I'm very uncomfortable with kissing, while some asexuals in romantic relationships may still kiss or be intimate with their partners (especially if their partner is not asexual) despite the fact they still do not experience sexual attraction. People of all different sexualities have different comfort levels in regards to physical intimacy though.
I don't think it is for you to determine, wouldn't that be between you and your version of god? As it is, Asexual is simply a lack of sexual attraction. Asexuals can still have sex, still have children, and still have successful relationships. You can think we are "pure" all you want but I don't quite think that is correct. Asexuality is no more a choice than being heterosexual, gay, bi, or what have you. This is not something that is a choice, but that isn't the point. I don't find myself comfortable reading how someone plans to use asexuality to try and convince someone who is LGBT that they aren't actually LGBT. Jesus never mentioned Gays or Lesbians at all, He also stated "Those who are without sin may cast the first stone" so why are you planning on throwing stones at people?
My asexuality didn't keep me away from fornication. I know some asexuals who've engaged in homosexual acts. And I'm sure there's even some asexual adulterers out there. Asexuality is not some pure and righteous path that leads people safely away from the road to sin.
I have seen plenty of asexuals have their life condemned as selfish, whether it's because they don't want a relationship or don't want kids, or because they've said "No" to sex one too many times to someone who thinks they're owed it.
I have seen Catholic priests call us inhuman and say that we'd be destroying the sanctity of marriage if we refuse to consummate it. I've read an account of an asexual Mormon woman who was ostracized because she did not want to have children.
You say "pick one side or another" as though sexual orientation is like choosing a college to go to. "Let's see... I'll go to WWU and be asexual!" It's not. Sexual orientation isn't a choice. People don't pick sides. People are who they are. If that "sexually self-questioning teen" is asexual, then great, he's asexual. But if he's pretty sure that he thinks guys are hot, then it is wrong to try to push him to believe he's asexual, because he's not. The point of "sexually self-questioning" is to find out who you are, not who someone else thinks you're supposed to be.
I think generally you need to find out more about what being asexual means before you take off running with this idea that it's instant, God-given "sexual purity" and selflessness.

sidenote: There are more than two sexual orientations excluding being asexual, so it wouldn't be a "third option", anyway. It also certainly isn't one that should be dangled in front of someone already going through a difficult time trying to figure themselves out as some sort of promise of redemption, as 'well, maybe you aren't straight BUT I find this sexual orientation acceptable so you should make yourself fit that mold, instead'.
Here's a group of people who don't have abortions, don't increase the population, harm no one but are the ultimate threat to feminists, pedophiles, pornography and other blights on society who try to use sex for power and intimidate people that don't conform to their plans for their life.
I'm asexual. I'm also a feminist. And I've got nothing against pornography. Please do not make claims about what we stand for without knowing what we stand for.
Sorry for thinking higher of you than is warranted. I was speaking of the asexual ones who actually care for the common good and welfare of all people, not just their own little group.
I could not be happier to see these articles coming about. As someone who is still learning to accept their status as a grey-a, but still feels like something is wrong with me, it's refreshing to see that people are starting to notice us. :)
Why is being asexual posted in the Huff Post Gay format. AN asexual person id NOT gay. This is doos data foe a medical arena or a Behavioral health forum but it does not belong in a gay format.
Because asexuality is an alternative sexuality the same as homosexuality is. Our communities battle much of the same hatred and bigotry and no minority has ever won equality by splitting itself into groups that war amongst themselves. This is "mainstream heterosexuality" as opposed to "everything else," not "mainstream heterosexuality", "homosexuality", "bisexuality", "transgender", and "asexuality" all fighting the same battle but not combining resources.

You really think that this is for the Medical or Behavioral Health sections? Can you see how that is fundamentally trying to "fix" asexuals, and these articles are trying to educate those people willing to listen that we don't need to be fixed any more than homosexuals need to be fixed. Gay Voices is the only section we can have this discussion in and have it really discussed and not devolve into the same old usual "you're just sexually repressed", "you were abused", "get your hormones checked", yaddah yaddah.
I don't really see it as alternative sexuality. Many asexuals still have a gender preference in the people they form relationships with, and they may even have sex for the purpose of procreation if they get married. It certainly doesn't fit the homosexual category.
It's wonderful that you don't see it as alternative! I wish there were more people like you out there. The reality of asexuals' experiences is that most people out there treat it as alternative, however. Some asexuals have a romantic attraction to the opposite gender, which makes them pass as heterosexual from the outside very well. Others have a romantic attraction to the same gender which makes them pass as homosexual, with all of the problems that come from that assumption. I know you haven't done this specifically, but being as this everyone can read this and it's relevant to this thread, please no one make the mistake of believing that homoromantic asexuals aren't "gay" enough to matter to the LGBT movement. It's never been sex that LGBTs are fighting for, but the right to have a relationship with who you want and not be treated differently for it. That's a goal very relevant to asexuals of all kinds and we shouldn't be excluded just because we don't want the sex that most people want.
Some asexual people are gay though. Plus, it's not like we have an 'asexual voices' section to put it in anyway. So for now it goes here because it's the place designed to give refuge to those without a safe place and who identify with a sexuality other than heterosexual.
Of course gay and asexual aren't the same, but many discussions of various non-gay sexual minorities take place here in "Gay Voices". And there are a few similar issues: as a gay man, I find the comments about asexuals being "broken" or "needing somebody to fix them" or "contrary to nature" to be sadly familiar.
I actually met Miss Decker on a dating website. Still not sure if Asexuality is really a thing or not. It seems un human, but who knows nature can do some seemingly strange things and without all that sexuality getting in the way I'm sure a person could get a lot more accomplished.
I think you should probably accept that when people say they are experiencing something, it is "a thing." Orientation and experience of sexual attraction is by definition subjective.

(And since people will probably misinterpret that "dating site" comment, I am not on OKCupid for dating. The site's six categories for members are "friends," "activity partners," "long-distance pen pals," "short-term dating," "long-term dating," and "casual encounters (sex)." I only clicked two of those. I bet you can guess which!)

I think the problem with "it seems un human" is that some people insist their own experience is what defines normality or humanity. I'm happy to say that there's a really broad range of what is human and people are starting to realize that. :)
Wow, really? Are you kidding me? There was a link in the article to one of her videos where she addressed everything you are saying there as wrong and offensive. "un human" and "I'm sure a person could get a lot more accomplished" are hurtful.
I completely see where skepticism comes from about asexuality. Gay or straight people who dont experience it cannot conceive an utter absence of desire towards sex.

And when 'aces' are actively in a 'relationship' with someone I think its pretty easy to see how confusion even among the most 'enlightened' and understanding of people can be rife.

For aces themselves its never easy especially if you were sexually active and arrived at the revelation afterwards.

Its easier for people to rationalize a person as 'weird' who may be a virgin or only had a handful of intimate interactions (intercourse or not) and now identify because its easy to fall back on the [Your just ugly] or [burned by a bad relationship] line or reasoning.

If it is scary to recognize you like the same bio-gender as yourself. Its as equally scary to not be able to figure out why any gender doesnt 'do it' for you. I suspect there are any number of aces who never even thought about the possibility that they are such and instead simply think of themselves as being 'broken'.

I think the big challenge is that you do not need to go around declaring yourself aces (as opposed to coming out per se). An ace can live their lifestyle without anyone knowing so it makes it that much harder to bring awareness and communities together. And thats if the individual has even begun to wonder if what they are feeling is asexuality.
It took me over a quarter century to realize that my 'asexual' ways weren't abnormal or broken or wrong. And even then, I wasn't convinced for a while. Then it took even longer to fully accept it into my self fully. I contemplated suicide a few times. I'm glad my parents instilled a respect for life into me, and in a way I'm thankful that my friend committed suicide so that I know the personal cost it takes. Otherwise I'd not be here today, learning about me and coming to really be happy in who I am.
Why is anyone else's sexuality any of my business? Asexual, bisexual, homosexual, pansexual - the idea that any of us have anything to say about how anyone else views their own sexuality is appalling.
Thank you for writing this article. I honestly have not heard much about asexuality, and was unaware of this issue of abuse facing our society. I am glad to be informed. I will start to pay more attention now and look for ways to be a small voice of support.
You're lovely and the asexual community will be glad to help you with resources if you would like to ask some of our members about how to be an ally. (I actually have an article published called "How to be an asexual ally" if you want to look it up someday.) :)
I just view asexuality as another part of the human spectrum. I was, frankly baffled at the negative reactions to those who happen to be aces...then I thought that maybe it is because sex has so permeated this culture, and has become such a "currency" in every aspect of living, that encountering a human who has no desire, or need for sex is incomprehensible to many.

How do you advertise, coerce, belittle, control, negotiate, entice etc... without the ever-present crutch of "S.E.X."? Finding themselves at a loss, too many people then resort to the second, most used crutch in our society: violence.
I say that whatever consenting adults do in their own bedrooms- or don't do as is the case here, is their business. I'm not trying to trivialize anybody's experience with jokes; it's sad that in 2013 people still have a hard time with that concept. I really don't understand the hypocrisy of society's attitude about sexuality. I'm tired of the good and normal people of the world limiting the human rights of those of us outside their circle.
Asexuality isn't the not having of sex, though. It's not being sexually attracted, and attraction is not behavior. Think of all the gay men in history that pretended to not be gay because it wasn't acceptable to society. And some asexuals do have sex lives, too.
I was using humor, even if I wasn't trying to be dismissive. This isn't something I've encountered- or if I have, I haven't known it. I can generalize from my experience as a gay male and completely accept that this isn't something that is simply defined by sexual activity. Thanks for taking the time to read and reply to my post. ;)
"Sexual harassment and violence, including so-called “corrective” rape, is disturbingly common in the ace community"

fairly common for the lesbian community as well. Let's face it, sexual violence is prevalent in the world period. Rape is not about sex, it's about power.
You would be correct, rape is about power. The point of this article is to discuss how some individuals face sexual assault, harassment, etc. based on their orientation. If you read my particular post you'd notice that I discussed how this affects people in the LGBTQ+ community as a whole, not just asexuals. However, the problem is that some in the LGBTQ+ community assert that asexuals don't face *any* problems in regards to identifying as asexual when they do.
well to assert that asexuals don't face any problems in that regard is incredibly naive.
What a strange age this is. I never eat stuffed bell peppers. 'Think I'll become an activist and promote the lifestyle.
I don't like peppers either. I will march with you!!
I know several asexuals, one of whom is extremely beautiful, and they don't seem to elicit romantic/sexual expectations from others. Everyone who meets them reads the "not interested" vibe without getting all bent out of joint. I would say they are lonely and don't want to live alone forever. Partner relationships with other asexuals would seem to be a solution.
I thought I was just weird, and you know, people who think they know you will insist they know what you think and feel and that "you can't possibly be that way, you just need to find the right guy!" Hmmm, interesting when you are not sexually attracted to either sex. Not to the point of actually wanting to sleep with them. Fortunately, my weight keeps people from finding me attractive, which either unintentional or intentional. I think people, gay or straight, want you to be like them, to 'fit in'. Unfortunate for me, my weight tends to keep people away, it's not that I don't like people. I really do, I just don't want to 'sleep with them'.
Julie Decker, something more I wanted to add to my last comment here; I felt alone as an asexual before I read this article because I didn't realize there were other people in my shoes. I don't know how long I will be an asexual and don't care because everything happens for a reason, and usually for the best. While it is important to feel independently strong, it is sometimes needed to know we are not alone. We can find the support we need if we just make an effort to reach out. So as I continue on my journey, not knowing exactly where I am going or why, I will believe in the best of me and make the most of it, WITH OR WITHOUT SEX. Life is so much more beautiful to me without sex. I am happy that you are with us and wish you the best of the good things left in life. Cheers to your strength.
Interesting.. People who choose to have no sex of any kind are ridiculed by those people who choose to have only homosexual sex and accuse them of trying to corrupt their movement.. Not their status of natural birth... but their movement... their agenda... People who choose to do or not to something in a specific sexual manner, all think they are a "special" group that deserves special Rights. That is why my avatar is the Divide symbol. America loves to divide itself into special interest and political pandering groups... No one wants to just be an American anymore... This story also proves that the Gay community using the Equal sign only applies to them. Equality for others doesnt matter.
When will Gay Voices do something about those who are sexually fluid?
I'm not sure that a lot of 'fluid-identified' people exist: it seems to be more of a theory based on semantics, usually asserted by people to claim 'you can and should change your orientation,' ...most people who've claimed to be 'fluid' that I've heard from don't seem to actually report anything particularly different from bisexual experience.
Maybe you can suggest the topic to them!

I've not learned much about sexual fluidity, I know a little from my friends in the GLBT community who are sexually fluid. Aside from that, I don't know all that much :)

Who knows, maybe HP would be interested in covering an article? You won't know if you don't try.
I can't believe someone would say that to another person. That is just so cruel.
I always retreat to movie world for comfort when things get so damn dicey and unpleasant. Isn't there one scene in The Knack (and How to Get It) where a bedraggled person knocks on a door and gasps out to the person who answers: Rape! and the homeowner gently replies: No, thank you.
While the rape and rude comments are terrible, why does every single "group" in America feel the need to be accepted for every single difference? It's exhausting. If people want to be ignorant and think stupid things, they have the right. The truly ignorant hateful people aren't going to change their ideas or opinions based on activism. I am a member of at least 3 groups that have MAJOR discrimination surrounding them. One of them is so misunderstood, if people know, I would never have a job or friends. But, you know what? In spite of that, I am happy and successful. How? I just live my life and don't go looking for people's approval or disapproval. I don't feel entitled for people to accept my differences. I am who I am. People can like it, dislike it, whatever they want. We all pretty much have a whole lot of weird going on behind the curtain and people can feel how they want about it.
See, if asexuality were one of those things that could go unnoticed forever, then that would be one thing, but it's not. Eventually people start wondering whether or not the asexual person in question will ever get married/ have kids like most people do and that opens up a whole other can of worms. Go ahead and have yourself a look at this. http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/without-prejudice/201209/prejudice-against-group-x-asexuals Most people would think that asexuals would simply fly under the radar and nothing bad would happen because of their sexual orientation, but that doesn't seem to be the case in practice.
I think what they are seeking is simply understanding. Ignorance and secrecy go hand in hand. When things are kept underground and secret they are viewed as bad even if they are perfectly normal. Being open brings about education and understanding. That's why I believe all the various groups "come out".
Well said. Plus ignorance about our orientation leads us to believe no one is experiencing the feelings associated with asexuality. And considering the overt compulsory nature of sexuality in our society, we are bound to believe we need to change if we think we're the only on who feels that way.

What I don't understand is the concept of "*I'm* happy being silent, *I'm* happy without people knowing anything--I just don't know why other people need to come out because *I* can't imagine needing any of the things coming out leads to!" Well, not talking about asexuality means like-minded people can't find each other, and we can't do much to help each other and ourselves understand asexuality if instead of acceptance we encourage SILENCE. (So other people won't have to get exhausted learning how not to hurt us and prevent us from participating fully in human society.)

In short, if learning about the diversity of the world is just too overwhelming for someone and they don't like being asked to modify their perspectives and behavior to be more inclusive of every kind of human being, they're suggesting that they should be left alone to possibly keep unintentionally hurting and erasing people through ignorance, and that the problems ignorance causes are less important than the problem of them experiencing the discomfort of exposing themselves to new perspectives.
The bullheaded ignorant people aren't worth my time and energy. They hate me, they'll always hate me, and there's nothing I can do to change that. I'm not involved in activism work to change their minds.
I'm involved in activism work to reach the people who aren't infected with terminal ignorance and show them who we are. I'm involved in activism work to reach those who are lost and confused, like I was, and show them who they are.
"I hope you get raped. It has a dual benefit, you'll get laid finally AND put you into your place as well."

Now there's a person who needs to be tracked down and put down like a rabid dog.
Nobody needs to be abused. A man will not be attracted to women if he is beaten and shown porn. A woman will not be attracted to men if she is attacked and humiliated. Crossdressers and transgender cannot be "converted" by violence either.

I would be very much in favor of de-genderising society. We absolutely do not need to be gender identified on our passports, drivers licenses or anything. It does not serve as any legitimate form of identification - just as a form of discrimination.

This discrimination is partly behind this abuse thing. Let people be themselves and let people make love to whoever they want to and let them express their identity as they want to. That'd get rid of a whole load of issues.
Does this violence happen towards asexual men?
I have heard of it happening, yes.
test
I mean the desire and drive to have sex is mostly chemical; a base urge stemming from primal need to reproduce. Not having a sex drive or sexual attraction doesn't seem so weird when you think about how simple those things are to influence.
So the real issue isn't who you have sex with it's being different from the socially accepted "norm".
I will admit that I can't understand asexuality. For whatever reason it just won't compute for me. Having said that even though i don't understand it I think what is happening to these people is horrific. Nobody regardless of sex or sexual oreintation should be subjected to this.
I suspect that the Hodson and McInnis study that "found that people of all sexual stripes are more likely to discriminate against asexuals, compared to other sexual minorities" did not include pedophiles as one of the other minorities.

Be thankful that there is not a concerted effort to exterminate you based on who you love.
Anyone who thinks rape is the answer should volunteer their Mom for it. Let's see how that works.
And make that person be the one to do it. See if that changes anything.
Oh, so now we have to be GLTBQ...and A? Give me a break!
"Mosbergen linked a CNN video "Corrective Rape" documenting South African LESBIANS as "queer".

The HORRIFIC stories of these lesbian women are NOT "queer"....
They are lesbians.

Ace activists should know better then invalidate lesbian sexuality."

Also, trans activists in the United States push rape culture concepts like the Cotton Ceiling. See http://pretendbians.com/2013/06/21/endangered-species-actual-lesbians/
i get asexuals..sex is so overrated,it only complicates everything..
What is this world coming to? The kind of people who make self-righteous claims about others sexuality are the same kind of people who make rape and death threats. It seems to be increasing in leaps and bounds. Zealotry, it has to be uprooted!
Geez, if you don't want to have sex, don't. If you do wanna have sex, go ahead and find a willing, legal partner. Why do so many people feel the need to concern themselves with the sex lives (or lack thereof) of other people?
The tragic sadness of rejecting difference and using that terrible word 'normal' ... is that those who cling to such modalities have no idea they're stuck in amber, in a delusion, a cognitive dissonance as large as such things get.

Take any human being on the planet - now find another person exactly like them - that isn't them: a twin won't cut it, even the closest, because it is impossible to anyone to have lived the same exact experience/moment at every point of life.

There will never ever ... ever .. be another person exactly like any person you find. Nor has they ever been one. Nor is there.

We are all born bounded by time and space ... our experiences are therefore also bound in the same. That makes every single human being - that has lived, is living or will live, all of them, absolutely unique.

Diversity is infinite - ain't that wonderful :)
I feel like a bad person after I couldn't stop laughing after I read the line "corrective rape". I am still giggling what is wrong with me!!!!! Its just so stupid I can't stop laughing.
Hi this is Angela who created the post on corrective rape and how that affects the Asexual community. I would just like to clear some things up.

The post I made about corrective rape was in response to the anon that I received. I received that anon response I'm assuming because I was bothered by this particular blogger that was posting hateful comments in the asexuality tag. This particular blogger (wtfsocialjustice.tumblr.com) runs a "backlash" blog and frequently harasses people they perceive to be "social justice bloggers" - never mind the fact that people merely discussing their orientation online is not an act of social justice.

This person has a lot of exposure in the tumblr community which is somewhat dangerous as their followers go after people in the asexual community as well as other communities and leave hateful comments and even threats such as the rape threat that I received. Seriously if you ever want to gross yourself out just go through their asexual tag and look at some of the comments on the posts they reblogged.

That is how I ended up receiving the threat and that is why I ended up creating the post. It was a 'this is the last straw' kind of situation. I don't take threats lightly and I'm a very aggressive and assertive person. I wanted to put into words exactly how these attitudes harmed me and other people like me, especially since asexuals supposedly 'don't experience problems' because of their identity.
I can bet that asexuality is a real and true trait for people and there is no calling into question the legitimacy of it on my part. What I don't enjoy is the thinking that everyone has to accept the premise right off the bat, such as the thought that, "A few years ago, there was nothing. There was a deafening silence about asexuality"...and when she talks about going to counselors and psychologists and receiving little help. Not being completely aware to a fairly newly identified sexual orientation, and finding it just a little odd that a person can have no sex drive is not tantamount to being a bigot or homophobe.
Asexuality is not about a lack of a sex drive or libido. It's about a lack of experiencing sexual attraction to another person. Sexual attraction is seen as intrinsic to humankind but asexuals are an anomaly in regards to people's general understandings of human nature.A bigot is someone who is devoted to their prejudices and intolerance. There are people who are prejudiced towards and intolerant of asexual identifying people, and quite dedicated to that intolerance.
I can understand that there are many people that are prejudiced towards all kinds of people based on race, religion, sexual orientation and asexuals are no different. I don't fully understand every facet of what makes an asexual an asexual, and people that don't understand or comprehend fully, or are not completely aware of their circumstances are not bigots. People that continue to reject, hate and vilify people based on a inborn characteristic are bigots. I guess my point is to call a spade a spade, rather than taking a lack of knowledge or complete belief about a fairly new notion in society to mean somebody is a bigot.
asexual would be the perfect Christian, in fact I believe the Shaker sect disavowed sexual activity. the hot/cold judgmental hypocrisy of the loud Fundamentalist choir would be silenced by the asexual movement
Except for, I am a Catholic Christian individual and asexuals who are Catholic also face prejudice within the church. Asexuality is seen as a disorder that needs to be fixed through heterosexual marriage and copulation, otherwise we are not seen as "whole." I have been told repeatedly to not want these things, to not desire these things, is selfish and wrong. Of course, others would say asexuals should become nuns and priests. This is ridiculous because it assumes that nuns and priests do not experience sexual attraction. Some do, they are merely celibate. Asexuality and celibacy are not the same thing as asexuality is not a choice while celibacy is.
I still don't understand that how many reasons insane people need to discriminate against someone. Gays and lesbians are hated by many bigots because they have wrong sexual attraction (accoding to these bigots). Now what is the problem with assexuals? If someone doesn't want to have sex with anyone and then raping them. Is it not against one's choice and will? Is it not violation of one's fundamental human right?
I think bigots and insane people need good dose of discrimination.
I would think that the asexuals can be in the Christian club more so than the GLBT club. Not being driven by sexual desire is a good thing.
Except for the part where it's not a religious belief at all. In 2011, there was a large on-line survey of self-identified asexuals in which 36.5% said they were "non-religious" and 14.3% said they were Christian.

The question on the survey was multiple choice, so many people likely selected both "non-religious" and "atheist" or "Catholic" and "Christian". A detailed analysis of the results came to this conclusion:

"Atheist OR agnostic: 42%
Atheist OR agnostic OR nonreligious: 64%
Catholic, Christian, Eastern Orthodox, Protestant, OR non-denominational: 22%"
Survey by Asexual Awareness Week, analysis by Tristan Miller. Source: http://asexualawarenessweek.com/docs/SiggyAnalysis-AAWCensus.pdf
One reason I never married would be that I would have to do my "duty" as a wife. I thought that more horrible than anything I could think of. Do I love people? Yes I do, just don't want to have sex with them. Would I marry if I could have a truly intellectual relationship with someone? Maybe, I have loved some people, and some people I have loved so much that we decided not to have sex because we were actually closer for not having it, and we didn't want to ruin our relationship. I know that doesn't make any sense to most people. To those of us who have lived through this, it makes perfect sense.
It's sad that one has to have a "movement" just because they do not need or want sex. They still have a gender, that is true. It seems almost a parallel to someone who does not drink, does not smoke, does not curse, etc. As long as it is moral and causes no harm to self or others I see only an individual's make-up and that is only the business of that person.
This is all news to me as I have never heard of asexual and I still don't after reading this story. Anyone care to enlighten me?
Asexual? Look at her picture. Lipstick, makeup, ear rings, cutesy hat, cutesy pose, hair strands dyed 2 different colors. No, she's not just trying to get attention. No, she's not doing anything to stand out and make herself look attractive to "someone". And since when is trying to get a kiss on the doorstep considered rape? For a while I dated only blonds - somehow I never felt the need to join the "blonds only" community. I never felt persecuted and I never sought out a political party with a "blonds only" platform. And, stupid me, I never even thought to look for the "blonds only" tax deduction. If a brunette had tried to kiss me on the doorstep I'm pretty sure I wouldn't have cried rape.
I admit that I don't understand this, but to me it isn't something that I object to either. Everyone should have a right to decide what path they take in life and what that life will entail according to their own guidelines, judgments and ideals. I think if it's possible for someone to be attracted to all genders and/or types, then it stands to reason that there would be those at the other end of the spectrum who are attracted to no one of any gender or type. I might not understand it, but I see nothing wrong with people who are asexual. I expect to be accepted for who I am and therefore I think everyone should do the same for others who are different...not just tolerated, but accepted. It's our differences that make us all important and unique and special, so to each his own. Those advocating 'corrective rape' need to be locked up in a mental facility and evaluated for psychological dysfunction because they're no better than any other rapist. No one deserves to be harmed or violated in such a way, especially for being different and most especially for being open and honest about who they are. I hope this lady and others like her find what they need in the community. Peace.
When I first read this, I was like "Now I've heard it all..." then I started to really think about it - what happened to society that a person can't find the simple joys in life without the need for sex? There are so many ways to be intimate without having actual sex. Also, how foreign it is to people that you'd rather experience life's simple joys than have 14 orgasms in a session for which is more important to you. The real rebels - those who can go through life without sex and be just as satisfied and not feel like they're losing out on anything! Never thought I'd see the day when there would need to be rallies to point out that lifestyle is o.k. as an option! (this from also knowing several confirmed bachelors/ettes which is what we used to call it..)
So we have heterosexuals,homosexuals,transwhateversexuals and now asexuals?? Every form of human screwed up sexuality now has a name and want legitimacy?
I never knew much about being asexual but I'm glad that I'm aware of it now. Were all born so different that of course some people will be born with no sexual desires. And to think that someone would rape them to cure them he should have gone to jail for that.
Hey, if they don't like the idea of sex, then why is that such a problem?

Asexuals are ok by me, and just as human as everybody else.

I just hope they don't end up like the Atheists, and think they're somehow better than everybody else, just because of the way they are.
Rape is never justified! That being said, no one would discriminate against them if they didn't go around telling everyone about their sex lives, or lack thereof.The less you tell people about yourself, the less ammunition they have to use against you. Sex is your own business; this era of over sharing certainly has it's drawbacks.
Used to be hetero but after being abused by the child suppoort system, being asexual is the safest route.
have these people had sex??? once you pop the fun dont stop
(dont hate on me for making a joke, just tryna be a lil funny)
I was always taught that people are allowed to identify themselves meaning I should never TELL someone how he or she identifies his/herself. I mean, who does that? Who goes around telling people that they're just broken or that their identity "isn't a thing"? I find it so sad that anyone should have to feel excluded because others aren't willing to TRY to understand.
Asexuals are probably not less human. They are less animal. Which must mean they are MORE human. They may be more highly evolved. A famous person who was clearly asexual? Jesus Christ.
My sheep and I have been together for three years now. It's beautiful relationship.
The corrective rape sounds really messed up. The asexuality seems a very small percentage of people and sex does influence a lot of things in this world. Not knowing anyone who claims to be asexual I have no idea if they are troublingly different or different and just fine. I did work with a guy who claimed to hate all forms of music, just couldn't understand it at all, it all was noise to him - he seemed frequently angry..maybe he just felt isolated. I kind of see some in the LGBT movement not wanting them to join in with them, as they have been fighting for various sexual and relational rights that probably don't pertain to asexuals. Sort of how some minority groups don't like the LGTB movement co-opting their minority-hood. This is intersting - I'll stay tuned as I have no answers on this other than they deserve peace and respect if they are of no harm to anyone.
yuck
poor things frigid and what a life in a personal prison
must be triggered by deep fear
Just like homosexuality, asexuality has no cure because it is not a sickness.
I say this with all sincerity, I don't understand this whole acceptance thing. You go through life as whoever you want to be, you choose your friends based on them accepting you, you take care of your business, and you live your life. Who cares about everyone else accepting you? Unless you are throwing it in everybody's face, who cares? I really don't understand.
I am against homosexuality, that being said, nobody should have to endure rape whether they be homosexual or heterosexual.
I'm curious - how would anyone even know unless an asexual broadcasts it? They would look like anyone else who is "just not interested" so what provokes the corrective rape?
People who are interested in having sex (and forcing others to have sex) consider themselves to be "normal," but a better word for them is "common." It's common for people to want to have sex and have children, but it's wrong to think it should be considered "normal," the opposite of which is "abnormal." It's uncommon to be asexual, and also not to want to procreate, but so what? The uncontrolled pursuit of sexual relations is often rooted in psychopathology. What is it about asexuality that makes common people feel threatened? The asexual people I've encountered are much more at peace with themselves and with others than the randy ones.
I read the article and still am not sure what 'asexual' means. Does it mean a lack of desire? The thing that is always confusing to me is that people get involved in other people's sexual lives. I can see it if there is a connection between two people but to wonder what someone's sexuality is when first meeting the person is weird. I would never assume anything about someone's sexuality. Meeting people for the first time I don't think that they are auditioning for a role or applying for a job. They do not need to prove anything to me. To think that someone should get raped to change their sexuality is ignorant and criminal. But then this is America and we have some strange, puritan ideas of what sex is supposed to look like.
I am surprised that anyone who is asexual actually feels the need to fight for that right to be respected. Who in their right mind would think anything is wrong with these people?
Our society dismisses things that don't fit the norm and they don't understand.
Too many minorities and social groups suffering from sexual victimization. I just can't keep track.
Sex is both self-indulgent, a human instinct, and a privacy issue, regardless of sexual persuasion. Homosexuality is an anomaly and an abberation of nature. A-sexuality is a new "let's talk about it" fashionable topic of conversation. Rape is against our societal laws and cannot be justified for any reason, just because someone created a bumper sticker called "corrective rape."
Why does it bother ANYONE that someone isn't attracted to another person? How does it affect anyone but the asexual person? What you do or don't do in the privacy of your bedroom is not my business.
When the idiot started to lick that lady's face she should have said," If I want a dog, I'll pick one up at the pound."

As for "corrective rape" that sounds too disgusting to contemplate. It's like saying, "Therapeutic assault." Oh well, one oxymoron is as good as any other.
Rape for any reason to anyone is horrible and there's no excuse or forgiveness for it.

That being said, however, I'm confused by this whole need for people to identify themselves as asexual, or for that matter, bisexual, homosexual, heterosexual, transsexual, gender confused or any other label. It is no one else's business who you have sex with (or choose not to have sex with) and no one should have to explain it to anyone. I realize we probably have to go through this phase to enlighten the flat earthers, but I long for the day when what people do behind closed doors isn't a public discussion.
OH My,
If it isn't bad enough that we have Gays and the like, now some DA Wants to play the Asexual Card for attention?
Are you kidding me??????????
You don't like boys? Scared of Men?
Get over it and move one, so you want to never date or marry, why do we need to know about it?
Lets put this whole mess back in the closet where it belongs, along with Drug Addiction!
Do you understand that you are messed up?
Get help while you can!
Most Doctors I know still give drugs to Gays to straighten them out, maybe they can help you, or just keep quiet about it, we don't want to know!
It probably would have been beneficial to those of us who have no clue what asexuality is to define it at the beginning of the article. Just a thought.
As pointed out in the article, I've heard of asexuality in terms of other organisms, but I never considered that it would be a lifestyle for humans (I heard of celibacy of course) until I read this article. I can honestly say that the only thing that I don't understand is why some "outsiders" can't let asexuals be. This should be a non-issue: some people aren't interested in the sexual aspect of the human experience...so what? Besides any who suggests someone needs a "good raping" is the one who isn't human.
I think asexuality is more common than admitted. I had a total hysterctomy, including both ovaries. Was put on high dose Premarin. In 18 months I developed breast cancer and needed a mastectomy. Nix the hormones. My body image was shattered, I gained weight, felt miserable and was morre worried about living, than getting laid. Due to circumstances I couldnt care less about sex. Surgical castration with no supplemental hormones DOES have an effect, as well as aging. TELL ME, WILL RAPE HELP THIS?
Taking a course in college MANY years ago about Human Sexuality and the sexual continuum - the many ways people expressed sexuality or identified sexually:
Asexual, self-sexual, heterosexual, bisexual, homosexual and polysexual. These are ALL natural and NORMAL expressions of sexuality... People may find they fall somewhere in between any of these markers, or that they may identify differently at different stages in their lives. But let's repeat: They are ALL natural and NORMAL....
rape is about power and control, NOT discrimination! Stupid story!
What is the big deal? Some people have no sexual desire at all. Why does anyone care? As long as they are happy there should be no problem. Sex is not a must for humans to live.
Asexuals are not less human. They are less animal. Which means they are MORE human . They are probably more highly evolved. One famous person who was obviously asexual: Jesus Christ.
Why is this still news? Big deal people are gay. I do not get what all the hype is on both sides just live life!
In college, a male friend confided in me that he was not attracted to females. He wasn't attracted to males, but rather had no sexual attractions. What did I know then? I suggested that he either had a very low sex drive or was asexual. In anycase, he wasn't "broken".
Could we all please just keep our sexual preferences to ourselves? It is getting more than sickening to hear all these people want to share.
Ok, I understand you prefer to lickety split and shove the highway......horrible isn't t.....but you're just nasty when you want to do both..........menow especially.........
had to get the first off my chest, pertaining to the article don't care who you are or what you like in life no one should be taken advantage of against their will.
Why do people feel the need to fit everyone into neat little boxes when nothing else on this planet, or the universe for that matter, fits into a neat little box? There is a spectrum for everything and we are all peppered across it, that certainly includes sexuality.
This is another manufactured cause. If you don't want to have sex, then don't. Rape is already illegal. Having a crusade to announce to the world that you are asexual is just a desperate plea for attention over LITERALLY nothing.
People need to get out of bed and start living. There is much more to life than always doing or talking about sex. Being asexual is just being neutral and living without always putting sex as the most important thing in life, because it's not.
There was a sect, that totally believed in Non-sex. Shakers. they died out, there were no children, ergo, no offspring. The State took over all the assets of the community they built. If people wish to follow this course, with todays world population. best wishes.
It states that she was sexually assaulted by her friend. Licking her face is not sexual assault..albeit gross..is not sexual assault. By over exaggerating for sympathetic effect just makes the article as a whole less credible.
I don't understand why anyone's sexual preference, or lack thereof, has become one of the most important issues of our time. If you're heterosexual, homosexual or asexual....who's business is it??? Why do people have to "join" or "celebrate" any type of sexuality? Just live your lives....aren't there more important issues to be concerned with?
Asexual? Or just smart? Think of all the problems they don't have spending thier lives chasing after another person. My first spouse cured me of the desire to marry.
Let the guys be with the guys, the girls be with the girls and the asexuals be with their pets...at least they are purging this from the gene pool. Maybe someday this behavior will become extinct.
Rapists deserve to have their genitalia cut off.
@K22 you are absolutely correct
" ZERO LIBIDO " tee shirts might help get the word out.............
I'm ok with people of all different beliefs, lifestyles and races.

The only ones who are an exception are those who think they're better than everybody else.
This is all pretty much unknown to me. But it doesn't take a rocket scientist to understand that any kind of rape is personal invasion and assault. As to the rest, it's all called "preference" for a reason, even if the preference, a la Bartleby, is not to.
What ever happened to modesty, humility and self respect? Why do some people have such a need to air their sexuality, or lack thereof, especially if it's outside of what's considered "normal" by a majority of humans? There's no excuse for sexual assault for any reason, but as my Mom used to council "Why invite trouble"?
Unless I have an intimate relationship with you, I don't CARE what you do or don't do in the privacy of your own space as long as it harms no one, and I certainly don't want you to know about my private life.
God's law is that EVERYONE abstains from sex until married.
I'm confused. An inappropriate attempt at a kiss is now "rape"?
Ok I get it now ... the majority are in California ...the land of fruits and nuts and flakes....
Rape of ANY kind...NO, NO, NO!!! For that matter, anyone using ANY type of forceful action to make another do something against their will...NO, NO, NO!!!

Incidentally, one of my favorite fantasy heroes also happens to be asexual (from what I can tell): Dr. Who.
Mind-boggling.
'corrective rape' ..... a b.s. term invented to make this news article and have people gasp.
I wish I were a-sexual. god, my sex-drive is getting quite annoying after 338 years/
38, that is. : )
Whats the big deal? Why should they have to explain their sexuality to anyone? You want to have sex. Do it. You don't want to have sex and have no desire too. Then don't. It is not that difficult.
Wow, the fact there's a term that condones rape firghtens me. I get you'd want to give it a go and try to give pleasure but there is no pleasure in rape. Oi!
It's just another lifestyle. It doesn't affect or harm anyone, so what's the problem?
I'm absolutely sure that what makes these abusers so angry and violent is some kind of underlying doubts about their own sexuality or identity. They're actually reacting to asexuals with fear, and that gets translated into aggression designed to placate their own emotions. Some people prefer strawberry ice cream over chocolate. I don't need to rape or stalk them.
It amazes me why some people are enthralled with other people's sex life. If you aren't paying someone's way, or married to them or even feeding them and they are not hurting or controlling someone else's mind/body? Then what business is it of yours? A business associate of mine was once relating about how his son died of aids and the reaction he'd received in his rural small town. I related my opening remarks to this comment to him and added, "It's none of my business and I don't care who you're with". "What I do care about is someone getting in my face about any side of the subject". "I just happen to be male, straight, married and christian, but I don't want to hear about anyone's sexuality, Period". Gay, straight or non-sexual, KEEP IT TO YOUSELF! I don't want to see it on the 5:00 O'Clock news.
Wow, this is all new to me. Why on earth would it matter to anyone if another person identified as asexual? People need to mind their own business ASAP.
if an attempted kiss and lick on the face is sexual assault or corrective rape then my two dogs are predators. sure the idea of corrective rape is horrific. are asexuals nonsexuals? everyone has the right to choose their sexual partners...unless you are married of course...lol
Asexuals are people that never got layed. Period.
I don't understand why people have such a condemning attitude toward asexuality but at the same time, asexuals wanting to claim that they're just "special" is only being in denial. It's not a "special" trait of some, it's obviously a disorder scientists have yet to study. To get to a place of total acceptance of having it is healthy, but acting like it's normal to be asexual is a refusal to admit that they suffer from an obvious disorder even though asexuality is the only "normal" they know.
Everyone is on the bell curve. It doesn't behoove anyone to feel superior to anyone else.
What an odd definition for someone to classify themselves as.

So people that abstain from sexuality and really don't want anything to do with sex are called asexual. As are most single celled organisms.

Two things:

-First this really is nobody's business what their preference is. People need to leave people alone and let them do whatever they want to do so long as kids or critters are not involved. IMHO TYVM.

-Second , this movement is nothing new to the Catholic church, heck pretty much all priests and nuns abstain for sexuality. .. well err .. some try homosexuality with boys but we won't go there.
after reading about this asexual..i kept trying to see what was the bottom line here, like get to the friggin point, I just don't see why anyone should care about anyones sexuality, and why they should advertise it...do we really have to know, and why is this important.
Seriously? Just another cult
I actually throughout my life couldn't understand how people are NOT asexual.
Cant imagine my life without my bald kitten.........
next civil rights cause - asexuals should be able to not marry another axesual and get all the federal benefits as heterosexuals and homosexuals ------

and you KNOW we'll see that lawsuit soon
Why wouldn't two a-sexuals want to marry each other? They are still capable of LOVE, aren't they? I accuse you of HATE CRIME!
nope - that would be legal already whether gay or straight / same sex or different.   this is the "NEW" movement - asexuals who are discriminated against because they're not married.   you KNOW we'll see that lawsuit - why should they have to get married to have the same benefits as people who have sexual attractions?
back in the day we used to call them FRIGID...............
My first question is: why is there a need for rallies and such? I tend to think "Don't ask don't tell" would actually work in this situation. Please - I'm not trying to be sarcastic or ignorant, but obviously the latter is true. I don't feel insulted or threatened; and on the other hand, I don't feel happy for an asexual person either. I don't feel anything, except disgust and outrage that anyone would be verbally/physically assaulted or raped because of it. I also wonder why it would ever come up in casual conversation; and therefore, why would someone be attacked? The internet is a different thing; you'll get all kinds of crazies on there -- that's to be expected, unfortunately. But going out with someone and having to explain your most personal desires (or lack of), why is that necessary? Why can't an asexual just say "I'm not attracted to you in that way," and leave it at that? Do that a couple of times and the other person will either want a non-sexual friendship or nothing at all. What am I missing? And getting back to rallies: what is the fight for? To let the world know that there are asexuals? I wouldn't know myself if I hadn't seen a show about it, but I found it more interesting than anything else. I wasn't shocked because I can be asexual for years at a time when I'm not in a loving relationship.
I read this article a couple of times and I still don't understand the problem. Why does an asexual person feel the need to explain it to anyone or to even be recognized and/or accepted and/or understood for it?......You are who you are. Period. It certainly doesn't bother me. I don't see why it should bother anyone. No different than taking a vow of celibacy and certainly better than a life of promiscuity. It's your life - live it like you want to live it.
Who cares?
After viewing the video, I can honestly say that it is difficult to get past the presentation of the subject. Dripping with sarcasm and name calling doesn't make the viewer receptive to your point of view. You're carrying yourself like a 17 year old instead of a woman of 35. Perhaps you might re-think this and drop the cutesy theme and present it like the serious matter you want your audience to understand.
Mom! Oh, nevermind.
Why would anyone wish rape upon someone else? I don't understand why some people take such offense with other peoples' lives. Who someone is, or in this case, isn't attracted to has no negative or positive effect on any of these strangers' lives who find such issue with their lifestyle. And how can anyone in the gay community bash this group of people for their sexuality? You would think a group of people that has seen such discrimination against them would be a little more sensitive to others. People are allowed to believe in what they want, date who they want, and so on, if it isn't damaging your life, and I'm certain it isn't, buzz off.
I don't understand what they are protesting about. I get gays who want to get married and treated as equals under the law, especially when it comes to spousal benefits, they are also descriminated at work, because it is pretty hard to hide your sexuality. Asexual people don't have any of these problems, they don't want to be with anyone and they are not descriminated against, because they act just like the rest of us. So what are they protesting about? Rape? Rape is illegal no matter who is committed against. Again I don't understand what the problem is. I agree with the LGBT communitty these people just want to feel special.
Trying to explain asexuality to a sexual person, gay or straight, is like trying to explain the color blue to a person who has never seen blue. Equally, for a sexual person who tries to explain or bestow sexuality on an asexual person is like trying to force a person with no eyes to see. Neither one can ever really understand the other. In fact, a sexual person cannot even conceive of sexual emotions and desires not existing in another human being. This is why, IMHO, asexuals "aces" do not belong in the LGBT movement. Asexuals belong in their own, separate category.... because the LGBT movement is all about sexual desire and emotions.
Although I'm not asexual and have been married for 20 years and enjoy all aspects of my marriage, I've always thought that humans would become asexual as we evolved in the next 1,000 or so years.
Strangely, even some homosexual people who have dealt with discrimination because of their sexuality will make statements to heterosexuals about homsexuality like, "How do you know you don't like it until you try it?" as if various forms of sexuality are just things you try and maybe you'll like it and maybe you won't, which is totally contrary to what homosexuals have been fighting for all along, the fact that sexuality is something that is inherent within you, not something you choose or something you "try it, you might like it".
I'm genuinely confused about something - I went back to read another of the articles in the series and at one point it seems to say that the definition of asexual is lacking or does not experience sexual attraction. Which makes sense. Except then later in the article and comments it said that some asexual people DO have sexual attraction. So which way is it? I'd appreciate some help understanding the definition better....
Take a look at these asexual people.....No wonder !!!!
For all this article kept going on about raising awareness and understanding of asexuality, nowhere is it actually explained. I don't really understand it, but I would like to. Do they not want any romantic relationships at all? Or is it just the sex they don't want? Like, are they just friends with the world? Or do they desire love, but without sex? Do some of them enter relationships and then have sex just so they can have children? Do some of them give their significant other sex occasionally? Is sex painful for them, or just not pleasurable? Do they just not want sex with other people, or do they not masturbate, either? This article should've explained if they really want the word out there.
yeah. this is typical behavior. gays are genetic anomalies. but, that is no reason to discriminate against them. glad that DOMA was overturned. leave that to the states.
Okay. Let me get this straight. There are heterosexuals, homosexuals, gays, lesbians, bisexuals, asexuals, monosexuals, pansexuals, polysexuals, objectum sexuals, transexuals, transgenders, third genders, cisgenders, genderqueers, intersexuals, androphilias, gynephilias, ambiphilias, pedophilias, urophilias, zoophilias, coprophilias, klismaphilias, necrophilias, exhibitionists, transvestites, voyeurs, frotteurs, transvestic fetish people, cross-dressers, partialismites, masochists, sadists, telephone scatologists, two spirit people, and homophobes. Did I leave anything out? Seriously, I’m no hater, and I don’t care what you do as long as you don’t try to push your agenda on me or mine. And, right now just a few of the groups mentioned are trying to get the “all clear” to be accepted. For the most part, everyone’s embracing them with open arms, and calling the rest of us haters or homophobes. But, how do you feel about all of the above getting that same “all clear” when they start asking for it? Will you embrace and love your neighbor if he’s a pedophile? Will you let your local objectum sexual make love to your car because it makes him feel good? I’m a little worried about where we’re taking civilization - to an early extinction? I wonder, too, if I'm going to get a hug even if I don’t see it your way?
I only ever thought of asexuality in a biological sense. Now we have to hear about those poor asexuals not getting enough attention. I think I`m going to become a recluse sooner than I thought.
Whatever Im tired hearing about it
Since when has rape of any sort ever turned someone TOWARDS having sex?! That's the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard.
Well, here's hoping the Supreme Court doesn't have to legislate the right NOT to marry.
Good afternoon. I'd like to say that I was NOT aware of asexuals/asexuality until this very day. Secondly, I'd like to know why people feel it necessary to go around telling others that they are an asexual and now there are marches to let everyone know that there's a group of people known as asexuals. We're supposed to care about or be aware of this because..............???? Just something else I've lived my whole life ignorant about, and I'm none the worse for it.
When Julie Decker was 19, a male friend tried to "fix" her by sexually assaulting her. You do a disservice to those who have truly been sexually assaulted by including such a mild form of aggression as an unwanted kiss. Just saying...
What?
There are two issues here:

#1 - Rape. It is criminal and disgusting regardless of the circumstances.

#2 - "Asexual" -- what? Now there's an "Asexual" community? Really? People must really love labeling themselves to have come up with that one. If you're not interested in sex, so what -- who cares? You really have to organize this? For what purpose? This takes the cake.
Yes is yes and no is no....to many will say yes..rape is a violent act...not related to sex
Sexual violence as well as all violence against another human being should never be tolerated. Having said that, I have never heard of asexuality re humans - what does that entail?
Why do people feel the need to announce their sexuality and make such a big deal out of it? It's people's public behavior that matters to me.....it's none of my (or anyone else's ) business what they do in private. As far as the rape part of the story....there is never an excuse to attack someone like that no matter who you are.
Why does there have to be a movement? Why don't people just do, or not do as
they please and just shut up about it? Why does everyone have to discuss all of
their proclivities in public? Just do it or don't do it. It's all so boring. I've long
thought that sex is much better felt and the less SAID about it, the better.

On another point, I see a comment from someone called "Josh hates clowns".
Now THAT's a movement. I hate clowns, too. Always have; but I thought I was
the only one. Hey, Josh, let's get out and march!!!!!!!
I just wish it was easier for an asexual person to recognize that in themselves, so they wouldn't marry someone who has normal sexual expectations. I have been married for 38 years to an asexual man. I have a high libido. In the beginning, I thought there was something wrong with me, not pretty enough, not sexy enough. I was open to any sexual experimentation that might turn him on. Nothing did. We had an on again, off again sex life, with him trying for awhile, then giving up, then trying again, then giving up. I was on this roller coaster for years. Finally about 5 years ago, he stopped trying entirely. I am nearly 71, and I still have a raging libido. I never cheated on him, and it's too late for me to have a normal life now. I beat cancer last year, and the thought that I will never have sex again for the rest of my life is agonizing. I'm in deep depression, hardly able to function, and wasting what I have left of my life. I have nothing against any form of sexual expression or non-expression, but don't ruin the lives of others because you want to pretend you are normal, as society dictates normal. He's happy as a clam now, has everything he wants in life, while I am miserable. Is that fair?
.....to each his own....someone please enlighten me...what is the difference between being asexual, and being celibate?.....
In reading this one article, haven't read the other 3 because I didn't know of them. I've also read most of the comments. First and foremost I want to say KNOW ONE DESERVES TO BE RAPED FOR ANY REASON, MALE OR FEMALE!!!!! Second: I will admit to believing, for a long time, that homosexuals were wrong. Third: Now I don't believe that anyone's sexual preferences are wrong, there just not for me. I have come to the conclusion that what consenting ADULTS do in their own privacy is not up to me, but up to them. Fourth: I don't happen to be looking for sex of any kind, but I have lost the only man I've ever had sex with and am just not interested in sex with anyone else. Doesn't make me asexual, bisexual, homosexual, or anything else, I'm just not interested, period end of report. Fifth: Why do we have to classify everyone's sexual, eating, playing, walking, working, etc. preferences? JUST LEAVE OUT CLASSIFYING EVERYONE! LET PEOPLE BE THEMSELVES!!!!!!
Now off my "soap box" and back to my e-mail.
Most women are asexual. They just put out to get what they want.
Odd... These so-called Asexuals talk of being raped.. yet at no point, did they ever file rape charges against their rapist....Hmmmmmm
I dont care what sexuality someone is, no one deserves to be assaulted in ANY form. Humans are a whole always fear what they dont understand, and for those that advocate "corrective rape, you quite obviously dont understand a damn thing.
My God, with all the problems besetting the World, how can one spend one's energy on something so ridiculous as this?? If those persons choose to be asexual, it is indeed their right. It is also ours to find them utterly ridiculous, and to tell them that we do. This country never seems to end having problems with something as fundamental, as crucially important as Human Sexuality. Every pretext under the skies is being found to push guilt on everybody, for being a Human Being. May I offer two solutions, if indeed the asexuals find themselves "harrassed" by us? Mount Athos is one, and a Carmelite convent, another. Let us work, in the meantime, on far more important rights, such as the Divine Freedom of those less than 18 to do what THEY want, with their God Given Bodies, and rid the World of the putrefaction of Protestant Guilt gone bad through redirecting by the American Feminists, the most authoritarian beings perhaps in the World, who have passed horrid laws in order to "protect" people who should be Free, and left alone, and fed with Literature, Philosophy, and TRUE Feminism.
Sometimes ignorance certainly is bliss. I came up during a time when homosexuals were firmly occupying closets. There were married couples which consisted of a man and a woman, and men and women dated. You never saw a man kiss another man on the lips in public and when women slept together they were assumed to be friends. All of that has been jumbled so badly it is all hard to keep track of. The only sexual preference that still seems to remain unacceptable is pedophelia, and I often wonder if that will be considered normal some time soon. Now that same sex marriage has been accepted it shouldn't be too long before you will be able to marry your dog or cat, or even the entire girls basketball team. Now in this article I learn there is a sect of people perfect for the priesthood and to serve as sisters. Thinking with all their problems the Catholic Church would be recruiting these folks.
She is a very well spoken young lady, her oral skills are really something else."
The number of self-diagnosed "conditions" that are really just named eccentric behaviors has, to no one's great surprise, skyrocketed since the dawn of the Internet.
I'm ignorant on this topic. I seem to understand that asexual people do not have sex because they do not desire to have sex. Do asexual people have romantic relationships, like is kissing okay but not sex, or do they not enjoy any form of romantic affection? Do they masturbate?
Ladies, gents and others who identify as asexual: Don't be afraid. Carry a piece. ARM yourselves. I for one, would NEVER see you as committing a crime if you defend yourselves against a sick rapist pig who deserves to die.
Well, we have the psychiatric community to thank for instilling in our culture the fear there's something wrong with us if we don't have a robust sex life.

That said, however, if this person doesn't care that she doesn't have or want a sex life, why is she trying to make others care? Why can't she just contentedly and quietly live with her special condition, instead of having to go blabbing it all over the place? The condition isn't even anything that is painful, disabling or requires any kind of special accommodation. It isn't visible, isn't going to keep her from getting a job, or a place to live, or anything else in the life of the community.

Next thing you know, she's going to demand "marriage equality" for un-marriage.

Persons of any sexuality can be subject to rape, and I agree with all here who are outraged that it should happen to anyone. But an "asexual" would at worst be no more subject to it than any other sexuality -- unless they go blabbing about their condition, which IS an invitation!

Look, there are enough classes of people in the world with special conditions deserving special sympathies. Speaking myself as one who is short on libido, I'm sorry, I'm just not going to add "asexuality" to that list.
Her "friend" is a jerk. No question.

But "people don't see us as being fully human"?? Get a clue, most of us just aren't that interested.

I spent 15 years being celibate. Not once did my sexuality ever become the topic of conversation.
So basically asexuals just don't give a f_ck.
I don't understand it. It is ok with me for you to be asexual.....just please please please don't expect me to, no matter how it is presented. And also do not act as if something is wrong with ME because I don't understand you nor care to.
I never saw so much activism by people who DON'T want something. The rape stuff aside, I don't know who would care if a person is asexual or not so long as said asexual person isn't trying to be in a relationship(of a more coupling nature) with someone who wants sex. And my guess is, if you have someone who is trying to sexually assault you, you're asexuality is more of an excuse than a reason.
Asexual ....What happens to most married people after a while ..
Does any of this matter when we have so many serious issues threatening our freedom. Leave them alone, let them marry, or not,,,, if they don't take something out of your pocket or break your leg, let people do what they want.

Focus on freedoms that are disappearing. Open your freaking eyes and learn about your world, and open your mind.
Why is it important to tell everyone that you are asexual? Whay not just "be" and let be?
There is no discrimination
Newest "fad' thing to join.........,
Life's gotten so complicated. Heterosexuals, Bisexuals, Asexuals, Homosexuals. I know there's a few more. I think no means no though, regardless of the orientation or has that also become more complicated as well? I wouldn't be surprised.
Don't throw it in people's face and no one will care. Having a parade for something like this is akin to pointing out to the local bully that you have tape on your glasses and just bought a new pocket protector.
I'll never understand why people are so horrible. As a species, we hate everything that is different from us, even if those differences don't affect us at all or are even outright noticeable.
I have a question or two- So you are asexual - you have no interest or desire for sex - at all. Ok - I get it. Why do you feel the need to advertise it? Would anyone notice or care if you didn't? Its not like everyone on this planet hasn't said "no thanks, not interested" at some point in their lives. Does is NEED to be followed up with "I'm asexual you see. I'll never want to have sex. I'm special".
I hate sex...and no one out there can convince me otherwise
The human race is changing. From one article I read a few months ago men will no longer exist in a several thousand years. They have a chromosone that will cause them to become extinct. It's obvious that our sexuality in this world is changing. Why? No one seems to be able to answer that question. Or is it because the human race has surpressed the change for years do to religious beliefs. Maybe the human race isn't changing, but instead it's just waking up. I'm not LGBT. I'm just a person who likes to think in many different ways.
corrective rape? try correction facility!!! Are you flippin kiddin me....
Why did she go out with him?
Aren't monasteries and nunneries "A-sexual"?
Your sexuality, or asexuality, is no concern of anyone else.
Likewise, anyone's else disdain for your sexual identity, or any feelings towrds it, positive or negative, are none of YOUR business.
You see...? Freedom - a two-way street.
Basing a meme on "someone once said this in an internet chat room.." is totally meaningless. 13-year olds are on chats. It means nothing. And an attempt to make it 'mean something' shows up the author as a person looking for trouble. No one cares about your sexual identity, and that's the real problem, isn't it? You want a parade.
There is nothing wrong with this. If they go a little further they could live a consecrated life.
I watched this video, all 15 and some mins of it. I have to tell you the idea people say this stuff and truly believes it makes me sick to my stomach. The people wishing wishing rape on others belong behind bars as much as rapists themselves do. I am not Asexual, I am a straight very sexually active woman, yet I feel it is my duty to educate myself. I took a human sexuality class in college, I read and listen to when the LGBT community has something to say about who ans what they are, and I will listen and I will read what the Asexual community goes through. I feel that is only one was we all should use to pay our debts to society. Get an education people. Asexual people are just that PEOPLE. They aren't broken. They aren't autistic, (by the way how friggin dare anyone? So now if your Asexual your autistic? I wonder how the families of Autistic people feel about that particular comment?) I am tired of the view that if your not of the societal norm your wrong. Guess what SOCIETY. NOT a SINGLE one of us falls 100% into the societal norm. We all have some quirk that makes us UNIQUE. This mentality of fall in or get out is just a lack of education. Yes people I called you STUPID. Read it and weep. Get educated.
The logic of the so called corrective rape escapes me. Must be a liberal thing as they never seem to make much sense to anyone else.
What puzzles me is why people want others to "understand" their sexual or non-sexual lifestyles. Why do they want others to know their (what should be) very private lives? It seems that the whole country has become obsessed with exposing, and getting public acceptance of, the most private areas of their lives. Is there no such thing as 'privacy' any more?
While I cannot understand the movement being a very sexual person--Rape under any guise or means is reprehensible and should be squashed and punished to the maximum allowed by law. We are who we are and I admire the people courage in this article amidst all the ignorance of so many people wanting to correct them
Since is it OK to rape *anyone*? It is *never* OK.

I was horrified to learn about the kinds of harassment reported here. My heart goes out to those who have received such hateful threats and gestures. I'm so sorry.
Since when is it OK to rape *anyone*? It is *never* OK.

I was horrified to learn about the kinds of harassment reported here. My heart goes out to those who have received such hateful threats and gestures. I'm so sorry.
I like her I think she is smart,funny, witty as all get out and she is happy unlike most people I mean.
HILARIOUS.......the overwhelming majority of people don't care who sleeps with who or who isN'T sleeping with who. American's seem to create ways to victimize themselves.
Pretty funny, the article is about azexuals and it won't let you post the word.
They use to call these women "old maids",.....life used to be so simple.
I am a heterosexual female and cannot presume to judge another person's orientation or practices. As long as no one is being harmed, this is a private matter. I have more respect for someone who recognizes his or her sexuality or asexuality and lives an honest life than I do for someone who marries someone whose needs are very different in order to appear "normal" (whatever that is) and cheats both of a fulfilling relationship.

And I certainly cannot find any kind of justification for rape. This is a violent crime no matter who commits it and no matter upon whom.
We does sex defne any of us?
Rape use to be a capital crime that could land you the death penalty. Hummmmm
I do not understand the mentality that sexuality, which is a mental function, is something that has to be one way. Everyone's brain, while having similarities, are different, and the sexual control center of the brain can be different from one person to the next. Heterosexual, homosexual, bisexual, asexual, etc. I believe are just differences in the wiring of that part of the brain, and are not choice derived. Most of those notions, are theologically driven, and lack logical rational. It is sad that those that do not understand someone's sexuality tend to react violently. It is beyond my understanding why people create prejudice behavior, because they refuse to critically think about a subject. I will be glad when we can one day rejoice in humanities diversity.
my wife had "corrective rape" happen to her. she now suffers from anxiety and PTSD. If I ever find this guy he will know what rape is when he is in Jail!
Awww, great! First we have Gays, now we have asexuals?! What does that mean? Do they like their as---sexually or what? Now, I'm confused.....
I've got hundreds of friends, acquaintenances, business associates and the like. 98% of them would have no idea if I'm straight, bi, gay, asexual or whatever because I do not make my private life public. Why has what people do or don't do in their sex lives become the main identifier of their personality in public? Either way, rape or any other form of unwanted physical interaction should ALWAYS be reported to the police. If you're not willing to stick up for yourself, you don't have the right to expect others to. Someone touches you in any way they should not, react to it immediately and forcefully.
wow, just wow. Just when I think the world cant get anymore messed up, I see this. Wow. COME ON ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE OR WORLD CLEANSING PLAGUE!
"Asexual discrimination" and "asexual 'movement'" . . . . it all sounds rather ridiculous to me. Thismight exist on a one-on-one, personal basis; but I certainly do not perceive it as a "societial problem". It appears that "these asexual people are apparently mostly looking for a cause that gives them a coommon bond for social reasons. Rape of any kind, whether it be date rape or whatever, is a criminal act. Revealing any type of "personal information" to the wrong type of other persons is just inviting potential problems. The solutions would seem to be very selective about whom one reveals personal information to, regardless of whether one is hetrosexual, homosexual, or asexual. I don't see any basis for any type of asexual "movement" . . . it sounds rather ridiculous to me.
Rape? I am late on the conversation, but I didn't see an example of rape. If I understand correctly, a male made an uninvited advance to a female and tried to kiss her and "lick her face". Sounds like a clumsy attempt at a french kiss. Rape is serious business. Sexual orientation is a deep personal issue. Let's not exaggerate any details just to further a story
It seems that asexual individuals would be better candidates for the mission ot Mars. Sexual tensions would be removed and there would appear to be less tension on a two person mission. Maybe this should be considered and studied by NASA with willing participants in a long term isolation simulation to see if this is true or if other stress or tension factors would make this less likely.

I hope I have not offended anyone but I think this might be a positive issue to persue.
So now we're supposed to call frigid women "aces", as if they're #1? What a crock of BS. I don't even believe this crap that an "asexual" woman is at a significantly greater risk of rape than women in general. I think their "problem" is being exaggerated. Also, if you are an "asexual" woman but for some reason you are dating normal "sexual" men, when your date makes a romantic advance, such as trying to kiss you, it's not "sexual assault". That's a normal move. If you firmly say "no" and he forces himself on you anyway, then it could be sexual assault.
Either they lack sexual interests due to bad experiences in the past, were rape victims, insecurity, a cover up for taboo sexual interests, or lack sexual urges due to some neural anomaly. Other than that there is not really many other reasons anyone can identify as asexual. In exception for the last reason, everyone has sexual urges at some point. Unless reclaiming it publicly for attention. If you keep who you are to yourself and avoid the wrong people or the wrong expressions of who you are. You shouldn't have a problem with you are or with other people. I'm not sure if Asexual tho, means not having sex with others but still resorting to masturbation, or no sexual acts at all. If I could i would give up sex, but the drives and urges keep me masturbating or getting some when possible, and if i repress them they interfere with my mood and performance in life. Lucky those who truly are successfully asexual. I wish i wasn't so depended on sex as I seem to be. At least it reliefs stress when it's good.
As noted, I find the idea of corrective rape ridiculous, however asexuality truly isn't 'real' persay, it's a means of identification. Typically if you ask any person who identifies as an asexual they will have physical arousal but will lack mental arousal. This can be biological, hormonal, or mentally related. This is typically why the asexual community is met with skepticism.
There are plenty of physiological reasons why someone would have a diminished or non-existent sex drive. However that doesn't mean that physiology would be the only reason and that there's anything innately wrong with an asexual person. Happiness can be found outside of sex and certainly more so if you don't feel that desire in the first place. It's a perfectly valid identification just as anything other personal trait is. From a medical standpoint it has been widely documented and has existed, from a gender standpoint, for thousands of years. Asexual is a recognized gender typically associated with tribal communities or religious individuals. The gender (not to be confused with the specific examples provided buy this article) is one in which the community typically views the individual as neither male nor female for sexual or gender purposes and typically serve a specific role in the community. Those roles are often of a co-leader or spiritual nature. The problem here lies in that asexuality is fundamentally non-western. In order to overcome the exclusionary habit prevalent in our culture education is required. I learned about this in anthropology and found it both interesting and wholly practical. There is a place for you and it's growing.
dont get it, asexual community sounds like they have sex, is there a bsexual community? why make a group out of it. why not just say i prefer not to have sex, don't need a reason, it's your choice. isn't just saying your celibate mean the same thing? does an asexual person have children, or kiss their husband, or do they even get married.???Hmmmmmmmmmmm wonder
N O T .......
I really could not care less who or what you like to do in your sex life. It is none of my business just my sex life is none of yours. Pretty simple really.
I'm not buying asexuality. I feel it's a mental illness of some kind or at the very least like some sort of defense mechanism to justify or rationalize not growing up, not getting sex, being bad at sex, or after having a really bad experience with sex or relationships. Like to make yourself seem like a special case instead of a pity case, you call yourself an asexual just because you are afraid to get close and honest with people. I'm not advocating corrective rape in anyway. I'm just saying there's a lot more to sex than just the physical act. There's a lot of mental, emotional, and spiritual things that goes along with sex. It's therapeutic, promotes closeness, trust, honesty, and bonding because it's like you are giving yourself to the other person. Are you sure you're asexual and not just some person with some serious trust issues? Have you ever tried to form a good, honest relationship with anyone and not try to push them away when they got too close to you?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Personality_disorders
Society needs to fear God and get back to the bible again. Judgment day is coming.
We all go through a period of asexuality as children, and again at a certain older age, differing with each person. This seems so normal to me. I don't understand why others can't see it.
If people would quit talking about what they do or don't do with their private parts, there wouldn't be an issue.
If I was asexual, I could probably cure cancer. I swear, we'd all be super productive humans if we didn't have sexuality distracting us all the time.
"How Come You Haven't Cured Cancer": http://www.asexualityarchive.com/how-come-you-havent-cured-cancer-with-all-your-free-time/

Really, if all it took were devoting the time you’d normally spend thinking about sex toward finding a cure, cancer would’ve been cured long ago by some horny playboy who figured this out:

-Giving up sex for a while = Lots of free time
-Lots of free time = Cure for cancer
-Cure for cancer = Instant mega celebrity
-Instant mega celebrity = All the sex I want, when I want it, with pretty much whoever I want, for the rest of my life.

And yet, no one’s taken that deal?
Why does anyone have to share so much about their "personal" stuff? Keep it to yourself and go about your business....no one needs to know. Why the need to have others inside your very personal life? Unless you're looking to be another "victim" of society.
Of course violence will not "solve" anything but don't tell me, "Asexuality" has to be another American phenomenon. I bet is started in inventive California. Next we will get Bsexuality and so on.
Thank you, Julie Decker, for sharing your story. As of last year I became an asexual. I don't fight it or let anyone break that choice because it feels natural to me. I still have natural desires but I don't act on them because I feel as though respect and love, for the most part, are not combined with sex in our society. In all the relationships I have been in in the past 15 years I have been used and blamed by partners for breakups. After experiencing an abusive childhood while witnessing domestic violence between my parents, being bullied at school, miscarrying my first two children from domestic violence, birthing the only child I was able to have, struggling through three marriages, experiencing homelessness, moving on from a broken relationship with my parents, relocating again and again, suffering and surviving depression, I realize that I am the only one who can make myself truly happy.
People need to spend time working on their own issues and personal realities. And spend less time figuring out how to fix the things in OTHER folks they don't like. OR ARE TOO STUPID to understand. But maybe more will know about it if folks keep saying it out loud.

Would really make the heads of the dogma tribes go BOOM!
If, as a society, we had not made sexuality the driving force in all aspects of life from selling soap & clothing to success in business, this would not be an issue. You are a person, a unique individual, and your sexuality is a part of that, and no one has the right to presume you should be anything different.
When will people learn that not every human being is interested in having sex? It as simple as that! Gees grow up folks these people are bothering no none!!!
look at me.i have a brick for a brain,most humans
some people are just animals nothing more if fact they are beneath animals,a person's sexuality does not give anyone else the right to rape,the same as how some one dresses' does not give another person the right to rape.. no one needs fixing only rapists
What people need to comprehend and accept as fact is that human sexuality runs the gamut from 0 to 10, and from totally gay to totally straight, and everywhere in between. And it is all normal! If you don't want to have sex, so what!!? If you are a man wanting to dress like a woman, so what!? If you desire both men and women, so what!!? As long as you are not hurting anyone else by your actions, it is totally your business and no one else's.

So, thanks for posting this article. It never occurred to me that there were so many asexuals out there, nor that there was discrimination, no less a movement.
Hi Ivy I'm guessing you are an only child I keep hearing about community when in actuality all you really want is isolation from the world. No one should care about your sexual preference it is your choice, Now it is not right on your part if you do not explain yourself when a person of the opposite sex ask you out for a cup of coffee or diner you as an a committed asexual in total isolation from the rest of world you should never except any invitation from a normal. Just like you do not want to be judged you should not judge them. Even in the Bible it states go out into the world and be fruitful. I wish you the best in your endeavors cause we social creatures by nature. Hopefully you will find another just like you where you can draw a line down the middle of your house and watch out for each other otherwise in the end your neighbors will find you by the smell.
people have gone their entire lives without sex for centuries- big deal- why do we need another friggin group that has to show the world "their feelings" about their personal decisions- and why is the minority groups always have to have to make a "statement" but the MAJORITY still keeps qquiet- no parades, no banners and flags, no "Im Hetero" bumper stickers- We need mroe attention seekers in the world (sarc)
I don't care what anyone does sexually.....it's all a bore.
Are you open to hugs and holding hands
YOU CAN'T GO WITHOUT EATING BUT YOU CAN DO WITHOUT SEX...FOR REAL !!! Ten or even five years ago I could not have understood this story. Now I do. I am a 54 year old heterosexual married woman with adult children who no longer wants to have sex in my life. Frankly it makes me tired just thinking about it. This does not make me abnormal. I consider it perfectly healthy to want to just have your own body to yourself for a while or even for a lifetime. You are not devoid of affection or even weird. There are plenty of people who choose to be sexually inactive and just as many people who are asexual (non-sexual). Anyone's so-called sexuality can be expressed through common courtesy and compassion for others. That's what true LOVE is. I firmly believe a person can be WHOLE without sexual experience. I LOVE YOU doesn't mean I want to stick something into you. It means I enjoy your company. Period.
Sex.......either you like it or you do not like it.
im a heterosexual male, but i know exactly what asexual people are about...and i think anyone who pretends otherwise is being kind of shortsighted. the same exact feelings of intimacy that you have for other humans (whether they be man or woman) is the exact feelings that asexuals DONT have. it's not complicated, nor is it something that should be hidden or "kept in the bedroom." all of us hetero's/ bi's/ homo's like to share our feelings concerning sexuality, so why should asexuals be any different? everyone wants to feel they belong and that they have a community -- ESPECIALLY if they belong to a select group where they don't run into people of their "kind" that often. people need to start realizing that people all over the world are all compelled by some hidden force to feel, think and act the way that they do. we're creatures of circumstance who are playing roles in this life, but at the end of the day, we're all the same -- regardless of what our nature compels us to do/ not do. this is harder to understand in those of us who are compelled to hurt others or act in ways that society deems 'bad' or 'evil', but at the end of the day, even these people are just acting out their own nature. people love to take credit for things that largely have nothing to do with them and were pre-chosen for them at birth.
I officially know so much more than I ever wanted to know about other peoples sex lives (or lack there of.)Whatever happened to just shutting up?People blab on & on about their sex lives & then complain they're mistreated by others!Solution,mind your own business & let other's mind theirs.I personally,& I think most others feel the same could care less if you're having sex with a farm animal..............or not.
Asexual discrimination? Well it may have something to do with the fact that you won't shaddup about it.
Why do SOME men think they can cure anything with their penis?
Can you imagine a world where no one is sexually turned on by another.....some can....try to understand, even if you are horny...On second thought, that won't work... :>)
Let me start by saying that if you are not a heterosexual, then you are a homosexual. This asexual junk is merely a cover up. Secondly.....since when does a guy licking a girls face, constitute RAPE. Have you people all gone MAD. You try to rationalize your behavior by implying there is something wrong with the rest of US. Good grief, stop blaming others for YOUR actions. Stop trying to force your agenda on US. As liberals, you preach tolerance. And yet, you find those of us who dont agree with you, to be INTOLERABLE. For heavens sake......Take a long hard look at yourselves, and ask, Does the problem lie within???
"Corrective rape" is BEYOND horrifying. If someone doesn't want to have sex, that's his or her right. And no one has any business trying to "fix" that person! Just when I think I've seen and heard it all, someone proves me wrong. Again!
I have actually confused asexuality with transgender, gender neutral and intersexed identities. If those can exist, why not actual asexuals?
Asexuality is a sexual orientation, like heterosexuality or homosexuality. It's not a gender identity and it has no physical manifestation.
Do we seriously have yet another label for yet another sexual preference? Aren't people tired of being pigeonholed and seen as divided in to separate groups instead of just being people? With that said;

Corrective "Rape", seriously? That's really horrible. My deepest sympathies to her . I can only imagine what she must be going through.
I've had a thought:
If science could find the neurochemical impetus for asexuality, maybe they could use it as a form of "sexual lobotomy" for offenders.
Asexuality=hormonal imbalance
Except it's not. Many asexuals have normal hormone levels and the test results to prove it. That's even mentioned in some of the other articles in this series.
So they're losing the battle on "same sex" sexual relationships, so now their focusing on "no sex" sexual relationships? I won't lie, I do find it odd that someone isn't interested in having a sexual relationship with someone (hetero or homo), but I really don't care how anyone get their rocks off. Threatening someone over the sexual preference or "lack therefor" is ridiculous. Only in American will we be upset that your having sex too much (having kids you need help supporting), having sex with the "wrong person" (race or homosexual), then be mad that you choose to not have sex at all. "Thall shall not sleep alone with thyself"- The "Newest" Testament
Why do some people now days feel the need to share their sexuality, or lack of it, with the world? Personally I don't care whether someone is gay, straight, asexual, pansexual, bisexual, or whatever. What sort of person they are interests me a great deal more. Are they kind, loving, giving, interesting, enjoyable to have coffee with? But my heart goes out to anyone who's been assaulted for any reason. The idea of corrective rape is as repugnant as it is ludicrous.
Just out of curiosity...how does anyone know you're asexual unless you tell them?

And why would you tell them...unless you're asked? Wouldn't it be just as easy to 'just say no'?

And most importantly...whose business it it of anyone else's but yours.

So why would you tell anyone?
First off rape is rape and for my comments that needs to be taken out of the context of my comments.
I'm sorry, but this sounds more like a social or emotional disorder than a "sexual preference". If you don't like sex or feel sexual, that's totally fine. I don't like chocolate. But that doesn't mean I feel "oppressed" because people can't understand why. I just don't eat it and I certainly don't feel a need to announce it to everyone in order to achieve some kind of acceptance in light of it. This appears more to be a cry for attention to compensate for some much deeper seeded emotional connection issues. Your sexual preference does not define who you are as a human being and shouldn't be the focal point of your existence and primary source of your happiness. In all honesty, without other unrelated emotional issues, a life with out sexual interest "should" be far less complicated and rewarding as it hypothetically would free your mind to pursue much more rewarding endeavors.
Just my opinion.
I fully support asexual people. Not for the reasons you might think. Why? With the human population out of control anybody that's not producing more humans is a good thing.
Depraved mind and soul leads to much evil, resist the devil and he will flee from you, promised the Lord
Those who are enraged about someone's choice, or way of being, are probably themselves in an asexual relationship, though not by choice, and are very, very angry at themselves, and the partner, and cannot fathom someone being content without sex.
I think this says more about how our society has become hypersexualized than it does about these people. When people's sexuality increasingly becomes how they define themselves, then I suppose it follows that those without sexuality are forced to define themselves as a group.
Asexual = A person who doesn't like engaging in sex, man or woman.

Hmmm, sound strange, but you won't know unless you are in their shoes. Is it the pain or the close body contact?
Asexual = Someone who does not experience sexual attraction. It's not about pain or body contact or anything like that.
Well, thanks.
No one ever needs to be raped for any reason. If you don't like sex that's your choice and it's alright. It's your body and people need to respect your wishes and leave you alone about it.
It frightens me to think that there are people that can actually rationalize an act of horrific violence by calling it "Corrective Rape"! Further, sex is an act of mutual agreement. Rape is an act of extreme hatred and violence. The two have nothing in common.
This is very interesting to me. I am middle aged with two children, and
have never really had much of a sex drive. I have a younger friend, that
every time he calls me the first thing he always asks is "So...have you
gotten Laid lately?" This is a guy that has been divorced three times
already! The other question I get that is extremely annoying from
people "So...are you dating anyone?" My theory is that people who
have the biggest problem sustaining relationships are the ones who
are the quickest to look down on, or make fun of, people who have
no interest in a relationship.
Thank you for sharing this story. I agree 100%.
I have known asexual people, but did not know there was a movement. In some ways, they are blessed not to have the burden of needing to seek intimacy. They can focus on bigger things.
I am a man who did not willfully make love until age 32. I knew I was attracted to men, but in my childhood I was sexually abused by a male older cousin from age 6 until age 11. He always said if I told he would hurt me and I def believed him. Whats wierd is by the end I sorta liked it , but it was I who finally ended it saying " go ahead hurt me but this has to stop". I then hid for 20 yrs, never having sex with anyone. I buried my hurt in alcohol and drugs, until I crashed and put myself into rehab for 32 days. I have never used since then. I joined gay AA, terrified to go in, there I was accepted. 2 yrs later I dated for 8 mnths before we made love, not sex but love. We were the same, never sexual. Discovering love at age 32 is late I guess. So many tried to match me with the right girl, over and over. Falling in love is a gift, but not until one is ready, never forced.
Regardless of the adjectives used with it, RAPE IS RAPE!

There is nothing "corrective" or beneficial about forced into involuntary sexual activity. That used to be the thinking of straight men, and some women, regarding lesbians and the transgendered. Before that it was the thinking around "frigid" women.

Most recently it has been, an often unspoken, part of the "reparitive therapy" community which attempted to "repair" homosexuals in addition to the "pray the gay away" brainwashing. The damage done by that movement alone is incalculable, up to and including multiple suicides and attempted suicides by survivors of such abuse.

It's despicable and an excuse for sexualized violence against someone regardless of their orientation or their preference. People are what they are. Let them just BE.
" In a 2012 Fox News segment about sexologist Anthony Bogaert's book Understanding Asexuality, host Greg Gutfeld and a panel of guests mocked the asexual identity, treating it as something invalid or exaggerated. "

These twits have to be some of the best examples of arrested development that I have ever come across. They are stalled at the same emotional (and probably intellectual) level of fourth graders who find endless ribald humor during grammar lessons whenever the world "period" is used.

It's no longer politically correct to ridicule anyone in the LGBT communities but this is still ok. There seems to be a segment of humanity that desperately needs to have some one or some group to make pick on, bully and/or make fun of in order to not feel like the complete waste of resources that they are.

I've heard of the host a few times before and looked him up to see what he's all about, He's never had anything to say that I wanted or needed to hear. But kudos to him for finding a way to get paid and avoid honest work while still being as unpleasant as humanly possible. That has GOT to take some kind of gift..

As for his so called panel, not long ago they were the recipients of swirlies, wedgies, being stuffed into their lockers and have now found a way out of the AV club by ridiculing yet another subject they obviously know nothing about.
The new kind of attentionwhore... they go aroun announcing to everyone that they are "different" and need to be "accepted". Why is there a need to go everywhere announcing ones sexuality to every person? She "had spoken extensively about her asexuality". WHY????
Because there are other people out there who feel the same as she does. They feel lost and broken and alone. They think something is wrong with them because they're not into sex like everyone else.
Found this story a few days ago but didn't have time to post until today (7/1).

I absolutely understand the emotional connection between asexual folks and gays. Anything outside what our society considers "normal" is a target for all kinds of discrimination, misunderstanding and hatred. Atheists also fall into this category.

But I was surprised to find out that there's a community of support and encouragement. You just never know what (or who) is out there until you dig a little -- or stumble over it accidentally, like I just did with this.
An 'A'sexual movement for people who got F's in sexual education class in the 6th grade. It goes WHERE? I'd rather eat pie. tee hee. :(
What disturbed me is the term "sexually assaulted". He licked your face. While as gross and childish as that may be, I don't think it deserves the phrase "sexually assaulted". I mean, I'm sorry that he did that to you, it must have been an uncomfortable moment, but take it from someone who has been sexually assaulted and raped, this was no "sexual assault". Please don't use that term lightly, or freely. With that aside, I wish you luck in all that you do.
Kissing and licking can be seen as sexual. If it felt sexual to her and the sexual attention wasn't wanted but was forced upon her anyway despite telling him no, then yes, it can be considered assault. Rape and sexual assault doesn't stop at penetration or groping genitals.
Look at the people in the picture holding the banner. You're only as promiscuous as your options. That picture says a thousand words. Enough said. If I was a man who looked like that I'd fear the p*ssy too.
I think this is one community that will grow greatly in the near future. With the dangers of traditional romantic relationships and marriage to men, (biased family courts, false domestic violence, rape, and abuse claims, alimony, losing your children, losing your rights). Sex has became simply too dangerous. Now lets stop the violence, first by not doing it, and 2nd by stepping up and reporting it. Guys this means you too, when you get a slap to the face in anger, its not simply what Girls do, its abuse. Just wondering if there are many MGTOW coming out of the lone wolf lifestyle into the asexual community. Heck sounds like possibly a place for me in it.
Asexuality is not a shelter for your misogyny. "I hate women, therefore I'm asexual" makes no more sense than saying "I hate women, therefore I'm gay". That is not how it works.
You misjudge. I have been the victim of DV, would up in the hospital and received 48 stitches. I know personally how men are treated by the justice system. I wont say that my judgement isnt clouded by personal experience.
What you describe is aromantic autosexuality rather than asexuality. Aromantic autosexuals have a "normal" libido as well as an erotic orientation (androphile, gynephile, biphile etc.), but are content with masturbation and do not seek sexual and/or romantic relationships with other people (except perhaps for long-distance sexual role play).
I blame sex education in schools for some of this asexuality, starting children to thinking and talking about sex too soon and experimenting with their same sex friends.
Asexuality has nothing to do with "experimenting with same-sex friends". I never experimented with anybody. I'm curious how you make the connection that people who aren't terribly interested in sex were became that way because sex ed apparently gives people The Gay? Does not compute.
Having been an adolescent youth at one point, I can assure you that the other kids were thinking about and talking about sex well before the sex ed classes.
Sex education in schools didn't make me want to run out and have sex. What it did was make me understand some of the potential consequences of having sex, such as unintended pregnancy or STD transmission. And it taught me that it's okay to say no and wait until you're ready and that condoms help prevent pregnancy and STDs, but aren't perfect, and that the pill prevents pregnancy but not STDs. But it did not encourage any kind of activity, straight, gay, or solo. They did pretty much everything they could short of slapping on chastity belts to discourage us from doing anything. It certainly did not encourage "same-sex experimentation". In fact, outside of a list of word definitions and the lesson on AIDS, I don't think homosexuality was mentioned at all.
What is wrong with you? Sex education is a great tool in preventing teen pregnancy and the spread of STD's. The will to have or not to have sex is born within a person, it cannot be taught. It can however be taught that sex is a requirement in life, which it's not. I did not even have sex, with opposite sex or otherwise, until my mid twenty's. I thank sex education for that. However, despite my friends' assurances that "the perfect mate" will come along, I have no desire to do something I do not enjoy and really have no need for.

I think your rejection of Aces stems from the idea that Priests and Nuns are celibate because they are giving something great up for God. Well, God just made me the perfect Nun.

---------

This is totally me. I always thought I was a freak because of it and that I would be forever alone. Maybe I still will be alone, but at least I know I'm not "abnormal". I'm really tired of people accusing me of hating sex or acting as though something is wrong with me because I dont "hook up"
Well, I'm happy that you have at least discovered who you are.

That's the most important thing :)
Why do you think the moderators removed my comment?  Mystery to me.


I have no idea what comment you made in which you are referring to.

So I have no idea.
I am asking you b/c you replied..."I am glad to see the comments lightening up....etc."  I thought perhaps you flagged me.
You are not a freak! There is so much pressure to conform that it is disgusting. I love the claim that anything besides the Christian heterosexual model is unnatural when nature seems to abhor uniformity. All of these variations exist in nature. Don't allow anyone to make you feel like there is something wrong with you. If this is the way you feel at peace, go for it!! And good luck finding your significant other.
Great advice.
how do you know?? have you met?? people didnt think Ramirez was a serial k8ller either.
"Normal" is a state of mind. Never let anybody push you around because you're not like them. Normal is about being good with who you are, as you are.... Only you can set that goal post.

As for being alone because you are asexual, or differently sexual... Well, in my experience a great many couples become a whole lot less sexual after a few years. Our society is obsessed with sex. It's a gigantic marketing thing. Sex is great, yes... It IS however just ONE facet of what it means to be human and in a relationship with others.... Our society right now acts as though sex is the driving force of civilization, and IT'S NOT.

There's a place in this world for all of us. There's a spot that's right for you, and as long as you keep your mind open, it will come to you.

Remember that the most important thing about finding what you need, is to let others know what you're looking for. Isolating yourself and not telling anyone what you're interested in is a guaranteed way of not finding what you want.
Yay, another discovery story coming out of these articles! I love when people finally come to discover what they are and come to accept that they're not broken or wrong. I remember it for me, and it was so freeing. I'm a much more comfortable person nowadays. Welcome, friend.
I am quite asexual, but only because I would not want to have sex with anyone who would consider having sex with me.
There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy. -Hamlet
Thanks for sharing.
You are disillusioned. Your perception of reality has been effected; probably at a very young age at the hands of someone older. You are not different. You have been abused.
Nothing wrong with you. I always just thought I was lazy because to me the pleasure from sex wasn't worth the amount of physical exertion. But I get really turned on by making out and could just do that and be totally happy. Thankfully my husband to be is understanding and caring.
Huummm... I wondering about your statement.. Just because you do not "hook up" makes you asexual. The question is have you ever fell in love with someone but have never had felt sexually arouse by that person?

Do you get aroused by someone? Do you want to have sex with someone?

The mentality of a asexual person is different in so many aspect.

Anyhow, if you are and you just found out - GOOD for you!!!
If they're worried about YOUR sex life, they have bigger issues than you.
You are not "asexual". Most asexuals just don't want to be with someone else, but have real sexual preferences.
You're lucky. I spend WAY too much time thinking and doing sex. If you spend that time being productive, you will get rich. Not to mention you don't have to share half your savings when you get divorced.
you are
I'm so happy that you've found out you're not alone.

I'm withholding most comment because this is a totally new subject to me as a gay guy.

But what I do understand is what it's like to feel like you're alone, to find out that you're not, and to find out how irritating it is for other people to tell you that they know better about what's going on in your head, and in your heart, than you do.

I'm sure I'll make all kinds of clueless mistakes as I try to understand, but I'm pretty confident in those commonalities. (But if I'm wrong, let me know.)
Thanks everyone for the supportive comments :) ,,, made me smile. Thank you thank you!!
Right on, mangelpearl!! Sounds like a major revelation for you. Congrats!!
I am so glad you were able to find yourself due to these articles. I know from personal experience (though I am not asexual) that having a word that describes what you are feeling is very liberating. Having a group of people who shares similar feelings is relieving. It means you are not alone, are not weird or a freak. It truly is a relief.
I can't help but cackle at these people. I am generally open minded, but sex is a part of human anatomy and DEFINITELY a requirement for living a healthy life. (or at least masturbating... I guess.) It's my opinion, but if you can do relationships without sex, more power to you. Just not my thing.
It's a requirement for living YOUR healthy life, not mine. For me as an asexual, having sex is an unhealthy thing to do because it goes against my nature.
But I'm sorry if you masturbating you still simulating sex and the pleasure one gets from sex.
Okay? How does this contradict asexuality? Asexuality is lack of sexual attraction to others. It doesn't mean your body cannot experience sexual pleasure or orgasm. This is super basic stuff and it's been covered in these articles you're commenting on. If you were a straight man and you were on an island you could never leave, and there were only other men there, but you still masturbated, would it mean you were expressing sexual attraction to the other men, the only available partners? No. Please remember that masturbating does not translate to "there are available partners that I find sexually attractive." It also has zero to do with whether you would actually have sex with said people. Behavior is not attraction. Not finding other people sexually attractive is the ONLY thing people who are identifying as asexual are saying about their experience. I'd really appreciate it if the people commenting here would actually process that sexual behavior and masturbation DO NOT CONTRADICT the concept of not finding any person sexually attractive. Non-asexual people seem to be able to process the idea of having sex with someone they don't find attractive just fine, but when asexuals do it suddenly people think we're living oxymorons. It's really not a complicated concept when you remember that NO behavior cancels out a person's experience of attraction.
I have a suspicion that the reason some sexual people have this thing about aces masturbation is that they are looking for an escape hatch. Their (subconscious) thinking may go like this: "You don't crave sex? The thought of not having sex drives me insane! Do you masturbate? Yes? Then you can't be asexual and I can stop freaking out about it!!" Maybe that's not it exactly, but something is clearly making them crazy of they wouldn't think that marching up to someone and demanding to know if they masturbate is ever an acceptable thing to do.
I think you might be right there! People are very confused by the whole idea sometimes and if they can find something that will let them use existing definitions to categorize something they don't understand so they DON'T have to listen or learn, sometimes they'll do it. I can't even begin to estimate how many times I've been asked, point blank, by a stranger, whether I masturbate (and I never know whether my answer would inspire them to invalidate me or whether it would make them think "oh then that's okay then," as if it matters to me whether they're okay with my orientation). People do like to say "Oh, okay, so you're ACTUALLY ZYX" when I have described it as XYZ. Kind of like sometimes people react to trans* people by saying "Oh I see, it's like you're a man who wants to be a woman." Not accurate at all, but that's how they look at it and that's how they then TREAT that person, so it matters.
Yes, and there's probably a very fine line in these sorts of conversations between someone trying to understand but not quite getting it and someone trying NOT to understand. I suppose some are just trying to fit the unknown into the known, and some are just trying to reject new information, but it's hard to tell which is which since either can be offensive or inappropriate.
it's not without sex...it's without sex with each other
Look at the article a bit closer, and especially yesterdays article. It's NOT a necessary part of EVERYONES biology.
I'd rather you focus more on the "just not my thing" and "more power to you" inclinations than the "can't help but cackle at these people" and "sex is a requirement for living a healthy life." It seems like essentially you are saying "live and let live, I GUESS, but I'm still going to assume you are ill and feel no qualms about mocking you for thinking you're okay." You know, you are certainly free to judge us silently, but assuming that sex is a must for all healthy lives denies the experience of millions of people who do not feel this way, and you asserting that there is NO way to be healthy unless it incorporates assumptions you've taken for granted all your life does help to dismiss and erase people like us. Since you seem to have a basic understanding of why you should live and let live here, can I please ask you to lean on those inclinations and less so on the "they're sick, period, they're not human without it, and I get to say what is human" perspective?
How do you get from "I cackle at these people" to "More power to you"? Have you evolved on your acceptance in the time it took to write the paragraph?
Agreed, You arent asexual if you are masterbating. What are they doing math problems while they whack off? Bull- you have to be sexually aroused to climax
Claiming you know another persons sexuality better than themselves. Charming.

Asexuality is the lack of sexual attraction, not lack of sexual arousal.
Did you even read the article?
You know, here's an idea. How about you leave the defining up to people who have spent years experiencing or studying asexuality as opposed to you apparent 10 minutes.
How bout I'll form my own views and opinions regardless of if I spent years studying it.... This entire issue is arbitrary labeling. If some people have less sex drive then good for them, maybe they are Asexual. If you are masterbating then you have sex drive, if you can experience sexual arousal then you can also experience sexual arousal. I'm sure it does relieve tension..... SEXUAL tension! If you are cleaning the pipes then you are not asexual.- You are simply not having sexual intercourse with another human being. I can't stand people who disagree with a stance only because it contradicts a "professional researchers" stance. Form your own arguments and I'll take you seriously.
**** if you can experience sexual arousal then you are also experiencing sexual ATTRACTION.
So men who wake up with an erection were attracted to what, exactly? Arousal is blood flow. Arousal can certainly be triggered by attraction, but it can also be triggered by physical stimulation, driving along a bumpy road, exercising, or just the random act of walking down the street.
Aside from that, the objection that I can't be asexual because I masturbate is empty. If I'm not asexual because I masturbate, then what am I? I'm not attracted to women. I'm not attracted to men. So I'm not straight, I'm not gay, and I'm not bisexual. What am I, then?
I married a very sexual man who just happens to get aroused sometimes for NO reason at all. There was no overt sexual stimulation around him, nothing touched him anywhere, yet, arousal happens. It frustrates him to no end, because, many times he feels it's due to nervousness before presenting an idea to a client. It's complete b.s. to say that all arousal is due to attraction AFTER indicating that you've studied human sexuality for years. This is first-year Psych and/or Bio student stuff.
His sex drive may not be caused BY attraction but it certainly results in sexual desire. His body is aroused and in order to fulfill this URGE he must vent. This venting requires a sexual attraction to ejaculate- of some kind.
Surely your husband isn't "asexual"? He physically experiences sex drive. Wether or not his intellectual self agrees with his hormonal urges is irrelevant when it comes to classifing hom as Asexual or Sexual.
Don't get me wrong guys I think thatt being asexual can be a good thing. And I can understand that sexuality can be a cumpulsive itch. My only point is that masterbation is inately sexual. Even if you are only masterbating to rid yourself of sex hormones- it is still a sexual act. If you are compelled to perform sexual acts then you are not (by definition) Asexual.--- You may not like the concept of sex/ or the consequenses but if you are masterbating then you are still engaging in a form of sexual activity. This would make a diffrence between having no sex drive- and wanting no sex drive- yet still being prone to sex hormone. If I could choose I would chose to have 0 sex drive.
Asexuality refers to a a sexual orientation where a person is not sexually attracted to anyone. That is the definition in this context, so masturbation and sex drive has absolutely zilch to do with asexuality in the context of sexual orientation.

And it is gross that you would define sexual attraction and desire in a way that claims rape victims experience attraction to their rapists.
Except that, by definition, asexuality is a lack of sexual attraction. Nothing more, nothing less. And if sexual attraction is separate from libido and ability to experience arousal (and it is), then an asexual can experience those things. By definition.

I don't mean to be condescending here, but I want to spell this out extra well for anyone who doesn't understand. So let's swap out the word asexual for the definition of asexual. "Asexuals can masturbate" is the same sentence as "People who do not experience sexual attraction can masturbate." Can you argue that that isn't true?

I'm sorry if you don't like the definition, but it's not your place to redefine a word that people are using to explain themselves to others. Just accept that the word means something different from what you think it should mean and move on.
I someone says "I am asexual and this is what it means to be me." Who are you to come along and tell them that they are wrong?
It's not up to you to decide other people's identities for them. Sexual orientation is never about what someone does or does not due. It's not as if you are gay only when shtupping someone of your own sex. If it were, what are you when not on the job?
'do' not 'due'
Yeesh.
In addition to what everyone else has said, it's also possible to be aroused by the action of sex itself (i.e. erotica. And FYI, there are non-human fetishes out there, too. Like tentacles, for example), while still not actually desiring to have sex with anyone in particular or not being aroused with an actual person physically in front of them.
That's being judgmental of others. It's sort of like saying "I know better". Most people who think they know better, usually don't.
I felt a little uncomfortable when I first heard about this but, after reading about it, I think I kind of get it. It doesn't really sound so far fetched even though it's not the life I would prefer to live. And to laugh at them really is pretty sad.
"a requirement for healthy living"??? So says you. Hopefully maturity will teach you that what works for you does not work for others and respecting others' differences will actually benefit you. Good luck with that.
Just because someone is asexual doesn't automatically mean they don't have sex. Some do. Some don't. (And just as well, the same goes for all other orientations.) Being asexual has nothing to do with behavior. It's just about who they're (not) sexually attracted to. That's all there is to it.
Well your opinions are based on ignorance. Asexuality isn't about sex drive at all and this is why you should refrain from forming opinions until you've actually put some effort into understanding a topic. I am asexual, I do have my own opinions and they're based on my own experience and the experiences of other asexuals. I've thought long and hard about these things and, frankly, it's insulting for you to take a glance and casually dismiss our experiences.
Sexual attraction is not the same as sexual arousal. Ever heard of a fetish? A person with a diaper fetish can be aroused by diapers without wanting to have sex with them. It's a very simple concept and if you were willing to put even the smallest amount of effort into understanding, maybe you'd realize you're making an idiot of yourself.
"if you can experience sexual arousal then you are also experiencing sexual ATTRACTION. "

So... a woman ties a man down and stimulates him to the point of arousal to rape him, he is sexually attracted to her? How on earth is sexual arousal automatically attraction? Men have gotten erections because their cat jumped onto their laps, I sincerely doubt that the men are sexually attracted to their cat.

I personally do NOT masturbate, but I do have sex with my partner. I do experience PHYSICAL arousal because of physical stimulation. I don't think any human (or any animal for that matter, look at horses who are manually stimulated for sperm) can have their genitals stimulated and not experience arousal.

Having working anatomy has nothing to do with attraction.
By the way, before anyone jumps on my statement that I have sex.. I shall clarify my partner is sexual. Denying him would not be fair. If my partner were asexual, I would go without and still not masturbate as I do when I am single.
Would not be fair in my specific circumstance* (some sexual/asexual relationships find celibacy a workable compromise)
And that's fine for you to want to have sex in a romantic relationship. For you and other sexuals, it may be hard to imagine not feeling sexual attraction, but that's how it is for us. We don't feel that intrinsic attraction you do. And that's fine. But I would like to remind you that attraction and libido are two separate things. It is perfectly possible to have a sex drive and no sexual attraction.
But don't "cackle at these people." Because we are not here for your amusement, sir, and my sexuality is not something there for you laugh at because of inability to understand how sex isn't some necessary part of a healthy life. You clearly aren't as open minded as you claim to be if the thought of people not needing sex to be happy makes you laugh.
I don't really get this, but I also don't see how I am affected by what they choose to do, or not do. Good luck to you. I'm a little inclined to think you're not doing something right if you refer to sex as "ritual sex", but whatever floats your boat.
Great point. Ritual sex sounds awful.

I don't really "get" anything outside of my own sexuality... I try to put myself in others' shoes, but that doesn't tell me how they feel. It takes years for some to understand that diversity should be celebrated, not stifled.

Science demonstrates sexuality exists on a continuum. "Sexuality/sexual identity" is from the neck up, whereas "gender" refers to our reproductive organs. It's normal/natural to identify as anything from asexual to heterosexual - with other norms like bisexuality & homosexuality falling somewhere between those 2 poles.

The trouble starts with the attempt to force everyone to exist within "acceptable" categories. Using guilt to impose compliance might change BEHAVIOR, but it will NEVER change the underlying identity. You might force a gay person to "act" straight, but they then display many maladaptive coping mechanisms to compensate, symptoms of what we commonly call PTSD -
If you try and put yourself in other peoples shoes Sounds like a shoe fetish to me......;-)
Hmmm, interesting. lolz
Gay and bi people are not less sexual or closer to asexuality than straight people. They're just sexual.
How sexual one is depends on the individual, not the group they associate with. Human sexuality is fluid - asexuality is at one end of the spectrum and heterosexuality is at the other. In between are the others. All are "normal" within the realm of human sexuality.
I was NOT referring to "how sexual" people are - I was referring to the range of normal.  "Normal sexuality" is fluid and falls anywhere along that continuum. 
okay well in that case i don't understand why asexuality is less normal than homosexuality/bisexuality. like, all sexuality is normal. there's not a "range of normal". heterosexuality, homosexuality, bisexuality, and asexuality are all just "normal".
Why would asexuality be less normal? Who says that? I am certainly not saying that at all. 
They didn't refer to it as ritual sex, they referred to it as a physical ritual, which it is. And for a lot of people feel like at a certain point it is required. We are free of that feeling.
getting dressed in the morning, taking a shower, eating dinner....those are "physical rituals". I don't consider the sex I have with my husband as a ritual. It's spontaneous. we don't decided to have sex, or not to have sex, on a nightly basis. it's what makes our relationship special, it's something we share with each other that we don't share with anyone else.
Does everyone do any of those things you just mentioned in the same way? No. Same with sex. And the ritual thing is that it's felt as if at a certain point it is required. That's how it is a ritual despite everyone doing it differently.
To be honest, SuperDork, that sounds like an atheist insisting that spiritual people are only praying by rote or for some other reasons. Just cause you ain't feeling it doesn't mean no one else is, either.
I never generalized about anything there. I'm saying that the meaning of the word, as it was used in the article, is different than the meaning of it you were thinking of.
That wasn't me you were replying to, actually.
Sorry, hit the wrong reply button.
No worries, I was just trying to add a perspective there. :)
I stand corrected. It sounds kind of depressing and maybe even selfish to me, but again...if that is what some people want, it is their business. I hope it works out the way the want it to.
It's not selfish if both people in the relationship agree to and are fine with these things. Also, it's not depressing if it's something they don't want or care for in the first place. (In fact, I even personally know a few heterosexuals who also don't care if they go without having sex with another person, as they find other things to be more important. This doesn't change their orientation, though, since it has nothing to do with behavior.) It's all about the individual couples. Although, you probably figured that already. I like that your comment is worded in such a way to not generalize, which is nice compared to some of the other comments I've seen on this article.

But anyway, as for your original comment, the things mentioned in this article aren't supposed to be things that you're affected by, but these articles are being posted to spread more awareness of the orientation. A lot of people don't even think it's "real", so that's why this is being done. I guess there's much more to it than that, but I think there are other people who would word this a lot better than I would.
:) Way too many people are concerned with other peoples futhcie fatchies and what they do with them.
You don't get it... You juuuust don't get it! ;^)
(@_@;)
I'm really enjoying reading all the articles this week, and I'm going to have to save that infographic for 'explaining myself' to others.
This infographic is very well done, I don't even think I could have expected anything better.

I really do hope it helps clear up some of the misconceptions and questions posed in the previous sections comments!

I also hope those users so entwined in the comments section (who are trying to understand more about asexuality continue reading the articles!)
I hope that one day, we'll all live in a world where 'explaining yourself' isn't all so necessary. Meanwhile, we'll talk. K? :)
I hope so too. :)
I am autistic, and there are a decent amount of asexuals in the autistic rights movement. I obviously can't generalize about all of them, but the people I've met have always been unfailingly polite and respectful of others, while expecting nothing more than reciprocation. They seem to understand that nobody deserves to be othered just because of something like sexual preference or neurology.
You bring up an interesting perspective, eagle. I wonder how many asexuals belong on the spectrum. Also, what's the percentage of introverts among them (large, would be my guess), and alexithymics -- folks who have difficulties experiencing and naming emotions in oneself (not as large as introverts, but substantial, I'm guessing).
My personal opinion is that both of them are on the spectrum in large numbers. I dispute the labeling of "introvert" because it so often falls under neurotypical labels (for example, people think I'm an introvert because I don't do small talk, but I don't do small talk because it's stupid, not because I'm shy).
Many introverts are not shy. It is misconception that introverts=shy and extraverts=outgoing.

Being introverted simply means that one requires alone time to refuel and gain internal energy.

In the same way that extraverts get energy by being around other people and being in social situations.
Well, then, the whole world needs to correct the misconception :P
My point was that I don't like people. I don't do small talk. Therefore I am labeled (correctly or not) as an introvert, when I'm not necessarily one.
I certainly agree with you about small talk being really stupid. What's the point of small talk anyway. It's a complete waste of time.
Most of the asexuals I've met have, like me, been social, outgoing, emotionally expressive people. I suppose there could still be a tendency towards introversion though, since the aces actually going out and making friends with others are obviously on the more extroverted end of the curve.
There's a great deal that is still not well understood about sexuality and romance, and certainly the asexual community has contributed some new and useful ideas. However, the spectrum of sexuality goes far beyond what is mentioned in this article - encompassing not only gender, sex drive, and romance but also physical and emotional age - among other things. Curiously, I see many similarities between the asexual community and the pedophile community, except of course that pedophiles are still being targeted for genocide with all the accompanying dehumanization, suppression of the truth, and persecution. In fact, we seem to have a fair number of asexuals and demisexuals in the pedophile community. We have lots of people on the autism spectrum (mostly Aspies) but that may reflect the necessity of communicating online and understanding computer security rather than being a reflection of the sexual and romantic orientation(s) as a whole.
I'm sorry, you lost me at "we in the pedophile community." I have compassion, as long as you understand that your urges are in fact pathological and harmful if pursued in reality, and make sure you do not act upon them.
Urges? I'm afraid you have listened to too much hateful rhetoric. An attraction to children encompasses everything from awe to tenderness to playful laughter, but for the majority of child lovers "urges" are a relatively small factor.

It is not pathological at all - it is related to caring for juveniles in many species, including humans. Pedophilia may even be related to the rise of intelligence in humans via neoteny or self-domestication. Natural selection has a way of weeding out especially harmful traits, yet attraction to children has been accepted in virtually every society up until Victorian England. If one travels outside the English-speaking world the pathological nature of the treatment of children in the Anglosphere quickly becomes evident.

Sadly, pursuing even non-sexual relationships with children HAS become dangerous to them - because if such children are found out they will be hounded by social workers and others who will stop at nothing to make sure that they are harmed. It is amazing how much damage society can do via the nocebo effect. Here is a short related essay I wrote:

http://newgon.com/wiki/Essay:The_Vagaries_and_Changes_of_Perception

But I do appreciate your compassion. It is nice to know that some people have retained their humanity.
I am familiar with pedophiles' justifications for their predilections. Every human vice, with no exception, is rationalized and glorified by those who indulge it.

Children need adult love, care and support, and nobody will fault you for giving them just that. But sex abuse -- yes -- is neither. It is a pedophile's desire fulfilled, not the child's.
Can't seem to reply directly to Bellanova's last comment, so have to reply here:

Pedophilia requires no justification, just as Heterosexuality, Homosexuality, and Asexuality requires no justification. It is not a vice - and the fact that some pedophiles are not cowed into submission does not mean anything except that some pedophiles are not cowed into submission.

Sex abuse is of course always bad, but the term "abuse" has been wildly abused. Not all children desire a sexual relationship, and those who do generally do not want the same type of relationship that teleiophilic adults often do, but there is ample evidence that many children - perhaps most - do have sexual desires, and there is no reason that a sexual relationship could not fulfill a child's desires as much as or more than an adult's.

As for whether society would fault a pedophile for giving a child non-sexual love, care and support - they do that all the time, with truly terrible results for both pedophiles and children.
This whole thing can lead to nothing but greater self-absorption. You're not different just because someone sees you as different, so why are you worrying about how others see you? If you really spent time getting to know the nature of human beings, you'd lose all interest in striving to obtain their acceptance. If we were all identical, our base urge (it's in our genes) to put down others as a means of comparing ourselves (in order to establish dominance, or a sense of security) would simply be re-directed and you'd eventually be mocked for having one extra-long fingernail.
I dunno, there, Lighthaus, you're trying to draw some pretty strong conclusions from some pretty strong claims that seem to be from *your* sense of everyone being like you. What if some people aren't so *fussed* about dominance as you? These things certainly can relate to how sexually-agressive people may be, actually, as well as how xenophobic. You seem to be making a case for self-absorption by claiming that how people may be perceived, understood, or accepted by others is of no real importance. I don't see any reason to think humans *are* all identical in the way *you* claim, actually. Maybe that's part of the problem people have with 'otherness' in this society, really, Not all societies have been dominated by some priority of 'dominating/destroying the different.' :)
"everyone being like you."We're all similar in the most fundamental, biological sense (I'm no fan of psychology or therapy, which teases out imaginary pathologies) .  "how people may be perceived, understood, or accepted by others is of no real importance"It IS important in the sense that group acceptance is a strong driving force in our nature, but if you look closely enough, you'll find this primal biological drive has been sublimated into the egoic desire to have everyone like or accept us. It enhances our well-being to be liked, sure. But, bottom line - if what people think about you MATTERS to you - you'd better get darned good at tap-dancing, because you'll be playing to a rather large and demanding crowd. True individualists desire freedom from such perceived necessities. That doesn't mean they DON'T want to be liked - it just never becomes an issue for them.Also - I wasn't stating that we are identical, I was employing a hypothetical. Implying that, even if we were all carbon copies of the same person, our innate drive to locate DIFFERENCES and either exploit or shun them, would still be there. The smartest thing to do in the face of this fact is to learn how not to demand (it's a demand, if not getting it makes you unhappy) that others perceive you in the way you would like. Some gal titled her book "What You Think of Me is None of My Business." Couldn't have said it better myself.
Or.... People could communicate instead of saying 'Everyone is like this, resist it!' :)
Your point is difficult to discern.
*I speak in terms of individuals, never in terms of societies. I don't believe in them.
You seem to say others are self-absorbed cause of what *you* 'don't believe in.' My point precisely. :)
Being self-absorbed is intrinsic to our nature - a fact which requires the simple ability to recognize what is in front of one's face, and not belief of any sort.
Initially, I didn't understand what you were referring to (societies- d'oh). Societies are the by-product of the behavior of individuals. My focus, therefore, is on the individual. Whenever I hear someone talk about the problems of "society" I wonder - how are you going to fix something which is fundamentally abstract in nature? Dealing with perceived symptoms is a terrific distraction from the more difficult work of discovering the root cause of the disease.
What the #$*) are you talking about?
Nothing. I was just j*rking off.
Of course. Too bad the right wing hasn't figured this out. They DO tend to be a little slow.
wait...so if you are asexual and dating...arent you really just good friends? What is the difference?
There is emotional intimacy and trust that goes beyond friendship. That's the kind of connection that keeps a marriage together through the tough times.
Seriously? Read the article - that was addressed incredibly well.

Though, John Travolta in Pulp Fiction said it best "would you give a guy a foot massage?"
I would think the difference is about the level of commitment/attachment you have towards one another. For instance, I've known people who became paralyzed as a result of injuries like car accidents or got very sick with things like cancer. One guy was married before he was paralyzed; another went through some really rough rounds of chemo. Both had someone who did the "in sickness and in health, for richer and for poorer" thing with their significant others even though sex almost certainly wasn't on the table. That seems like something a lot deeper than "just good friends". I don't see why someone can't find that with another person, sans some major intervening health crisis. No doubt it's hard to find, but I'm sure it happens.
I am not asexual, but totally understand this. I had very romantic feelings not related to sex for my husband before we had sex. The feelings were about him as a person and had nothing to do with sex.
Is having sex the ONLY reason you would date someone? Is having sex the ONLY difference between your significant other and your close friends?

Probably not right? All those other things that go into a sexual relationship other than sex are no less present in an asexual one.
Nah, you don't even have to be asexual to have a platonic thing with someone that doesn't involve sex. Had that kind of thing, myself, once: I wasn't in a place for sex (mostly csuse of grief,) and she was pretty much straight, so it never went there despite us being considered an item. :)
Yeah, it just kills me when people say "but without sex it's NOT a romance." Is the idea that people could want all those other forms of intimacy and partnership that foreign to someone that they can't imagine these relationships being valid unless sex is cementing it? Plenty of people who don't or can't have sex still have romantic relationships, right? People who are actually in these relationships need to be trusted to define whether their partnership is romantic. Other people don't get to step in and say "I don't acknowledge you as a couple because you don't 'do it.'" (Especially since in some cases they DO do it, and nobody seems to acknowledge this.)
The article has a real-life example of such a scenario. I usually read an article before commenting on it.
If you are dating, do you kiss your partner? Would you kiss a friend?

Do you cuddle with your partner? Would you cuddle with a friend?

Do you hold hands with your partner? Would you hold hands with a friend?

Do you marry your partner? Would you marry a friend?

Do you love your partner, romantically? Do you feel the same emotional connection to a friend?
Interesting reading. In my culture, the only people for whom asexuality was accepted, even expected, was elderly widows. For anyone else it was inconceivable. I don't know how people think about this nowadays but I suspect little has changed. Perhaps articles like this will raise the awareness.
It's really nice to see some supportive comments in here instead of the usual arrogance that we as asexuals face each and every day from people (just look at the comments)

Again, thank you.
Face each and ever day? With whom and how many people do you share this preference of sexuality? I think it's completely bizarre that it's seeming 'asexuality' needs a 'sexual identity.' Isnt there a move to add an A to the LBQT? I would just think it would be one of those things that you would follow and just live with.
I've experienced bullying on *many*n occasions. With whom do i share my preference in sexuality? The same amount anyone else would, if the topic comes up and I'm asked sure.
However, being setup on dates because I'm "dateless" was very annoying, and warranted me saying I'm asexual.
Obviously (and I retract), I was exaggerating. It's not like each and every single day I am bullied, while I was in High School that was true, and mostly in University.
Now it's not so much, but I don't really go anywhere either.
But I put the bullying together, it still happens; and I have seen it, I have experienced it.
I do think asexuality is a sexual identity, As it identifies ones sexual identity?
I personally don't know of the push to include A in LGBT, since we are already included in the larger (LGBTQQP2SIAA).
Honestly, I think asexuals fight for the same things that many LGBT persons fight for; and I see no reason to fight separately rather than together.
There are LGBT people who don't think asexuals exist, or that they shouldn't be included in the LGBT umbrella.
I am part of my LGBT community, and they accept me fully; so I never thought of the 'A' not existing, I've always been a part of it, and they have other aces in there whom they accepted with open arms.
I've just known several people throughout my life who don't have sex and even identified as asexual all the way back when I was in High School. I never thought anything of it like it just didn't matter to me. I've never thought anything of it until I see repeated articles on Huffington Post like it's this huge deal. I mean, there are people out there who would discriminate against someone who doesn't feel the desire for sex? Everyone gets bullied for something. I've had my share of bullies pick on me. Maybe I'm more saddened that something I never ever thought of asexuality as a big deal that needs to have some sort of massive support and education movement. It's all so so weird to me... I embrace difference.
I wish all people could just accept it and act as if it was no big deal, Art. Unfortunately, not everyone can. Some call us sinners, some call us mentally ill. Parents may try to force their children into treatment for it. And of course the annoying being set up on dates, told we "just need the right one", told we're "doing it wrong", told we're just gay and in denial and my favorite - if you had sex with me you would change! I have read many stories of people who came out and lost friends for it, relationships with parents destroyed because of it, etc. If you want to see some of the extreme cases, watch Ivy's "letters to an asexual" on you tube. She has many of them highlighted and responds to them.
Nature if anything, loves a variation on a theme. So yes, maybe when we think of roses the first color to come to mind is a red rose, because that is the most predominant of the species. But with further examination, we find roses come in all colors, shapes and sizes. Some roses give off a heady perfume and some hardly any at all. We are now starting to realize that it is the same with human sexuality. Saying that only red roses are the "normal" rose sounds silly. So is saying only heterosexuality is the only normal kind of human orientation
So well-said.
Fascinating.

Isn't demisexual just another way of saying "this is what a healthy, sexually intimate relationship should be like"?
No. And people say that constantly, but it's not at all what demisexuality is. Demisexual means a person does not feel sexual attraction until or unless they are already emotionally connected to another person. Note that IT DOES NOT MEAN THEY ARE SAYING THEY WILL OR WON'T HAVE SEX BASED ON THAT EMOTIONAL CONNECTION. It is that they literally DO NOT FEEL SEXUALLY ATTRACTED without that connection. So, since I'm pretty sure most of the world has identified movie stars as "hot" and felt that they were sexually attractive (regardless of whether they would "actually" sleep with that star), demisexuality is actually not a very common orientation compared with the rest of the world. You generally can't conceive of a stranger or an acquaintance as hot if you're demisexual. It is not a statement of sex moralizing or a requirement of "love" before having sex. Demisexual people, like many other orientations, can and do sometimes have sex with people they're not attracted to.
Thanks for the explanation, Ivy. (I must be demisexual then. :))
Maybe! But seriously, if that term is not useful to you in navigating your life, no one is asking you to use it. I think one issue is that demisexual people "feel asexual" a great majority of the time and often feel alienated by the sexual culture, but every once in a while in certain situations they do feel sexual attraction. If whatever you've been identifying as up to this point honestly suits you better, that's great; it's just a label that exists to help people understand how they connect.
On second thought, I am not (demi); but I strongly identify with the need for emotional connection for sexual attraction to arise.

It is an interesting topic, in any case.
What is the correct label for people who seldom if ever get to have sex with the people they *are* attracted to?
"Getting to have sex"--in other words, engaging in a behavior--is not a sexual orientation. But I have actually heard people in this situation call themselves "involuntarily celibate," or "incel" for short.
Do asexual people hang out in nay bars?
There's not even an asexual night at the clubs, so hey, maybe you can start a nay bar and we'll hang out there! If you build it they will come.
Do you feel uncomfortable in straight bars and/or gay bars? Would you feel more comfortable in a nay bar? Please explain. Do you consider kissing to be sexual or just romantic? Is your initial attraction to someone usually based on physical appearance or something else? ( I'm not criticizing -- just curious.)

>>> "If you build it they will come."

I thought they weren't into that. (sorry, I can't help myself when there is a pun begging to be recognized)
What's funny is I thought of it too. I almost wrote "ba-dum-bum *ching*!" or "wink wink, nudge nudge." And then thought better of it.

Let it not be suggested that asexual people can't have dirty minds.

(Though let's be honest and say that on an article about asexual people and masturbation, suggesting that they must not be into "coming" isn't really accurate. Ha.)
Ivy,

I'm glad you empathized with my pun. :o)

However, I noticed that you ignored the rest of my comment which consisted of several questions -- I hope I didn't offend you.

I didn't mean to put you on the spot -- just trying to understand what it's like to be you. You seemed to be open to discussing the details of your orientation in your other comments and those were questions that I didn't see addressed elsewhere in this section. This subject is very new to me.
Odd, I didn't even see the rest of the comment when I was replying. Maybe my e-mail didn't print it all.

I don't go to bars at all (unless it's for karaoke!) because I don't drink alcohol. I'm not interested in any bar scene that's "singles" oriented, either, since I'm not looking for a partner. I don't personally kiss or date or experience any "initial attraction" so your questions aren't really applicable to me. I imagine you'd get different answers if you asked romantic asexual people. Their answers would vary within the romantic asexual group, too, since we're just as diverse in what we experience as most other people. As for whether I personally consider kissing "sexual," I know plenty of people who like kissing but don't feel sexually attracted to the people they're kissing, but I also know plenty of people who like kissing who consider it a warm-up for other activities that lead to sex or sexual activity.
Thanks for your thoughtful answer, Ivy.

So you're a non-romantic asexual?

What does your social life consist of?  Do you hang out with friends?  Do you get along better with women, men, gays, straights, asexuals, or doesn't it matter?  Have you ever met someone you felt a desire to get to know better -- someone you were "attracted" to on some level (intellectual, spiritual, emotional, aesthetic, ideological ...)?

Could you see yourself ever forming a partnership with someone, based on one of those types of "attraction", or maybe even to simply combine incomes for financial reasons?  Or do you see yourself being single for your entire life?

How do you feel about family members?  Do you experience a form of love in that realm?  If so, could you ever see yourself feeling that same kind of love for someone outside of your family?

Are you religious?  Spiritual?  Atheist?  Agnostic?

I hope these questions aren't too personal, and I assure you that I have no desire or intent to criticize or judge you.

You are who you are, and I respect that.
I am sure New York has a bar or two.
Not the last time I picked up a phone book (online ones count)
As a gay person I can tell you the feeling of loneliness can come from feeling different.
Thank you for sharing. It expands my knowledge about myself.
LOL I wish there was an A-bar to go to, trust me.
Just curious -- Why don't you feel comfortable in other bars or clubs?

Interactions with other people don't have to be sexual in nature if you don't want them to be. Sure, some places are just meat markets, but you can easily avoid those.

I've had great fun and conversation with all kinds of different people, both friends and strangers, over drinks. That doesn't necessarily mean that there was an expectation on anyone's part that we would go bump uglies afterwards.
Personally, I'm not a bar kind of guy, and maybe some of it has to do with the pressure associated with 'getting laid' when you go out to a bar, but mostly, my circle of friends are all not exactly 'bar people' and we would all rather hang out at a home and drink if we feel like it. But I would love to see such a place exist for those that are 'bar people' because it'd be a great way for them to be able to relax without worrying about some drunk person hitting on them. Or worse, as today's article shows that even sober people have done terrible things to asexuals.
Just curious -- Why don't you feel comfortable in other bars or clubs?

Interactions with other people don't have to be sexual in nature if you don't want them to be. Sure, some places are just meat markets, but you can easily avoid those.

I've had great fun and conversation with all kinds of different people, both friends and strangers, over drinks. That doesn't necessarily mean that there was an expectation on anyone's part that we would go bump ug lies afterwards.
We usually call it "aromantic," and yes, I am.

My social life is pretty much what most people's social life is. My friends and I do things we like doing and have fun doing it, and though sometimes it involves going out in big groups, I prefer the one-on-one activities like baking with a friend. Yes, I have emotions toward other people. They're not romantic or sexual emotions. That's about it. I'm not different from most people in that I form friendships that sometimes are based on certain common interests and occasionally become very long-lasting and intense, but I don't ever desire exclusivity or domestic partnership (or sex or romance) with people I love.

I do intend to be single my whole life, yes. Some aromantic people still want partners that aren't romantic but are committed, but that doesn't happen to be me. I like living alone.

I think "do you experience love for your family?" is a pretty weird question so let's just assume I feel the same way about everything but romance/sex as people normally do. And yes, some of my friends feel like second family when I've known them for a long time and have built trust. And as for religion, I'm an atheistic pagan. Hooray.

Tomorrow's article looks like it's gonna be a lot about me (that's my picture), so maybe you can follow whatever links the author posts to learn more about me.
Once again, thanks for your thoughtful reply.

>>> "I think 'do you experience love for your family?' is a pretty weird question ..."

Sorry, didn't mean to offend you -- just trying to get a feeling for what kinds of affection you experience. Love, emotion, romance, affection, etc. can be quite difficult to sort out. I think you explained it very well, and I now have a much clearer understanding of how you relate emotionally to other people.

>>> "I'm an atheistic pagan."

Interesting that a lot of people harbor the misconception that paganism is about having sex all over the place.

I really appreciate your patience in dealing with my onslaught of questions and look forward to the article you mentioned.

Wishing you well, Ivy.
I understand, though I hope you can see that people who are asexual are expressing that they're not sexually attracted to others, not that their emotions are absent. I know that imagining someone who doesn't feel romantically or sexually inclined toward others brings up a robotic or alien or inhuman image which makes people imagine that we can't love, but I hope this series helps people understand what assumptions not to make.

Regarding Paganism, yes, it's a pretty sexually liberal belief system (usually) and I'm a sex-positive person. But a lot of people confuse support of sexual choice (where I'm on board) with support of "all sex is good, more sex is best." Since I support choice--even if the choice is "no, thank you"--I think everyone should be allowed to pursue sexual and/or romantic relationships in any way comfortable to them.

The article featuring me is up. I post in comments as Ivy because it's my nickname, but my legal name is used in the article (same last name).
Just so you know where I'm coming from, I'm (according to the chart) a hetero-romantic, sexual, male. A lot of people (including gays) read me as gay, but that's probably because I grew up in the theater and, as a result, had a lot of gay peers and role models at a rather early age. As a result, I have a lot of empathy for the LGBT community.

As I mentioned, this whole asexual thing is very new to me. I actually find it MUCH easier to understand the asexual part than to understand the aromantic part. Again, sorry if my question about love was awkwardly presented -- I didn't mean to imply that you might be cold, robotic, alien, or inhuman. You come across as very rational, intelligent, balanced, open-minded, positive, considerate, and caring.

I have two very close lesbian friends and, even though they are both very attractive, my awareness that sex with either of them isn't an option has an interesting effect on my relationship with each of them. With the question of sex out of the way, we are free to focus on other aspects of ourselves, which is kind of refreshing and, in my opinion, is one of the reasons why we are so close.

(see part 2)
(continued from part 1)

Sex can contribute to a very strong bond between people, but can also sometimes complicate things and get in the way. I tend to be most attracted to women with whom I resonate on at least several different levels -- intellectual, emotional, spiritual, aesthetic, and ideological as well as sexual and romantic. In fact, I'd consider a partnership with a romantic, asexual woman, whereas I wouldn't with a religious fundamentalist, cigarette smoker, alcoholic, Republican, ... don't get me started.

I had a chance to read the new article and also watch some of your YouTube videos. Sorry to hear about the face-licking thing -- ewwww! One of the great things about sex is giving pleasure to each other. I can't begin to understand why someone would even want to have sex with someone who isn't interested. Obviously more of a control thing than a sex thing.

Glad to see you're having some success in getting your ideas out there, Julie / Ivy / swankivy. I've certainly learned a lot in the last couple of days as a result of your work.

Best wishes from a straight guy.
This was very informative. I've seen a lot about the Ace community recently & this answered a lot of my questions.

I feel that being informed is often key to acceptance & I'm glad I can somewhat understand people in the ace community. ...so if I come across a potential new friend, he/she won't have to hide this about themselves around me, and I won't need to bother them with a million questions.
Hi, Melissa McCurley:

So, do you now have a better understanding the what makes a person incline to be panromantic or biromantic --

http://big.assets.huffingtonpost.com/2013_05_SexualRomanticSpectrumWIDE.png
I don't really see any problems with any of this but the need to define and put names on things seems kind of compulsive.
Names are put on things so discussions can take place.

can you imagine if we never named animals? named colours? named objects?

How would we communicate?

Names exist for the sake of communication, to say certain things shouldn't have names is silly.

The term asexual allows other persons identifying as asexual to find one another and gain companionship and support.
Where did I say all names are bad?  I'm just talking about over examination of human sexuality.  People can do what they want.  If people are unsure I guess they have a right to rationalization but it seems neurotic. 
I resemble one of these terms (demisexual) and my whole life it has been maddening to have people try to label me. "You're not a brute? Must be a closet case. Not gay either? Fine just sit here in the friend zone you strange enigma." At last I can just say "there's a term that explains my outlook, if you're interested look it up and learn more", rather than have to stand there and attempt to explain myself to each and every person I ever get to know, or in my case, just decline to say much out of frustration.
yeah, I just feel like "live and let live", much simpler, but I hear you.
I think the included chart goes a long way towards illustrating that a large part of the problem with comprehension of this issue is tied up in lack of adequate vocabulary.

"Sexual" is a charged word, loaded with all sorts of connotations. It includes concepts as vague as attraction, intimacy and love as well as finite ideas about physicality, arousal and orgasm. Even on their own, any of these words have many sub categories. For instance, an orgasm can come in a wide variety of forms, but is still represented by this single word.

Someone who recognizes themselves as asexual has a number of possible points that are coming to play in their sense of whom they are. This vagueness makes it a little challenging to wrap your head around.

While one wouldn't want to go off trying to turn the world into a series of chart identified subtypes... it's helpful for those of us who are on the sexual side of the equation to stop and look at the multiple elements that make up our sexuality. In so doing we can start to better understand the mechanics of our own desires and understand the mechanics of others.
One could also say the problem IS the vocabulary making a hodgepodge try to appear to be a whole.
Waaaayyy too much info. I was just looking for a "yes" or "no" answer.
Fine, the simple answer is this : Some do, some don't.
Much better. Thank you.
But now I have a second question (for anyone who can answer) - when they masturbate, do they fantasize (I wouldn't think so), or is it simply tactile pleasure (like "scratching an itch," as the one guy put it)? I wish the article was more succinct. It's a fascinating subject - completely foreign to me. I can understand a lack of sex drive, this is apparently something different.
Just like anything outside the realm of the strict definition of whether someone asexual feels sexual attraction, some do and some don't.
The problem is- I'd love to have a conversation with an asexual person to find out what THEIR personal experience is, on a real level. This article is information overload for me
I think that the difference between what you want and this is that you'd only get one viewpoint, and this series is trying to encompass the very heart of asexualiyt and get across how varied it is. But if you want to talk to one, I'm available, just know that I'm in no way representative of even most asexuals.
Appreciate the offer - thanks!
Here are some of my questions (eventually, I'll tackle the article)... Is asexuality considered a pathology (i.e., the absence of something that "should" be there), or is considered to be like homosexuality where one's sexual orientation is simply different from the norm? Is it a problem in your life - and if so, in what way? Do you feel like something is "wrong" with you, or is it other people's perceptions of you that creates problems in your life?
Most aces consider it a sexual orientation. Other people pathologize it, which is troublesome (and was the focus of yesterday's installment in this series).
I do not consider asexuality to be something "wrong" with my life. On the contrary, when I discovered asexuality, that's when I stopped feeling broken. Up until then, I didn't understand why I wasn't into sex when it seemed like everyone else was. When I learned about asexuality, everything finally made sense.
Is it a problem? Not right now, but I did grow up thinking I was wrong at my core and thought of suicide over it a few times, so not all was always good. Is it a pathology or just a different orientation? Orientation for sure. See the second article in the series for an explanation of the science behind that. As far as the last one, I used to feel like I was wrong internally, but again, that was based on perception of the difference between myself and the 'normal' orientation of those around me. It was based on my own perceptions, which were based on the perceptions of others.
I don't fantasize. I've tried to force myself, but I never found anything that worked for me.
It is pleasurable. For me, it's definitely more than "scratching an itch" and I don't do it to "clean out the plumbing". I do it because it feels good.
I just tried to reply to you and my comment got removed (before I submitted it!)
I could cry. I just wrote a LENGTHY reply to you that would have put Tolstoy to shame, and the website ate it.
That's okay, it ate a bunch of my better worded responses too. It's just a shame that the moderated comments section is attacking some of the good comments and letting so much hate and misunderstanding through.
We don't need a new category for people who can't get dates or who are too shy to close the deal on sex.
We should get a new category called ignorant voices for people like you.
What happens if somebody develops a mood we don't have a "name" for yet?
Language evolves all the time. Get over it.
And asexuality isn't a "mood" either.
Ah yes the evolution of the language of psychological "infirmities". Dorks, geeks and loners used to be dorks, geeks and loners. Now they're asexual. Well not quite. They still like sex but are just limited to having it with themselves. At least until someone comes along that is willing to have sex with them. Then the ranks of the "asexual" decrease by one. That's nature. I saw it on the Discovery Channel. Or something.
Yet another person who refuses to learn from available resources. Asexual people don't feel sexual attraction. That is not the same thing as "no one will sleep with them, so they name themselves something as an excuse." Considering how relentlessly I am propositioned for sex because people believe it is my obligation to "do it" based on my desirability as an apparently normatively attractive woman, I can safely say at least from my experience that it is not some b.s. orientation people cling to out of desperation. But if it makes you feel better to pretend--in flagrant denial of all the facts and academic studies and lived experience from people who are not you--that asexual people are all sad undesirable nerds who stop being asexual if they find a partner, there isn't much I can do to change your mind. They say people who mock others and cling to ignorance often do so out of lack of confidence and fear of change. Are you comfortable? Enjoy!
Asexuals can still have sex. Not being able to 'get any' is not the same as not being sexually attracted to someone. I have turned down more offers than I care to count because I am genuinely not interested. Get out of here with your hatred.
Someone did come along who was willing to have sex with me. She convinced me to give it a go.
I'm still asexual.
Sex wasn't anything life changing for me. I frankly didn't see the appeal. It's been ten years and I don't miss it.
Gays need protection as a class because they risk violence being done to them if they hold hands in the street/kiss/"look gay." They need protection because they are fired from their jobs for being gay. They need protection because the federal government denies gay couples the same rights as heterosexual couples. Same with trans folk.

Tell me, besides being looked at strangely when you announce your asexuality, what is the big deal about it? Are you going to risk being kicked out of your home for coming out as asexual? The biggest hurdle for the asexual community to possibly have to overcome seems to be, "to finally not be thought of as slightly weird/closet gay in denial/hormonally challenged until the doctor dispels that idea."

That is to say, what is the political significance of the asexual community that it warrants this many articles flooding the gay voices section? It's annoying and seems to trivialize gay politics.
Interesting that in defending gay politics, you insist that none of these things happen to asexuals. In the comments of the articles you can see aces talking about coming out and then having to pretend it was a joke so they wouldn't get kicked out, people saying they had gotten fired after coming out, a statement about a couple that was denied adoption by Social Services because "if you are asexual you're not even fit to be married," and references to an academic study that documented anti-asexual prejudice and discrimination in 2012. But I guess it's easier to assume these things aren't happening because you have never personally seen them, when I don't see why you would have seen them if you are not asexual.

So, when you said "tell me," I have told you. Please don't inform us what our "biggest hurdle" is and then insist that we cannot possibly be going through anything comparable to gay and trans* people (and some asexual people are gay and/or trans*, too). Please don't mock our erasure and enforced shame. And please don't suggest there is a finite amount of attention to human experience issues which necessitates attention REMOVED from gay issues to talk about asexual issues; I think it's terrible that anyone wants to draw a line on what constitutes a big enough problem to warrant discussion.
Why is this on the front page of gay voices? Asexual people have nothing to do with the gay community.
There are homo, bi, and pan romantic asexuals who have same gender relationships, plus trans* asexuals. Besides, they probably put this under gay voices due to asexuals not being heterosexual. But what category do you think this should have been in?
Because the gay voices page is for things that aren't the heterosexual norm. Personally I think they should have used a better name but whatever they're not going to change it.
Can someone elaborate on how this is different from simply having a lower sex drive? It is just further along the spectrum?

Is asexuality like homosexuality or heterosexuality, in that it is pretty fixed and begins at birth? Or is it something more fluid that some people come in or out of?

I have no experience with this at all (never even heard of it) and I am finding these articles fascinating.
My asexuality has been fixed, and so has every other asexual person I have talked to.

Asexuality is about sexual attraction, not sexual drive.

i.e, asexuals have no sexual attraction.

They can still have a sex drive (libido), and it can't be very high even!

Physically everything operates the same way.
Thank you for responding to my questions, Lobie.
Just so I am clear... they can have a strong desire to have sex, but they are not sexually attracted to any individuals?
That's an interesting question; I didn't mean to imply that.
I would say yes, they could have a desire to engage in sexual activity (I don't personally), and still lack sexual attraction.
In the same way you can engage (and enjoy) sexual activity with someone you don't find attractive.
I don't know if any asexuals would say they do experience this, but I wouldn't say it's impossible!
Thank you for trying to help me understand :)
You are most welcome, it's nice to actually discuss the topic with someone open minded in here.

Taking a look at the other comments here has just... Well,you get my point if you are reading them anyway :)

Again, glad to help.
I'm really loving this article series so far. Very informative! I've been sharing it with my FB friends and on my Tumblr. :)

I do wish there could be an article this well-written about just the romantic identities though...especially about aromanticism and how aromantics connect with each other and the sort of relationships they form. Because a lot of people assume aromantics to just want light friendship and nothing more...and there's a lot of interesting ideas in the aromantic community I think. What with how they describe friendship and things like queerplatonic relationships and the such. It's very interesting.
Well, there's more articles to come. It's been really helpful so far, I think. So I tend to expect we'll hear more about the variations as they post more of em. :)
Wow. Seriously. This is boring.
Not at all.
People who aren't interested in other people is really kind of dull.  We don't need to label absolutely everyone.  I don't like brussel sprouts.  Is there a label for that one, too? Charts?  Self-help groups?  A movement?  
Now that you've mentioned it... Sproutophobia? I'm sure we can get Pfizer interested.

I find this, along with individual differences in people in general, fascinating. And I think labeling, in this and other similar cases, helps people feel less abnormal and find a sense of belonging, and as such can be a source of great relief.
You're a hostile crank, we get it.
Hue is different from saturation is different from brightness. Here is my big problem with using the word asexual inclusively to encompass many who are not actually non-sexual. It's not a question of terminology, it is the idea that there is a unidimensional spectrum of colorful sexualities which asexual is merely another color. It's not; intensity is measuring a different thing than color, entirely different. It's orthogonal, by definition not part of the same continuum.
I don't understand this at all. Nor do I understand what it has to do with the homosexual community, the gay men and women. The LGBTQIAafjklsgjlkjasd acronym is getting incredibly long. But, that doesn't mean I can't try to understand. My lack of understanding has nothing to do with my own willingness to accept someone.

So, I guess my lack of understanding comes from the fact that my partner and I lose ourselves within each other when we make love. The act of sex between us is so powerful and overwhelmingly emotional that it affirms our love and passion for one another.

The physical act of kissing, hugging, cuddling, making out, dancing in the shower, and whatever else are things that bring us closer together. They are things that feel SO good.

So, I don't understand how a person could reach the apex of togetherness in a relationship without intimacy. I don't think it is possible to reach the same level of intimacy without sex.

But that's just me.

I don't know if I personally would qualify asexuality as a sexual orientation as I consider it celibacy. Choosing not to be sexual is a choice, or a simple lack of interest. Masturbation wouldn't be necessary if biologically they were not sexual beings. We are all sexual beings... we are born sexual beings.

I don't want to sound insensitive as I have been following the articles but, I just don't get it.
The whole point of this article is that there are many forms of intimacy that don't have to include sex. We can be just as cuddly and lovey-dovey as anyone else without having to introduce sex into the relationship.
I guess I don't understand how a choice not to have sex is a sexual orientation. But that's ok because I'm not trying to say asexuals are wrong... I just don't get it because the closest I feel to my partner is after sex and I can't imagine not having that connection with her.

I guess I would consider an asexual relationship more of a platonic relationship.

I guess I would also wonder what an asexual person would consider sex and I suppose it would differ for everyone. I consider petting, masturbation, penetration, um... rubbing, and oral all forms of sex. Even a good make-out session with a good deal of grabbing could be sex if you get turned on enough. So, how are you "intimate" with a partner you're not intimate with.

I know I must sound like I am obsessed with sex and I assure you that I am not, I am obsessed with the connection sex creates between my partner and myself. An asexual person might argue that their relationship is stronger because they forego sex with their partner. I can't disagree with that because I don't know but I do know that even when sex is out of the picture for a couple weeks, my partner and I are still as close as ever.
First, asexuality isn't a choice. Second, it's not a choice not to have sex, since attraction isn't the same as behavior. How is it so impossible that just because YOU feel closest after sex, that there aren't others that feel closest in other situations?

I don't mean to come off as a jerk or anything, but there are a lot of ignorant and hateful attitudes being expressed today, and I've had it up to here with that kind of person. I'm actually glad to get to talk to someone like you that, though admitting not understanding it, is still open to learning.
The commenter "Jobie" who replied to my comment -- either this one or another -- clarifies a lot of this for me.

The closeness I feel after sex is something important to me and something unique that I don't feel in any other way.  I didn't mean to imply that I thought sex was the only way but, I definitely did imply it.

I think everyone should be open. I genuinely am interested and would like a better understand which I think I am acheiving thanks to the users here.
Also, I agree about the acronym being too long, and that's why I call it LGBTetc instead.
You can be asexual, and engage in sexual activity.

Sexual drive is not at all related to sexuality, that is to say.

A homosexual man can functionally engage in sexual intercourse with a female. Physically the sexual organs function in the same way, and thus it is possible.

I am asexual, I engage in sexual activity.

Sexuality is about which sex(es) you find sexually attractive and/or arousing, and not which sexes you engage in sexual intercourse with.

Seeing as you can have sex, without love; people seem to not understand you can have love without sex.

The only reason I engage in sexual activity, is because my partner is sexual; and we have a deep understanding of one another.

I very much enjoy cuddling and snuggling, and all that jazz with him. The sex seems so absent, and pointless for me; it's not relevant in the relationship; however, it makes him happy and that means a lot to me.

tl;dr - Asexuality is the (lifelong) lack of sexual attraction. Celibacy is the choice to not engage in sexual intercourse.
That makes sense.  Especially the part about having sex without love.  That I can understand.

I guess as a sexual person, I can't imagine being absent from the act; especially if it is with someone I love as the act brings us closer together, imho.

So you have no sexual attraction to your partner?  Your attraction is based on personality, emotional connection, attractiveness and so on...  That I can understand.
Thank you for your answer.  I really do want to understand.  Its just that the concept of loving someone (as a partner) and not having a sexual attraction to them is a bit foreign to me.
Yeah, so; that's hard to answer.
I feel a bond, a very close emotional bond with my partner. He has a wonderful personality, and I can easily say I love him a lot!
However, correct; I do not find him "sexually attractive", nor do I feel any motivation (outside pleasing him) to have sexual activity with him.
It should be a foreign concept, sexuality is a very foreign concept to me :)
I hope that answered the question, it's a bit of a tough one to answer fully; but I think I covered all the points!
Individuals that practice asexuality do so because they tend to be introverts who don't like to share and surely don't want to engage in the trials and tribulations inherent in any relationship whether it be hetero or homosexual. And of course they don't want to raise any children. And probably all aces live a financially better life than if they were married.
Literally every point you made there is wrong.
1. It's not a 'practice'
2. There are some introverts, sure, but there are some very extroverted people that are ace as well.
3. We love to share.
4. We are asexual, not arelationshipal. There are a lot of aces looking for and in romantic relationships. Did you even read the series so far? There's even an asexual dating site mentioned, AceBook.
5. Many asexuals have kids and many want kids.
6. I'm broke as a joke. And do sexual people really put so much money into sex that they would be financially well off if they didn't seek it out?
Item 1 is argumentative. Item 2 I'll give to you. Item 3 OK. Item 4 if it's romantic it's not asexual; if it companionship OK. Item 5 is a non-sequitur! Item 6 I take back.
1 is not argumentative, the definition of a practice is something you choose to do.On 4, did you read this article? There's an ace couple that are in a romantic relationship, but who don't have sex because they don't feel like it. Romance and sex are totally different. Just because some people link them doesn't mean everyone does.How is 5 a non-sequitur? Just because you can't follow the logic of something doesn't mean it doesn't logically work. If someone were to try to explain nuclear physics to some redneck hick from the backwoods that had never been off of the family farm, would the fact that he didn't follow the logic of it mean it didn't make logical sense at all?
Asexuailty is not defined as abstinence of romantic or sexual relations.

It's defined as the lack of sexual attraction.
Now I'm confused----if asexuality is defined as lack of sexual attraction, there there can be no romance or sexual relations----both require sexual attraction. If you argue otherwise then you are either being disingenuous or conflicted.
Are you telling me that someone can't have sex without love? Someone can't engage in sexual activity with a person of which they are not sexually attracted?
There is romantic attraction, which is separate from sexual attraction. Which is covered in this article.
If you require sexual attraction to have sexual intercourse, that's fine. But it's not a requirement for everyone (That's not only asexuals either!)
You just blew the top of my head off! Engaging in sex without being sexually attracted is totally against the laws of nature----can't happen. But engaging in sex without romance happens every day----I'll give you that one.
You know there are plenty of gay people who get married to straight people and settle down with biological kids because they can't come out of the closet, right? Having sex without sexual attraction is hardly a rare occurrence.
Interesting point, but those individuals have a slight inclination towards bi-sexuality and thus by definition have a slight inclination towards sexual attraction. Pure asexuality means no sexual contact at all----any sexual contact defeats the meaning of asexuality.
No! We can't break up things into categories! We're in a nation of all or nothing! Think of the conservatives! Their brains would explode! ...waitaminute... Carry on ;D
Shouldn't this article be in the "Asexual Voices" section?
Is there such a section? No? Then it belongs in the section designed for talking about other sexualities than heterosexual.
I have sexual desire in spades. But I can understand why someone who doesn't may still have the need to masturbate. There's kind of an uncomfortable build up of fluids.
That's exactly what I have heard it described, as a way to release that because they have to, not really only because they want to. Like a chore. Like cleaning out the gutters, you do it because if you don't something bad might happen.
I've never experienced the "uncomfortable build up of fluids". I do it because I want to. When I don't, I don't really feel any different. I don't feel like I'm going to explode or anything.
I don't really understand how it's possible to masturbate and "think of nothing"? If I did that, I might as well roll over and go to sleep! Mission not accomplished!
They fantasize about paramecium dividing.................
I don't think that would work for me!
And I don't understand how fantasies are supposed to work. I've tried to force it, but it never goes anywhere. I have to concentrate so much on maintaining the scene that I tend to get distracted. Attempting to fantasize always ends up hindering, rather than helping.
I remember hearing that one of the main religious objections to masturbation was that it was sinful because you couldn't do it without lust entering your heart because you HAD to be thinking impure things about someone else in order to do it. That thinking always baffled me because I was able to take care of business quite well without having to think about someone else.
Well, that's great. But it would never work for me. Religion isn't an issue for me. I'm totally non-religious. Of the Dawkins/Hitchins school. I guess diiferent people have different ways of dealing with these things and apparently they aren't interchangable, so to speak. I'm curious though. Do you ever become attracted to certain people? Or are you totally not attracted to anyone ever?
I've never been sexually attracted to anyone.  Even when there was a naked woman who most people described as "hot" standing in front of me and wanting to have sex with me, there was no sexual attraction there.  The whole experience was more like an in person anatomy lesson than a moment of passion.
I understand.
Sorry this is late, but one thing I never ever do is listen to "religious people".  If something works for you, then you have the answer.
Asexuality seems to be another variation on sexuality. On the other hand, sex expert Brotto is flat out wrong that masturbation is not sexual. It is. Your desire and fantasy does not have to be directed to other people, but if it involves your sex organs, it is sexual. Some folks might experience masturbation as a perfunctory exercise in tension release, but it is sexual release. Sometimes experts get so involved in their topics that they don't see the forest for the trees.
You can call it "sexual" if your definition of sexual is that it involves the sexual organs. It doesn't contradict the fact that some asexual people who masturbate do not feel sexually attracted to anyone, and that's the thing that defines them as asexual. Brotto is expressing that masturbating does not make a person's asexuality null and void. That's one of the reasons I don't describe non-asexual people as "sexual," because it can be (deliberately or accidentally) misconstrued to suggest other implications that are not intended.
A sexual?

Congratulations Liberalism more damage to society
Are you ascribing god-like powers to the liberals now? ;)

We didn't create asexuals just by saying the Word, we merely acknowledge their existence and their right to live their lives as they see fit.
Liberalism,
paves the way for mercy sexual identity..you are not born Asexual period. I think that you are actually happy that these individuals are in the state that they are in.Of course they have "their right" to live their lives how vapid
"you are not born Asexual period."

Ah well, that settles it then. You have made a watertight case, supported by credible scientific studies, logical consistency and common sense. All the while remaining open to the possibility you were wrong.
So name me the physical reason this is true?
That question makes little sense. I am assuming you meant to ask for empirical or scientific evidence for the existence of asexuality as an orientation and not a pathology?

Here's a start: http://www.asexualexplorations.net/home/extantresearch.html

Knock yourself out, and further research you can do yourself if you are open minded. Try Google Scholar, that should be entry-level enough.
Well, I was born, and then despite being quite game and open to possibilities, never experiencing anything that might put one off of sex or relationships, and being in above average physical health, have not experienced anything resembling sexual attraction in my 24 and counting years.

There is no evident basis for claiming that asexuality is an artificial condition.
Curious that this series is about asexuality, but it hasn't even mentioned that something like 70 to 80% of the asexual community is female. In fact, it has hardly even mentioned female aces - almost every ace quoted has been male.
There has never been any official poll though.

While AVEN polls have shown about 75% biologically female, on another site I frequent with a large amount of asexuals there are more males than females.

I think this is an interesting question, and I certainly do believe there are more female asexuals than males.

It would be interesting to see a more official poll and the results of the poll for the asexual community.

In addition, I think todays article will be much more female oriented in regards to the topic. I think when it comes down to it, it's just been who has answered and where the a lot of the posters came from!
I don't think there are really clear numbers on that. True, the statistics that are out there do lean that way, but it's unclear how accurate those are. The Kinsey Scale more or less set us aside. The study Bogaert used for his numbers is believed to underrepresent asexuality due to various factors, even by Bogaert himself. And surveys done by AVEN and AAW are primarily driven by online community members, which are probably more likely to skew female.
I'm convinced that male asexuality as a whole is vastly underrepresented due to cultural and societal pressures. A man just isn't a man if his life isn't centered around his sexual prowess, so a man who isn't into sex is more likely to stay hidden. Also, male sexuality is often reduced to "Can you get it up?" If a guy doesn't have ED, well then CLEARLY he's got to be straight or gay because his equipment works. (See other comments on this article for examples of this ridiculous assertion.) And so, even though he's not really interested in either women or men, he'll live his life assuming that he's probably just straight (by default) but not very good at it.
give him a testosterone injection and he'll be chasing women in their locker-room ... problem solved and I'm not asking for the Nobel Prize.
Many asexuals have been given T. Some of them report that they're suddenly more horny (As in the bits down below are more active), but they're still not attracted to anyone, so the horniness isn't directed.
wow, I solved one problem now I have to solve another ... try porn ?!!
Been there, done that, didn't work. Back when I thought I was just not very good at being straight, I bought a lot of different kinds of porn, hoping that something would do the trick. Instead of getting turned on and excited, I spent more time annoyed by the poor lighting and terrible camera work. Most of it was just repetitive and boring.
maybe you've had too much sex ... sometimes after spending a weekend drinking and shagging some gal, by Monday I'm only in the mood to sleep...

or, maybe you're a little lazy ... I dunno, like today, I slept 3 hrs at lunch, and then had drinks with friends... waitress was "ok" (barely), normally I would have asked for the number, but, today, nothing ... zero... sleepy and lazy.
If by "too much sex" you mean "none for more than ten years", then I suppose that's possible.
I don't understand... oh well... 
Sorry I can't help it but: I remember the first time I had sex. It was dark, I was scared, I was alone......
lolz... Sounds like the typical adolescent wet dream.
I have been asexual since I left the priesthood. LOL
That's normal. Sex is a form of communication, and the most intimate form of communiaction. If you don't feel a connection, why communicate with someone you don't feel intimate about? I felt no connection the first time I had sex. I thought I did, but no.
You aren't the only one. I think nearly all of us started that way!
this is getting out of hand. next up, ahumans
lol
If by ahumans (You mean non-human), then technically they do exist.

Otherkin (People who believe they are of another species) [Either partially, or fully].

They have also existed for a very long time, it's nothing new.
How does asexuality lead to ahumanism? That argument is the exact same one some people use against gay marriage. "Where does it end? First it's okay to be gay, then what? People marrying sheep?"
i never said it would lead to ahumanism. just like the concept of an ahuman is ridiculous, so is asexualism. 
How is asexuality ridiculous? It's merely the abject lack of sexual attraction.
Masturbation is by nature a sexual act... it's stimulation to release and procreate. This is nonsense that it's not. Yes, you may not be attracted to one sex, but you are releasing what your are suppose to... it's not stress relief.
"Several male asexuals told us they masturbate frequently, some every day"

Im not sure this makes them Asexual, it looks like they lost their drive to find a partner because of too much masterbation.
How can they be asexual if they masturbate?"

uh, it's Asexual not NONsexual
Oh go back to Tumblr with this asexual nonsense. It is an insult to the LGBT that these doofuses even remotely believe their "struggle" is similar.

Literally the only social group that it should be okay to make fun of.
http://bit.ly/11vO5bz That's all I'm going to say to you so that I don't say something I'll regret.
Hi, cuddles.

It should never be okay to make fun of anyone. I do apologize, but this sort of blatant call to hostility is merely an indicator of a larger problem in today's society: A shameful level of ignorance that should have been banished years ago.

I would go so far as to suggest that instead of mocking groups who claim to have a struggle, however true or not true that may be, people should mock this sort of attitude that says it should be okay to mock people or minimize people because of their orientation or what they go through. Perhaps it will cause this infernal, inexcusably cold-hearted and hateful mindset to die out.
After reading this very informative article I have discovered that i am also an asexual... when I am not having sex.
So basically, you're just like everyone else. Wow, you sure had to say that. Yep, not a wasted electron there at all.
I think we both just wasted couple of electrons: you by replying to my post and me replying to your reply. Good bye and waste no more.
So, you only experience sexual attraction during sex. That's interesting. Most people I know of other orientations experience it even outside of when they're in the physical act. But, while I don't want to label you, I think grey-a might be a better fit than strictly asexual, since you do experience sexual attraction occasionally.
I do not think that is interesting. What is interesting is that another sexless wonder has been paraded in this silly article.
Masturbation is absolutely sexual. A virgin has a sexual orientation, don't they? Human beings aren't asexual, single-celled organisms are. Human beings sometimes have psychological, emotional, or social issues that make them celibate.
Asexuality is a sexual orientation where a person is not sexually attraction to any gender. It's not about choosing to never have sex. It's about never being sexually attracted to anyone.
I'm skeptical such an orientation exists.  I think it's a lot more likely that there are other things that are stopping a person from wanting to have sex than not having any drive at all.  Fears, hang-ups, consequences, etc.
Actually, many asexual do engage in sex. But there's still no sexual attraction to their partner.
I understand that's the idea.  Though I don't believe it exists.  I *did* say "*wanting* to have sex", not "having sex".
Fortunately people will continue existing whether you believe in them or not. Your choice to be ignorant is yours to make.
People will continue being Special Snowflakes and claim to be an oppressed minority because it's better than just being different, and continue to offend actual oppressed minorities.
so when a asexual man has a wet dream, what was / is he dreaming of ? flowers in a meadow ? ,a tight hairy / or smooth butt, or va nay nay
I'm not the average, but the one time I had one I was dreaming of sex, but dreams are dreams, and you can't exactly apply logic to them. I once dreamt that I was a dinosaur and cavemen were cutting slices of my tail and eating them while I was tied down and alive, so again, logic has no way of explaining dreams.
That dinosaur dream is rather far out and amusing!

I have to say I chuckled at that one, thanks for the laugh :)
I should tell you about the dream I had where people that liked to read were put into concentration camps for it. That one was weird. And the number 8 kept popping up too much too.
Your dreams are amusing, I rarely have such amusing dreams.
Generally my dreams are disturbing actually XD
Actually, those are the rare exceptions. For most of my life I had a recurring dream, then things got weird for a bit and it changed, and then after that I rarely even remember my dreams at all.
anybody ever take Chantix ? the stop smoking medication, now that causes some really odd dreams
Yea so what, some people don't want to have sex as much as others. Why are you making a big deal about it? Until yesterday I wouldn't have even know you all existed, but now when I say it's weird for someone to not want to have sex with a beautiful woman I will be automatically reprimanded for being discriminatory. When all I would be saying is you are different from me. It seems the more we know about people the more segregated we become. Its a weird paradox, especially since those going against the "norm" are wanting understanding. What you need to understand now women, is that if you identify yourself as asexual don't expect me to talk to you because I want passion in the bedroom and there would be no future for us. If you would have just kept your mouths shut I probably would have taken the time to fall in love with your personality and then worked through the other stuff later.
You sound out of breath!
I am. Figured I'd get it all out so you all can know where I stand.  
If you are looking for a bacon sandwhich are you going to go vegan restaurant?
You sound out of breath
You don't talk to people you don't have a chance of boning? You should announce that more often so people can know to avoid you.
no chance of future is how I was looking at it.
Sorry for these folk.
Should we be vocally sad for you that you're not like us either?
No, because I am reproductively functional
As are we. Not having sexual attraction has nothing to do with functionality, as the previous article showed.
No, if you have no sexual attraction, that is reproductively dysfunctional.  Not as dysfunctional as being homosexual but it is dysfunctional.

Its also odd.
Functionally, my penis and other aces body parts work fine. However, we don't feel that it is a necessity to have sex. The two are totally unrelated.
And so am I. Kind of gross that you'd respond with pity if someone is not like you, though. Very walleyed way to live life.
Oh. I am surprised.  Do you think you merit or qualify or need pity for some reason?
Romance is great and sex doesn't need to be a part of that, but relationships develop and the intimacy of sex is part of it, . . . when you're ready. There are no time limits and everybody is different. Every relationship is different and what's right for one relationship isn't for another.
That's not honestly fair, though. You don't get to decide what all intimate relationships must naturally lead to if they are *really* intimate. It'd be cool if you'd just let the people involved describe and define their relationship. Most asexual people do not require sex as some kind of cementation of the "reality" of their relationship. I think your closing statement, "Every relationship is different and what's right for one relationship isn't for another" should really be applied to everyone, without a caveat that intimacy that's real does eventually proceed to sex. If you are never "ready," it doesn't mean your relationship or your love or the participants are immature or still developing toward a single end. To be honest, the resistance I keep seeing to the reality of romance without sex is puzzling to me. Sometimes people have sex without love, and nobody doubts that the sex was "real." But as soon as you claim your love is sexless, everybody's got a comment about how something HAS to be wrong. Since sex obviously does not guarantee that intimacy and commitment will last, I don't see how it seems so out of the question for people to accept that some relationships are intimate and committed despite lack of sex.
You realize that we are animals and we do procreate?
Evolution is thrifty and there isn't a human emotional or physical trait that we possess that isn't needed to insure a parental long term relationship to get the next generation off to a happy and healthy start.  What you do with all that is your business, but biology is a strong pulling mechanism and if it wasn't we would have died out as species. 
Congratulations, your argument also invalidates gay sex.

It also suggests that every single person needs to reproduce if we are to be a successful species, and that nothing except for personally reproducing can help contribute to or ensure the survival (and flourishing) of a species. Non-childbearing people have contributed to society since the dawn of humanity, and variants that do not usually lead to reproduction have always been a natural part of the human species. I don't need any 'splaining about how we wouldn't be here if people didn't have sex. The idea that asexual people in romantic but non-sexual relationships are uselessly spinning their wheels and therefore are not productive members of society is not only offensive; it also actually contradicts how relationships, reproduction, and child-rearing have always worked. Happily, as human beings, relationships that do not lead directly to procreation still have function in society. (This is true or you might as well just claim that grandparents past reproductive age are no longer helpful to the species once their children are grown.)

And considering people who are asexual sometimes choose to have children (through sex, through insemination, or through adoption), even by your standards there is zero reason to suggest their relationships are laughable, useless, or impractical. Biological reproduction being portrayed as the only important reason to live is absurdly reductionist and useless to a discussion about human relationships.
Now you're just looking for an argument by misconstruing what I wrote to clothe a straw man argument. What you're really at odds with is the FACT that all human behavior is driven by biology derived through millions of years of evolution.

We are who we are because it increases the chances of human survival, but you want to see human relationships as purely "Spiritual" events not affected by crude biology. Love is a complex biochemical phenomena that attaches parents to children, children to parents, and mates to one another. Depending on the myriad of cross sexual nervous and glandular system variations that can make you be born "Gay" this can be expressed in different ways in male and female bodies.
Spiritual? I said zero about spiritual. Why do you assume I'm suggesting spirituality has anything to do with this? (I'm an atheist.) Talk about straw men. Knock it down and enjoy yourself.

"Human behavior is driven by biology" doesn't mean "every human must reproduce." That's irrelevant and unnecessarily simplified when we're talking about how human relationships work in the world. Your initial argument suggested that any relationship that's intimate will be sexually intimate eventually. I don't know why you think you have the authority to tell people that their relationships will always progress toward sex, but I do suggest you stop harping on "it's biology, end of story" as if that means there is literally no useful intimacy between people if they do not directly involve themselves in producing progeny and raising children. Suggesting evolution does not allow for variants constitutes a misunderstanding of how it works, so I'll thank you not to explain it to me.

Your statement--that biology drives our species to reproduce and without sexual relations we wouldn't be here--is true, but that principle operates in macro. It doesn't contradict at all with the fact that not all people reproduce or have relations that facilitate reproduction in micro. Last time I checked our species is not in danger of dying out due to lack of reproduction, so it's pretty pointless to dismiss partnerships that don't have the inclination to reproduce. (But this isn't really about the babies anyway. It never is.)
So you've come around the horn to agreeing with me while still insisting I'm wrong.

LOL
There's a difference between intimacy and sex though. That should be clear because of the ace couple mentioned. They are intimate and lovey-dovey without sex.
Sex in a loving relationship is really very intimate.
And I'm not saying it's not. I'm just pointing out that there are other ways to be intimate without having sex. Kissing, cuddling, holding, etc. are all intimate and things you don't do with people that are 'just friends' but are also not sex, you know what I mean?
Kissing and cuddling are not in the "Friend Zone".
I just said that. My point is that those things are intimate, but not sexual, so those that think we asexuals can't have intimate romantic relationships are being weird. Just because we don't have to have sex doesn't mean we don't or can't, and even if we don't we can still be very intimate.
There's always a part of every romantic relationship that is asexual.
Again, look at these articles, no, not every romantic relationship turns sexual.
pffffft!
Seriously, as Bob Seager put it:
"I've seen them come,I've seen them go.Only one thing in common,They got the fire down below."
;-)
This was a great article to read! I can totally relate and it's nice to know that people like us exist ^^
I'm asexual by choice...unfortunately, its not my own.

;-)
Me too!
this asexual stuff annoys me. how can you be a "community" of people who DONT do something. its a bit ridiculous. i dont do indoor wall climbing. im looking to join a club of non indoor wall climbers. its silly
I think you are seriously missing the point.

Asexuals do do something.

They experience a lack of sexual attraction, and have issues with acceptance of their sexuality due to that. They feel outcast, alone, and drained by todays society.

The asexual community is there for support, to help those who need it who are suffering with sexual identity issues.

You don't get bullied by numerous people because you don't go wall climbing.

You are however, frequently bullied by people if you don't engage in the normal human behaviour (according to our society) of sex.

People attempt to set you up with their friends, or send you out on double dates with people that *have* to be sexually attractive.

In our society, sexualization is big and everywhere. The media is very big on discussing topics to do with sex, and in this asexuals feel left out and alone.

In our society people do not constantly discuss wall climbing, nor is it a big part of almost everyones lives.

I hope that helps you understand why we seek community with one another.
people who are in a relationship dont have sex with EVERYONE else in the world except that one person and even then its maybe once a week. i dont see how a person going one better and not liking anyone or just being single. not doing something doesnt require a community. we all know what it feels like to NOT be sexually attracted to someone. theres no mystery to that. 
However, we are sexually attracted to *no one*
That's entirely different than, hey I know what it's like to not be sexually attracted to person X. Therefore the experience of asexuals is somehow invalidated.

It's a hard thing to come to terms with for a lot of people trying to understand their own sexuality in this society.
Why shouldn't we be allowed to seek support in our community?
because its not a community. you are NOT doing anything. thats not a reason to have a community. if im in a room full of men, im not sexually attracted to anyone. im asexual in that instance. plus asexuals kiss and sleep with people. why getting a genital massage is some big step makes no sense to me. 
I think you are entirely missing the point still.
Maybe the future articles will help you understand better than I can.
i know lots about it. i read up on it years ago and i understand the many things that are called "asexuality". my issue is simple. we dont have communities for people who dont want to have children. we dont have communities for people who dont want to be in a community. i dont understand why there needs to be a community for people who dont want to have sex with people. 
Actually you're revealing your ignorance when you pretend there aren't communities for things that are about "not" doing something. There are communities designed to help people who have stopped drinking and need support. There are communities for transgender people who aren't "doing" or "not doing" anything so much as being themselves and wanting to have a place where people understand. There are even--yes, though you denied it as if it was absurd--communities for the childfree crowd. Look 'em up; they exist.

And so does the asexual community.

It's baffling to me that anyone would say "I don't see why you would need a community!" when PEOPLE WHO ARE ASEXUAL ARE SAYING THEY DO INDEED APPRECIATE HAVING A COMMUNITY. We. Us. We're saying we need it and get support from it. Who are you to say it "doesn't make sense" for us to have a community--for us to share experiences, find others who have been through what we've been through, connect with people like us, share resources, provide education? And if you don't get it, why is it any skin off your nose if we, who say we need it, have it anyway?

And if you want to see evidence that education and communion for people like us is sorely needed, you only need to wander as far as the comments on these articles.
the people who are overcoming alcohol addictions are one thing but a "community" for people who dont like or want to eat cabbage is not required. it all sounds a bit pointless. 
Aw, that's adorable. I give you excellent examples for groups that are about "not" doing something and you still insist "BUT IT'S NOT REQUIRED!" No, sorry. Those of us who are experiencing something and say we want a group because we need support--in part because of people like you who insist we have nothing to talk about and no problems--are going go be the ones who determine the need for such things, as well as the ones who organize it. And guess what? We did. That community you dub as "pointless" has helped hundreds of thousands of people. So I'll thank you to stop mocking other people's experiences and using your voice to shove them into obscurity instead of saying "to each his own."
im not attracted to most people. does that require a community? plus i dont fully believe the "im not attracted to anyone" stuff. people can be sexually inactive and call themselves "asexuals" but then use a vibrator. i dont see why a mans vibrator is something that must be avoided when he is the asexual womans boyfriend and hes right beside her in bed where they kiss. 
Look at you. Repeatedly telling other people that since YOU do not need it, nobody should need it. Have you never, ever had any problems in your life? Assuming that you have ever had an issue that you needed help solving, isn't it nice when people who have been through it or shared your experience can help you feel that you're not alone and provide advice?

Oh, but why should anyone need that? YOU don't! Therefore it's just totally absurd and you need to SAY SO and express publicly that people who want something you don't relate to are RIDICULOUS!

But I guess it's silly of me to keep replying to you when you're already saying you don't even believe my experience exists. That would make it hard to see why we need support. Thankfully, most people are not so ridiculously impervious to realizing that people who are not them frequently have experiences that are unfamiliar to them.

I don't know what your point is about the vibrator. Asexuality isn't another word for "sexually inactive," nor does their masturbation (with or without electronic devices) invalidate the VERY BASIC FACT that they are asexual because they DON'T FIND OTHER PEOPLE SEXUALLY ATTRACTIVE. That isn't hard to understand, so please read it over until you do.
What do they masturbate to? Is their mind just completely blank when they do it?
My answer: What is the sound of one hand clapping?
At least that hand won't get the clap!
Don't worry. In a week, the side boob stories will be back.
Physical attractiveness is the degree to which a person's physical traits are considered aesthetically pleasing or beautiful. The term often implies sexual attractiveness or desirability.

If asexuals claim to be devoid of sexual attraction or sexual feelings then how is physical attraction explained? Or do asexuals not feel any sort of physical attraction?

Can physical attraction be separate from sexual attraction? I think that at some basic level, physical attraction is a type of sexual attraction. But that's just my opinion. Thoughts?
I can't speak for all asexuals, however I experience absolutely no sexual attraction, absolutely no physical attraction.

I do however think they are separate.

As in a guy can talk about how physically a guy "looks good" while being heterosexual.

I have seen guys do that, and talk about 'physical attractiveness' separate from any sexual desire.
Do you want to bone landscape paintings? No? Then obviously there is more to sexual attraction than beauty/aesthetics.
Thats a false comparison. We are not biologically hardwired to bone paintings. However, we are biologically hardwired to feel sexual attraction. The two types are different. One is aesthetic and abstract - the other is biological and sexual, instinctual.
Here is an idea. Let's get in a big discussion without first agreeing on the meaning of the key word.
I'm fairly certain asexuality does have an agreed upon definition...

An asexual person is a person who does not experience sexual attraction.
Right. So why would the subject of their masturbation even be in the question?
Well over half of the people who know I'm asexual asked me if I masturbate.
I suppose it's a topic that people want to know *for whatever reason*
1. Having no evident sex or sex organs; sexless.
2. Relating to, produced by, or involving reproduction that occurs without the union of male and female gametes, as in binary fission or budding.
3. Lacking interest in or desire for sex.
masturbaition ? not if the republicans have their way. You do know it is only 1 step away for a baby.
My dad became asexual after marrying his 2nd wife. If you saw her, you'd understand.
Can we get an article on, like, hypersexuality? I need some affirmation that I'm not the ONLY one who ALWAYS thinks about sex.
I assure you, you're not alone. Not an hour goes by that I don't think about it, and in vivid detail.
I don't like the choice of words. First off, the prefix "a-" from the Greek means: without. Something that is asymmetric lacks symmetry. It doesn't matter how or why it lacks symmetry at all and to be a proper lexical definition a word would broadly include all the members of its class. So in this sense, people who have no sexual desires are just as asexual as people who are celibate for religious reasons.

Secondly, the etymology of the word asexual has always referred to a species that does not require sex for reproduction. Putting all this together, what i see here is a poorly chosen way to describe a persons lack of sexual desires. To me, this choice of words smacks of poor diction.
And the word "gay" has always only ever meant "homosexual" and it never ever had any other meanings? Or do you object to using the word "gay" to refer to homosexual people because it means "happy" and there are plenty of angry and/or depressed homosexual people out there?
If you are a fan of words, perhaps you've haerd of the words "Homonym" and "Polysemous"?
Some people just can't get laid.
People who don't want to put their genitals inside of other people like I do are lying and actually just jealous of me. And because they're not capable of putting said genitals inside of said other people (despite all evidence to the contrary), they've fabricated an elaborate false sexual orientation just to save face. They've even built websites and gone way out of their way just to meet other jealous losers so at least they can be together while they desperately wish they were good enough to put their genitals inside of someone else until they shrivel up and die. Some of these people are even attractive, outgoing, and successful.

Ever heard someone say a girl was a lesbian just because she couldn't ever get a man?
Or a guy was gay just because there's no way he could ever land a girl?
I just hate that people have to explain themselves to others..and it's sad that the asexual individuals referenced in this article felt so alone and isolated. Everyone is different! Intimacy and sex can be very complex and unique human experiences(for some more than others). How great that studies are shedding light on asexuality and hopefully eliminating the stigma of a judgmental world. I'm not asexual but always support and respect people's differences and really hate when people are made to feel isolated and alone because they're different. Progress is a good thing.
And it's people like you who help the world understand that it's our similarities, not our differences, that matter most. :) I'm glad you see the awareness efforts as a positive push to help more people feel less isolated and afraid, rather than the opposite effect some other commenters are accusing us of (e.g., "you just want attention," "everyone wants to be special these days," "you don't need a label for not having sex," etc.). Thanks for your words.
You're so welcome :-)
These articles on asexuality are really interesting.
And yet... Something bothers me a bit here: why do we always have to pigeonhole people, put them into different strictly delimited compartments and classify everything...?
Doesn't it depend on so many things in one's life?
I think that I could recognize myself in the Romantic and Sexual spectrum above but I am sure that two years ago, I would not have considered myself to be in the same circle, and I won't either in three years from now...
Besides, I know people you used to be sexually and romantically active and then, things changed in their life (after a break-up for example), and they've been "asexual" and "aromantic" for years now (and they do not see that as a problem)... But maybe they'll meet someone new and sexual arousal will come back. No one knows.
What I mean here is that: everything can happen and everybody's so different that we really have to stop classify everything...
But still, I think that these articles make people aware of these differences, and this is a good thing.
Still, labels can help with describing yourself, if only in your current state. Imagine the drag if we had to talk in entire paragraphs where a few words like: homosexual, or romantic asexual would have sufficed?
I agree with you on that point.
I just think it would be a pity if these labels took over our lives... As if one could only be complete when she/he found in which box she/he belongs with this or that label written on it. And I've got the impression that it's what happens in my everyday life... People have to put a label on everybody (me included). But why? I find it silly... I myself don't know what "type" I am, and I do not think it matters.
One or two comments down, I'm making the exact same point. I wholly agree with you. 
I think Sjoerd did a good job at explaining this.

Many asexuals experience social distress, bullying, and feelings of loneliness low self worth in regards to trying to discover their sexuality.

I myself went through all of this, and it wasn't fun (Who would think it is!).

Having the label allows for the communication of asexuality.

Which in turns gives asexuals visibility, and other people struggling with their sexuality who are coming to terms with asexuality can find the community.

They can finally say "Wow, that's what I am... That's me... I've found purpose, I've found community. It's not a mystery anymore."

The key thing is realizing...

"I am not alone."

I agree, sexuality is very fluid and depends on a lot of things in life. However, as the reasons above the labels are a good thing, not a negative or a bad thing.

Aside from some of the arrogant comments on these articles of course!
I agree with both of you.
Lobie, of course, I understand what you mean. I just think that too many labels are not such a good thing and people should not judge others on "their label" (well, that's my point of view).
Sjoerd: Yeah, I saw that just after I posted my previous comment and somethingshappening's comments illustrate exactly what I meant.
What about people who only want se-x with people they aren't attracted to? Demiserious question reflecting terminology problems?
When the need ever arises, I'm sure we'll come up with a word for that ;)

Romantically mirrored sexuals?
I'm sad to see all the negativity on this forum. I'm bisexual, and while I might not truly understand the asexual orientation, it doesn't mean that I think people who identify as asexual are wrong or their experiences are invalid, or that asexuality doesn't exist, because it does. I appreciate Gay Voices for running this series so I can learn more about asexuality and be a better ally.

I had a coworker tell me a few weeks back that he thinks one or more of his sons might be an "A" (we were talking about LGBTQIA, of which we are both supportive), and to my embarrassment I said "allies?" When he said no, he meant asexual, I had this "doh!" moment where I was horrified that I had forgotten that A stood for asexual. Right then I promised myself that I wouldn't ever forget about asexuals again. So I truly appreciate this series on HuffPo for helping me learn and check my privilege.
Here's Triumph's take on the subject:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7zWNJHS9PBE
How insensitive! I call on the student body of San Francisco State to hold a sit in and sing kumbaya in protest. Meet at 08:00 hours. Right before the Angela Davis speech... :P
Nice article, but — again — I must ask: why is anything having to do with sex, regardless of orientation, shoved on the Gay Voices? Why is this the lead here? Has the US now fully resolved all its LGBT issues that there is nothing here to report?

Im not being disrespectful. I just find this too obvious trend of dumping alternate sexuality issues on GV, since, I gather, there's no place else on HP for them to go? Being supportive is one thing. Feeling like this space is being used as an all-purpose dumpster is quite another.
The infographic really helps explain my wife, a lot better. I'll be sharing these articles with her and see what she thinks.
"she masturbates to mythical fairies" Yeah, there is a name for that - not very polite though.
my best friend's aunt makes $60 hourly on the laptop. She has been out of a job for nine months but last month her check was $15914 just working on the laptop for a few hours. Read more on this site
http://makingmoremoney.qr.net/kmWN
Aha, this sounds like my first wife. No desire, would participate in sex, would have orgasms, but seemed happy with no sex at all. She used sex to form the attachment with me, as she did with her second husband. To her, sex was a useful behavior with which she could form a bond of love. To me, sex was about passion. I understand she did what she could with what she had, but that was not what I wanted with a wife.
Masturbation is sexual, it's stupid to say otherwise. You masturbate because you need to relieve sexual tension. If you're tired there are many other things to do and without sexuality how can one get horny enough to masturbate?

The whole thing seems so strange to me. I couldn't imagine what it would be like not to be attracted to females. It would be a huge relief, I think, that's for sure (no more loss of cognitive ability, no more having to reread a paragraph over and over again, no more having to pretend that the super tight business suit is appropriate when in reality it's what the clothes look like it's how much bum can be seem but can't talk about that, it's evil, etc, etc, etc). It would be magical, almost. Very boring, too. While it's annoying that hornyness can't be turned off, it does feel good.
I fear too much masterbation is keeping these young hormones from fruitation....
Many people masturbate for a variety of reasons. It is well documented that severely depressed and recovering drug addicts will compulsively masturbate to orgasm. The reason, it is theorized, is that the release of endorphins offsets the depletion of these hormones. In that way, its using masturbation as a way to naturally get a quick high, and as its not motivated by another person, is inherently a non-sexual act
The physiological sex drive and the psychological sexual attraction are not linked, at least not for most asexuals. We experience arousal/sexual tension, but it is not directed at anyone. In short, most of us don't get horny whilst thinking about people, in fact for some it can be a major turn off.
Classifying people is kinda hard, huh?
Beating the Bishop is not sexual. Seriously?
The bigger question is what are they fantasizing about while doing it? Do they think about doing laundry or flying in a plane? Is there a fantasy at all.
There might be fantasy, there might not be. In any case, fantasy is not really an indication of sexual orientation, or an indication of what people would necessarily want from real life. I'm intrigued to know though, what do sexuals fantasize about whilst masturbating? Is it just them having sex with someone in particular, or is there more to it?
Do Asexual People Masturbate? Maybe...

Do I care? No, it's none of my business!
Masturbation is not sexual? I guess if they are rubbing their nose it's not.
I am enjoying learning from this series.

Science teaches us that sexual arousal is the physical reaction to increased sexual desire. If one is capable of becoming aroused (possibly through self stimulation), then one is capable of desiring sexual activity. Some Ace's in the article gave reasons for sexual activity as stress relief, child bearing, and even being "biologically compelled". So it seems that, the innate desire for that type of dopamine release is present at some level in everyone but that some chose not to act on it.
That is not true. There's a difference between physical stimulation and sexual desire. There are women that achieve orgasm through rape, but you wouldn't dare say that because that is possible, then they can learn to like rape, would you?
Its science, its fact. Are you really conviced that the comparison of violating another person sexually and chosing not to participate in sexual activity is equal?
 
Yes, there is a huge difference between physical stimulation and sexual desire, scientific fact. One can become sexually aroused and even desire sex without any physical stimulation at all. It doesnt change the fact that the innate desire for that type of dopamine release is present at some level in everyone. Some people prefer a physical release and some dont. Its still a choice whether to act on the desire or not.
You are equating libido to attraction, though. They are totally different. The only thing that makes someone asexual is lack of sexual attraction to a gender or a combination of genders. Anything else other than that is something different, and anything else can be summed up like this : "Some asexuals do, some don't."
They're not saying that violating another person sexually and choosing not to participate in sexual activity is equal, they're saying that physical stimulation can lead to orgasm without the presence of sexual desire, or sexual attraction (which is the thing asexuals don't experience).
I get that, thanks for explaining. In order for one to become sexually aroused though, sexual desire needs to be present at some level. This article is about self stimulation. If one is capable of some kind of desire, can then become aroused, self stimulate, and possibly orgasm then they are experiencing sexual attraction. The attraction is to the dopamine release.
"In order for one to become sexually aroused though, sexual desire needs to be present at some level."

So you would say that someone who was aroused while being raped desired it at some level?

When talking, generally, about sexual orientations, like hetero or homo or bi or pansexuality, the sexual attraction is towards a specific gender or genders. Asexuals experience no sexual attraction to any gender. The interest in pleasurable feelings or chemical releases isn't important here.
I found this thread on the AVEN website that really explains the point Ive been trying to get across. If one is a true Asexual, then they have no sexual interest at all. So someone identifying as an Ace that self stimulates is not an Ace because they have sexual desire/attraction . Analloerotic is a new term to me.

http://www.asexuality.org/en/topic/35204-analloeroticly-asexy/page-2
Gross.
Says the guy with that avatar.
I would think that the term asexual would refer to a person with a disinterest in sex, including masturbation.

I would think a better term for a person who restricts their sexual activity to masturbation would be 'autosexual'.
Autosexual usually implies self-attraction - that you are sexually attracted you yourself, and many asexuals are not.
Otherwise autosexual describes sexual behaviour, which is not the same as orientation. In other words, someone could be a heterosexual autosexual (attracted to opposite sex, restricts sexual activity to masturbation), or they could be an asexual autosexual (attracted to nobody, restricts sexual activity to masturbation).
And, in this wonderfully confusing world of ours, one could be a heterosexual homosexual (one who is attracted to members of the opposite sex but who restricts his/her sexual activities to members of the opposite sex. Far more commonly, one encounters folk who are homosexual heterosexuals; folk who are attracted to members of the same sex but who have sex only with members of the opposite sex.

The problem is deciding which the modifier or the modified noun applies to: orientation or activity.

The point I am trying to get across, though, is that many masturbators have vivid sexual fantasies that fuel their activities and it not really appropriate to call such folk 'asexual'.
That is an interesting interpretation and is probably as valid as mine. I was thinking about things from the perspective of sexual actions as opposed to sexual attractions.

In any event, asexual is a poor word to apply to anybody who masturbates.
Where is common sense? Fine not to know something, but this always seems like the sort of thing people don't know because they're too self-absorbed.

Of course masturbation doesn't have to be popularly "sexual." Neither does urinating. Neither does intercourse.
I wonder why this is under gay voices.

Anyhoo, I think sometimes our society places too much emphasis on sex and coupling. There are many who feel at their most complete when they are alone. Those are the people who travel alone, go to movies alone, buy houses alone. They enjoy the company of others, bond with others and even have sex but it's not a biological drive like it seems to be with others.
Asexuality just seems so sad to me.
Sad how? So we like different things, everyone has different things they like/don't like. Get over it. And it's not like we can't have sex or that we can't enjoy it either.
The opposite to me! How empowering to finally be open and honest with yourself and with people close to you about how you identify yourself in this life. It's wonderful.
have they started a rights movement?
Just be happy!! :-) I love sex, but I have to say - it is refreshing to see people not give a #$%2 about it!
i think its something to do with being incapable about getting out of one's own head. and why is this in gay voices anyway?
Well, I have no idea what you mean about the first part, but while I think it may not quite fit in gay voices, there isn't a place to talk about other sexualities other than this, and with the fact that there are gay asexuals, it fits here too.
it means sex is not enjoyable if you are too cognitive about it. there is also the massive sexual over-stimulation of our society that makes it incredibly "meh."
It's not because we 'overthink' sex. We have simply never felt it was needed in our lives.
yes they do - even more than Bill Clinton in the Oval Office powder room
Masturbation is NOT for Christians!
I'm christian and asexual. Explain to me how the two are mutually exclusive.
You are a so-called Christian, in name only. You must belong to one of Christendom's 51,000 denominations of Christianity & growing, who take out of the Bible, what they like & throw away that which they don't like.

Be warned, adding to or taking away from scripture is a mortal sin. So rather than you telling me how it works, be humble enough to allow the Creator to tell you how it should be. This is what true Christians do.

The clay does not tell the potter who to do his job!
Sen. Patrick McCarthy is not married.
Oh come on ;-)
Everyone wants to have their own little group because they choose to swim upstream. These people aren't special (in the sense that they deserve reverence or recognition for their mental illness). Oh, now these people are going to want to marry themselves.
We didn't "choose to swim upstream", we're not trying to be thought of as "special", we're not trying to achieve "reverence", and as yesterdays article proved, it's not a "mental illness" either, and asexuals aren't looking to marry themselves, that MIGHT be considered autosexual at closest. All we want is to live our lives without the shame and hatred being piled upon us for no reason. Isn't that what everyone wants?
A-sexual, panromantic demisexual, Gray-A....at some point aren't we no longer describing a true 'group' or 'category', and aren't we just talking about the individual preferences of a very, very few people?
There is one group talked about in this series, asexuals. And within that one group, this is exploring the subsets and subgroups so that people like you can get a complete picture and not try to tell someone they're not asexual because they don't fit into (subgroup a).
Sexuality exists on a spectrum. I like that we seem to be getting away from simplistic gay/straight/bi definitions that don't really fit.

Our society is so overly sexualized it's nice to acknowledge that it's not, in fact, compulsory.
"Do Asexual People Masturbate?"

Not well.
there is too much conformity...people are restricted in their behavior and do not feel good being disingenuous and calculated. There are so many assumptions about gender and the meaning of behavior that I think many people have missed out on the very stimulating activity of flirtation, or playfulness... it is often assumed that intentions are not innocent and this leads to stigmas.

our actions and perspectives become enmeshed in the dynamics of our culture, almost like words in the context of our language... I might not understand asexuals, but what I am saying here is my perspective about the subject.
Sure sounds like a sucky (or lack of) way to go through life.
It certainly starts out that way because we are taught that there's only certain ways to think and we don't feel that way. I myself thought about suicide a few times before figuring out what I am. But once you figure it out, it's so freeing and liberating, that actually things are great now.
I am glad to hear you have found peace with yourself.
Sex
This is so interesting. I love knowing more about human sexuality. The more
I learn the more I'm enlightened to my own sexuality.
Masturbating while thinking about nothing - I am so confused by that. I don't really get how that would work.
Of course they masturbate. They just think of a brick wall while they do it.
I can certainly relate to these feelings. I had them at times in my life. But I think there needs to be a different, more positive term. Maybe that's where "ace" comes from. Sexuality - both the degree and type - is a sliding scale, as is gender. I have always been firmly hetero in my interest but have been mistaken as gay for my behavior and mannerisms at times. More power to people who are finding strength through such a community. Trying to make everything black-or-white is so limiting and painful to those who don't match up.
For me it was discovering that sex was greatly over-rated, had a lot to do with ego gratification and/or control and manipulation of others, and was usually more trouble than it was worth. It has amazed me how easily and quickly some of my more promiscuous friends could bed with people they didn't know well or at all.
As for the Asexuals who masturbate to "clean out the plumbing"...yeah, right. The plumbing is quite capable of self cleaning while you sleep, so I don't buy that reasoning.

Sounds more like they are sexual but asocial - or at least they dislike doing laundry more than they dislike sex.
"...actually masturbation is not inherently sexual. [Asexuals cite] boredom, stress reduction, helping them to get to sleep, etc., as reasons behind masturbation."

if you have to wipe yourself off, it's sexual.
It was referring to the thought processes.
How can you "release" without thinking of something to help you get there?
Masturbation can be a purely physical thing for asexuals. That's how.
I have known myself to be Asexual for quite some time, the most important thing to remember is even in a world that seems to revolve around sex for everything from sales to supposed self worth. (young women are certainly the most ostracized if they are not "sexy" enough,but it happens to men too if they do not care for the traditional hormonal male lifestyle, believe me.) is that this is merely another standard deviation in the complex system of human sexuality, and nothing to be ashamed of. You can still have good friends, and a great life even if you don't feel the constant drive for sex the "normal" people (as they call themselves) do, even romance is not out of the question, it just takes a different form.
"masturbation is not inherently sexual"

THEN YOU'RE DOING IT WRONG!!!!
I like the beaver eats man story better.
Cool
Lol....slow news day
and to think all these years i thought i was odd having to dress in my Tele-Tubby costume during sex just to ejectulate
really? You wasted all of those bytes on a story like this? Who freakin cares what you do in your bedroom (bathrooom or wherever) Just don't tell me,

( and make sure to wash your hands)
Other people obviously care. This is one of the top things people ask asexuals.
Lack of desire, don't want or belittle physical and emotional intimacy, masturbation without fantasy of another... seems Schizoid to me. As if there is a void where there should be an abundance of internalized objects.
"I do have regular sex, and it is pretty nice," she said. "And I do feel some sexual desire under special circumstances … but I enjoy a lot of the sex with him only very partially from my own sexual desire, which is minimal. It's really from this secondary sexual desire, this desire to make him happy, that makes it enjoyable. That desire is a powerful force that stems from the head, rather than my libido. I don't hunger for sex the way other people might."

ummm... if that's a description of what it is to be 'asexual' there are a lot of asexual married people out there...

 I suppose we can blame Bush's 'no child left behind' fior this article, a generation has grown up thinking you're nobody unless you've first been tested, scored, ranked and pigeon-holed. What's this, the sexual SATs? Sorry Chester, we think you should apply to sexual tradeschool.

Ya nothing sexual at all about sexualy stimulating your sexual reproductive organs to the point of orgasm. Stupid
Well, to those aces that do masturbate, it's a chore like cleaning out the gutters. You wouldn't think of sex doing that, so thus you don't call it sexual. It's about the mindset of it not being sexual, not that the physical act is not anything to do with the parts that are also used for sexual activity.
This is an interesting subject - not many talk about it. It is healthy and natural - Just like same sex gender - healthy and NATURAL -

Sexuality is such a complex topic - but there are many people closed in "their box" - It is sad... of course, having sex with an animal or a family member is too much for me...LOL
If it's distant enough, family can be okay, but it's going to have to be pretty distant :P
hahahaha... true!
They are just fooling themselves......appears that asexuals are really sexual.
BINGO. This article described it perfectly. Some of us have a dualism with romance/attraction and sex. Most people view them as one in the same.

I've described myself as a Gray-A, but after the article I've definitely got a better term: Heteroromantic-Demisexual. I feel like an "ah ha" moment just happened. Something clicked.

Love this series of articles Huffpo has done.

"Pan romantic" is what we are meant to be.  Virginia Woolf was the first person to note romance has nothing to do with sex.  Romance is being thrilled someone else exists. 


Anyway.  An asexual movement is bound to happen in an advertizing culture that uses sex to sell everything from cornflakes to cars, to white bread and toothpaste.

I'm so happy to see the hateful and inconsiderate comments lightening up.

Society is very sexual, it's the norm to be sexual; and that's where I get a large amount of my grievance in society. Being abnormal, because I'm asexual (against nature, or what be it).

Thank you. Hope that you have been enjoying the article series.
A lot of what this culture calls "sex" is manipulating other human beings.
Asexual is not the same as not wanting to be with someone for sex.
Whether they do or not is of no interest to me.
Not asexual, not bisexual, not heterosexual, not homosexual, but (yes) unisexual (or maybe autosexual).
"When you talk about masturbation, you may think of it as a sexual activity, but actually masturbation is not inherently sexual. [Asexuals cite] boredom, stress reduction, helping them to get to sleep, etc., as reasons behind masturbation.""

BULLSH*T

It's as sexual as it gets.
Would you think of cleaning your gutters as a sexual act? No? Neither do those asexuals that masturbate when they do it. It's like a chore, that's it. It's an action taken, not because you want to, but because it heads off a problem before it arises.
Nobody thinks of masturbation as "cleaning the gutters".  That isn't even backed up by biology.
They're LYING.
Again, you're thinking that sexuality and the biology of sex are the same. And no, I made up the cleaning the gutters thing, but there have been many that compared it to cleaning the pipes.
Who cares??? Good golly! Why do liberals always have to announce their personal traits? Nobody cares!!!
The "I only masturbate because I'm bored" thing especially cracked me up.

Oh la la la la what should I do? I'm bored! Should a read a book? Should I see a great movie? How bout playing a fun videogame or spending time with my dog?

Naaaaaahhhhh, I'm going to play with my willy that I absolutely do not enjoy in any way *wink wink*
The world is so complicated as it is, now we these...pan - romantic, asexual,
pro- sexual, masturbating to mythical fairies, ....ayyyy caramba !!!
People are getting stressed with this news.....and you know
what happens when you get stressed....
It's amazing how you can take something so natural and turn it into a scientific experiment with charts, studies, and theories. Jeez folks.
I agree that it's sad that it has to be this way, but some people refuse to learn that certain people exist without that stuff.
I'm glad to see this presented and discussed. Given the irrefutable legitimacy of this as an issue, I think it's due time Huff Po creates an "Asexual Voices" page. Not only are their issues worthy by their own merit, but giving them their own page would help others understand that it is indeed a separate issue, and would help to dispel the generalizing notion that there is only "normal" sexuality (i.e., straight) and "other," into which everything else is too often grouped.
I think being "aromantic" makes a bit more sense to me then being "asexual". Relationships can sometimes feel like an unnecessary drag... (I can see a few bad relationships being enough to put someone off to them for good) but "some" form of sex, even if it's just masturbation seems to be pretty much a biological requirement.

Could just be a hormone thing though. I definitely don't think about it 2000 times a day anymore like I used to. Maybe in another 20 years I'll barely think if it at all.
"Demisexuals are people who do not experience sexual attraction toward others unless and until they forge a very strong emotional -- and usually romantic -- connection."

I'm 36 years old, single and alone, and for the first time I have finally found a term that explains me. Thank you.
do asexuals like getting massages? you can call it "sexuality" all you want but all it really is is nerve endings. a penis massage has nothing to do with sexuality now does it
I like how you said this. And yeah, some asexuals like sensual experiences. Some even like sex despite not being attracted to the partner, the same as a gay man may be able to enjoy a sexual favor from a woman if he isn't repulsed.
Why would somebody ask why am I this way? I am as I am.
The people that discribe me as a disorder are the ones that need to be examined.
As for the subject of masterbation, It has little to do with sex. Men have bodily fluids that must be ejeculated one way or the other. As long as the body is producing semen we must deal with it. The clergy made masterbation into a sexual issue in order to control us through guilt. The psychologists continue to sexualize masterbation out of pseudoscience. When viewed without any premise masterbation is simply another bodily function that everyone deals with regardless of their sexual orientation. And, face it, masterbation is a fast way for a man to get to sleep.
Love without sex? ? What? Call the morgue, I'll die in a second, I always tell my wife, you can take my food, but not that thing.
As a physician, my first question is what are their hormone levels? I have found in practice, that people who have low sex hormones obviously have low sex drives. In this day and age, many factors may be influencing the hormone production in our bodies in a negative way. If their hormones were treated and returned to normal levels, would they still be asexual? I have no idea if research has been done in these areas, but it would be an interesting research project and could elucidate some interesting findings!
I can confirm my hormone levels, as well as my pituitary gland are entirely normal and functional.

Also, realize asexuality is about sexual attraction, and not sexual drive. It's a common misconception.

I don't think any peer reviewed research has been done in regard to hormones and asexuality, but I know many other asexuals who all have a normal hormone level.

I still have a sex drive, just don't find anyone sexually attractive.

Hope that helps out a bit. :)
I can't say for everyone but my own testosterone levels are a bit higher than average. Adding in my ADHD and you have compelling medical evidence for my ebing hypersexual, not asexual. And yet here I am, an asexual.
Hey Doc, I hear there's a snazzy new treatment for Low-T...
People are fascinating + of course there has to be such a wide range of sexual responses and sexual identities that make us all part of the human family. Now that we appear, in some countries , to accept this without jumping up + down morally + demonizing people who are different, we can be more open + learn.
Use porn to release, much easier that way. Guys must practice everyday.
Sage advice.
Why is an article about Asexuals on the Gay voices page of Huffingtonpost? I'm sorry, but I really don't think that every single minority connected to sexuality and gender necessarily belongs as yet another added letter to the already ridiculously long LGBTQI ad nausuem. Should we hold up ENDA if it doesn't have language specifically protecting Asexuals? I just don't feel connected to this in any way. It's no wonder younger people feel no connection to the community, when it is so amorphous that it has utterly lost any meaning.
Because there is no other place to discuss gender and sexual identity issues on Huffington Post?

Furthermore, asexuality has been under the queer umbrella for some time in the full acronym: LGBTQQP2SIAA

Younger people feel no connection to the LGBT community? I feel a very strong connection to my local community, outside from the fact when I'm told by people I shouldn't be welcome at LGBT events.

Connection and community is an important thing.

I also don't think any asexual has ever stated they want asexuality included in X-law. As asexuality would be covered in any discrimination laws (As they would be on basis of sexual orientation).

I'v been to a lot of LGBT events in Canada and not once have I been unwelcome at the events, I've only got an outcry of support and we have frequently discussed many gender and sexual identity issues (Such as asexuality).

Anyway, I answered your main question so I will stop rambling on.
It might interest you to know that our asexual contingent was invited to include information about discrimination and make a case for why we thought asexuality ought to be specifically mentioned in ENDA. And it was accepted and taken to the discussion meeting that happened at the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force's conference at Creating Change, January, Atlanta 2012. (Yep, I was there.)

It might also interest you that two US states--Vermont and New York--explicitly do include asexuality as one of the protected groups when listing sexual orientations, with more to follow. Apparently even some lawmakers do not think this is ridiculous.

However, it's okay if you don't believe that Gay Voices should include sexual minority perspectives that are not explicitly gay. Apparently the people who actually run Gay Voices felt otherwise.

I am automatically suspicious of anyone who claims that meaning of their identity is contingent upon excluding others. It smacks of heterosexual people insisting that their marriage means less if gay marriage is allowed, if you catch my drift.
How is 'asexual' NOT a lack of desire to have sex? Am I to understand that some people get more pleasure from self sex than with others (mental reasons only) ?
Because asexuality is defined to mean a lack of sexual attraction, not a lack of desire to have sex?
My wives must have been UNsexual. :)
I am reaching the age of menopause and I am so glad I have no desire or feel no attraction. I used to be such a horndog, and now it doesn't matter! What a relief!
Seriously? It's a simple choice to not have sex. Does this really represent a group that needs a voice?
Asexuality is NOT a choice, as expressed in the other articles on this topic. Asexuality is the (life-long) lack of sexual attraction

So, yes it does need a voice.
Also, does it bother you that people whose experiences happen to be irrelevant to you get to talk about themselves sometimes?

(And as others have said, it means you're not sexually attracted to anyone. If you think this orientation has no business taking up space with acknowledgment of its existence, take a look at all the people in the hundreds of comments on these articles and see why the education is needed.)
It's not that. It's that I find it out-of-this-world that not having sex can be any kind of issue with anyone besides that person. The fact that people care so much about what other people do is really bothering me.
If you look at the comments here, you'll see a cross-section of the kinds of things people confront us with all the time. They're asking us to justify not wanting sex if we don't, grafting medical issues or psychological problems onto us even if they're not there and trying to convince us they're real, and subjecting us to attitudes that fuel everything from mild bullying to corrective rape. (Documented.)

So . . . if you are not asexual and you have not had to deal with any of this, but those of us who are asexual and are telling you we do have to deal with this, I think people should really just live and let live here, and understand that support from people like ourselves is a vital part of being able to belong, feel at ease, and understand ourselves in relation to the rest of the world.

"I can't believe anyone would treat you in such a way that you actually need a voice" sounds like what people say when they don't believe we are getting treated that way (and believe living as an asexual person in this society has no significant negative consequences). Or they've had no challenges to their identity and lifestyle and can't imagine why anyone needs a group. I'd like everyone to let those of us who are having the experience determine what we need in the way of community in order to support ourselves. That would be very nice. Thank you.
Well, she is probably done with disco and all that. She looks terrific BTW, and hope that some great scripts will come her way. I really miss her film performances. She is an amazing actress. Hopefully she will pick her next project carefully, so as to not be stereotyped or used up.
Huffpo has a problem with posts. I had replied to an article about Cher not likeing the Cher persona any longer. It got put here. Go figure??
I have waited all my life for the answer to this key question.
I've seen it all now.
"...estimates that half of all asexuals stimulate themselves on a fairly regular basis..."

Darn, I thought we were talking about dunkin donuts............
Well if you had been following the news you would know that masturbation begins in the womb so of course this would mean that asexual people masturbate.
Some do, some don't, if you don't feel like reading the article. That's what I say. In fact https://twitter.com/asexuality/status/327288815075090432
I have it on good authority (Rep. Michael Burgess, R-Texas) that asexuals do masturbate . . . but only in utero.
Anyone involved in this kind of situation is CLEARLY overthinking it.
It's not that we think about it too much and DECIDE not to have sexual attraction, we just never do. It's not a choice, it's not overthinking, it is just how we are.
I admit I did not read this whole article. But just from the headline alone, I can see this is TMI.
Interesting. Physical attractiveness is the degree to which a person's physical traits are considered aesthetically pleasing or beautiful. The term often implies sexual attractiveness or desirability.

Asexuals say that they are not attracted to people sexually. Does this mean that they do not care about how their partner looks? Physically that is?

What type of attraction is the one that kicks in when you are attracted to someone's looks? Romantic or sexual? I would say that physical attraction is a type of sexual - not romantic attraction since it has nothing to do with someone's personality, just their looks (physical).

If asexuals say that they have zero sexual attraction, that means that they also don't care about physical attraction. Perhaps some really don't care about looks, but something tells me that's not the case. Almost invariably, people are in someway concerned about looks.

Stop trying to define yourselves people. Stop pigeonholing yourselves into neatly defined categories, its not necessary.
Physical attraction (or aesthetic attraction) is like when you see a beautiful piece of art or a lovely sunset... it's something that you like to look at, but not something you'd consider having sex with. That's the difference.
To me it's different. Physical attraction is like when I want to hug/cuddle/hold someone and aesthetic attraction is when I want to look at them because that person is beautiful/handsome.
In answer to your question posed on the main, can I get back to you? I'm a little preoccupied at the moment.
As a straight woman, I have yet to come across an asexual man while dating.

The more I read this the more I am becoming more 'ainterested' since I am actually finding the articles making me more confused about where these people find themselves. I think that's the problem in a way, like me reading about it, they are neither here nor there with regards to sex; I suppose they can take it or leave it which is still on the spectrum of all things sexual.

I am a bit dubious about what they think about while masturbating. Something makes them 'pop' and it ain't thinking about making a sandwich or mowing the lawn. I would be curious, although not my business, what exactly makes these folks 'pop' and whether there are similarities there. but then folks would have to be very honest about that.
It varies from asexual to asexual. They all have different feelings about having/liking sex, just like people with other orientations do. The thing with asexuals is that they don't experience sexual attraction to any gender. Think about having sex with someone you don't find sexually attractive. Does it turn you off or is it inconsequential? Some people won't have sex unless they find someone sexually attractive, some have sex without sexual attraction because they like the physical aspects of sex, or they want an orgasm. Personally, as an asexual, I don't mind sex. I have certain kinks that aren't about the people involved. I have a high sex drive/libido, but it never points at anyone, it's just sort of free floating. But that's me.
This really got me as a reason why it's NOT sexual, "boredom, stress reduction, helping them to get to sleep, etc.."

Geez, half of people having sex with each other is about that stuff. My husband and I have sex because of that stuff all of the time. Stimulating a sex organ is sexual, period. It makes no sense to say it isn't and then site actual reasons why couples have sex.
The difference is that, at some point, I assume, both you and your husband have experienced sexual attraction towards people while asexuals never do.
I thought I was asexual for a min while living in nyc...turned out I was just going on a bunch of dates with really bad kissers.
As it's already been said that if ever there’s a reduction in “crime & social disorder” it’s because some ‘homophobia’ forgot to get out of bed on that morning. . .
Lewis: Any of you that have ever felt stepped on, left out, picked on, put down, whether you think you're a nerd or not, why don't you just come down here and join us. Okay? Come on.

Gibert: Just join us cos uh, no-one's gonna really be free until nerd persecution ends.
Yes, we masturbate, a bad habit left over from our days in the womb.
That dude in the picture knows good and well he's not asexual. He's trying to slowly creep in and get some action from that chick.
We met on an asexual-only website that has the sole purpose of bringing aces together socially. The article even links it. You think I went there to "get action"? Was I subscribed to reddit/r/asexuality so when Dominique posted asking for interviews for this series, I could volunteer just to sell my act?

And Jesus, she's not some chick, she's my partner. We live together, support each other, take care of the other's friends and family for each other, and yet have no desire to interact with each other's genitals. Imagine that.

You have to stoop to a pretty uncouth, intensely ignorant level of sleaziness to ignore all of that and instead assert that all males are predatory and constantly craving sex.
So what do they watch or think of when they masturbate?
I've literally thought about furniture before. Not in any kind of sexual way, but in a "I should put some bookshelves in the spare room, so let me plan this out while I have a free moment" kind of way.
Mostly what I think of is "This feels good".
If nothing else, this conversation has given me, as a gay man, some fresh insight into the mystifying resistance so many people seem to have toward any sort of sexuality differing from their own. What we might call the "what's it to ya?" aspect.

I see that photo of Luke Bovard, who's a very attractive young man in that "nerdy-sexy" way that's in fashion these days, and think, "Gee, that's too bad; what a waste."

Of course, I can't count the number of times I've heard the same thing said by a straight woman about a gay man, so it brings me up short to find the metaphorical shoe on the other foot.

But even as a sexually active gay man, I've never quite felt the same way about an attractive, sexually active straight one; at least they're "getting some," so in those cases its more of an "oh, well," than a "gee, that's too bad," in the sense of a waste of "material."

So in the end, even though sex is an important part of my life and it's difficult for me to understand those to whom it isn't, I can at least mentally back off enough to conclude, "Well, whatever makes them happy. It's not for me to impose my values upon them."

If those in the "sexual mainstream" can see their way to apply that thinking to asexuality, maybe they won't find it too much of a stretch to do so for any other kind.
I think this is part of why we find it useful and enjoyable sometimes to engage with the LGBT community, StevenWells. People like you are actually the norm in most of the circles I've spoken with--accepting, understanding, and willing to say that even if they don't personally understand something, they know better than to say "YOUR PROBLEMS AREN'T MY PROBLEMS SO GET OUT." They know how that feels and have developed empathy for our situation. It's refreshing, and sweet.

Thank you for sharing your perspective!
Asexuality is the only thing related to the human sexual condition that Republicans have yet to complain about and attack.
Nah, Fox News did an offensive and insulting story about us last year.
it's 90% of people in Seattle
As someone who lives in Seattle and has yet to meet another openly asexual person, I would have to disagree with that assessment. Wearing North Face or Columbia gear year round is not, in fact, a sign of asexuality.
argh.
I am so relieved to hear that they masturbate. Because my own experience is it is unhealthy not to (and studies in Australia have linked strict celibacy - no masturbation - with an increased risk of prostate cancer in men). When you think about it masturbation is sort of a "gay act". I don't bring this up to bash gays but so gay basher's realize that they probably have sex more often with the same sex (themselves) than anyone else over their lifetime.
I'm glad to see people who are feeling free to decide for themselves what role sex will or will not play in their relationships. So many people don't, and instead read magazine articles and determine that there must be something wrong with them if they'd rather go to sleep instead of do the deed X number of times a week.
Most married men have learned that feeding their wives wedding cake causes a similar anomaly.
Being male and m-asturbating for s-exual relief, with a nonexistent partner or an unwilling partner, doesn't actually narrow it down. At all.
The speaker was excellent and articulated asexuality in a simple, personal and compelling way. There is a certain beauty to Asexuality. If you remove the sexual motivation from a relationship, you have eliminated many problems, and are able to enjoy a relationship for who you are, or they are. Nothing wrong with masturbation, all organisms are engineered for reproduction. Our limbic system still functions and compels us to seek this mating pleasure even without a reproductive partner.
if i weren't so damn attracted to my girlfriend, i would be 100% on board with being asexual...

most problems in my life have stemmed from either drinking too much or screwing too much sometimes both at the same time...the drinking is easy...stop drinking...the screwing on the other hand...can't seem to want to give that one up...hoping my 40s take it away naturally...

respect to the asexuals!
After spending most of my adult life trying to conform to a heteronormative standard, I discovered that I am heteroromantic Gray-A/demisexual. This has released a lot of stress from my life. I had always wondered why I fretted so badly over the sexual portion of a relationship, for which the relationship always suffered, but now I know. And while I am single, celibate, (and lonely) after five years, my ability to cope with it has increased dramatically to the point where I don't worry about finding a partner so much.
I hate to say this because I really do believe in tolerance for those of all stripes, and support full equality for those of all sexual orientations (oh, sorry, OR non-sexual...), but seriously, with all that's going on in the world? WHO CARES!

Get over yourself, just a little bit. FFS!
Because you reading an article about asexuality, reading through the comments, and replying to someone's comment in order to belittle them and tell them to get over themselves isn't a waste of time at all. Maybe you should go do something about "all that's going on in the world" and leave people who you clearly find to be somehow lesser than yourself alone, because I guarantee no one really cares about your oh-so-well-hidden (you believe in tolerance? Really?) issues with asexual people.
I'm saying that it is disingenuous for asexuals to insinuate they are discriminated against on the same level as LGBT people. Deal with it.
It's great that asexuality is getting more light and that more people are learning about asexuality :) I, myself an asexual although I'm more in the grey-A (possible demisexual?) area (I'm pretty sure part of the reason is that nature messed up my downstairs (I'm trans) lol, so idk if I will still be on the asexual side when I'm on hormones and/or had SRS since that changes things). One of my friends (who is also trans), is like a diehard asexual, but he isn't totally aromantic (although he's close). Gotta love it when people actually know and/or understand what you're talking about and/or going through! :)

Now let's all have some cake! ;P
OH PLEASE. I am sorry but if you can masturbate you may as well have sex!
For me, sex was kinda boring and felt alien. It physically felt good, but I just didn't see the appeal. Now I understand why. I haven't done it in ten years and I don't miss it at all.
This is a huge area that has been ignored. there are a LOT of asexuals who have previously had no label. I'd love to see the ACE community grow and become as well known as all the other "labels" I think sex with other people as a necessary part of a relationship is nice for some people but not necessary. And I think more people are coming to see this and like it.
"there are a LOT of asexuals who have previously had no label."

Uhm... the horror? Labels are instruments, not goals to be pursued.
Sometimes it is a horror. I spent years not knowing what I was, and not being able to explain what I felt beside 'broken', because I didn't know about asexuality or that sexual attraction wasn't a mandatory human experience.
Fair enough. I overreacted a bit because you seemed so focus on the label, and not the community and identity it represents.

My bad.
Great articles.....
Fantastic article/series.

I'm a panromantic asexual as well. And I am happily married to a sexual cis male. Any sexual interaction that I take part in is solely for the benefit of my partner. Because I love him, I enjoy making him feel good. The actual physical act of sex, though, does nothing for me.

I'm so happy to see some attention being given to asexuality. I also need to check out that social networking site, I've never heard of it before.
Bright and dark are not colors in the spectrum.
I think the inforgraphic is well done, although I was a little disappointed to find no mention of demiromatnicism or grey-romanticism. Oh well, those two are rather rare in the asexual community already and it would be expecting a lot to find them here too. I'd would be nice, as a grey-demiromantic, to see it there, but it's not that bad. These articles have been well done so far. I'm enjoying them, while making a strong point to avoid the comments section. The masturbation section describes my experinces to a T. Very well done! I look forward to the rest!
People think I'm weird but I take my time forming "bonds" with the oipposite sex. I find the physically attractive bnever really want to get se3xual unless I find a mental/emotional connection. Many people think I'm gay as i don't hang around the ladies but I don't feel comfortable around them; I feel like a piece of meeat theya ll want to fight over. (My initial foray in the sexual areana was diastrious; I've been quite a bit wary since then). I've been on both side of the undesireable/desireable divide; truly seen how ugly woman can be. I think I shall remain single. Life is a lot less complicated..I come and go as I please do what I want. Please stop assailing my lack of partnership as a disease. I prefer to be single.
There's a danger in labeling who you are. Being "heterosexual" feels like the most natural thing to most people because most heterosexuals do not carry a label of identity saying they are heterosexual or don't try to prove themselves in any way shape or form. So as long as you label yourself, chances are you are putting yourself in a box and will become a target for people's injustices, prejudices etc. Labels rarely allow us to understand who we are. It's about you and what's in your heart, if you don't hook up don't fall into the peer pressure of trying to, get a back bone and stand up for what you believe in, not what "an expert" says. In short - be true to yourself and don't wait for "an expert opinion".
My micro-bio says it all about me. I am referring to being asexual.
This makes me wonder if I am somewhat asexual ... hmmm... Quite fascinating though.
And not one mention of a person with a disability. Yet, the stereotype persists that all individuals with a disability are asexual. I'm fascinated by asexuality, nonetheless and learned a lot from the article. It proves that sexy isn't everything and it certainly isn't the glue that holds all relationships together.
* sex is what I meant to write, not sexy.
I keep seeing comments on these articles with the tired old claim that bad experiences with sex and relationships are the source of asexuality. I gotta say, it would have been difficult for my partnered sexual experiences to have gone better. I wasn't forced or coerced into anything against my will. I was with someone I cared about. My partner was someone who was generally considered to be attractive. I felt safe and comfortable and knew that I could stop at any time if I wanted to. We weren't rushed or afraid someone would catch us. There was no performance anxiety or embarrassed nervousness. It had a satisfactory conclusion. In other words, it was pretty much the ideal scenario. I admit, I have a limited sample size, but every data point in it was positive.

And yet, I'm still asexual.

Bad experiences don't cause asexuality any more than good experiences prevent asexuality.

(For the record, I did not know I was asexual at the time, although I was aware that I wasn't as interested in sex as my partner. They intentionally worked to make sure I had the best experience possible in the hopes that it would make me more interested. Didn't quite work out that way, though...)
I'm with you on that frustration! I'm asexual, homoromantic, and never had sex. Ever.

How can my asexuality be caused by negative sexual experiences...if I've never had any?

It took me a while to actually recognize and admit what I was feeling, but the most I ever felt about the idea of sex was "meh" and occasionally "ew."

I actually tried to force myself to try it...and the absolute lack of any physical urge for it just killed any desire I had to try and force myself to do something that I clearly didn't feel any need for.

People seem to have a hard time understanding that I don't "hate sex," I just DON'T CARE. I seriously have no cares to give on the subject. I don't feel any physical or emotional need for it, and trying to force myself through the motions anyway is stressful and exhausting. I've got better things to do with my energy.

--------

Great second article, I've heard several times that I'm just ill, have some type of mental disorder, or some type of sickness in regards to my asexuality. It's absolutely crazy that I can be told time and time again that I must be sick.

I've been asked if I was molested as a child, hate sex, hate people, am a psychopath, and if my hormones are all out of whack. Time and time again, it's disheartening to run into someone who thinks asexuality isn't real.

Hope this helps in the understanding for others!
Thanks for your input! I have never (knowingly) met someone who identified as asexual but I don't see why it is my business or anyone else's! As with most things, if someone is a certain way and doesn't hurt themselves or others what's the deal?
thank you! I feel that way about LGBT as well. It is not my business and I don't want to know what consenting adults do behind closed doors.
Well said.
it's important to the GOTP that your behavior conforms to the norms set forth by some toothless yahoo baptist preacher in Alabama.
I don't really mind being asexual. It's not like I've never had sex, it's just not worth the effort and sort of "meh". I thought it might be a gay/straight thing, but it's not.
I think it is real in many cases. But, to just blatantly disregard that it could be due a medical issue and judging people for suggesting it is silly because it could be due to a medical issue. You not accepting that it could be a medical issue is the same as some people not accepting that it could just be a part of the normal sexual spectrum. They are both distinct possibilites.
I've had a check-up before, and that's why I am judging towards it. I don't mean to be offensive in any way.

However, was it not offensive to homosexuals being told the same thing year after year?

There was no sudden lack of interest in sex, I just never had it.

It never ever occurred.

I understand that some disorders do show a lack of sexual arousal and attraction; and I respect that, however, I don't think it's fair to instantly assume one must have a mental/physical illness in regards to being asexual.
You're falsely-equivocating libido and attraction.
The major problem with "you should get checked out to be sure it's not a sickness before you can be sure you're really asexual" is that there's no "safe" number or type of tests you can take to find out whether your lack of interest is tied up with any dysfunction. Most will say if nothing's wrong NOW, we should keep "making sure" next month, next year, etc. It's not knee-jerk denial for asexual people to say their orientation shouldn't need to be tested to be respected as real, especially since a) there is no "test" for whether you're asexual and b) anyone of any orientation can have a hormone problem or biological problem that is partially tied in with their sex drive, so it seems suspicious that only asexual people are eyeballed as likely to be sick. Sex drive is not sexual orientation and I think that extremely basic distinction is confusing a lot of people. It's very unlikely that your hormones are in some dangerous state of underproduction if you went through puberty. "You should be tested just to be sure" is good health advice for any possible problem for ANYONE. We aren't a special case that needs to be subjected to more scrutiny just because people so consistently misinterpret us as having a physical lack of hormones rather than a different perception of who is sexually attractive to us.
And another problem is that we've been down this road before with homosexuality and transgenderism. If you're anything other than heterosexual and cisgendered, somebody is going to judge you as broken and in need of fixing. If that somebody is a medical professional, then that judgement becomes a diagnosis and your identity becomes a pathology. We keep on having to fight the same fights.
Or worse....you must be repressing your urges. You'll have sex one day and it will feel sooooo good. Nah.
I agree that there must some sort of realignment in the medical community in terms of recognizing asexuality and the true, full spectrum of human sexuality. But this isn't really like homosexuality. I have never heard of an asexual getting discriminated against or getting his or her head bashed in because he or she does not have sexual urges. Medical mis-classification of asexuality is a product of the honest-to-goodness limitations of our medical understanding of sex; medical classifications of homosexuals were devised primarily to give a scientific justification for systematic discrimination and persecution.
There's quite a few stories in the asexual community of being discriminated against (like job loss, adoption refusal, problems within the court system) and even abused. (though things like corrective rape are more common than being beaten) Asexuality is fairly unknown at this point. Give it some time to see how people react to it at large. Unless an asexual tells someone that they are asexual, the other person probably would never know... unlike obvious signs like two same gender people publicly displaying affection. Lobie wasn't comparing asexuality to homosexuality in anyway other than both being misidentified as medical conditions. We all understand the struggles of people who are gay and no one is trying to down play those.
So these people can screw themselves.
just frikkin hate psychologists and mind doctors telling other people there is something wrong with them. They know sh#t, except labeling people.
Anyway, live your life. ;-)
I can imagine the responses you must get.

Let me ask you, Lobie, do you (and/or other "aces" you know) have a desire to have a kids or get married, perhaps to someone who is asexual?
Many asexuals have many different desires and interests in what they may seek in a relationship, whether the relationship will inherently be sexual or non-sexual is up to each person much like it is in any relationship.

For an asexual, it just isn't a given. While many sexual persons see sex as a given in a relationship (Although, not all of them!); asexuals don't see a connection between love and sex. Love can exist without sex, and that's the most important thing for an asexual.

There is a series of romantic attractions (Homoromanitc,biromanitc,...)

What ends up happening in the relationship is up to the parties involved, and comes down to communication of boundaries and what you are comfortable with. I think that should be the case for all functional and healthy relationships.

As for me, I'm homoromantic; and in a 2 year + relationship at this moment which is sexual. As for asexual Y (s)he may be panromantic in a non-sexual relationship, and Asexual Z may be aromantic and in no relationship content by themselves.

Asexuality in itself is a diverse community which makes defining it so difficult!

I've heard far worse than the things that have been posted by me here.

Hope that helps! :)
That is very interesting! I have to say that I enjoyed reading this more than the original article LOL. And I agree with you that healthy relationships rely on "communication of boundaries and what you are comfortable with" rather than a prescriptive amount of sex per week and all the other "musts" that float around in the media and elsewhere.
Wow. thanks for the post.

Just when I thought I had the transgender thing worked out...Along comes the nuances of asexuality.

Basically it's a spectrum– non-sexual/non-romantic, to non-sexual/romantic
to romantic/sometimes sexual, (like yourself). Is that right?

So if you're sexual and in a romantic relationship, why do you consider yourself asexual?
Well, the definition of asexuality is to have no sexual attraction (which would be true in my case).
Physically still operate in the same way, so sex is possible. I just have no arousal towards nor interest in the idea of sex.
However, it makes my partner happy; and that makes me happy :)
I can't help but wonder why people even know that you are asexual? I am not trying to be snarky. I keep my sex life to myself. People assume that I am straight because I have a husband, but I could be bi-sexual, or asexual, right? Why does there have to be a movement? If someone is asexual and is fine with that, then there is not issue, unless that person feels like publicizing the fact and gets negative feedback (which I think is horrible! I am sorry that people feel the need to analyze you). If the person is not happy about it, it's between him/her and his/her physician/therapist or whoever the person approaches to find a solution.
Let me see if I can answer that.

I see your point. While for sake of ease of conversation in many cases I may just let them think I'm gay since I'm dating a guy. If I don't have the time, or don't want to bother identifying as asexual and getting into a discussion about it.

Now, most people know I'm asexual from the past; I only got into my first relationship as 21.

Throughout high school I heard "Why aren't you dating a girl, are you a f****?" and was frequently bullied due to these issues.

I decided to tell people when I was around 18, rather than listen to them setting me up with girls (or guys), telling me how hot she is, discussing sexual intercourse and asking me what I thought about that hot girl/guy over there.

It seemed (and still seems easier) to let people know I'm asexual.

Purely, it's reason of self identification, and so I'm not misidentified in most cases.

I really think the main problem, from my experiences is mis-identification, people are assumed to be straight; and thus you run into everyone thinking you are heterosexual. Which leads to all kinds of things (I personally don't wish to deal with).
Gosh, I am truly sorry to hear about the bullying! I had a best friend in high school who never dated. I did think once or twice that this was odd, and later though that he was gay but in the closet (didn't know about asexuality) but I never brought it up with him. We were friends and it was none of my business! He obviously didn't want to talk about it.
Continued from previous reply:

Now people just assume I'm gay, which honestly; I'm okay with, it's not as big of a deal (I'm in a relationship now, and it's not like they are going to be setting me up with someone else!).

But it's still my identity, and my good friends will definitely know because I think it is important for who I am, and how I feel about the world! I still run into people who frequently ask me things like "Don't you think *insert actor here* is really hot!?"

Hope that helps!
I know it must get tiring to be asked very personal and frankly rude questions about your mental and physical well being - but try to remember that they care about you. As an atheist with very religious friends, it got tiring to essentially be asked why I was choosing to go to hell. At first it was painful, but then I started to engage and had some of the best conversations about the nature of religion, beauty and humanity. Think of this as a chance to encourage people to explore their own relationships to their sexuality - because many of us are far too fixated on sex in an unhealthy way.
I am truly glad to tell you asexuality is thought of as an outsider dysfunction from the norm of mainstream Hollywood and initiations into adulthood experiences, I felt pressured all of the time. Never felt natural to give someone that part of life experience. One of my classmates in jr high wanted her brother to take my virginity on a date and I was so awkwardly scared about what was happening I left. I couldn't believe it was so important to almost 75% of the population of my age group that you do something.
There is a complex, diverse and beautiful array of gender, orientation and sexual libido.

You have chromosomal gender- XX or XY or a variant of both

You have anatomical gender- male or female reproductive organs or a combination of both.

You have hormonal gender- male or female hormone predominance or a equal combination of both.

You have psychological gender- who do you know yourself to be- male, female or a combination of both.

You have orientation- which gender are you attracted to, male, female or some combination thereof.

You have intensity of attraction and libido- on a scale from none (asexual) to very strong.

Last but not least we have gender roles and sexual rules, which are entirely social constructs.

Our problem as a society has always been that the these roles and rules were not always designed with OUR best interests in mind. They were designed to serve the needs of religious empires and as systems concerned more with mass control than individual fulfillment.

Therefore billions of people, have been forced into molds, under duress and absence of any other alternative, that do not quite fit them.

The result has been disastrous on our health, relationships and well-being. We now have the chance to rectify these missteps by breaking free of superstition, fear of ourselves and most of all, systems of control that do not work in our best interests.
Very well said! A++
Pretty close, but there are also asexuals that have a libido but the thing that makes them still asexual is the lack of focus on any gender or combination of genders.
in other words they cant figer out if they wanna screw a human or a dog???
No, we know that difference. We just don't feel that it's needed to screw anyone. We get all the same romanticism as anyone else, but don't feel that sex is absolutely necessary in a romantic relationship.
Thanks for the clarification ;-) We will have to add another category, which once again shows how complex we are as humans.
Then why would that not be pansexual? I am very confused. I thought part of being asexual was a lack of libido.
Libido is separate from sexual attraction. And pansexual people are just about the opposite of asexuals because asexuals are not sexually attracted to anyone while pansexuals are sexually attracted no matter the gender.
When I was doing more reading I *think* I identified my confusion. There *is* libido but there is no attraction toward a gender or genders. Is that correct? Is that correct?
Exactly right.
Super post and I've never heard anyone separate out these categories before. But it is absolutely true,
you know you spend about 10 minutes out of 24 hours doing something regarding your sexuallity. why do you write on the subject like the times were swapped around. ' disastrous ' , you live a shallow life with way too much time on your hands.
You actually took time out of your day to work that out? What was your methodology exactly? And you are off by quite a bit. It takes me about 30 seconds to post ;-) as I have the gift of lightening fast typing and there are days when I do not check HP at all.  Today I did 3 separate promotional concepts. An entire proposal for Saint Lucia Carnival. Consulted on office renovations, I did yoga, meditation and later will walk my pooch on the golf course, make dinner and catch up on my personal writing....Oh and I have a logo to design.  And that's a SLOW day for me.  Namaste
asexuality is NOT part of the GLBT community. There is no reason for them to be. they are NOT discriminated against nor openly hated!!!!!!!!!!
Some asexual people are also GLB or T. However, there are people (both in the queer community and not) who feel that asexuality is inherently queer. Yes, they are discriminated against (there is even a study that says in some situations MORE so than gay folks, though not in all situations by all parties), including housing denials, adoption denials, and people getting fired over their orientation. But what's weird is a) you can SEE the examples of vitriolic hatred and dismissal in the comments on this very series, and b) does queerness REALLY depend ENTIRELY on whether someone is hated or discriminated against? Doesn't being LGBT have something to do with identity regardless of how much or how little hate each individual or the community as a whole has suffered? I think it has a meaning apart from hate. So even though yes, asexual people DO experience what you say they don't (though institutional discrimination is not as likely), I don't believe they would HAVE to in order to have an identity that they or others feel is appropriately supported in the overall queer community. It's okay if you personally want to not be inclusive. We're used to it.
No they're not. That would be oxymoronic.
So now we can have a "passionate" debate as to whether they should be properly be seen as victims. Rule of thumb: when in doubt, project victim status!
Except, asexuals are frequently bullied, and seek support in any accepting, and caring community that they can find when they are struggling with who they are and their sexuality.

They seek acceptance for who they are, struggle to understand their sexuality, and have a hard time figuring out what exactly may be wrong with them. We are told often that we aren't real, or have some type of mental illness. Frequently told we must have been molested, or are somehow faking our feelings because we hate sex (Even sometimes are told, it's just because you're ugly and no one likes you.)

As one seeks for acceptance in their life struggles they find the GLBT community, a community out there for acceptance of others who are struggling with sexuality and identity issues.

The GLBT community has been founded to seek the end of discrimination, a place for people to go who aren't accepted for who they are, what they are, and what they do.

Imagine, a youth asexual bullied in high school, struggling to understand their sexuality, put off by the heavily sexual community, in depression due to the bullying and seeks any community, anyone who will listen to them.

In search of anyone, anything to help them they find their local GLBT community and turn to them for support. Then, the GLBT community bullies them as well, tells them they aren't welcome!

Do you really think that should happen? Has the GLBT community learned nothing from it's own problems?
If you honestly believe that asexuals don't deserve to be welcome in the GLBT community despite their issues with their sexual identities, and should in turn be bullied not only by society in general, but also bullied by the GLBT community you are a horrible person.

I was bullied for years in high school, throughout University at a liberal arts school for being asexual. Told I'm just seeking attention, told I need to go seek professional help, told I'm pitiful pathetic and a waste of human life because I'll never find anyone.

Told I should just kill myself, I'm going to be alone for life anyway.

Told that I shouldn't express my sexuality, I should keep it secret.

I've been told that I don't even deserve to have a relationship with another person, and that I shouldn't ever be allowed to enter a relationship.

I have been violently assaulted in High School (never in University). However, the bullying was the worst.

I wanted anyone to listen to me, anyone to hear me out and see what I was going through. I looked everywhere for people to understand what I was going through.

the absence of an "asexual group" locally sent me to my GLBT community.

Luckily, they were very accepting with open arms; and gave me the support I needed.

If it were not for them, I honestly may not have been here today.
Poor dears!
Seems like they are if they are being considered a maladjusted illness for their lack of sexuality which is exactly what homosexuality was considered at one time.
Speak for yourself! I 'came out' to my mother and had to backtrack saying that it was a joke for nearly three months to avoid being disowned. I've lost several friends as well, because I'm 'a freak'.
I have been openly hated as well, and being hated doesn't make you a part of the GLBT community by default.
That's right, while some gay people may have parents that accepted them from the get-go. It's weird how some people want to quantify and qualify the hate you could possibly experience and say "yours isn't severe enough, isn't dealt out by the same people for the same reasons, or isn't happening in a way *I* can see, so I think you're stepping on my toes and usurping my identity by trying to stand under the Big Queer Umbrella." I don't know what anyone gets out of suggesting we need to stand in the rain--especially since they frequently tell us we're not getting wet no matter how many times we show them our soaked clothes--but it is frustrating when people won't have empathy. Happily almost all of the interactions I've had with LGBT-identified non-asexual people have been positive, and when an asexual contingent represented at the latest Creating Change conference (put on by the Gay and Lesbian Task Force), our panel was well received and well attended. It's refreshing.
Fantastic way of putting it! I might borrow this for one of my future conversations, if you don't mind.
Sure, if it helps you get your point across, feel free to borrow the metaphor. I think I said something like this in the book about asexuality I wrote, too, but not quite in these words. (I hope the response from the publishing houses currently considering it will be positive. :) )
The LGBT community (sometimes referred to as LGBTQ or LGBT+) isn't just for gay, bi, lesbian and trans people and it hasn't been for quite a while. It includes people of varying gender identities and sexualities. The idea is for equality for people of all sexual orientations and gender expressions not just a select group. And it's worth pointing out that having your sexuality labelled as a medical disorder could well be labelled as discrimination and the reason that they are "[not] openly hated" is because many people are not aware that asexual people exist and fewer people have had the opportunity to meet someone who is out as asexual. I'm pretty sure if asexuals were as visible as gays, bisexuals etc. there would be plenty of hate thrown their way too.
There are lots of sexual practices and sexuality related issues that are still "labelled as a medical disorder" does that mean our movement should just take all of them in based on that criteria? I don't think so!
I do, given that homosexuality was labelled one and only changed BECAUSE people in the LGBT movement fought against that classification.
I used to think Transgender and Gay didn't mix as a cause. After all, there is a difference between who you are and who you want. I felt that since transgenderism was more of an outcast minority, including them would be dragging down the gay rights cause. What a mistake! I've come to understand that we are all on a ladder to obtain our fundamental acceptance, and we go up the ladder together. To step on another's hand on the way up helps no one. And to deny the ladder to begin with is surely an unjust cause. The fundamental LGBT(QIA) cause is accepting a diversity of sexual nature and expression. Asexuality is part of this diversity of sexuality and therefore belongs. Asexuals can be gay, straight, lesbian, transgender, bisexual, etc., it's just that their involvement is romantic, companion-oriented, and physical too, just not sexual. To say they are separate and do not belong, but are not discriminated against or hated, sounds very similar to current anti-gay rhetoric.
Not even close!
Include, help, support. The rainbow belongs to all who appreciate and defend diversity.
By you they are. We are about including the excluded. We have straight allies, we have transgendered, why not have asexuals? Because by your sentiments, they are discriminated against... By you.
Fail! not even close.
Fine. Just letting you know, you're behaving no differently than the GOP. Which is fine. You don't have to think asexuals are included in the LGBT. But just remember what it was like growing up and feeling "different" and alone.
Who are you, the gatekeeper? Your attitude alone is proof that you are wrong. Besides which, asexuality as a thing is a newish concept. It's not that well known, but give it time and hate will blossom. People who are bigots are rarely bigoted toward only one specific thing, even if it's one thing they consciously focus on. Like bigotry against a religious minority. A woman in New York hates Muslims, so she shoves a Hindu into an oncoming subway train. A man in Wisconsin hates Muslims, so he shoots up a Sikh temple. It's differences that people hate and persecute. The specific differences hardly matter. People, especially hateful people, are lazy. Just like Islamophobes lump other religions into the category 'Muslim', so homophobes lump other orientations along with gender identities into the category 'gay'. So people may not (yet) be hating on aces for being aces, but they can and do hate on aces under the mistaken belief that we are gay.
So what you're saying is, discrimination comes from being mistaken for being gay, not from being asexual. (And people who hate Muslims and who target Muslim-looking people just can't tell the difference. But the underlying discrimination is not necessarily just on being Muslim, but on brown people in general.)
No. I'm saying that when a person is bigoted against one thing, they are bigoted against related things as well. Islamophobes may focus their bigotry on Muslims, but they are really simply bigoted against religious minorities generally. Homophobes may focus their bigotry on gays, but they are really bigoted against sexual and gender minorities generally. So when an Islamophobe encounters some religion other than Islam, they don't respond with acceptance. They respond with the same bigotry that they have for Muslims. When a homophobe encounters trans, bi, ace or whatever people, they similarly respond with bigotry rather than open arms. So if a homophobe is seemingly not bigoted against aces as aces, it's really only because they are not yet familiar with that category. Haters hate, full stop.
But that reduces hate to a mere impulse. A person doesn't just suddenly hates something or someone because he decided he hated everything other than himself or his group.  Your explanation completely disregards the history of and the historic justification for collective discrimination and bigotry. Minorities aren't hated just because they are minorities.  Some groups are hated because our society has used them as a counterpoint to delineate the normalcy that we think our society is defined by.  The brown and the black have been used as a counterpoint to the "normalcy" of being white.  The homosexual and the transgendered have been used to define the abominable fringes that threaten the "normalcy" of heterosexuality.  I just don't see asexuality as being or having been anywhere in that picture.   
My explanation comes from observed history. Bigotry is an irrational impulse and only needs a trigger to set it off. Prejudice against any specific group always has a starting point somewhere in history. Consider Islamophobia. It didn't exist, certainly not as an organized thing, prior to 9/11. Did Pam Geller have such an ostentatious hatred of Muslims prior to that? Or did it exist only as a potential? Or take my own brother. Up to recently he never said anything about trans people whatsoever. Then the man who runs the garage where he gets his car serviced came out as a trans woman, and all of a suddenly my brother is the world's greats transphobe. Your problem in understanding me is that you insist on keeping your gaze fixed on the past, assuming that if acephobia has not been a thing in the past then it can never become a thing in the future. That's a foolish assumption. Islamophobia once was not a thing. Now it is. Asexuality is new as a category. Bigotry is irrational. Given time and greater awareness, who knows what new forms of bigotry can arise in days to come.
Your statement other than being a rambling on about bigotism is basically based in an incorrect and faulty premise!
http://bit.ly/11vO5bz Learn some before you stick your foot in your mouth again please. Statistically we face more hate than gay people or any other sexual orientation.
There is hardly any statistics in that article. It's more like, "we asked a bunch of people and this is what they said".
You will not and do NOT have the right let alone the supporting statistics to support such a completely frivolous and inaccurate statement!!! Too many Gay, Bi, Trans people have lost their lives due to the hate poured upon them!! Don’t you even try to belittle this communities suffering! How dare you make such a statement based on one questionable article! You are obviously the one who needs to “learn something” before making stupid comparisons!
Wanting others not to use you as a scapegoat for hate is a long road to hoe. Laws are a different story (and should be changed), but wanting people to drop their hysteria on account of reason has never worked.
True.
Why not just welcome everyone? Did MLK not say to fight hate with love?
They should be. That way you'd have a vowel to work with and you could come up with a decent acronym.
LOl I don't think that is the best reason but you have a point.
Our community has and does reserve the right to include or yes exclude anyone who does not meet the criteria! Oh and by the way it has always been that way! Sorry if that upsets some people’s P.C. ideal. We have worked for decades to build a movement that represents those who identify as homosexual, or have gender identities that are different from their biological sex; and those who are bisexual. We have been very careful about who is brought in under our umbrella (for very good reason) distancing ourselves from groups who by your standard have every P.C. right to join like pedophiles, and zoophiles and a long list of other sexual practices which are discriminated against and hated and in most cases illegal or registered as mental illnesses. The reason our movement distanced ourselves from these groups was because they simply did not fall under the idea of consensual sexual practices; and yes some are just too charged and would have underminded the movements ability to bring about change. In the case of asexuals:
(a•sex•u•al ( -s k sh - l)
adj.
1. Having no evident sex or sex organs; sexless.
2. Relating to, produced by, or involving reproduction that occurs without the union of male and female gametes, as in binary fission or budding.
3. Lacking interest in or desire for sex. Nonsexual.)
I really, really, really hope that you worded this in error. You understand that you are basically saying that

"We distance ourselves from the other groups who are considered mentally ill like pedophiles and zoophiles, and a long list of other sexual practices because they don't fall under the idea of consensual sexual practices. Thus, we shouldn't welcome asexuals!"

I have sex, consensual sex, many asexuals take part in consensual romantic (and some sexual) activities. If that is your sole reason of not welcoming them, then I don't understand that logic.

What you basically want is two groups:

Asexuals and GLBTQ

Asexuals fight for - Acceptance, gender and sexual diversity, ending stereotypes, getting the government to recognize discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identities.

GLBTQ fights for - Acceptance, gender and sexual diversity, ending stereotypes, getting the government to recognize discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identities.

Or do you guys fight for something else that I'm missing here?

You want us to fight for the same issues separately, while fighting with one another about whether or not we should be allowed to fight together?

Why waste the energy?

Many asexuals (myself included) identify as queer as well, are you then to say that I'm invalidated in my identity and that I'm somehow not welcome to be in the GLBTQ community?

Should I cut ties with Pflag Canada, and the many other GLBTQ activist groups I've been in?
First of all you miss the whole concept! Second of all no one said that asexuals should not be considered friends. Thirdly of all it is questionable if in fact you are an asexual based on the definition of the term (frankly I do not care). The point is that asexuals do not fall into the parameters of our movement in the strict sense and thus are not part directly of it. Start a movement if you feel one is needed and we will support you. But don't pretend to have gone through or be going through the same sorts of legal discrimination and persecution that the GLBT community has had to deal with. Far too many GLBT people have died for our movement to have you saying that asexual face the same level of discrimination and hate!
I think they--and everyone--should be accepted in the LGBT community, but let's not forget that the community rallies around not just on feeling alienated, but also in being subjected to legal and systematic discrimination. Since the 60s, that has been a defining characteristic of the community, so it is a little uncomfortable when the collective experience of a people that have been legally excluded from mainstream society is being "watered-down" by a group claiming the same discrimination without actually experiencing the same discrimination.
And I will stand beside anyone who fights any law that discriminates against anyone GLBT or not! but that is not the issue which I am talking about.
There is no need for them to be brought under our umbrella as they are not being discriminated against in the larger society based on their sexual orientation nor is theirs an issue of gender identity. So many of you people responding lack any understanding of our history and also lack comprehension what it was and is about.
Now am I saying that asexuals don’t deserve our support and friendship? NO! I am saying that they do not meet the requirements to be included in our movement. I feel sorry for those people who cannot understand that simple concept!
Arguing about the source of asexuality is certainly interesting. As a Gay man I often muse about where this orientation I have sprung from. Everytime I read a new hypothesis it's interesting to run it through the profile of my own experience and see if it pans out and how far...

However, it bears mentioning that one shouldn't categorize something a "disorder" simply because of the statistical prevalence of those who see themselves as asexual (or for that matter homosexual or bisexual).

There's a desire in our attempt to catalog and understand, to pathologize a condition that is unusual... Unless a person is experiencing difficulty with their asexuality, why does it need to be a disorder. Simply being branded disordered can be a heavy stigma in and of itself.

Just like Gays and Lesbians struggle to explain to some that the attraction we have for people of the same sex is inborn, so asexual people have the right to assess and present their own condition, without the rest of us second guessing their direct experience.

I'm still curious to see if we'll discover the source of gayness... But not because I'm hoping for a cure or a reversal... Because whom I am is not a disorder and I would resent anyone attempting to imply that it is that simple.
Well said!
well said ! I HATE hate HATE the word "disorder", how dare shrinks label others people caracteristics as a "disorder" !!
Probably because that is what they are trained to do and that is why people go to them. Why go to someone looking for answers and then get upset with them when you get an answer you don't like? You would be better off only talking with people you agree with.
its not about agreeing. its about a person could explain that there are many kind of people in the world and that "you" ate not abnormal, OR, that a person labels anyone diferent from the usual person as "disordered". Take your pick.
Like the label shrink?
"shrink" aka psycologist is a profesion, it is not a label. dont be stooooopid.
It's a derogatory label. By the way, it's a derogatory label for psychiatrists, not psychologists. The profession is doctor. Shrink is slang. Learn the difference when applying insults.
make up your mind, it is a label OR it is slang. Why is a slang word an insult ?
I have never been questioned, as a heterosexual, where the roots of my desire for a male partner springs from. While I admire your quest for self enlightenment, and your generosity in answering questions with patience, it should not be a struggle to explain something so self evident. My heterosexuality just "IS" and requires no navel gazing, why should being gay be any different?
agreed... Spending too much time analyzing the what's, why's and how come's of our sexuality does indeed make it a "thing" when really it should simply be accepted as another variable on the long continuum of normal.

But, speaking as a 45 year old gay man, I have to tell you I've spent a big chunck of my life contending with a world where my sexuality was not considered an acceptable variation but some sort of defect. Without falling into internalized homophobia, it still remains a curiosity to understand where along the creation process I became a gay male as opposed to all the other possible options. In a similar way to a girl perhaps wondering what occurred to make her female as opposed to male. It's an interesting puzzle for me at this point.

But I like the first point you brought up. If more people stopped to make that connection, I think there would be much less intolerance directed at people who's sexuality is different.
Oh, thank heavens, I was worried that in posting my tone would be completely wrong. There is a great deal of evidence suggesting a biological link, identical twins have a higher correlation than fraternal twins of both being gay or straight, but not one hundred percent. Fraternal twins have a higher correlation than siblings. Identical twins though, do not have a nearly 100 percent possibility, so there is not a gay gene that absolutely predisposes a set of twins to be gay, but there is a predisposition to being gay. Fraternal twins have a higher link than siblings which suggests that there may be a factor in utero, like the colorations on a kitten (cloning your cat doesn't work, the clone may look completely different than the cloned due to conditions in the womb--which incidentally affect your fingerprints and hair patterns as well.) And there could be some life experience trigger, especially if you are genetically predisposed. And I have read that subsequent male pregnancies by the same mother, the odds of a gay child go up, also suggesting a link to conditions in the uterus, with each male pregnancy. My best guess is that it will be a combination of all those factors, a combination of genes, conditions and nurture.
Also, came across a sociologist who suggested menopause is an evolutionary advantage in that it is in the genes of a particular family to have women stop bearing children and work exclusively to feed them (hunter gatherers subsist quite heavily on the gatherer part of the equation). It raises an interesting question in my mind. Does having gay men-who don't compete for women and who do not reproduce offer a similar evolutionary advantage? It is all conjecture, of course, but interesting to ponder. Any thoughts?
You bring up some excellent and very thought provoking points.

Reproduction is an incredibly complex mash up of influences. As humans, we like to categorize everything into relatively simplistic boxes and sort them and in so doing have a tendency to oversimplify miss co-relation.

I recall years ago the genome mapping effort was expected to yeild all the secrets of what made us tick... Surprise, we soon found out that the genome was merely a bit player in a complex stew of environmental, chemical and hormonal soup that works with mental triggers to form who we become.

Given the infinitesimally minute triggers which a fetus is subject to... we may in fact never truly put our fingers on a definitive answer to what makes a baby gay or straight. There may be dozens of right answers... that would be in keeping with the way nature does things. Perhaps it takes several triggers to position an individual along the sexual continuum and then experience and happenstance does the rest. Maybe if you have enough genetic triggers it places you all the way at a Kinsey 7 without anything else coming into play at all.

I think that's the biggest challenge in all this... the type of person who would require proof of homosexuality as genetic in order to accept gays and lesbians as "natural" will likely never find an acceptable level of proof. Hence the argument that each person's personal experience in these matters must be accepted. To do otherwise denigrates
I do recall one of the studies that has always stuck in my mind looked at the prevalence of gay men being born to mothers who were carried by their mothers during the second world war (I THINK the study was done in Germany, but I'm not positive now). It postulated that there was a correlation between the stress level of the pregnant mother during the period of fetal gender development that might be linked to the differentiation between gay and straight.

I always found that an interesting study since we are all conceived female and become male later in the gestation period as a result of hormonal triggers. Given that homosexuality is more than what one does with one's genitals, but is also a range of mental attributes as well... It was always interesting to me to consider that the mechanism for sexual attraction in gays men might be in some way related to the brain architecture of the fetus that didn't under go the proper sequence of hormonal cues...

It's always challenging to write about this type of stuff without wanting to sound like one is hunting for a disease... but, one way or another, there is a mechanism that makes us all what we are, and I think it's a fascinating topic
If people in the minority have a disorder, then Einstein had a huge disorder.
I don't disagree with you, but to play devil's advocate, if your homosexuality truly is a "disorder" then running it through your own experiences in order to find validity is like using yellow lenses to determine the color of the sky.
I think you're missing my point.

I'm not in any way suggesting my homosexuality is a disorder. I'm curious about how a fetus gets differentiated as gay the same way I was curious how one became male or female... it's simply a matter of curiosity.

One can't deny the curiosity of one's origins simply because some might perceive that curiosity to represent some sort of dissatisfaction.

With regards to whether running a theory against my own experience is a valid experiment... I agree, it doesn't represent anything statistically. It's just an interesting personal way of evaluating a concept based upon my own experience... no more no less.
I like your line of thought.  As of now, I have only heard conflicting evidence that suggests that our sexual identity is genetically influenced.  Have you heard of any conclusive evidence that scientists agree on that states whether sexual identity is inherent or chosen?
I believe there are two things at play in this discussion:1) The fact that sexual identity is relatively new due to factors such as a) the baby boom and its result of human beings not being focused on "preservation of the species anymore". b) the sexual revolution. c) the rise of American individualism among other factors....
2) The mapping of the human genome (no matter how imprecise it may currently be) has lead to researchers looking for "controlling genes" or "determining genes" which would control/determine certain parts of our identities, actions, personalities, etc.
I believe the first point centers on our cultural influences or socialization and the second point centers on a sort of determinism.  I find both options take more and more personal choice out of the equations and that can be potentially dangerous.
As far as I have found there is no solid "proof" of what causes sexual orientation. I am by no means an intellectual, but I do have my ear to the ground on this as it is a bit of a pet topic...

Proof in the form of one identifiable trait has been elusive and IMHO will never be conclusively identified. Our path to becoming what we are is impacted by a thousand triggers whose interrelation is virtually impossible to trace. Genetics, gestational hormones and environmental chemistry are but three of the larger points which interact at specific points in time to affect the out come of a given fetus. Also sexuality is a continuum... different people range along it at different points.

I believe that sexual identity issues are not a new thing, as we have proof that throughout history and across species we find proof of people occupying different positions along the sexual continuum. That said, the late 20th century has created circumstances where we as individuals are able to be far more attuned to our individual selves and needs.

Anecdotally I CAN confirm that I've never met a gay man who made a choice about their sexuality. I have met bisexuals who can range in their sexual tastes, but all the gay men I know knew as soon as they became sexual (or sooner) where their desires lay.
I'm not arguing with you and I want to be clear about that.  I respect your beliefs and opinions not because of your sexual identity, but because of your intrinsic value as a human being.  With that being said, the comment I made about sexual identity being new wasn't a statement that homosexual behavior didn't exist in the past, simply that an individual wouldn't have PRIMARILY identified themselves by their sexual orientation.  By that, I mean that it is a relatively new concept that people label themselves or are labeled by others as "Homosexual" "asexual" etc.  Whereas centuries ago people would have been identified by their country of origin, status as citizens, etc.
My second point can be a crude example (and I realize this) but know that I am not saying it in a hurtful manner.  People always use negative behaviors to compare to homosexuality and I'm afraid i tend to fall into that category for the sake of conversation and argument.  I don't believe that I have ever met someone who admitted that they chose to be homosexual, but that they were born like that.  However, i don't think I ever met anyone who chose to be an alcoholic either.  It was something that "runs in the family" something they "have a disposition towards" and the like.  the point being, we often find "genetic evidence" to rationalize or explain parts of us that society might currently view as "fringe" or worse.
The last point would be your comment
I hope I didn't come across as combative... it wasn't my goal at all.

I do think you are correct in your point about sexual identity residing at the forefront of our identity is a relatively new thing. I may be mistaken on this point, but I think as a society we have reached a point in our evolution that has allowed individuals to be much more attuned to our inner dialog.

The structure of our society has also reversed the age old imperative for procreation. As primarily urban people, offspring are not a needed source of free labour as they would have been in an agrarian or hunting society. We work primarily with our minds today and we have a level of leisure time that is unprecedented. This means much more time to concern ourselves with our happiness and personal fulfillment I think.

I also think that in our age of globalization we are witnessing a growing trend of acceptance of diversity. The churches are quickly losing their influence as people are becoming better educated and this improved knowledge base is creating a climate where people are increasingly understanding of each other. We are, in the end, far more similar than otherwise...
Thank you, I think that was all very well-said.
In regards to a homosexual person's ability to contribute successfully to society.  I think this point goes primarily to a person's ability to contribute as a human being, it is not dependent on how they are identified.  Whether someone is homosexual, christian, a pedophile, an alcoholic, a woman, etc.  Theisr unique skill set is found in their humanity, not in their identity.
As for negative attributes that depend on a lifestyle, many of these are generalizations.  For instance, and alcoholic CAN be abusive, a christian CAN be judgmental and off-puting, a drug addict CAN be violent or non-contributing, but these are not hallmarks of that person's humanity.
There have been studies of the negative physical and psychological affects of homosexuality and I was wondering if you would be willing to share your thoughts on those kinds of studies.  For instance, the prevalence of multiple partners, the use of drugs to heighten the sexual experience, the presence of AIDS in the gay community, and the fact that the sexual act requires certain parts to go in certain places they weren't intended to (which the CDC is now teaching teenagers is a viable birth control practice).
Finally, your comment that the church is losing its influence as people become more educated is a point I have to disagree with.  In fact, if we are to take the philosophical community as an example, Christian philosophers are growing at an exponential rate as people begin
Well, as I mentioned in one of my posts, the possibility for gays and lesbians to occupy a normal and healthy position in society is imperative to their healthy adjustment as individuals. We are all social animals and rejection from our family or primary peer group causes incredible damage.

I'm 45 and live in Canada... I have witnessed a society which has legalized gay marriage quite a few years ago as well as adoption. Hence our society has come a long way towards accepting the presence of gays and lesbians in everyday life.

I have noted that younger gays, coming of age in an atmosphere of greater acceptance from their peers are by far better adjusted and tend to mingle freely with their peer group regardless of orientation. In contrast, when I came of age, my sexuality drew me away from my heterosexual friends to find other gay men... while I have always lived my life quite openly, it was not without the understanding that there was shame attached to who I was. Shame is incredibly corrosive to the human soul and I believe that living under the weight of such shame is largely to blame for the social ills that many attribute to homosexuality.

In my travels I have noted that when I travel to an area where homosexuality is less accepted, The prevalence of stereotypes becomes much stronger... As though gay men feel they need to identify with a certain cultural role. The opposite is true in areas
(I just hate that HuffPo truncates my posts.....)

The opposite is true in areas where homosexuality is more accepted. The more a part of society gays and lesbians feel, the less their sexuality is a point of identification.

I believe that what we are witnessing, as gays and lesbians become accepted into the general social fabric, will be a greatly reduced level of self destructive behavior.

You mention issues such as multiple sexual partners, substance abuse and AIDS in your post. I would postulate that these are not homosexual specialties. They are baggage that came with the shift in our culture that occurred in the 60's as sexuality became freer and people explored their pleasure centers. The major difference is that for gay men and women there has been a lack of a defined societal role to guide them out from that phase of life.

It may seem trite, but example is a powerful learning tool. When you
can't find a positive role model to pattern your goals upon, it creates a
great deal of uncertainty. Coupled with a general societal
condemnation, it made for a very difficult path for young gays and
lesbians to invent a positive future for themselves, leaving many to extend the adventures of youth indefinitely and sometimes at great cost.

This is beginning to change as our social group starts to rebound from the AIDS epidemic and the demographic vacuum it created. Today, increasingly young gays and lesbians are aspiring to the same ideals of
Today,
increasingly young gays and lesbians are aspiring to the same ideals of
any other young person... to find love and live a stable life. I have
the great fortune to know many couples who have been together almost as
long as I've been an adult. These are pioneers for people my age, but
now that the example is set, I know several young couples who've married
and adopted... stabilizing their life pattern and establishing roots.

In the end, I'm witnessing a growing familiarity in the lives of young gays and lesbians as they are progressively drawn into the accepted core group of society. Belonging to the same group as everyone else ultimately seems to create stronger more resilient people who live happier and more stable lives.
While I don't believe anyone should be marginalized in a society for no reason other than our intrinsic value as human beings, I must ask the question...is the acceptance of homosexuality by society as a whole essential to its survival?  I understand what you are saying about shame, but I also have to wonder if that is something that can be solely influenced by society.  I understand there is a difference between shame and guilt.  Both of which can be influenced by outside forces, but they are ultimately due to how an individual views themselves for a number of reasons.  What happens to homosexuals if society never fully embraces homosexuality or if society doesn't embrace homosexuality even on a large scale?  I respect my homosexual friends, but they know that I am not supportive of their homosexual behavior in the sense that I would endorse it as a positive way of life.  Do I have a responsibility to all homosexuals?
Society, like all complex organizations, is not dependent on any one group for its survival... Iran hangs gays till they're dead and they're still operating as a society. Not one I feel is particularly inspiring or desirable... but none the less functional.

Just as society can exist without embracing gays, so gays will continue to exist without the support of society. We've been doing it for centuries. Our existence is documented throughout history and even outside the human species. You see, and this is where I get upset, I can not fathom what people are thinking that would make being gay so intrinsically fantastic that we would weather beatings, ostracism, social exclusion and violence.... trust me, I love my husband, but if anybody had offered me a hope of a simple life 40 years ago with 2 kids and a white picket fence, do you THINK I'd CHOOSE this? Trust me, I'm not that much of a masochist. Society has made being gay a really unpleasant choice, no one makes a decision to make their lives this tough. This path I'm on, no body offered me an option about it.

Ultimately, we are all bit players in each other's lives. It is not up to us to agree with someone's path, their path is their own and no one's burden needs to be made heavier. As we act out our parts in other people's lives, we either leave them with positive feelings or negative ones. While your approval is not
Speaking about shame, and its power to damage our lives and relationships... I have a link for you. I hope it will post and not get cut out...

http://www.ted.com/talks/brene_brown_on_vulnerability.html

This is an author who was recommended to me my a counselor I was speaking to about shame, self respect and allowing myself to embrace who I am.

It's a 20 minute talk she gives and it's both funny and insightful. It really explains how shame works and how shame eats at our relationships with others.

For gay people, the shame society has placed on us by virtue of the people we love is at the heart of the negative influences that damage the lives of so many homosexuals.

At the end of the day, if you have a responsibility to your friends, it is to NOT add to the burden of shame they carry.
i appreciate your honesty and insight.  I hope you don't mind me asking you a personal question.  Have you, personally, been beaten and ostracized due to your sexual preference/identity/orientation/whatever people are comfortable calling it?  That seems like something so personal that no one would know unless it was make public by one's own self.  By that I mean that I can't think of a time where I publicly stated my heterosexual identity.  How is something so personal so rampantly punished?  I hear about gay men being hurt by society and I stop and ask myself "why?" not "why is our society so hateful?"  that is a question that could solve many problems if answered, but "why does everyone know who people want to have sex with?"  That seems like something so personal and private that I can't figure out why we make it public and why we want that to be the primary identifier in our lives.
Yes, I have been assaulted physically. I was also taunted and humiliated through school until I seriously considered taking my own life. Even after I became an adult I was frequently verbally harassed on the street.

These things no longer occur. I decided long ago that I would not accept the attacks people would attempt to inflict upon me anymore. I turned my attention towards buildin