Asexual Isn’t Anti-Intimacy, Ctd

by Chris Bodenner

A reader writes:

I just wanted to thank you for your continuing efforts to raise awareness about asexuality to your readers. I'm a junior in college, and I've been struggling to get people to take me seriously when I tell them I'm asexual. Some friends have said my standards are simply too high, some said I'm too socially awkward. It's demeaning, but I don't feel like I have a right to complain. Compared to other members of the LGTBQA community, asexuals probably have to deal with less intolerance and violence. No one calls me a sinner or a freak, or tells me I don't have a right to be married. We don't get beaten or murdered because of who we are. Really, I shouldn't complain.

But apparently I don't have the right to not be sexually active, or interested.

I was a little worried in high school because I didn't know I could be interested in men without being sexually interested in them. What was I? No one could tell me. I'm not religious enough to use that as a cover for my lack of physical attraction to people. I'm scared of being in relationships because it seems like everyone expects sex after a certain point in time. How am I suppose to say "It's not you, it's me" and be taken seriously?

Whenever I'm feeling at my lowest, though, someone somewhere says something about asexuals and how we exist. How we have feelings. How we do love and want to be loved, even if we're uncomfortable with physical love.

One thing I've always wondered about asexuals: is their feeling toward sex more of an indifference or outright revulsion? As in, would an asexual be willing to tolerate a certain amount of sex with someone he or she loved if the significant other was not asexual, similar to the way many couples tolerate each other's kinks? I asked our reader for her take:

Honestly, from what I've learned about others, it really depends. Some, like myself, feel more willing to accommodate someone we trust, like indulging a kink, while other asexuals I know feel incredibly uncomfortable with the idea of sex, some even with themselves. There are different levels, it seems, not just one answer across the board.