Categories: Health & Fitness

Asexuality: what does an asexual person feel?

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Asexual people feel little or no sexual attraction. But the term asexuality is sometimes used to designate a lack of interest in sex, or, more rarely, the absence of sexual orientation. We take stock with Sandra Saint-Aimé, clinical sexologist and president of the union of clinical sexologists & Dr Carol Burté, doctor sexologist member of the Interdisciplinary Post University Association of Sexology.

Definition: what is asexuality?

Asexuality refers to the fact of not feel sexual attraction to others. Asexual people, also called Acesimply do not see the point of having sex and can do without it, without suffering. That said, they can have sex, out of curiosity, to satisfy their partner(s) or to have children, for example.

Asexuality is not linked to sexual dysfunction, it is stable throughout life: it is not something that would have changed compared to previous sexuality, insists Dr. Burté.

She is considered as a sexual orientationin the same way as heterosexuality, homosexuality, bisexuality and pansexuality since the human rights conference of the worldpride of 2017.

Did you know ? The letter A of the acronym LGBTQIA+ refers to asexuality. In detail, the “L” stands for lesbian, the “G” stands for gay, the “B” stands for bi, the “T” stands for trans, the “Q” stands for queer, the “I” stands for intersex, the “A” stands for asexual and the “+” stands for all of the many other gender variations.

What is the difference with abstinence?

Asexuality has no nothing to do with celibacy orsexual abstinence, more motivated by personal or religious beliefs. Abstinent women and men feel attraction but voluntarily abstain from sex, while asexual people simply don’t feel the need. Finally, remember that asexuality is generally “persistent” throughout life.

The Unrecognized Spectrum of Asexuality

Asexuality includes a range of sexual orientations: the feelings can be different according to each one. We talk about the spectrum of asexuality, including in particular:

  • the “demi-sexuals”“, who can feel sexual attraction in very specific cases, when they have created a very strong bond with someone;
  • the “grey-sexuals”who very rarely experience sexual attraction;
  • and the “akoisexuals”who feel an attraction that fades when it becomes reciprocal.

What does the asexual flag look like?

The asexual flag is appeared in June 2010, following a campaign by the Network for Asexuality Education and Visibility (Asexual Visibility and Education Network – AVEN). It has four colored bands:

  • black, which represents asexuality;
  • gray, which represents demi-sexuality and grey-sexuality;
  • white, which represents queer (non-asexual) people, who support asexual people;
  • and purple, which represents community.

In 2021, various associations have also set up the international day of asexuality, which now takes place April 6 each year.

© Mr. Flags

Causes: asexuality is neither a sexual disorder nor a mental disorder!

Asexuality is not a choice, just like heterosexuality or homosexuality. It can neither be “diagnosed” nor “treated”, since it is not a pathology, underlines Sandra Saint-Aimé. They can live healthy, completely happy and fulfilled!

Asexuality is no longer recognized as a pathology by the American Psychiatric Association in 2013: for a long time, some specialists have indeed thought that it could be linked to an illness or a problem of libido. Tracks decried by many activists, who recall that homosexuality has also been considered a mental illness that it was necessary to “cure”.

To date, “studies on this subject do not show no identifiable cause“, notes Dr. Carol Burté. It is not linked to an anxiety disorder or relationship difficulties.

A minority of researchers, however, believe that it is not relevant to include asexuality in the continuum of sexual orientations, given that it is characterized by a lack of sexual attraction.

Be that as it may, if you feel distressed by what you feel – or do not feel – do not hesitate to contact a professional who can offer you a reassuring space for discussion, without taboos!, recalls Sandra Saint-Aimé.

Each is free to develop and live their sexuality as he sees fit, insist the experts. Nobody has the right to stick this or that label to someone because of their feelings. Are you or are you not asexual? This is a question that you have to explore yourself.

How do you know if you are affected or not? “Asexual people don’t have an aversion to sex per se, underlines Dr. Carol Burté. They are not opposed to the idea of ​​sexuality, but when they have sex, they may be indifferent, bored and see no point in iteven if they experience arousal and reach orgasm.

Libido, masturbation, pleasure…

Asexuality refers to the absence of sexual attraction to others, not the absence of pleasure. In other words, asexual people are not necessarily abstinent : they have not taken a vow of chastity and can also have a sexuality. In fact, they can have a libido, entertain fantasies, masturbate or take physical pleasure, says Dr. Burté.

Asexuality is not incompatible with the couple

Nowadays, sexuality is set up as a fulfilling norm in the couple, regrets Sandra Saint-Aimé. Faced with a hypersexualized society, some people (asexual or not) may feel marginalized and ashamed… Wrongly! Because many couples flourish by ignoring this “parameter”. And for good reason, Sexuality and feelings are two very different things. “The couple and asexuality are not incompatible since asexuality concerns sexual relations, not romantic relationships”, assures Dr. Burté.

Asexuality should not be confused with aromantism

Some people present a total lack of interest in romantic relationships, regardless of their sexual orientation. We are talking about aromatism. People with aromantics can be sexually attracted to others and have satisfying sex. On the other hand, they do not seek to develop romantic feelings. Theoretically, an asexual person can also be aromantic (in the same way as a heterosexual or homosexual person), but this is not systematic.

She can completely flourish in the context of a relationship and lead a life of cut (with an asexual or queer person). Each couple must then communicate and find their balance. The important thing is set limits and enforce them. Your partner should never make you feel guilty about your sexuality!

#Asexuality #asexual #person #feel

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