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Katherine Moon
Katherine Isabella Moon
Meow, hello there, my name is Katherine, but you can call me Kat; because I basically am a cat. Anyways, I am a 26-year-old, lifestyle blogger, with an INFP-T personality type, from the United States. I love fashion, the color pink, cats, dogs, and spending all my time on my computer. I'm often seen wearing cat ears headbands.
The Kat Life
The Kat Life

how I'm choosing to live my best life

Wednesday, October 23, 2019

My Experience With Asexuality [Demisexuality]

Purple Sunset
Photo courtesy of Marion Michele on Unsplash

With this week being Asexual Awareness Week, I might as well come right out and say it; I'm on the asexual spectrum! To be a little more specific, I identify the most with demisexuality, which essentially means that I typically don't usually experience sexual attraction, but I might if I form a strong emotional connection to someone. Also, I'd like to clarify that this is not the same thing as abstinence or celibacy; this is just one of many misconceptions about asexuality. Asexuality is a sexual orientation, not a personal or lifestyle choice, such as abstinence; and although many asexuals may choose not to have sex (or just don't care to), many asexuals do have (and even enjoy) sex, even in the absence of sexual attraction.

By the way, before I go any further, I'd also like to note that sexual attraction and romantic attraction are not the same things. You can be asexual and not experience sexual attraction, but still experience romantic attraction; and be of any romantic orientation, such as heteroromantic, homoromantic, biromantic, panromantic, or even aromantic. By the way, you can also be aromantic (or any subset of aromatic), but not be asexual, and be of any sexual orientation. I could go on and on, but I literally can not speak for everyone on the ace or aro spectrum, as there are many ways to experience asexuality and/or aromanticism. I can, however, speak from my own experiences.

My experiences with asexuality and demisexuality

I'll be 100% honest with you, I actually didn't even know I was demisexual until a few years ago; purely due to the lack of information on asexuality or any of its subsets, such as demisexuality. Seriously, I couldn't have been any younger than 20 when I first heard the terms asexual and demisexual and started reading about it online. I don't remember exactly when and where I first learned about it, but I do know that when I discovered the term demisexual, it made a lot of sense to me. Then upon looking further and further into it, and realizing that yes, you can still experience romantic attraction in the absence of sexual attraction towards someone, it made even more sense. For real though, why did no one tell me about any of this before?! Why did I not learn about this in health class, or anywhere else until I was in my early 20s? This all would have been great to know in both middle and high school.

Seriously, knowing about asexuality back in middle school would have at the very least helped me to understand myself better; even if none of the people asking me who I "liked-liked" would understand it. Ugh, I can't even begin to express how much I despised being asked that "who do you like-like" question. Why do I have to "like-like" someone, and even if I did, why should I tell you about it? Especially since when I did "like-like" someone, it was very deep and personal to me. And why would I tell someone that tends to pick on me that very personal bit of information; knowing it would likely get used against me? So typically, because I felt like I was obligated to give an answer to fit in, I'd just spout off the name of some random popular guy that every other girl seemed to be going nuts over. Even though I didn't really see the appeal of said popular guy, outside of the fact that they were kind of cute, I'd say "sure, I like him"; just to shut whoever is asking up.

Okay, for real though, why was it so important to have a crush in middle school; and for that crush to be on someone of the opposite sex? Mind you, this was back in the mid to late 2000s, but still, why does everyone need to have a crush in middle school or even high school?! When someone, or a whole group of people, approached me asking me which guy (or guys) I had a crush on, apparently "I don't actually have a crush", wasn't an answer; even when I actually didn't have a crush. Oftentimes, saying that I didn't have a crush (or not wanting to share my crush because it was so personal), would lead to the other students assuming I was a lesbian. And as you can probably guess, their tone in sharing this assumption about me wasn't exactly kind or accepting; even if they had been right and I was, in fact, homoromantic, I didn't appreciate the homophobic tone they used.

Demisexual Pride Flag
Demisexual Pride Flag

Having basically been interrogated about my crushes, and rarely having a real answer to give to a question I didn't even give a crap about, and being confused as to how a person can be attracted to more than one person at a time, or have many crushes, I felt like the odd-one-out. Through the course of middle school and high school, I had a whopping total of THREE [3] actual crushes, one of which I met online, and didn't even live in the same state; all of them too personal to me to discuss with anyone I knew might use it against me later. I kept wondering, why was I like this? Why don't I have many crushes, and why am I rarely attracted to anyone, even if I find them to be easy on the eyes? And why are the attractions I do have so personal, and so special to me? Does anyone else experience anything like this, or am I the only one? Those were just a few questions that I had.

So as you can imagine, learning about asexuality and it's subsets, and being able to identify with the term "demisexual", came as a huge relief to me. Same with also learning that I can very much be romantically attracted to my partner, but not really care or have any desire to take things any further than cuddling and actually watching the movie or playing a video game together. Although I wouldn't mind a little bit of kissing with someone I really love from time to time. But as I said before, this is only my preference, others may be completely repulsed by the idea of any form of physical contact, while others on the ace or aro spectrum may want to take it even further than kissing, for a number of reasons; which is still valid, by the way.

Photo courtesy of Kristina V on Unsplash

All that being said, learning what asexuality was helped me a lot in discovering who I am, and understanding myself better. No longer do I not understand why I don't experience attraction in the same way others do; or why I'm so tempted to fast-forward through the sex scenes in TV shows and movies, and will even exit the room when they come on. This isn't to say there aren't still some challenges to my demisexuality; from not really being able to relate when my friends talk about sex or sexual attraction, to being invalidated or being told there must be some reason I'm "scared of sex", or that I'm just prude or haven't met the right person yet. Actually, I've been romantically attracted to a small number of people throughout my teen and adult life; so can you really say that? I personally enjoy romance, although dating can be hell if you're on the ace or aro spectrum; especially in this hypersexual world that we live in. I'd also like to say, that it's also totally okay to not want a sexual or romantic relationship, and prefer to just have a close platonic relationship with someone, or a queerplatonic relationship (QPR).

Also, to debunk one last misconception; no, nothing happened to me to make me this way, my sexual orientation was not caused by any kind of trauma; and no, I don't "fear sex", I just don't experience sexual attraction, except on extremely rare occasions. Although unfortunately, some people on the ace or aro spectrum may have had traumatic experiences, due to how dark and evil this world can be, this absolutely is not the case for me or a lot of others on the ace and aro spectrum. I've just always been this way for as far back as I can remember.

Asexual Pride Flag
Asexual Pride Flag

I could go on and on about my personal experiences with my asexuality or demisexuality, and I just might have to write about my demisexuality more often. Although I'll be honest, I was originally very nervous about writing this, as this is a lot different and a bit more personal than my usual content. But I felt that this was important to share, as many people may not even know that asexuality is indeed a thing; or what it actually is. So I'll end this post with a few resources on asexuality.

The Asexual Visibility and Education Network [AVEN] - AVEN has a ton of great resources and information on Asexuality and Aromanticism, as well as a forum where you can read others' experiences, ask questions, and connect with other aces and aros.

Explore The Spectrum: Guide To Finding Your Ace Community [GLAAD] - This is a great quick guide to read about asexuality, aromanticism, and their subsets.

The Asexuals and Aromantic Wikis - These wikis contain information on different aro and ace identities, and other information relating to asexuality and aromanticism.

If you're questioning whether or not you may be asexual or maybe demisexual, you may also find the asexual and demisexual quizzes from Lonerwolf helpful; but only you can actually determine this, and it's your own choice whether or not you choose to identify with any ace identity. And if you don't? That's okay too!
Thank you for reading, and I hope the rest of your day is wonderful!
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