I thought I’d share some of my recent experiences of being an “out” asexual. This covers a period of between one and two years.
I won’t say that the reaction has been overwhelmingly positive; rather, it hasn’t been negative. But that was very much in line with expectations. I didn’t want a mardi gras in my honour or to be commended by the town mayor; it’s just not that major. However, it did feel like a major thing at the time. It was the culmination of a process of realising that how I felt was broadly in line with the definitions of this thing called “asexuality”.
The biggest problem with telling people is that it’s not mainstream. In general, it’s not that well understood among the wider population. As a thing, it’s quite young, but what’s worse is that it’s hard to understand. For many asexuals, understanding sexuality is difficult; in a society where sexuality is not only the norm but, to some extent, a form of currency*, understanding what it is like to have that element removed must be almost impossible.
Since that time, I’ve been trying to meet other asexual people (albeit online) through specialist asexual social and “dating” websites. I’ve met some really lovely people through those sites — both in the UK and much, much further afield — and, who knows, perhaps one day I will meet some of them face-to-face. That prospect excites me. I still haven’t knowingly met another asexual in the flesh.
It leads to the question of dating and romantic relationships. I’ve given it a lot of thought, but there do not seem to be many answers, so perhaps I’m wasting my time. However, never say never.
* When I say sexuality is a form of currency, I don’t actually mean prostitution. Heard of the phrase “sex sells”? Then you must know what I mean. So many adverts — and products themselves — are presented on the premise that it is in some way associated with sex.