‘Sexual orientation towards nobody’ could be a good definition for the concept ‘asexuality’. Those who consider themselves asexual do not feel sexual attraction to other people and, if they do, it happens in very specific cases and specific situations.

They also do not wish to attract other people in this way. Like the rest of sexual orientations, it is an intrinsic part of the person and not a choice, contrary to what could be assumed, for example, by celibacy. 

As the Asexual Visibility and Education Network (AVEN) states on its website, asexuality does not make life worse or better. “It just represents a different set of needs and challenges than most sexual people.”

As in the rest of sexual orientations, there is no specific cause that ‘generates’ a person to be asexual. “It is not a disorder or any type of physical or emotional alteration”, explains to Maldita.es Iván Rotella Arregui, sexologist and member of the State Association of Sexology Professionals (AEPS). “It is simply one more experience of sexuality”, he adds. 

There is not much that science can prove or refute on the subject, as in any other sexual orientation. “There is one thing that science takes more and more into consideration: the self-definition of people, how they consider themselves,” Francisca Molero, president of the Spanish Federation of Sexology Societies (FESS).

Currently, there is a whole movement that has to do with sexuality and people who are clear and define themselves as asexual people: a wide spectrum in which the need (or not) for certain links is highly variable. 

Asexuality does not prevent other types of attraction or affective bonds

That a person does not experience sexual attraction does not mean that they cannot have an emotional or loving interest. “Nor that they cannot have sexual activity and physiological changes at the response level,” says Molero. In fact, there is considerable diversity in the asexual community: it is not a category or a label that requires certain characteristics or tastes, but the spectrum is very wide. 

The point is that, socially, we tend to associate romantic love, for example, with sexual desire. But it is not necessarily so and for asexual people the differentiation is usually very clear and evident. 

In fact, asexual people can feel attraction of a romantic nature, in the case of wanting a sentimental relationship with another person; aesthetics, when they appreciate the appearance of that person; or even sensual, if they have a desire to engage in sensual (non-sexual) activities such as hugging or kissing. The difference is that these do not result in the need to act sexually on that stimulus, although they may imply satisfaction. 

“Asexual people who experience these or other forms of attraction will often be attracted to a particular gender,” AVEN notes. That is, like the rest, someone asexual can continue to have a heteroromantic, homoromantic, biromantic or panromantic orientation. But this is not indispensable: they can be satisfied with close friendships or simply with themselves.

The association adds that, sexual or non-sexual, all relationships are made up of the fabric of interpersonal connection. “Communication, closeness, fun, humor, emotion and trust are just as important in non-sexual relationships as they are in sexual ones.” 

In this spectrum of possibilities of asexuality, there may be those who even have occasional masturbatory practices. As Molero explains, the frequency is usually small, but it can happen. “To masturbate or not to masturbate is not necessarily a sign that you are an asexual person. Masturbation is an option, one more possibility within one’s own eroticism and there are people who practice it and people who don’t, regardless of your identity or your orientation of desire”, adds Roella. 

Asexuality is not a problem for people who experience it

For someone asexual, not having sexual interest in other people is not a problem. This is the main difference with those who have low desire or sexual dysfunction. For the latter, their condition “produces anguish, discomfort and influences their interpersonal relationships,” says Molero. To the asexual collective, no. 

He adds that, in the questionnaires for studies with people who consider themselves asexual and people who say they have low sexual desire, the differences are clear: the scores, the percentages, or the assessment of the questions and situations in one have nothing to do with it. and another group. 

“Asexuality is only a problem if it is a problem for the person who experiences it. But, generally, from the moment they recognize and accept their guidance, they don’t have to experience different problems than anyone else,” explains Rotella. 

It is different if your orientation makes relationships with your surroundings difficult, “especially in love relationships or as a couple”, if the other person does not share the same orientation, as Molero points out: “In this type of sentimental relationship, the sexual issue is usually be important and many times this is the conflict. Not the own reluctance or lack of desire of the person who is considered asexual

Being asexual does not mean being afraid of sexual intercourse.

Not having sexual relations, in the case of the asexual person, has nothing to do with prejudice or fear of these. “In his biographical process of sexuality, the person has been discovering that his desire and attraction to her works like this, it is like that. The fear of having sexual relations is usually due to other issues and can be worked on with Sexology professionals. They are very different issues”, clarifies Rotella.

Molero agrees that, at a clinical level, it is possible to make a differential diagnosis to find out if it is asexuality or fear of sex. “There are many indicators: a person who is afraid of having sex usually says so. Fear of pain, of suddenness, of not having a good time… And it is her whole body that reacts through that fear, ”explains the expert. In the case of asexual orientation, it is not so. 

Grey-asexuality and demisexuality

Within the broad spectrum that this sexual orientation entails, we come across those who define themselves as grey-asexual or demisexual. The former sometimes do experience sexual attraction, but with a low impulse, “without wanting to put it into practice or on very few occasions,” explains the Higher Institute of Psychological Studies (ISEP). 

According to AVEN, these people may have had some sexual experiences in the past, but usually fleeting and without making them feel represented. “It is a very subjective subject based on personal interpretation of feelings and intrinsic experiences. The common point is usually that they have had a much lower appearance of sexuality than almost everyone who identifies as sexual ”, she adds.

“In addition, within the great diversity among asexual people, we can find demisexuals, those who need an emotional bond with a person in order to be attracted to them. Without that bond there is no attraction for anyone”, explains Rotella. 

The ISEP adds that it could be defined as “temporary asexuality until they meet the ‘right’ person, since they do not experience primary sexual attraction (appearance of the other), but secondary sexual attraction (normally romantic connection or the closeness of two people in a relationship)”.

Previous articleBeware of this content that claims that anal sex is “harmful to health”: with the proper prevention measures, it is a totally safe practice
Next articleAt least 30 countries limit or prohibit blood donation by men who have sex with other men