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Mon Oct 19, 2015, 01:51 AM

Asexual Awareness Week 2016 (Oct 23-30'th)

Last edited Tue Oct 25, 2016, 07:50 PM - Edit history (1)

[font style="font-family:'Georgia','Baskerville Old Face','Helvetica',fantasy;" size=4] [center]It is that time of year again![/center]

[div style='color: purple;font-size: 2.5em;'][center]It's Asexual Awareness Week!
[/center]

[center][/center]

[center][font size=6 color=#5F5F60]So what exactly is asexuality?[/center][/font]

Asexuality can be defined as a sexual orientation in which one does not experience sexual attraction or sexual desire directed toward others. In a way, it can be thought of as a lack of an orientation. You could easily say, that we would much rather have [font color=purple]cake[/font] than sex

But wait, there is more! In addition to being an (lack of) orientation, there are many sexuals who experience sexual attraction/desire so rarely, or only under specific circumstances that they identify with the label as well.

For this reason, in addition to being an orientation, asexuality is also be considered a spectrum of sexual orientations. Imagine it as a gradient going from black to white. The black end of the gradient represents those with no sexual desire what-so-ever. At the other end, represented by "white," are allosexuals. Allosexuals being people who experience normal to high levels of sexual attraction/desire. In the middle grey area are those people we mentioned earlier, the ones who only rarely or under special circumstance experience sexual attraction: Grey-sexuals!

In fact, this diversity in asexuality is basis of our flag. Black on top to represent asexuality, gray for the gray-sexualuality, white for our allosexual allies, and purple to represent the community in its entirety!

[center][/center]

[center][font size=6 color=#5F5F60]So does this mean that asexuals are never attracted to other people and never fall in love?[/center][/font]

Not quite. Asexuals do not experience sexual desire for others, but they can experience other types of attractions. You see, there are actually several different types of attractions. For instance, a person can be romantically attracted to someone but not sexually. Here is a graphic explaining some of the different types of attraction:

[center][/center]

An asexual does not experience sexual attraction, but they can experience these other types of attraction. Asexuals who are attracted to the other gender romantically, but not sexually can be called heteroromantic asexuals, while those attracted to the same gender could be discribed as homoromantic asexuals.

If an asexual lacks both romantic and sexual attraction they can be called an Aromantic Asexual. Not surprisingly, one doesn't have to be asexual to be aromantic. There are also sexuals who are aromantic as well.

[center][/center]

[center][font size=6 color=#5F5F60]So, asexuals are just people who don't have sex?[/center][/font]

No, that not quite right. What you are describing is celibacy.

Asexuality is an orientation much like being homosexual, bisexual, or heterosexual. And just like those orientations being asexual is not a choice. Being celibate, on the other hand, is a choice.

Further, one need not be asexual to choose to be celibate. Also, just like all other orientations, one can choose to have intercourse with someone despite not being sexually attracted to that person for various reasons. For instance, an asexual may choose to have sex because they want to become a parent.

But just like a person of any other orientation, there will be difficulties having intercourse with someone you aren't sexually attracted to depending on how repulsed one is to that gender.

There are, in fact, many asexuals who are completely sex-repulsed to the point that even if they want children they would be unable to overcome their aversion to sex. These feelings often can cause major issues in mixed relationships with allosexuals and just one of the issues our community face.

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[center][font size=6 color=#5F5F60]Do Asexuals face Discrimination?[/center][/font]
[center][font size=4 color= scarlet]Trigger Warning[/font][/center]

Unfortunately, yes, we do.

However, Many people not only think we don't have such issues but they refuse to even accept that asexuality exist. Quite often, asexual people are told that they are suffering from hormonal issues, or mental illness, or that our asexuality is the result of things like abuse.

Now, while it is possible for people to lose their sexual desire for others due to these factors; an asexuals lack of sexual disorder is due to their orientation, and it is important that people realize the difference. Fortunately, the field of psychology has now realized that and they have recently made a distinction between asexuality and Hypoactive sexual desire disorder in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders .

According to one study, we actually face more wide spread discrimination than any other orientation; HOWEVER, this discrimination isn't necessary of a phobic type. What this means is that a person who is homophobic is just as likely to hate asexuals as they are homosexuals, and that is assuming that they don't just assume that we are homosexuals in denial about our orientation.

We are routinely seen as both machine like and uncaring, and yet also as animalistic. Perhaps, the single worst form of discrimination an asexual could face is "corrective rape." There has also been a story of an asexual couple denied the right to adopt a child because of their orientation.

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[center][font size=6 color=purple]In Conclusion[/center][/font]

So, not to end on a downer not I would like to conclude by thanking the LGBT group here at DU for all of your support of DU's asexual posters and thank everyone who took time to read. For those further interested in asexuality here are some links:[/font]

[center]
    http://www.asexuality.org/home/

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asexuality

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/news/asexuality/

    http://asexualawarenessweek.com/[/center]

    [font style="font-family:'Georgia','Baskerville Old Face','Helvetica',fantasy;" size=4]Thank you all for reading this long post and please help yourself to the Ace cake~![/font]

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    [center][/center][/font]

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Arrow 15 replies Author Time Post
Reply Asexual Awareness Week 2016 (Oct 23-30'th) (Original post)
LostOne4Ever Oct 2015 OP
F4lconF16 Oct 2015 #1
LostOne4Ever Oct 2015 #2
F4lconF16 Oct 2015 #3
uriel1972 Oct 2015 #7
LostOne4Ever Oct 2015 #8
area51 Oct 2015 #4
LostOne4Ever Oct 2015 #5
retrowire Oct 2015 #6
LostOne4Ever Oct 2015 #9
LostOne4Ever Oct 2015 #10
LostOne4Ever Oct 2016 #11
Behind the Aegis Oct 2016 #12
closeupready Oct 2016 #13
LostOne4Ever Oct 2016 #14
closeupready Oct 2016 #15

Response to LostOne4Ever (Original post)

Mon Oct 19, 2015, 01:59 AM

1. Proud to k&r!

Had a long discussion with my roomie tonight about all of this. Demisexual is a thing, too--what ze identifies as some of the time. It's apparently when you are mostly only asthetically attracted, but can be sexually attracted if there's a strong bond between you and your partner/s. I think that's what you identified as grey-sexual.

Man, what a time to live in--so many options to choose from

Edit: oh, and apparently there's differences in definitions for trans and non-trans asexuality. Who knew? I wish I could elaborate, but I'm still learning.

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Response to F4lconF16 (Reply #1)

Mon Oct 19, 2015, 02:27 AM

2. Demisexuality is most definitely real too!

It is actually considered a subtype of grey-sexuality.

The way I understand it, it is when (like you say) a person can only experience sexual desire for others once they establish a strong emotional/romantic bond with another person.

Quite a few people start off thinking they are "fully" asexual, only to find out later that they are demi-sexuals.

Also, I believe there was a survey at AVEN (the asexual visibility and education network) that found that over 10% of asexuals identify as trangender.

I personally have some gender identities issues myself, but it is confusing and varies so much I just don't feel right identifying that way. Regardless, I wonder if there is a connection?

Anyhow, thanks you very much for the K&R!!!

Edit: adding a link for next year: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/00224499.2015.1015713

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Response to LostOne4Ever (Reply #2)

Mon Oct 19, 2015, 02:36 AM

3. Yup, that was ze's story.

Though ze is very open about finding people asthetically pleasing haha.

I know what you mean. I still haven't figured it out. I don't really identify as male--like, it's started mildly bothering me when people call me a guy. But I don't identify as anything else in particular. I think non-binary would work, but apparently that's mostly used among trans individuals, which I'm not. I think genderqueer is the best from what I've heard. If I had to guess, I'd say I'm male out of habit. But it's all kind of up in the air.

Ah, I am glad to have found a person to talk with about it though. I haven't had that, or at least didn't have anybody with the knowledge to understand. Lucky to have the roommate that I do. Ze and I have discovered that we agree on almost everything, and I know even in the short time span we've known each other we've learned a lot.

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Response to LostOne4Ever (Reply #2)

Tue Oct 20, 2015, 08:13 AM

7. For a long time I thought I was asexual...

but it turns out I have gender dysphoria. It's hard to feel sexy when you are in the wrong body.

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Response to uriel1972 (Reply #7)

Tue Oct 20, 2015, 05:15 PM

8. I have heard of alot of people who experienced the same thing

Last edited Fri Nov 6, 2015, 01:03 AM - Edit history (1)

[font style="font-family:'Georgia','Baskerville Old Face','Helvetica',fantasy;" size=4 color=teal]Sexuality and gender identity may be totally separate things, but there is a definite interplay between the two that makes things confusing.

That one of things I like about AVEN, no one really tries to police people's identities there. They tell people to identify as what feels right to the person, and if they find it doesn't quite fit, or if they find out later that they were mistaken, that they can simply change their how they identify.

It is that person's identity, and there is no penalty for changing later.

They also have a rather nice gender forum for those of us with gender issues...cause I am near 99% certain I have Gender dysphoria too.[/font]

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Response to LostOne4Ever (Original post)

Mon Oct 19, 2015, 03:13 AM

4. Kick

Previously someone on this board posted a link to the AVEN site and when I went there & read the information, it clicked.

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Response to area51 (Reply #4)

Mon Oct 19, 2015, 04:02 AM

5. For me it was the Huffington Post article getting linked on DU (nt)

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Response to LostOne4Ever (Original post)

Mon Oct 19, 2015, 04:22 AM

6. KnR!

Not everyone subscribed to what most view as traditional sexuality. The human mind is an incredible thing and we must all understand that all possibilities are possible!

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Response to LostOne4Ever (Original post)

Tue Oct 20, 2015, 10:08 PM

9. Famous Asexuals

[center][font style="font-family:'Georgia','Baskerville Old Face','Helvetica',fantasy;" size=4][font color=purple size=8]Famous Asexuals[/font][/center]

It is believed that asexuals make up somewhere around 1% of the population. Given that asexuality is a rare orientation, and it can be hard to identify someone for NOT desiring something it is not surprising that asexuality has a visibility problem. However, in spite of this, some open asexuals have achieved a degree of notoriety. Here is a list of some fairly well known asexuals you may or may not have heard of:

[center][font size=6 color=#5F5F60]Famous Living Asexuals[/font][/center]

[center][font color=purple size=5]Janeane Garofalo[/center][/font]

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Given this is democratic underground there is a good chance most people reading this have heard of Janeane Garofalo.

The famous comedienne, actress, and liberal actress is also an open hetero-romantic asexual.

[center][font color=purple size=5]Morrissey[/center][/font]

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The famed singer, songwriter, former The Smiths frontman, and passionate animal rights activist is a Pan-romantic asexual.

[center][font color=purple size=5]Tim Gunn*[/center][/font]

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Famed fashion consultant, television personality, actor, voice actor, and Project Runway personality Tim Gunn makes a controversial addition to this list as some people claim that he is just celibate not asexual. But, since he did say, "I’ve always been kind of asexual" I am going to include him in this list as a possible homoromantic asexual.

[center][font color=purple size=5]Caitlyn Jenner*[/center][/font]

[center][/center]

Another controversial inclusion, Famed Olympic Gold Medalist and current TV personality Caitlyn Jenner told Barbra Walters that she (back when she was seen as a male) she was never gay but was a heterosexual.

When pushed further she famously "Let’s go with ‘asexual’ for now,” which more than like meant that she was using the term asexual as a synonym for celibate. Regardless, even though she is probably likely a homosexual transwoman, I am going to list her as a possible homoromantic asexual.

[center][font size=6 color=#5F5F60]Famous Possible Asexuals From History[/font][/center]

Asexuality as a recognized orientation only happened recently, but like all other orientation the truth is it has existed as long as all the other orientations. But with the difficulty of finding evidence of a lack of desire, and varying negative attitudes toward alternate sexuality through-out history it is hard to identify famous aces of ages long past.

That said, there have been many people throughout history that displayed a pattern of behavior that strong hints that they too were asexual. Please take these names with a grain of salt as we can never know for sure.

[center][font color=purple size=5]Nikola Tesla[/center][/font]

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Nikola Tesla was many things; he was an electrical engineer, mechanical engineer, physicist, and the inventor of AC Power. He was also a possible aromantic asexual. Not only was he known for being celibate but spurning all romantic relationships.

[center][font color=purple size=5]Isaac Newton[/center][/font]

[center][/center]

Yet another famed scientist and inventor. Isaac Newton never married and had no public relationships that anyone knows of. There is evidence that he had a close relationship with Swiss Mathematician Nicolas Fatio de Duillier. I am going to list him as a possible homoromantic/aromantic asexual.

[center][font color=purple size=5]Emily Brontë[/center][/font]

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The author of Wutherning Heights constitutes another possible Aromantic Asexual. She was known as a recluse who barely socialized outside of her family and her beloved animals.

[center][font color=purple size=5]Eleanor Roosevelt[/center][/font]

[center][/center]

Many people believe that First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt was a secret lesbian, and there is a ton of evidence to support that. But there is also evidence that she may have been a homoromantic asexual as well. In particular a letter to her daughter in which she said, "sex is an Ordeal to be borne." Not a very allosexual thing to say; but with all these historical figures it is hard to be 100% certain now that they are no longer alive to verify for themselves.

[center][font size=6 color=#5F5F60]Famous Asexuals in Fiction[/font][/center]

They are rare, but there are also some famous asexual found in works of fiction around the world!

[center][font color=purple size=5]Sherlock Holmes[/center][/font]

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Sherlock Holmes was written as an almost perfect gaze into what it is like to be an Aromantic Asexual. His only interest in others is as puzzles to be solved or someone to beat in a battle of wits. Sadly, many more modern adaptations like CBS's Elementary seem insistent on removing this aspect of his personality, erasing perhaps the best known fictional asexual in the world.

[center][font color=purple size=5]Sheldon Cooper[/center][/font]

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How could I not include Sheldon on this list? Early on in the Big Bang theory Sheldon displayed a strong lack of interest in sex or romance or even being touched. Recently, however, he has been shown developing feelings for one of college Dr. Amy Fowler. Amy, strangely enough, displayed similar asexual traits when first introduced and who could be seen as a possible demi-sexual.

Whether or not the show will remove his asexual qualities has yet to be seen, but for now he could be argued to be the most visible fictional asexual in America.

[center][font color=purple size=5]Monkey D. Luffy[/center][/font]

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Well, being the anime nerd that I am I couldn't end this without listing the most famous Asexual in Anime now could I?

"Straw Hat" Luffy is the main protagonist of the world's most popular japanese comic book (Manga) "One Piece." Through all of his many adventures pirating on the Grand Line Luffy has not once shown so much as the mildest form of either sexual or romantic attraction to anyone. This was best shown when he was shown to be immune the powers of Snake Princess Boa Hancock who can turn anyone who has even the smallest amount of lust for her into stone whether they be man, woman, or machine.

Further, the series creator even confirmed this saying that they only thing Luffy and his friends are in love with is adventure.[/font]

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Response to LostOne4Ever (Original post)

Wed Oct 21, 2015, 01:29 PM

10. How to survive Asexual Awareness Week! A Survival Guide!

[font style="font-family:'Georgia','Baskerville Old Face','Helvetica',fantasy;" size=4][font size =6 color =purple]How to survive Asexual Awareness Week![/font]

[font size=5 color=#5F5F60]A Survival Guide![/font]

Here are some tips for dealing with asexuals safely!

  1. [font color=purple]Be alert![/font]

    See the asexuals before they see you. Asexuals are commonly invisible, so this can be challenging. The National Park Service recommends heat-vision goggles.


  2. [font color=purple]Avoid hiking at dawn, dusk, or twilight[/font].

    Asexuals are most active at these hours on the physical plane. Grey aces and demis are especially active on moonless nights.


  3. [font color=purple]Make noises to alert asexuals to your presence[/font].

    A startled asexual is a particularly likely to attack.


  4. [font color=purple]If an asexual charges you, stand your ground[/font].

    Asexuals commonly break off the charge or veer away. This is called a “bluff charge.” Running will trigger a chase response.


  5. [font color=purple]Do not attempt to play dead[/font].

    This is a useful tactic for escaping bisexuals, not asexuals, who may continue to maul you even if they think you are dead.


  6. [font color=purple]Distract the asexual by appealing to their interests.[/font]

    Asexuals are diverse and their interests vary wildly, but they often tend towards fandoms such as Sherlock and Doctor Who, queer studies and feminism, and the Internet. If all else fails, try memes.


  7. [font color=purple]Feed the asexual food so that they consider you an ally[/font]

    Although asexuals in popular culture are described as only eating cake, they are actually omnivorous and their diets are similar to those of their closest evolutionary relatives, the pansexual


  8. Have a nice week and practice safe habits when hiking outdoors! Please visit the National Park Service’s website for more information.

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Response to LostOne4Ever (Original post)

Tue Oct 25, 2016, 07:54 PM

11. Normally I would create a new post, but I am kinda busy this year so...kick! Nt

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Response to LostOne4Ever (Reply #11)

Wed Oct 26, 2016, 02:12 PM

12. I hope it is a good kind of busy.

Your posts have been missed!

I am glad you bring this to the attention of people. I feel it is a course for much confusion. I think I am going to bookmark this thread so when I see some ignorant statements, I can just reference this!

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Response to LostOne4Ever (Original post)

Thu Oct 27, 2016, 04:41 PM

13. Not to discount or disparage this post, by why posted in GLBT?

 

Doesn't really have anything to do with issues facing gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender people, IMO.

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Response to closeupready (Reply #13)

Thu Oct 27, 2016, 05:11 PM

14. Maybe I am misunderstanding but I took LGBT to be shorthand

[font style="font-family:'Georgia','Baskerville Old Face','Helvetica',fantasy;" size=4 color=#00009d]You know for LGBTQ, LGBTQ+, LGBTQIA+, LGBTTQQIPP2SAAA, and so forth.

Asexuality is usually classified either under the umbrella term Q for queer, or as one of the As in the above acronyms.

L-Lesbian
G-Gay
B-Bisexual
T-Transgender/Transsexual
Q-Queer/Questioning
I-intersex
P-Pangender/pansexual
2S-Two spirit
A-Asexual/Agender/Allies

If I am wrong, then between this and the LGBT CR&A group I don't know where to post this thread. There is no LGBT+ groups here.

I don't mean to cause any problems, and if the posters here feel this doesn't belong here I am more than willing to delete.[/font]

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Response to LostOne4Ever (Reply #14)

Thu Oct 27, 2016, 10:53 PM

15. No, please don't delete on my account, amigo.

 

I just wasn't quite getting the connection, but now that you've explained, I understand why, and I'm glad you did. Poor closeup - I'm always the last to know...

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