A is for Asexual

Asexual pride flag

I remember that Thursday in June when the three of us sat by the floor to ceiling window of the Starbucks on 3rd. It was crowded that day, but I could hear every word.

I had a chai latte, Linda had a cappuccino, and you, Peter, had tea.

“You want a three-way,” you said looking uncertain, “but you don’t want sex. But Linda and I can have sex, and you’re fine.”

“I hope you do,” I said, smiling, rotating my steaming cup clockwise, so that the green and white logo clearly faced me. The barista spelled my name horribly wrong, but that’s okay. “You both like it. I just don’t. Maybe once in a blue moon. Maybe.”

You sipped your organic green tea thoughtfully.

“I’m sorry,” Linda said. “Both of you. I think you’re both wonderful, attractive people and I hope we can stay friends, but no. No offense.”

“None taken,” I said, even though I really wanted to scream at her. Am I not enough? Are you only in love with someone who is going to get naked with you in a bed? Is that how you measure love? Am I not enough to make you happy?

She left us alone at the table. My eyes met yours.

“Thank you for your honesty,” you said. “I am really glad we had this talk. I hope we can stay friends or more than friends, if that’s what you want. I don’t understand, but I’m willing to go all the way with you. I mean psychologically, emotionally. This is weird, right?”

Maybe it is, Peter, but you know what? It was, and is, also perfect. Happy fiftieth anniversary.

***

Asexual means someone who doesn’t experience/experiences very little purely physical sexual attraction to anyone. People who are asexual can still have intimate relationships of many kinds (including sexual).

This fictional story is a based on a reality shared by many who choose to marry despite being ace. There is no one way to do it. Some have “open marriages.” Some marry fellow asexuals, knowing there is more to being in love than (occasionally, if any) sexual intercourse.

Personally, I am asexual and (happily) celibate as well. I prefer being single, and that is valid. Someone can experience sexual attraction to a “normal” extent (allosexual) to people of any or no gender and choose to have or not to have sex with other people, and that is also valid.

5 thoughts on “A is for Asexual

  1. Interesting start to the challenge!

    I recently wrote about my own experience of changing from A Sexual Being to more of asexual being. For me, it’s very much tied up with hormone changes. I know that for others, though, asexual is their default setting.

    I read a sign someone made that put asexuality in context. It said, “If people can have sex without love, they can also have love without sex.” – – brilliant!

  2. I know that Kinsey was a pioneer 60 years ago when he proposed that everyone was on a sexual continuum between homosexuality and heterosexuality, where the real outliers were those who were at the extremes of either end. What is clear now is that is just one aspect of sexuality. I have learned what LGBTQIA+ means as an acronym but I’m aware enough to know that there is a panorama yet to be revealed. Looking forward to your series, Anne.

    1. I never thought about it that way. Discerning my asexuality was such a journey. It still is, mostly because (funny but true) I *believe* other people experience sexual attraction. I’m still entirely sure what sexual attraction is. It feels like a divide by zero error. All the time. Have a great week!

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