Contrary to the picture, I am not an alien (though people tend to look at me like when when I tell them this), I am asexual. Well, sort of. I fall into the weird group that just recently got a pigeon hole: Gray-A. Let me start first with what a Gray-A is, then move on to my story. Hopefully some of you readers will come to find my discovery helpful.
So asexual is a person who doesn’t feel sexual attraction. Nearly 1% of the population is asexual. I never could quite place that label on myself securely because some people did turn me on, just not very often. Then I read about Gray-As. They are mostly asexual but, on occasion, experience sexual attraction. Or they feel attraction but have a super low sex drive. Or they like certain forms of sexual things like heavy petting, but sex is totally off the table and sexual attraction is not there. There are a whole bunch of different conditions that fall in the Gray-A spectrum. (Note: Asexuality isn’t about having sex. I’ve known a few asexuals who enjoy sex, but they still don’t feel sexual attraction.)
Now that all the technical crap is over, let’s talk about me. I was your typical early-20’s college girl who gave the free-love speech whenever she was drunk. I’d have boyfriend after boyfriend, and it would be fun, but my relationships would almost always end because I didn’t like having sex very often. I often felt like I had a short attention span. Or I felt like I owed the dude sex, which would make me go all crazy and make him leave so I didn't have to do something I didn't want to. (I have since abandoned that type of toxic thought). I lost some really wonderful connections because of my lack of sexual attraction and desire. I also scared away a number of fuckboys. So it wasn’t all bad.
One day, I was bitching to one of my guy friends about sex and he said, “You hate men. You hate women. Have you ever considered that you may be asexual?” I laughed in his face. After my anger subsided, and several weeks had passed, I actually started to consider it.
At this point, I only knew one asexual person. She was also aromantic. Considering she was the only baseline I had, I couldn’t see myself like her, or allow myself to use the same labels as her. It felt dishonest.
She convinced me that it was ok and it won’t be the other asexuals who would judge, but man, I had to prepare myself for some stupid-as-hell questions from people who consider themselves sexual.
You may have those questions. Am I sick? Is it just a psychological thing? How is that possible? Am I just gay and I don’t know it? But what about love? Is it just intimacy issues?
Here are the answers: No. Maybe, but probably not because I felt this way before I experienced any sort of sexual trauma. Idk...science or something. I’m pretty sure I’m not gay because vaginas freak me out. I can probably still find love- if I ever get over my hatred of people in general. Meh, that probably has something to do with it, but sex and intimacy don’t go hand in hand, man.
Now that we have that covered, we can move on. Fast forward a number of years, a few different sexual identity labels and a lot of soul searching, I find myself in a photoshoot where I am sorts of beautiful, and I get to model with just a stupidly attractive man. Like “god-damn!” attractive. I stuttered when I met him, and giggled like a little girl and I FELT ABSOLUTELY NO SEXUAL ATTRACTION TO HIM. And that’s when it hit me: I really am asexual. This is a feeling I’d felt over and over and it finally just clicked in my head.
I went home to do more research when Gray-A popped up in one of my searches. That was finally the label I was looking for. I do find myself attracted to very very VERY few people on very rare occasions, but for the most part, sex just isn’t for me. And that’s ok. I can be cute and flirty and not want to have sex. I am still the same me, just a lot more honest and free.
So to any of you out there who are struggling to find your sexual identity, know that there are so many options and so many ways you can feel and none of those feeling are invalid (except, maybe, for the illegal ones). Know that there are always people you can talk to and resources to be found. Asexuality.org was a life-savor for me. So whoever you are, and whatever you’re feeling, you have allies. And all I can say is good luck and god speed.