4 July 2024

Ace Of Hearts

By Bridget  

Content note: mention of sexual act, stigma   


“So, do you reproduce with yourself?”   

“Do you have a chemical imbalance? You should get that checked out.” 

 “So, do you masturbate?”  

 “So, how do you have sex?” 

There are all questions that have been asked by strangers when they find out that I am asexual. Having come out late at 25 (a few years ago) I was what they call a “late bloomer”. Who can blame me, with such little asexual (ace) representation in the media or any public role models?  

For anyone out of the loop, asexuality is someone experiencing little to no sexual attraction to anyone. Asexual is also an umbrella term, meaning it represents a few other identities, including but not limited to:  

  • Demi-sexual: only sexually attracted to someone after a connection is formed. 
  • Grey-ace: may experience some sexual attraction but usually not, this is a spectrum and;  
  • Aromantic: experiences little to no romantic attraction and can be paired together with asexual as well.  

Sexual attraction is different to sexual drive, romantic attraction and even platonic attraction. Nothing to do with sexuality is black and white, unfortunately, and asexuality challenges a lot of the beliefs of what allosexuals define as a relationship!  

The best way I have had it explained to me is that sexual drive is like being hungry. Sexual attraction is being hungry for something specific.  


Community Huzzah!  

Asexual’s have a complicated relationship with  LGBTQIA+ communities, for me, it feels like an older sister who all you want to do is emulate, as they are louder and more well-known, but are sometimes forced to take you to events rolling their eyes.  

A loud part of the community is the more sex-forward part of queer and gender-diverse culture. Which is quite isolating, not only for asexuals but the queer & gender-diverse parts of the community who are sex neutral or negative.  The narrative around some of the LGBTQIA+ community is spending all night partying, and engaging in hook-up culture is untrue. Although there is nothing wrong with a good party and safe consensual sex, some of the community feels isolated from this single narrative. What about the quiet queers who enjoy a nice book in the sun and like to meet a small group of friends for dinner and then be home by 8:30 pm?  

I feel the queer and gender-diverse community has a long way to go for inclusivity by not gate keeping this magical space but welcoming everyone with open arms. This can be done through education and learning about communities other than the big 4 (I would define the beginning of the LGBT acronym as lesbian, gay, bi+ and trans).  Also, by including leaders in the Ace community on panels when talking about LGBTQIA+ concerns from housing, to health, to sexual, family and domestic violence.  

Which leads to my next topic…  


Yes, Asexuals still experience abuse! 

Asexuals can have relationships! Yes, some will have little to no sex in it, some won’t have romance, and some will have a mix! Much like all relationships, it is a mixed bag.   

I want to acknowledge that there is a community of asexual people that are either sex repulsed or more like don’t know, don’t care which is completely acceptable. If you identify as that, you are valid, you are loved and welcomed by the Ace community <3   

It’s important to recognise that asexual individuals are not exempt from experiencing abuse and mistreatment in relationships. It’s a common misconception that a lack of sexual desire means that asexual individuals cannot be in romantic relationships, but this is simply not true. Asexual individuals have the capacity to form deep, meaningful connections with others, and the nature of these relationships can vary widely. 

Asexuals who are willing to brave the thrilling and dangerous world of relationships are susceptible to all the forms of abuse that allosexuals are, with some added difficulties. Such as the profound confusion some asexuals feel when navigating relationships. We are told this is the goal of everything: sex, love, marriage and children are the meaning of life, and if you don’t fully support it then there is something wrong with you. Unfortunately, asexual individuals may face additional challenges when navigating relationships due to the societal pressure to conform to traditional ideals of sex, love, and marriage. This can lead to confusion and discomfort in situations where they may feel pressured to engage in sexual activity or romantic gestures that they are not comfortable with. I know I wouldn’t have jumped into some situations if I knew more about asexuality.   

The joy I find in my asexuality is that I understand myself better and my boundaries. No longer do I think I’m weird for setting boundaries, as everyone has to do the same in any healthy relationship. I am currently with someone who is so lovely and understands me entirely with what I am and am not comfortable with, as I am with him! This is a continued conversation as well! Not just a one-and-done, this is a constant. There is no compromise with my boundaries, nor with his, and guess what, we are thriving!   

To anyone questioning their sexuality, I see you. It took me years to fully realise my wants and needs, not without any help! Many blogs, Reddit posts, private sessions with psychologists and sexologists and personal research. Still today, I am figuring out new things. It’s okay to sit with discomfort, please be safe and remember you are loved and welcomed into the LGBTQIA+ communities.  


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