What is Asexuality?
Updated: Jan 15
Asexual: Someone who does not experience sexual attraction or an intrinsic desire to have sexual relationships (or the adjective describing a person as such).
(definition from The Asexual Visibility and Education Network (AVEN)
When I run training workshops and I talk about sex and sexuality, I'm often shocked by how many counsellors have either not heard of asexuality or have swallowed negative and harmful myths about asexuality.
As a counsellor talking about sex and sexuality is something in my experience I find a lot of clients want to talk about. And so it feels very important that I'm clued up on asexuality.
I know how many clients have had difficult experiences in trying to explore, understand and think about coming out as asexual.
Talking about asexuality can be challenging for many people, due to the hyper-sexualised society we live in. I want this to change. I want clients to feel safe to talk, and counsellors to feel clued up.
Keep reading if you feel you could learn more about asexuality.
Asexuality Awareness Week is the last full week of October.
So I put together some great resources to help more counsellors and the wider public learn about asexuality.
Please help spread awareness about this sadly very often misunderstood orientation by sharing this blog about asexuality.
In this blog I list links to:
websites stacked with more free resources about asexuality
a free podcast with asexual activist Yasmin Beniot
Lists asexual key words and definitions such as:
More info: here
Common questions people may ask themselves such as:
Am I asexual?
I don't find anyone sexually attractive. Does that mean I'm asexual?
I masturbate/have sexual fantasies. Where does that fit in with my sexual orientation?
More info on the AVEN website: here
AVEN also have an online forum for asexual people to meet, ask questions & connect.
Join the conversation here
Sex educator Hannah Witton interviewed Yasmin Beniot (model and asexual activist) on her podcast Doing It!
In this podcast episode:
Yasmin discusses asexuality, aromanticism, and their meanings and misconceptions.
She and Hannah talk about the difference between attraction, arousal, desire, and the sex drive, as well as asexual and aromantic representation in the media.
Finally, Hannah and Yasmin discuss ace and aro inclusion in the LGBTQ+ community, and answer some listener questions..
Listen free here
Lastly I hope reading this you want to be a better ally for asexual people.
If someone comes out to you as ace, believe them
Read up on ace identities – you’re already on this blog, so that’s a great start! AVEN is another great online resource
Don’t assume everyone needs sex or romance to be happy – let them choose their own path. Accept their relationship choices and support them as you would anyone else
Remember that ace people may have an additional identity. An asexual person who is romantically attracted to people of the same gender may refer to themselves as gay. An aromantic person who is sexually attracted to all genders may identify as pan.
Don’t ask intrusive questions about someone’s sex life. It’s not OK to do this to anyone, ace people included.
Call out ace-erasure and acephobia where you see it and educate others along the way.
Please help spread awareness about this sadly very often misunderstood orientation by sharing this blog about asexuality on your social media.
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