The level of hostility and ignorance that surrounds the asexual community continues to astound me. It appears that in the twenty first century, most people can understand a person who is physically attracted to the same sex, people for the most part can understand experiencing attraction to a number of sexes, and yet there are an astounding number of people who can’t fathom someone simply not experiencing sexual attraction. So, here is my two cents and a dollop of research concerning some commonly heard trolling, hope these responses are helpful if you encounter any of this nonsense.
- “You just haven’t met the right person yet.” According to a study conducted by Martha McClintock in affiliation with the University of Chicago, the average age first experiences sexual attraction is ten, for both boys and girls, with a three year variance. Astoundingly, I have never met someone who has stayed with a partner they but before age 14. I have known a couple people who have engaged in intercourse with partners at age 13 (this boggles my mind, but okay, the choice was theirs) and I witnessed those relationships end with a special disastrous flair. It can be assumed that sexual attraction does not require a suitable lifelong partner, if children as young as ten experience it. I am forever seeing people who are immensely attracted to each other physically but are wrong for each other in all other areas: they have opposite personalities, are always bickering, have vastly different world views, and yet they still are sexually attracted to each other. Sexual attraction is a mystery to me, but it is very clear that it does not require “the right person.” Yes, I realize there is a portion of the ace community who has at one point in their life experienced sexual attraction, and I am in no way trying to invalidate anyone. Yet another point is that asexuality is a spectrum, and that if you do find this special person who you are attracted to, that doesn’t necessarily knock you off the spectrum; unless you wish it to, and that is completely up to the individual.
- “You’ve just never had good sex before.” One study published in the journal Archives of Sexual Behavior analyzed 24,000 heterosexual woman and found that roughly 66% of them did not habitually climax through intercourse with their male partners. While the 34% who habitually climaxed through intercourse reported being happier in their relationships, the study does not report the other 66% suddenly being attracted to women because of their lack of satisfying intercourse with men.
- “You’re traumatized because you’ve been raped.” In some cases of assault, a victim can experience a temporary lack of sex desire, however, this normaly returns to normal within a year and a half, according to a study done by doctors Gail Stekettee and Edna B. Foa, doctors who also conducted a study on behavioral and cognitive conceptualization of P.T.S.D. Another, less discussed reaction to rape that is surprisingly common is hypersexuality, and this typically dissipates with a year and a half.
- “You must have a hormone imbalance.” A study was conducted by Dr. Laurie Brotto in 2011, and it found that when an asexual person and an allosexual person were both shown an adult film, and while the asexual person did not say they felt aroused, their bodily functions were the same as the allosexual’s.
I plan on doing a few more posts like this, and if there are any ignorant comments – or anything pertaining to ace-ness, for that matter – that you’d like me to research, please let me know.
Until next time, know that you are valid and incredible exactly as you are, thank you for reading, hope this was in some way helpful. 🙂
Keep on Aceing It!