No sex, please

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Two years ago, Dan Ritter, 19, found himself spending most of the summer fighting off a girl’s sexual advances. There wasn’t anything wrong with the girl, he wants to clarify. He just wasn’t sexually attracted to her. In fact, Ritter started to realise he wasn’t attracted to anyone. “Slowly, I noticed that I was completely uninterested in sex,” he says. Then, in May 2012, Ritter came to an epiphany: “I’m asexual.”

It’s estimated that 1 per cent of all people have no sexual desire towards others whatsoever. One British study that queried 18,000 people about their sexual practices included the option, “I have never felt sexually attracted to anyone at all.” One in a hundred people ticked the box.

However, that doesn’t always mean a lack of sexual drive. In one study, US sexologist Lori Brotto estimated that half of all asexuals masturbate on a fairly regular basis; some have an aversion to all human contact, others need it as much as anyone else. Determining the root causes of asexuality is tricky, as few studies on the subject have been done. And asking asexual people why they think they’re asexual – is it the result of sexual abuse? Sexual confusion? A biological flaw? Not finding the right person yet? – becomes an exercise in asking the same horrible questions gays and lesbians have copped for years. Some feel they were born asexual; others identify as “acquired” asexuals. “And if we’re happy,” one asexual person told me, “why does it matter?”

Via Joāo Dujon Pereira
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Categories: Sex

2 Comments on “No sex, please”

  1. September 22, 2013 at 2:42 pm #

    Even though I know this article isn’t yours, I’d appreciate it if you’d clarify that the “no sexual desire towards others whatsoever” description of asexuals is an inaccurate. There’s a difference between sexual attraction and sexual desire.

    Thanks for linking to posts by actual people on the asexual spectrum, but what is that last one doing there? That “The Aftermath of Childhood Sexual Abuse” article is a general article on childhood sexual abuse and has nothing to do with sexual orientation. Placing it with the others insinuates that the two might have something to do with each other — when really, if you’d read the “Challenges faced by asexual spectrum survivors of sexual violence” series that you also linked, you should know that many asexuals were asexual before and after being assaulted (and in fact, some have been assaulted in response to coming out as asexual).

    Also, it’s perplexing why you tagged this with “asexual reproduction”. Asexual people obviously don’t engage in asexual reproduction, and the excerpt you posted here seems to have nothing to do with human beings giving birth.

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