Asexuality Top Ten

#5: "You are afraid of getting into a relationship."

Most of the ones who say this sort of thing think I'm afraid of love. They think I don't like to get close to people, that I have some issues with personal relationships. That isn't the case at all. I currently have and have had in the past plenty of extremely close friendships.

Many people argue that these don't "count" because they were only friendships. ONLY? Who are you to dismiss my relationships just because there's no good English word for "very-close-friends-but-not-sexually-involved"? Someone left me a message once saying "But, dear, there is [such a word] - platonic. Come on, you, as well, are a writer." In response to that, I say that still doesn't work--don't people automatically demote "platonic" relationships to being less serious or worth less than "real" romantic relationships? "Oh, there's nothing between us, it's JUST platonic." Well, that's not "nothing."

Some asexual people do have romantic relationships which involve everything you can have in a relationship except the sexual attraction. I don't know if you can argue that a relationship is for all intents and purposes meaningless without sex . . . maybe some people would say it is . . . but that's ridiculous. I see no reason why people can't have a completely fulfilling relationship with each without bringing sex into it, as long as everyone involved is okay with that.

However, for me, I don't want romance. It's not out of fear; it's out of disinterest. I'm what we in the asexual community call "aromantic"; nobody I've met strikes me as a person to whom I wish to offer the kind of access and intimacy that most people offer to their significant other(s). But I happen to have perfectly ordinary social relationships. My relationships with my friends are very close, and I can feel love, non-sexual intimacy, jealousy, attachment, excitement, and some forms of physical comfort with them in various cases. It doesn't seem to develop into something I'd term romantic, and definitely not sexual.

I've had people assert that my friendships are just puppy love; that I don't know what real love is. Do you think that once you do the deed it's therefore love, and can't be any kind of important love if that doesn't happen? Where do you get off defining what can and can't happen with MY feelings? Sex can be a physical expression of love, but it's not what creates the love, nor does it express a consummation of a relationship. In my opinion, relationships don't need to be "consummated." They just *are*. And they're very satisfying for me . . . and a hell of a lot less messy (in more ways than one).

People have argued that I can't talk because I haven't had sex. I think it's very unfair of people to discount my ability to judge my own feelings of relationship deepness just because I never did the deed. I can see their point when they say I don't know what sex can bring into a relationship, and that I accept. But I've also heard that sex can make a relationship "get weird," and that I wouldn't want.

In any case, I'm proof that non-sexual relationships can exist happily and satisfyingly, and I'm also proof that one does not need sex to be happy. Too many people treat getting a mate like it's the completion of life. I think you're probably just going to end up codependent if you're looking for someone to "complete you," even though our society processes I CAN'T LIVE WITHOUT YOUUUUU as romantic and necessary for a fulfilling life. In closing, I'd like to say that my view on relationships carries an extra grain of truth when you see how many couples think they know what love is and how few of them stay together. Sex "cementing" love doesn't guarantee permanence any more than non-sexual love is necessarily permanent.

Watch me discuss this topic on YouTube