The Fourth Sexuality

by Laura

Dr. Sigmund Freud once asked, "What do women want?"

My answer? Hell, I don't know. I'm not a normal woman--but I do know what I want, and it's bizarre. You have no idea just how bizarre I am. I am so bizarre that most people think I should be locked up.

What do I want? Not sex. Let me say it again. I do not want sex. I have absolutely no desire for it whatsoever. Now, some of you may be scratching your heads, saying, "What the hell is wrong with this girl? Was she abused? Is she chemically imbalanced? Maybe she's a lesbian but doesn't know it yet."

And some of you players are saying, "This chick just hasn't been with me yet. I can change her mind."

Boys and girls, the answer is NO to all of the above. Actually, I might be chemically imbalanced, but I see no cause for alarm. Homosexuals are "chemically imbalanced," and no one tries to medicate them. We chalk homosexuality up to heredity, or a genetic hiccup or whatever, but when someone says he is not interested in sex at all, an otherwise sensible person suggests that he see a therapist.

It's not necessary. Here's what it's all about:

1. Nonsexual, antisexual, asexual, celibate--these are all terms for what I am, though they have different connotations. Antisexual suggests that I think no one should have sex, which is not the case. If you're prepared to suffer the consequences, who am I to stop you? Asexual makes one sound like an amoeba, but my gynecologist says I am most definitely female. Celibate has religious connotations, suggesting that I'm making some kind of conscious effort to stay "pure." Nope. I'm making no effort; this is just how I am. I prefer nonsexual; I'm just not interested.

2. Just because I don't want to have sex doesn't mean I can't or won't love someone. I can love, and I have loved. I even have the capacity to become psychotically possessive. Just ask my male friends! I just prefer emotional intimacy to the physical. The difference between heterosexual love and nonsexual love is that if a nonsexual loves you, you know that his love is real, and he's not playing the mating game. I would love to meet a sweet guy with a nonexistent sex drive with whom I could spend the rest of my life.

3. Being nonsexual does not in any way make me pure. These are two completely different things. To make up for all the stuff I do not do, I have developed one of the dirtiest minds in the free world, and I have seen and heard a lot. I learned more from being in my high school and college bands than I ever did in health class. Also, I'm good for advice. My breeder friends ask me for relationship advice because I can see things without insane amounts of estrogen blocking my senses.

4. I don't want to convert you. Nonsexuality is biological; celibacy is not for everyone. I realize this, though I do wish people would at least wait until they are in love. Enough said.

5. I am not ugly or weird. Many sweet, wonderful guys have had crushes on me, and I have had crushes on them, but it just doesn't work. Why? I am not like them, and they, even the good ones, can't imagine a life without sex and/or children, neither of which I want. Sorry, guys. I love you all, but . . . you know.

6. I was never abused by my parents or anyone else. My parents were a bit overprotective, but I'm an only child. What do you expect? It may have played a small role in my nonsexuality, but I am not mentally scarred because of it. If I thought I had a serious problem, I would see a shrink, but I am fine just the way I am, thank you very much.

7. Why am I fine? I don't have to worry about pregnancy, STD's or jealous wives and girlfriends, and I don't have to answer such probing questions as:
"Am I pregnant?"
"Does he really love me?"
"Should I spit or swallow?"
"Where are my pants?"
"Who will sleep in the wet spot?"
"What will my gynecologist say about this rash?"
"Where did we put the key to this bondage gear?"
"How soon will my parents/roommate/sibling/significant other be home?"
"Where will we hide the gerbils when my parents/roommate/sibling/significant other gets home?"

I still enjoy looking at and flirting with attractive people. I just don't have to worry about this stuff.

I will admit, however, that there are some drawbacks to nonsexuality. It's a pain in the butt to be the only single person in my sea of paired-up friends. When I call one of them on a Saturday night he says, "Sorry. (Circle one: Doug/Nicole/Amber/Pat/this person I met at the party last weekend) and I already have plans. Stay home and watch TV while we go out and do couple stuff."

When I do get to go out with them, I feel like a third wheel.

Another thing that makes me think I'm on the right track is the way I hear people talk about their relationships. Sex is the first thing on all their minds. Something very much like this conversation actually took place not so long ago:

Person A: I'm seeing the most wonderful person! He's beautiful, intelligent, sweet and kind, and my parents love him!
Person B: Have you had sex yet?
Person A: Not yet.
Person B: Oh.

It's sad, really. These people are perfectly intelligent in every other respect, but somehow they, like everybody else, are blind when it comes to romantic relationships. I just don't get it. We talk about a sex "drive" as though sex, like food, water, clothing and shelter, is necessary for us to be healthy and happy. I have never heard of anyone who died of or was miserable simply because of sex deprivation. Not thinking about getting laid must free up a few cubic centimeters of brain space. Do I get bored? Not a chance. Feeling pressured and not sure how to handle it? Here are things to do in lieu of sex if:

1. You're lonely. Okay, so you're lonely. Get some friends together and go to a movie, order a pizza, or invent new mixed drinks.
2. You're horny. It happens to nearly everyone at some point. Hold your right hand (or your left, if you're left-handed) up in front of your face. Wave it. Say hi to Rosie Palm and her five daughters. They will not give you a disease or help you bring children into the world.
3. You want to do something "exciting" or "new." Sneak up to The Ridges and scare yourself silly. Find a new nook or cranny to hide in. Close your eyes and spin around until you fall down. Change your hair color. Wear a weird hat or a pair of wings to your favorite bar. Go to the movies by yourself. Write a story, poem or song, and perform it for someone.
4. You want to rebel. Get something pierced or tattooed, dye your hair a weird color, or wear shiny pants to Grandma's Thanksgiving dinner.
5. Everybody else is doing it, and you feel left out. Do you really think you're any less cool just because you can't get laid? Even the lowliest nerd can "get some" if he has the right attitude, because there will always be someone out there just as desperate. There is a fine art, however, to getting through college without getting some. Why be like everybody else? If you don't want to or don't feel like it, then DON'T.
6. You feel stupid. For God's sake, read a book. It's a fact that reading can make you smarter.
7. You want a family. Okay, that's a legitimate reason. Go for it. Just don't ask ME to baby-sit the little monsters.

What do I want? I want everyone to know that I'm out, and I'm proud. I want a support group, a special week and a colored ribbon. Most of all, though, I just want everyone to be aware that nonsexuals do exist, and that we are no less attractive, mature, educated or cool than the rest of you. We are everywhere. Come out; come out, wherever you are!

You can reach Laura and comment on her essay at smidgen110[at]