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Asexuality: no sexual attraction towards others

2 min read
Cycle Care

Approved by

Eveline Stallaart - Sexologist
No matter where you look you can’t avoid it. Sex! It’s in almost ever movie, game, (perfume)commercial or book. Clearly sex sells, but what if you’re part of the 1% of the people that’s asexual and steamy sex scenes just doesn’t do anything for you?

There’s relatively little known about asexuality, or being ‘ace’. The only study we could find on the internet was from 2004. In this study, asexuality is explained as not experiencing attraction towards other people. But everything isn’t as black and white as it seems. Asexual people can experience feelings of love and romantic attraction just as much as allosexual (people who do experience sexual attraction), but this attraction usually doesn’t lead to a relationship with (a lot of) sex. Another common misconception is the fact that all asexual people can’t get sexually aroused. It’s true that some asexual people can’t get aroused, but some people do get aroused, they just don’t feel like acting on that feeling and turning it into sex. Some asexual people choose to masturbate instead to deal with the sexual arousal they feel. This is different than having sex with a partner, because being aroused is a physical feeling that doesn’t require sexual fantasies with another person. You can compare it to a child taking a shower and discovering that the stream of water feels very pleasant. The child isn’t aware of the sexual nature of the act and doesn’t experience any sexual thoughts while doing it. So, asexuality isn’t the same as a lacking desire for sex, asexual people just never feel that desire to begin with. Another thing that we have to mention is that asexual people do have reproductive organs and are perfectly capable of having sex with someone. They just don’t feel the urge to. 

'You’re born with asexuality'

The question remains: why do asexuals not feel sexual attracted towards others? Scientists still don’t know the exact reason. The hormone levels of asexual people are the same as those of hetero, homo or bisexual people, so it’s not the hormones that cause a lack of sexual attraction. What they do know is that asexuality is a sexuality, just like homosexuality and that it’s something you’re born with. What’s more, sexual abuse and/or depression isn’t more common among asexual people than among allosexual people. 

We already mentioned that the asexual community is far from black and white. In fact, this community is incredibly diverse. Asexual people can experience relationships, attraction and arousal in many different ways. Where one doesn’t want to be touched at all, another person likes to cuddle or is okay with kissing. It really is up to the individual and what they’re comfortable with. 

The absence of lust doesn’t mean asexual people can’t fall in love

Confusing? Let us explain it by using a spectrum. Just like with hetero, homo or bisexuality, asexuality can be seen as a spectrum. To put it more simply: not every hetero, homo or bisexual person has an equally high libido. For example, one person wants to jump someone four times a day, while the other is content with once a month, or maybe even once a year during a romantic Valentine’s day session. Now, asexuals don’t feel sexual attraction and don’t have the desire to have sex. But the needs, feelings and sexual/romantic responses of asexual people are as distinct as those of sexual people. Side note: romantic attraction is love and sexual attraction is lust.  

4 types on the asexual spectrum:

type 1: the person experiences sexual attraction, but doesn’t experience romantic attraction. This person is also called ‘aro’ or aromantic. They can get aroused and have a desire to have sex, but can’t fall in love with someone. 

type 2: the person doesn’t experience sexual attraction, but does experience romantic attraction. They can fall in love and pursue a relationship with someone, but have no desire to have sex with their partner

type 3: the person experiences sexual attraction, as well as romantic attraction, but there’s no connection between the two. This means that they can fall in love and can get sexually aroused, but they experience them as two separate things.

type 4: the person experiences no sexual or romantic attraction. They don’t fall in love or get sexually aroused. 

Asexuals that don’t feel like they fit into these types can also be described as ‘gray-a’. Gray-a’s can be people that:

  • don’t experience sexual attraction most of the time, only sometimes. 

  • do experience sexual attraction but have a low libido.

  • are sexual but don’t see it as an important part of their life and/or those who don’t identify with the common sex culture.

  • do experience sexual attraction and have a desire to have sex, but the intensity of these feelings is so low, they don’t want to do anything with it. 

  • enjoy sex and also want to have sex, but only under very specific circumstances.

There are also people that are called demisexuals. They only experience sexual attraction or a desire for sex after a strong emotional bond has been formed with someone. They only have these sexual and/or romantic feelings for that one specific person, and no one else. 


  • Asexuals don’t have reproductive organs. Bullshit! Asexual people still have reproductive organs, they just don’t have the desire to use them for sex.

  • Asexuals are often virgins. Also not true! Some asexual people have been sexually active before they figured out their sexuality or have sex because they want to please their partner (but make sure that you only have sex if you feel comfortable with it!)

  • Asexual people suffer from their sexual abstinence. Nope! Asexual people have no need for sex and therefore don’t experience any problems if they don’t have sex. 

Are you interested in reading the experience of Crystal and her asexuality? Read her story here.


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