I don’t want to have sex … with you … right now … maybe ever… Surely I’m not the only one who has those sorts of thoughts!
Picture this, you’re on a date or you’ve met someone for the first time. On paper, they’re everything you know you should be looking for. Things are going well, the conversation is flowing, they seem like a pleasant person. Perhaps you even find them attractive – aesthetically anyway. You know how this is supposed to go, right?
As a demisexual, this is a situation I’ve found myself in time and time again.
We’re at the point in our date where we should negotiate whose house we continue the evening at. In other words, we should plan to have sex.
There is just one problem … I don’t want to have sex.
This is not a declaration anyone is used to hearing. We live in a world where sex is an easily exchanged commodity. People do it without giving it a second thought.
It’s such an ingrained part of our culture people seem utterly baffled at the thought of someone not craving sex, either with them or in general.
Not wanting to have sex, not being sexually attracted to someone is a fact of life for demisexuals, asexual, graysexuals and anyone else who finds themselves on the asexual spectrum.
It’s one of the hardest things to understand and accept about ourselves, much less try to explain to someone else.
Sexual desire and the asexual spectrum
Here’s the deal. Generally speaking, asexuals don’t experience sexual desire toward other people. Demisexuals, only experience sexual attraction to people they have a strong emotional connection with. Graysexuals experience sexual attraction rarely or not intensely.
Based on the interactions I have had, people have a hard time understanding a lack of desire to have sex.
Not wanting sex differs from deciding not to have sex. We live in a world where people are good at fighting and suppressing their sexual desires. They really want to have sex but don’t for whatever reason, usually something morally or ethically appealing.
Other people feel sexual attraction based on the other person being “their type.” They might be attracted to a certain gender or certain characteristics.
Not that demisexuals don’t have a type – we very well might – it’s just on top of all that we need an emotional connection.
YOU ARE NOT BROKEN!
In a society of one-night stands, casual flings and meaningless sex – being different, not wanting those things can lead to feeling broken, less than.
Not wanting sex is something that requires justification. Often people assume it’s something that requires medical intervention or counseling.
I can’t tell you how many times people have said I need to get over whatever my hangups are, stop being so picky, and just do it. There’s stories from men who have been tested for low testosterone and several other things trying to find a physical cause for their lack of sexual desire.
While I’m not suggesting anyone ignore medical or mental health issues, it’s ok not to want sex – whether at all or as frequently as everyone else seems to.
As someone with no desire to have sex with someone I just met, or don’t know well – I don’t always feel valid. I spend a lot of time justifying my position and trying not to hurt people’s feelings.
The problem is with the world, the way we think about sex, love and intimacy, not with us as individuals.
What you need to know about Demisexuality and Sexual Attraction
Demisexuals feel sexual attraction. We have sex, we probably even enjoy it sometimes.
What makes sexual attraction different for a demisexual is that it’s based of an emotional connection. We need to have a bond with that person before we take that step.
It’s about trusting another person with a part of ourselves we don’t share with many. We need to feel safe and protected in the vulnerable position we will find ourselves in if we let things progress.
So, how does one go about building that trust and those feelings being safe and protected? You share parts of yourself that you don’t share with many others. You let us get to know you – like really know you, not just the superficial stuff.
Fair warning though, an emotional connection does not guarantee sexual attraction. There’s no firm rule for this stuff, but patience and acceptance is a great place to start.
Why don’t you want to have sex with me?
Here’s the deal. Not everyone will want to have sex with you. That’s a fact of life.
It’s just like how you probably don’t want to have sex with everybody you know.
When you find yourself in this situation, please remember: it’s not you, it’s me.
Accept it, listen to what I have to say. Don’t push, pester or bargain. That will leave me feeling even worse.
It has nothing to do with appearance
Physical attractiveness seems to be a big part in what most people consider when thinking about sexual attraction.
For many demisexuals, appearance is secondary to how you make us feel. We can appreciate a good-looking person, we’re not blind. We can also respect their dedication, the hours in the gym and the cheeseburgers they didn’t eat to look the way they do. Of course we know when someone is objectively attractive.
But that physical attraction doesn’t beget sexual attraction. For demisexuals, we base sexual attraction on an emotional connection. They might see a good-looking person and want to get to know them better. Demisexuals will likely want to spend some time really getting to know each other, being vulnerable, sharing secrets, opening up and connecting in ways that are rarely experienced.
They build sexual attraction on the foundation of a solid emotional connection.
That’s not to say demisexuals don’t have a type, certain physical traits or genders they prefer, just like everyone else. It’s just not the same for us.
In someways a demisexual will wait until they’re comfortable being emotionally vulnerable with a person before they let them self be physically so.
It’s not a moral thing
For us, for anyone on the asexual spectrum, it truly is a lack of desire. It’s not a situation where we really want to do it and we’re constantly fighting this internal battle against our urges.
Not wanting to have sex is valid in its own right. There is no need to back it up with excuses or anything else. That’s not to say people won’t ask or push for more.
Just that “ I don’t want to have sex with you“ can mean exactly that.
As demisexuals, it’s necessary that we are comfortable enough with ourselves to say that. To be okay with it. That we stop apologizing for our lack of desire and stop making excuses for something that does not and should not require any justification.
It’s not you, it’s me. Honestly.
Don’t take it personally, honestly, this isn’t about you. Accept the friendship you’re probably being offered and stop complaining.
If you’re really interested put the time and effort into building an emotional bond with us. Be our friend, be a support, make sure that person feels safe and accepted in your presence.
Something to Remember
One of the most confusing parts of being demisexual is that sexual desire requires an emotional connection. Which sounds a lot simpler than it is.
While every instance of sexual attraction is underscored by an emotional bond, not every bond leads to sexual attraction.
This means it’s entirely possible for a demisexual to find someone aesthetically attractive, like them as a person, and still not experience feelings of sexual attraction to them. Heck, it’s even possible for that attraction to show up months or even years after they establish the emotional bond. Other times that attraction might pop up after a single emotionally charged interaction.
This is different for every demisexual. Some may find themselves attracted to many of their friends, others might find themselves rarely attracted to anyone. There’s no right or wrong way to feel attraction.
The biggest thing I want anyone to get out of this article is that it’s ok to not want to have sex. You’re not broken!
Accept yourself, assert yourself and enforce your boundaries.
You are lovable and valid whether you’re having sex or not.