If you are an asexual, that means you have no interest in sexual relations with others. You may have a girlfriend or children, even if you consider yourself as asexual.
Being asexual is not the same as living in celibacy. Here is a more comprehensive explanation of what lies in the concept.
What does asexual mean?
Most people need sexual gratification. At one point or another. Either in the form of masturbation or sex with other people. Of course, there are people who have reached a very high age where sex drive is not what it has been – likewise with children who have not reached puberty, the need for sex is not a theme.
But there are also people who are asexual. That is, people who have no interest in sex, do not find pleasure or satisfaction in sex or may even be repelled by the idea of sex. According to a number of studies, somewhere between 1 and 2 percent of the population is asexual.
Asexual is also referred to as nonsexual and can also be defined as a lack of sexual orientation. Being asexual is not the same as living in celibacy or being sexually abusive for a period of time. You can live in celibacy and still have a sexual drive.
You may also have had sex, even if you consider yourself asexual. For example, if you have had sex when you were young, when you have heard, learned and experienced that sex is a central thing for many in your circle, and you have had intercourse with another person, but found that it is not something you wanted to repeat. Perhaps it was not considered exciting, interesting or maybe even alienating.
Having sex can also be a practical solution. For example, if you want to have children with a partner whom you love, but neither they nor others turn you on sexually. If you are asexual, sex can also be something you participate in as a compromise with a partner.
In the mid-twentieth century, American professor Alfred Kinsey wrote some reports on human sexual life and sexual drive with the titles Sexual Behavior in the Human Male and Sexual Behavior in the Human Female. In this he divided people on a scale of 0 to 6 according to their sexual orientation. He placed 1.5 percent of adult people in the X category – which he defined as people without sexual contacts or relationships.
How many people are asexual?
Of course, it is difficult to find accurate numbers on how many people are asexual, as there is broad agreement among researchers in the field that there is a spectrum. In 2007, the Kinsey Institute conducted a study which revealed that while asexuals had significantly less or no desire for sex compared to people with active sexuality, asexuals did not differ in their desires to masturbate. However, there are also many asexuals who do not satisfy themselves sexually. The asexuality is primarily about not wanting to have sex with other people.
For many people, physical intimacy and caressing can also be important, even if they do not need sexual gratification as asexual. It can be one of many reasons why, as an asexual, one chooses to have relationships with others. But a large proportion of people who define themselves as asexual choose to live as singles, so they avoid having sex.
Previously, there has not been as much focus on asexuality, but today there is greater knowledge on the subject, and asexuality is not as big a taboo as it has been. Both young people, the elderly, men, women and transgender people can be asexual.
Asexuality produces lower self-esteem
There are studies showing that asexuals generally experience a low self-esteem. The reasons for this may be complex, but may be due, among other things, to society’s demands and expectations of people and their sex drive. These kind of drives are typically perceived as natural and important, and therefore asexuality may be determined as a taboo.
Sex is experienced as a basic need, just as sex is seen as a central element in many facets of life. That is, what one can or cannot achieve by virtue of one’s sexuality and “attraction value”. Most concrete in relation to partner and romantic relationships.
Defining oneself as asexual is not wrong or dangerous. It is not something to be cured or requires medication. However, it is potentially useful to consult a psychologist if you are unsure whether the lack of sex drive is due to depression or other mental disorders.