Since I’ve been tracking visitors to this blog – no, I don’t mean I’m stalking you; I just mean I can see how many people have looked at particular posts – I’ve noticed something rather sad. Aside from my personal analysis of wealth and organ donation, which was very topical at the time I posted it, and was inevitably going to receive a lot of visitors, one of the most popular posts on this blog is this one, where I ask about a potential ‘cure’ for asexuality.
Can I be totally honest with you here? OK?
Asexuality isn’t some kind of disease or psychiatric disorder. It’s a sexual orientation. You can’t cure asexuality any more than you can cure being gay or lesbian, or straight, for that matter. You can’t change the kind of people you are – or are not – sexually attracted to.
I get that this is disappointing, especially if you’re desperate for love but all your relationships end because you can’t bear to have sex with your partner. I’m sure it’s equally disappointing if you’re not asexual and you’re in a relationship with an asexual person who doesn’t want to have sex with you.
Here’s the first thing to understand (and this is for you if you fall into the second category – you’re hoping to convince an asexual to have sex with you), you cannot change someone else’s sexual orientation. Your asexual boyfriend or girlfriend, or even husband or wife, might agree to have sex with you because you want it, even though they don’t, even if the idea of sex makes their skin crawl, but they won’t enjoy it. Afterwards, they will hate themselves, and ultimately it will lead to the destruction of your relationship. Do you honestly want to make someone you (presumably) love feel that bad about themselves just because you want to fuck? I really hope not.
If you are the asexual person, and you hate sex, and you’re looking for a miracle cure that’s going to make you ‘normal’ so you can have relationships just like everyone else, then I’m sorry to tell you there’s no miracle cure. Most people agree that sexual orientation is fluid, and it can change, but no-one knows what makes it change, and it’s unlikely to be something you can control.
On the other hand, it is possible to change your attitude to sex. A year ago, I defined myself as sex-repulsed, but now I identify as sex-favourable. I’m actively seeking out sexual experiences with the right people, and even though I’m not sure if I’ll ever experience sexual attraction the way the majority of people do, I can develop a desire to have sex with someone. This post explains about my journey in asexuality.
I’m not going to pretend for a moment that changing your attitude to sex is easy, but I think it starts with desensitising yourself. Many people who are sex-repulsed are also genital repulsed (towards their own genitals as well as other people’s), so a first step could be getting familiar with your own genitals … touching them and looking at them (with a magnifying mirror, if necessary) until you’re comfortable with how they look and feel. If you’ve never masturbated – if you’ve never found out what feels good – then experiment until you figure out what works for you.
You feel awkward? Get over it. If this is important enough, you can.
Once you’re more comfortable with your own body, start looking at other people’s. I’ve found FetLife is a great resource for this because loads of people post nude photos and close up genital shots, as well as photos and videos of sexual activities. You don’t have to be kinky to join and look at photos, but be aware you’ll come across lots of kinky stuff as well, and some of it will probably make you uncomfortable. (Some of it makes me uncomfortable, and I’m very much part of the kink community.)
The most important thing to be aware of, if you do something like this, is that you’re going to come across a lot of stuff that makes you feel a bit icky, but that’s just part of the process. The point is to get past the icky feelings and accept it as normal. Read erotic fiction, gloss over the icky bits, and if you come across something that appeals to you, start trying to imagine yourself in a situation like that, maybe with a fantasy partner. The goal is to get yourself comfortable with the idea of you having sex before you attempt to do it.
At some point, you may want to take it a step further, but don’t rush it. All my past sexual experiences were pressured – either by the person I was with, or by myself because I believed I’d enjoy it once I did it – and they turned out badly. The trick to enjoying it is to get yourself to the point where you really want it.
Then it won’t matter whether you’re asexual or not.