Hello beautiful souls,
Today we’re talking about sexuality – mainly providing some definitions beyond the standard “heterosexual” and “homosexual,” because sexuality is a spectrum, not a dichotomy. Before we get into it though, I want to include an important disclaimer – because sexuality is a spectrum, these labels and definitions only represent points on the spectrum. There are infinite possibilities in between. And even more importantly, it is not necessary to label yourself if you don’t want to. Some people find comfort in a label, others find it restricting. This post is purely informational, not prescriptive.
Asexual: a lack of sexual attraction. Within asexuality there is a range of how individuals feel about sex. Sex-positive asexuals may enjoy the physical sensation of sex without actually experiencing attraction. Sex-neutral asexuals may feel no strong feelings about sex. Sex-repulsed asexuals may feel repulsed by sex and not enjoy it physically at all. Asexuality also includes people who feel very low levels of sexual attraction. Asexuals are often referred to as “ace,” in the vernacular.
Aromantic: a lack of romantic attraction, or experiencing very little romantic attraction. This is often couched in with asexuality, and while you could certainly be both, you could also be one or the other.
Bisexual: most accurately this means attraction to two genders, however it typically is used to mean attraction to both men and women. It is important to note that this attraction does not need to be equal. It is perfectly normal to be more attracted to one gender than the other, but still experience some level of attraction to both.
Demisexual: a person who does not experience physical/sexual attraction until they have already developed an emotional/romantic attachment.
Graysexual: similar to asexuality; someone who primarily doesn’t experience sexual attraction except under specific circumstances.
Heterosexual: individuals who are attracted to people of the “opposite” gender identity. A bit of a misnomer as gender too is fluid, and not dichotomous. Typically heterosexual refers to men who are attracted to women, and women who are attracted to men.
Homosexual: individuals who are attracted to people of the same gender identity. Commonly “gay” is used to mean males who are attracted to males, and “lesbian” is used to mean females who are attracted to females.
Pansexual: a person who experiences attraction (sexual, physical, emotional, romantic) to individuals of all genders/identities/expressions.
Clearly this list is not comprehensive, but it is a list of sexuality terms that are commonly used. Whoever you are attracted to or not attracted to, what matters more is that you are happy, healthy, and anything you do is consensual. So be safe Jumbos, and be happy.
“It still strikes me as strange that anyone could have any moral objection to someone else’s sexuality. It’s like telling someone else how to clean their house.” –River Phoenix
**Thank you to this website for its excellent definitions and information.