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Una Salus Victus

Definition discussion.

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Kai99
20 minutes ago, Xenobot said:

The only truly dumb thing I see here (regardless of what Mysticus might imply) is not the people involved in the community or this debate, but that everyone (or virtually everyone) within this current debate is PRO-desire based definition yet we can't work together on that point. The only thing that separates us, or keeps us from working together on this issue is that a minority of members on this site want to exclude/replace the sexual attraction based definition altogether instead of adding on to it.

 

Fine, you're entitled to your opinion there, but surely even you guys can see that at least starting with a compromise to bring awareness to your opinion has a far better chance of working than trying to completely overthrow the majority opinion with one fell swoop. The AVEN BoD would be far more likely to take the desire-based definition into consideration if we all argued for it together instead of endlessly fighting amongst ourselves over the exclusion/inclusion of the sexual attraction-based definition. That is a separate issue. The goal should be the inclusion of a desire-based definition. If the sexual attraction-based definition detractors want to keep pushing for excluding that part of the definition if and after we succeed at the inclusion of the desire-based definition, then that's their prerogative.

Because your not solving the problem by keeping it. People have a different opinion on what sexual attraction means. Keeping it continues the confusion. Why do you want to continue it? Why not just make it utterly simple and clear where almost no one would be confuse? Do you ever want to have partnered sex? If not, your asexual. If you very rarely want sex, your grey. That is that. That is all people have to ask themselves. 

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Xenobot
1 minute ago, Kai99 said:

Because your not solving the problem by keeping it. People have a different opinion on what sexual attraction means. Keeping it continues the confusion. Why do you want to continue it? Why not just make it utterly simple and clear where almost no one would be confuse? Do you ever want to have partnered sex? If not, your asexual. If you very rarely want sex, your grey. That is that. That is all people have to ask themselves. 

Way to both miss my point and prove it at the same time.

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Kai99
9 minutes ago, Xenobot said:

Way to both miss my point and prove it at the same time.

You want to waste time arguing for including it, than when it is included, we should than argue about excluding the sexual attraction based definition? That is a waste of time! If this is truly the thread to decide all of this than there is no point being wishy washy about it. 

 

For one, the definitions don't work together. In the new definition, people who do experience sexual attraction( the turned on by appearance meaning) but have no desire for partnered sex would now be considered asexuals. In the old definition, people can still want sex and be asexual while the new definition says they aren't. You can't have it both ways.

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Sally
9 hours ago, Homer said:

Once more - "Only you can decide" does not mean "Feel free to put any label at yourself, no matter if it is appropriate or not." It is NOT meant as a freedom to decide wrongly (of course there's no way to stop people who willingly decide to take a wrong "label", at least offline.)

 

"Only you can decide" says that only you have all the information about yourself and therefore only you can determine whether a definition does (not) fit.

And an important mission of AVEN is to provide that information.   We don't do that if we simply confirm whatever cockamamie ideas about asexuality people have by NOT talking about what asexuality is and is not.   

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Law of Circles

I'm torn on the idea of a hybrid "and/or" definition. On the one hand, it would be a more upfront recognition of the importance of desire. Right now, recognition of desire is buried in the FAQ as part of the definition for sexual attraction (a fact that many AVEN staff members seem oddly unclear about). If it were stated more clearly on the front page, that could be seen as an improvement of some sort from a desire based perspective, even if it's not as good as a fully desire based definition.

 

On the other hand, an attraction based definition still lends legitimacy to the idea that asexuals can innately desire partnered sex as long as they don't experience "sexual attraction." We can disagree about whether that's an advantage or a problem, but in any case, for people who find that to be a problem, a hybrid definition is not great because it does nothing to address that issue. If you don't consider that to be a problem with the attraction based definition in the first place, then a hybrid definition might seem like a good compromise... but for those who consider it to be a central issue, it's not.

 

It seems the two main "camps" in this thread fundamentally disagree on this point. Arguing about it is probably useless. Personally, I'm pretty "meh" on the idea of a hybrid definition. It seems like a marginal improvement at best, as it doesn't address a lot of the issues I have with the attraction based definition. Honestly, I doubt AVEN will ever do anything to change the definition anyway, even if those of us in this thread were somehow able to agree on something.

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Homer
39 minutes ago, Sally said:

And an important mission of AVEN is to provide that information.   We don't do that if we simply confirm whatever cockamamie ideas about asexuality people have by NOT talking about what asexuality is and is not.   

I think you got me wrong. Nobody can determine whether certain feelings are present in a person, except that very person (not) feeling them. AVEN cannot provide anything in that regard. That's what I wanted to express.

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Xenobot
1 hour ago, Kai99 said:

You want to waste time arguing for including it, than when it is included, we should than argue about excluding the sexual attraction based definition? That is a waste of time! If this is truly the thread to decide all of this than there is no point being wishy washy about it. 

 

For one, the definitions don't work together. In the new definition, people who do experience sexual attraction( the turned on by appearance meaning) but have no desire for partnered sex would now be considered asexuals. In the old definition, people can still want sex and be asexual while the new definition says they aren't. You can't have it both ways.

Oh my gosh... if you don't understand the strategic value of compromise to shift things in your direction and increase visibility for your position in a way that can then be used as a platform for further change, I don't even know what to say. These things don't happen overnight. People are generally rather resistant to change on the whole. Just look at the gay and lesbian rights movement. It is often more effective to take smaller steps towards your end goal. If gay and lesbian people in the 50s had taken the stance, "we want all of these things to happen NOW and we absolutely refuse to even entertain the idea of anything less because it would be a wishy-washy waste of time to do so!" then diddly-squat would have happened...

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Sally
13 minutes ago, Homer said:

I think you got me wrong. Nobody can determine whether certain feelings are present in a person, except that very person (not) feeling them. AVEN cannot provide anything in that regard. That's what I wanted to express.

Homer, sorry -- I wasn't contesting what you said, but confirming it.  Should have read my post before sending, because it doesn't sound like what I meant.   Definitely we can't determine feelings; all we can do is provide info about asexuality.  

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Lucinda

Xeno,

 

The attraction vs desire discussion has been going on for quite some time.  I don't believe any more compromises are going to happen.

 

Lucinda

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Kai99
2 minutes ago, Xenobot said:

Oh my gosh... if you don't understand the strategic value of compromise to shift things in your direction and increase visibility for your position in a way that can then be used as a platform for further change, I don't even know what to say. These things don't happen overnight. People are generally rather resistant to change on the whole. Just look the gay and lesbian rights movement. It is often more effective to take smaller steps towards your end goal. If gay and lesbian people in the 50s had taken the stance, "we want all of these things to happen NOW and we absolutely refuse to even entertain the idea of anything less because it would be a wishy-washy waste of time to do so!" then diddly-squat would have happened...

Do you have any idea how many discussions we have had on this to this point? Too many! We aren't in the beginning of a new discussion, we are at the end point. We are now debating a solution. Notice all the exasperated members on this thread who are sick of having this discussion and want a change now. There is a reason why a moderator made this topic. For many of us, keeping the definition means more of the same. You can't keep both definitions as I have pointed out as they conflict with one another. Either we change or we stay the same.

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Sally
13 minutes ago, Xenobot said:

 If gay and lesbian people in the 50s had taken the stance, "we want all of these things to happen NOW and we absolutely refuse to even entertain the idea of anything less because it would be a wishy-washy waste of time to do so!" then diddly-squat would have happened...

That's not what's being discussed here.  Your comment concerns public attitudes toward gay/lesbian people.  This  discussion is about definitions.  

 

What gay/lesbian people in the 50s (or ever) DIDN'T say was "Well, we don't really insist that people consider us homosexual; we can compromise so you can use whatever terms you want to use for us, and if someone says they're homosexual but they want sex with the opposite sex, that's OK."  

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Xenobot
39 minutes ago, Kai99 said:

Do you have any idea how many discussions we have had on this to this point? Too many! We aren't in the beginning of a new discussion, we are at the end point. We are now debating a solution. Notice all the exasperated members on this thread who are sick of having this discussion and want a change now. There is a reason why a moderator made this topic. For many of us, keeping the definition means more of the same. You can't keep both definitions as I have pointed out as they conflict with one another. Either we change or we stay the same.

 

36 minutes ago, Sally said:

That's not what's being discussed here.  Your comment concerns public attitudes toward gay/lesbian people.  This  discussion is about definitions.  

 

What gay/lesbian people in the 50s (or ever) DIDN'T say was "Well, we don't really insist that people consider us homosexual; we can compromise so you can use whatever terms you want to use for us, and if someone says they're homosexual but they want sex with the opposite sex, that's OK."  

Well, it's certainly no wonder that the BoD cannot/will not make changes if everytime they look at these discussions/debates taking place they see people disagreeing even on things they agree on. As I said before, and will say again, everyone in this thread appears to be pro-desire-based definition. If you don't like the gay/lesbian rights movement analogy, then just use politics directly.

 

I sit on the cusp between socialism and social democrat. I am well aware that my ideas are far more radical than the average person in the US, but when it came to Trump v. Hillary, you had better believe I didn't just sit on my hands and say, "If I can't have Bernie, there's no point! It's a waste of time!" Because as much as I don't like Hillary I saw it as better than the alternative, and would be movement in the direction I ultimately want. If we want to divide the parties of this continuing debate into ideological categories, you'd have the attractionists, the desirists, the attraction+desirists (which is not in conflict if you use an and/or statement in the definition, btw), and the people who have no clear opinion.

 

AVEN as an organization is attractionist. Based on a previous poll, nearly half of respondents were attractionists (we are left to assume that people who didn't vote either didn't know about the poll, or didn't really care about the issue). Most of the other half are attraction+desirists. 7-8% were desirists. If desirists and attraction+desirists formed a temporary alliance, then we would outweigh attractionists on a community level (none of us outweigh the people who don't care). AVEN still might disregard that anyway in favor their pre-existing attractionist stance, but they'd be more likely to take notice if more than half of the people who care about this topic were on the same page about what direction they wanted things to move in.

 

But sure, if desirists are totally unwilling to do that, then there's no point in having this conversation, and desirists will never get remotely close to having their way on this issue. Nothing will change, and Trump wins while we stand divided. *sigh*

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Sally

Oh god.  I'm not a "desirist"; please let's not invent more words.  And your political analogy fails, because you're  talking about personal beliefs, not definitions of orientations.  

 

Let's stop trying to use analogies.  None of them suit this particular situation.  I don't ever want to have sex with any other person.  There's no analogy for that.   

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Xenobot
34 minutes ago, Sally said:

Oh god.  I'm not a "desirist"; please let's not invent more words.  And your political analogy fails, because you're  talking about personal beliefs, not definitions of orientations.  

 

Let's stop trying to use analogies.  None of them suit this particular situation.  I don't ever want to have sex with any other person.  There's no analogy for that.   

Relax. I was only using it for the sake of brevity in that specific example. Analogies don't have to be comparisons between nearly identical things or situations. Such as the ever popular cake analogy that has transcended into symbolism/meme-status on AVEN.

 

Edit: Actually, I've heard cake-based analogies, cake-based metaphors, and cake-based jokes. I'm not sure what came first.

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FictoVore.
Quote

Based on a previous poll, nearly half of respondents were attractionists (we are left to assume that people who didn't vote either didn't know about the poll, or didn't really care about the issue).

 

 

A lot of the people who voted on those polls don't actually partake in discussions about the advantages and disadvantages of those two definitions. Many "attractionists" who actually become fully involved in those discussions do end up supporting a desire-based definition. I myself just assumed defining asexuality by sexual attraction was the most logical thing, and that's how it seems to many people at face value. Until you actually realise the massive issues created by that definition (which have been discussed in the last 6 pages of this thread). It's amazing how many people who support an attraction-based definition do change their mind after properly partaking in extended discussions about this topic, but 1) once you've cast your vote you can't change it and 2) many people who vote on those polls don't actually partake in the debates/discussions the polls are about, which would give those voters a chance to properly analyse both sides of the argument.

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FictoVore.
14 minutes ago, Xenobot said:

Edit: Actually, I've heard cake-based analogies, cake-based metaphors, and cake-based jokes. I'm not sure what came first.

Cake is better than sex, that's where the cake thing started lol.

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Xenobot
44 minutes ago, Pan. said:

 

 

 

A lot of the people who voted on that poll didn't actually partake in that discussion. Many "attractionists" who actually become fully involved in those discussions do end up supporting a desire-based definition. I myself just assumed defining asexuality by sexual attraction was the most logical thing, and that's how it seems to many people at face value. Until you actually realise the massive issues created by that definition (which have been discussed in the last 6 pages of this thread). It's amazing how many people who support an attraction-based definition do change their mind after properly partaking in extended discussions about this topic, but 1) once you've cast your vote you can't change it and 2) many people who voted didn't actually partake in the debate which would have given them a chance to properly analyse both sides of the argument.

Okay, so, if this is correct, then the more visibility the desire-based definition has the better. I want to increase the visibility of a desire-based definition, and you want to increase the visibility of a desire-based definition, so I think it makes sense to work together on that instead of focusing on our disagreements. I realize that a lot you guys strongly oppose the sexual attraction based definition, but tolerating it long enough to increase the visibility of the desire-based definition makes sense for the long game. If, as you suggest, once people know more about it they are more likely to adopt that view, then a two part definition is going to have better odds exposing them to the idea than sticking with a strictly attraction-based definition and speaking about it invisibly from the sidelines.

 

Yes, in that situation, people who want the dual definition will reach their endgame first with the help of the desire-based definition team, but if your stance holds as much sway as you say it does, then arguing from that new line in the sand compared to the one you're currently standing behind will give your side of the argument more visibility, and more reach in the community. If you succeed, and a preference for the desire-based definition becomes the majority, I could live with that. I would still argue against some aspects of an exclusively desire-based attraction definition, but I wouldn't spontaneously combust over it or anything. If the German asexual community can make it work, then clearly it isn't like the world is going to end if the majority here eventually leaned that way.

 

It just seems so much more practical to work together.

 

Edit: Additionally, I like you, and I don't want to argue until the end of time with you. :cake:

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Mundane Mesh

Speaking of polls, as it looks now the two "no" answers combined have more votes than "yes" ("no" has 60% of the votes) on the first question in this thread

The sample size may be small (47 votes so far), but nonetheless.

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Xenobot
8 minutes ago, Mundane Mesh said:

Speaking of polls, as it looks now the two "no" answers combined have more votes than "yes" ("no" has 60% of the votes) on the first question in this thread

The sample size may be small (47 votes so far), but nonetheless.

I was noticing this myself just a little while ago. Of course, a significant number of people who have voted thus far are those who Grep tagged, which means the poll has a Grep-selection bias. ;) 

 

It'll be interesting to see how other people weigh in as they find the thread. Granted, the fact that it's in the Hot Box will influence who finds it (i.e. people who are prone to arguing/are drawn to controversial topics). Still interesting though. I'm glad Grep started it.

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FictoVore.
1 hour ago, Xenobot said:

I was noticing this myself just a little while ago. Of course, a significant number of people who have voted thus far are those who Grep tagged, which means the poll has a Grep-selection bias. ;) 

 

It'll be interesting to see how other people weigh in as they find the thread. Granted, the fact that it's in the Hot Box will influence who finds it (i.e. people who are prone to arguing/are drawn to controversial topics). Still interesting though. I'm glad Grep started it.

I still don't think the poll results would reflect ideas based on actual discussion about this topic, for the most part. Almost all the members of AVEN just assume attraction is the best definition without considering or even being aware of all the issues surrounding it. Many people who now support a desire-based definition were originally attraction supporters and it wasn't until they actually discussed this that they changed their stance.. The majority of people on AVEN though really couldn't be bothered joining a discussion like this so will just automatically vote for an attaction-based definition automatically (I was exactly the same when I first joined AVEN)

 

Xeno, I actually argued with Mysticus for weeks about the and/or thing. I was convinced that at least adding "desire" into the attaction definition was a step forward. Maybe it's not ideal, but it's better than having a purely attraction-based definition for multiple reasons.. This was way back in 2014.

 

However what's important to me now (Mysticus convinced me of this and yes, he's definitely right) is an accurate definition of asexuality that people can understand, which we just don't have when the term "sexual attraction" is included in that defitnion. That keeps a definition that can be interpreted however you want to interpret it based on your personal definition of sexual attraction. (That's the main issue - an attraction based definition can be whatever you want it to be depending on how you personally define sexual attraction)

 

Sexual attraction is something that applies to many people who already have an innate desire to have sex with other people. Sexual attraction is what helps many sexuals (not all, but many) determine the direction of that innate desire to connect sexually with others. Asexuals lack a desire to connect sexually with others in the first place, so sexual attraction is a meaningless concept regardless of how one defines it, when it comes to asexuality. That's why I no longer support the and/or definition even though I was big on it for ages and certainly wasn't ready to back down for quite some time.

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Sally
4 hours ago, Pan. said:

 

 Until you actually realise the massive issues created by that definition (which have been discussed in the last 6 pages of this thread). 

And probably 37 other threads.  

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Sally
4 hours ago, Xenobot said:

Relax. I was only using it for the sake of brevity in that specific example. Analogies don't have to be comparisons between nearly identical things or situations. Such as the ever popular cake analogy that has transcended into symbolism/meme-status on AVEN.

 

Edit: Actually, I've heard cake-based analogies, cake-based metaphors, and cake-based jokes. I'm not sure what came first.

I wasn't unrelaxed -- telling someone to "relax" is kind of patronizing.   But the particular analogy you posited really didn't fit, because it was between two completely different situations.  

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Xenobot

@Pan. I have always agreed with your pro desire-based definition arguments up until it becomes an anti sexual attraction-based definition argument. Yours were among the very first posts I read on this forum, and I found those posts very insightful overall. The main thing that stops me from agreeing to an exclusively desire-based definition is psychology, and that's a very big deal to me. Nothing said here has been compelling enough to make me reject that, and if I'm being honest, I sincerely doubt anything ever will. If anything, when people on the exclusive desire-based definition side of things start showing very clearly anti-academic/anti-intellectual sentiments, that frankly just reinforces my adherence to it for reasons I doubt you would understand. When people from your circle accuse people of lecturing, trying to sound smart, are dismissive of the value of scholarly literature, whatever/etc... It weakens your argument by magnitudes. @Pramana and I have listened to plenty of anecdotal evidence and have not only taken it into consideration, but in many instances have adjusted our opinions to encompass that anecdotal evidence. Yet I have seen what appears to be an almost total unwillingness to to consider academic sources unless it is believed to support your stance... when it does not, on the whole, do that.

 

I was willing to set aside any grievances I may have had about certain things that have been said in order to work towards a common goal, but I see now that as far as you and others are concerned, there really is no common goal. Irreconcilable differences. *shrug*

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Xenobot
27 minutes ago, Sally said:

I wasn't unrelaxed -- telling someone to "relax" is kind of patronizing.   But the particular analogy you posited really didn't fit, because it was between two completely different situations.  

Well, I'm sorry I came across as patronizing. You seemed defensive, and I was trying to show you there was nothing to be defensive about because I wasn't seriously trying to coin a new term. I just didn't want to type desire-based definition supporter/attraction-based definition supporter or some such a dozen times within one paragraph for the comparison I was making. Again, analogies don't have to be the same or even really similar situations, they just have to have some comparable aspect to them. The point is generally to suspend one's focus on the dissimilarities during an analogy... Actually, weren't you the same person who gave me a hard time about analogies in another thread? Maybe, or maybe not, but I get the feeling that you purposefully miss the point of analogies. "Life is like a box of chocolates--" "Those are two completely different situations." ;) 

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FictoVore.
59 minutes ago, Xenobot said:

@Pan. I have always agreed with your pro desire-based definition arguments up until it becomes an anti sexual attraction-based definition argument. Yours were among the very first posts I read on this forum, and I found those posts very insightful overall. The main thing that stops me from agreeing to an exclusively desire-based definition is psychology, and that's a very big deal to me. Nothing said here has been compelling enough to make me reject that, and if I'm being honest, I sincerely doubt anything ever will. If anything, when people on the exclusive desire-based definition side of things start showing very clearly anti-academic/anti-intellectual sentiments, that frankly just reinforces my adherence to it for reasons I doubt you would understand. When people from your circle accuse people of lecturing, trying to sound smart, are dismissive of the value of scholarly literature, whatever/etc... It weakens your argument by magnitudes. @Pramana and I have listened to plenty of anecdotal evidence and have not only taken it into consideration, but in many instances have adjusted our opinions to encompass that anecdotal evidence. Yet I have seen what appears to be an almost total unwillingness to to consider academic sources unless it is believed to support your stance... when it does not, on the whole, do that.

 

I was willing to set aside any grievances I may have had about certain things that have been said in order to work towards a common goal, but I see now that as far as you and others are concerned, there really is no common goal. Irreconcilable differences. *shrug*

I can't support academic evidence when it blatantly goes against my personal experience and who I am as a person.. How can I say "oh yes I can totally see how that's true" when my own experience blatantly contradicts it?

 

Quote

 When people from your circle accuse people of lecturing, trying to sound smart, are dismissive of the value of scholarly literature, whatever/etc... It weakens your argument by magnitudes.

 

...how can you say someone's argument is weakened by magnitudes just because of other people's behaviour? I've seen plenty of "attractionists" mocking and ridiculing etc (and saying things like "they should open asexual sex clubs so asexuals can meet and have sex with each other" T_T) in these discussions, but I've never applied what they are doing to what someone like Pramana is saying. Oh Pramana your arguments are weakened by magnitudes because I've seen people on your side of the fence ridiculing and mocking others in the past, oh and talking about opening asexual sex clubs for asexual orgies..

 

Damn I'm trying to watch Catfish with my mum at the same time as typing this so I'm not sure if it makes any sense T_T

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Pramana
12 hours ago, Kai99 said:

For one, the definitions don't work together. In the new definition, people who do experience sexual attraction( the turned on by appearance meaning) but have no desire for partnered sex would now be considered asexuals. In the old definition, people can still want sex and be asexual while the new definition says they aren't. You can't have it both ways.

As I've explained before, I don't see any justification for making an objective judgment about whether or not people who experience desire for partnered sex in the absence of attraction are sexuals or asexuals. Therefore, as I've explained before, we have to give them the option to define themselves (in keeping with AVEN's only you truly know your self and can decided what label works for you principle). There can be two different valid conceptual models that produce different results with respect to borderline/rare cases.

Regarding sexual attraction, I've proposed explaining it by simply asking people if they desire partnered sex, and then asking if they have any preferences with respect to sexual partners (based on gender or other personal characteristics). Surely people can figure that out.

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Sally
41 minutes ago, Xenobot said:

 Actually, weren't you the same person who gave me a hard time about analogies in another thread? Maybe, or maybe not, but I get the feeling that you purposefully miss the point of analogies. "Life is like a box of chocolates--" "Those are two completely different situations." ;) 

No, I don't purposefully do that.  That would take more trouble with a post than I want to put in.  But maybe your previous analogy was as inapposite as this one. ;)   

 

As far as sounding "defensive", I actually think I more likely sound offensive.  It's best not to psychologize peoples' posts.   

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Xenobot
5 minutes ago, Pan. said:

I can't support academic evidence when it blatantly goes against my personal experience and who I am as a person.. How can I say "oh yes I can totally see how that's true" when my own experience blatantly contradicts it?

 

 

 

 

...how can you say someone's argument is weakened by magnitudes just because of other people's behaviour? I've seen plenty of "attractionists" mocking and ridiculing etc (and saying things like "they should open a sexual sex clubs so asexuals can meet and have sex with each other" T_T) in these discussions, but I've never applied what they are doing to what someone like Pramana is saying. Oh Pramana your arguments are weakened by magnitudes because I've seen people on your side of the fence ridiculing and mocking others in the past, oh and talking about opening asexual sex clubs for asexual orgies.. Damn I'm trying to watch Catfish with my mum at the same time as typing this so I'm not sure it it makes any sense T_T

Actually, I'm sorry. I shouldn't have said that. It was unnecessarily inflammatory, and retaliatory, and largely has to do with frustration with one particular individual (not you).

 

I understand that you don't feel represented by academia, but people in your exact circumstances are rare. As far as I'm concerned, you are supported in a roundabout way, but as an outlier.

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Pramana
3 hours ago, Pan. said:

I can't support academic evidence when it blatantly goes against my personal experience and who I am as a person.. How can I say "oh yes I can totally see how that's true" when my own experience blatantly contradicts it?

1. There are stories from people who experience sexual desire without ever experiencing sexual attraction and who identify as sexual (maybe as a variant of pansexual).
2. There are stories from people who experience sexual desire without ever experiencing sexual attraction and who identify as asexual (maybe as sex-favourable asexual or gray-asexual).

The problem, as I've stated before, is that I can't find any objective way to decide who's right. I realize you agree with the first group because that's been your experience, but we have to take the experiences of people from both groups into account. Without more evidence to go on, it's essentially a he said/she said situation. The only fair solution I can see, therefore, is to leave it open.

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FictoVore.
19 minutes ago, Pramana said:

Regarding sexual attraction, I've proposed explaining it by simply asking people if they desire partnered sex, and then asking them if they have any preferences with respect to sexual partners (based on gender or other characters). Surely people can figure that out.

Every self-identifying asexual I have ever spoken to who says they desire sex still always has "preferences". Like they won't have sex with literally anyone alive. That person needs to be a friend, or a partner, or someone who is clearly safe and disease-free etc. Or they have to be friendly and approachable.. Or not huge and fat and sweaty or whatever.

 

Every. Single. Time. - they always have some type of preference and would never literally have sex with just anyone alive. 

 

And if you're saying "an asexual can potentially be someone who would desire sex with literally anyone alive, but an asexual can also be someone who has no desire to have sex with anyone at all, ever" ....then what the heck is the point in having a label like asexual at all? When two asexuals could be so utterly sexually incompatible that they could never, ever even consider a relationship because one would desire indiscriminate sex all the time an the other wants no sex ever.. I mean. That's like saying two homosexual guys are in a relationship and one only desires sex with men and the other only desires sex with women. It's the same thing, yet people still expect the rest of the world to take asexuality seriously.

 

Would anyone take homosexuality seriously if the official definition of gay could mean both "can desire sex only with people of the same gender, but also can only desire sex with people of the other gender"? :S Because that's what's happening here.

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