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float on

please let us establish a strong definition for greysexuality.

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Alejandrogynous
1 hour ago, QueenOfTheRats said:

I know what you are talking about, but that's not how people use the word fetish in daily life.

I know, but that's what you described in your example. If you'd said, 'I have a friend who has this one fantasy that gets her off harder than anything but she still desires normal sex with people sometimes', I'd say that doesn't necessarily sound like greysexuality either - but I doubt you'd have mentioned her in the first place if that were the case.

 

1 hour ago, QueenOfTheRats said:

I also think that probably most of the people in the group you are describing would fall into the category of grey-sexual. Just a hunch, seeing as they will not be enjoying sex the majority of the time, even if their libido is up..etc.

Again, you're saying that all fetishists would automatically be greysexual, simply by their nature of having a fetish. That doesn't make sense.

 

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QueenOfTheRats
2 minutes ago, Alejandrogynous said:

I know, but that's what you described in your example. If you'd said, 'I have a friend who has this one fantasy that gets her off harder than anything but she still desires normal sex with people sometimes', I'd say that doesn't necessarily sound like greysexuality either - but I doubt you'd have mentioned her in the first place if that were the case.

 

Again, you're saying that all fetishists would automatically be greysexual, simply by their nature of having a fetish. That doesn't make sense.

 

According to your definition of fetish: yes.

 

Though, I would assume that would be a very small percentage of people.

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Winter Holly
On 10/31/2017 at 11:08 PM, roland.o said:

Hmm... is your goal to come up with an easily understandable definition of grey sexual, or to build a scientific model to diagnose it? ;-) :cake:

Either way, I'm looking forward to following your train of thoughts.

Beep.  The former is something we hope turns out to be practical.  The precise boundaries of the category "grey sexual" are what we're trying to help us to decide on, hence trying to find unambiguous terms for a broad outline, and soliciting feedback on where that outline might be moved.  The subsequent discussion of fetishes is a perfect example.  Our intent is to optimise for precision, terseness, and utility in promoting peer support, visibility & education outreach- more directly, we guess, for sexual minorities covered by "grey," but indirectly for intimacy minorities in general.  We also have a more specific personal leaning toward keeping the term "grey" as relatable to ace concerns as we can.  Whether to define "circumstance" and "targetability" more narrowly looks to us like a political issue, and our personal impulse is to keep it simple.  Either way, peops limited to eccentric experiences of sexuality are easy enough for us to relate to, at least in terms of the confusion and alienation.  

 

  Full disclosure: We enjoy some kinky stuff and find ourself most at home in a small slice of our local BDSM community, but feel that in our case this is a social boon rather than an onus, particularly for the freedom said community gives us to relate intimately and even sensually in affirmatively asexual ways.  We indulge in eccentric behaviour, some of which is sexual, but consider our personal kinkiness to have nothing to do with our greyness except for our having found a space for asexual sensual intimacy in the BDSM community.  While we're on the subject of what we feel overlaps with our personal sense of greyness, that includes our being quoi-rom, polyfidelitous and maybe, sometimes, just a wee bit quoi-sexual.  

 

  Being limited to eccentric sexuality, as described upthread, falls into the "circumstance" column ior "targetability" row in the example table we used, and results in many of the same sorts of difficulties in understanding psychosexual needs and limitations, and social friction therefrom, which aces have to deal with.  It clearly fits into "sexual minority," but does not entirely inscribe either "hyposexual" or "hypersexual."  It describes a range of sexual minorities whose concerns include passively invalidating obscurity, actively invalidating denial and misunderstanding, and the subsequent social frictions, including re: intimate partnerships which most of us here are familiar with, in addition to the more common threats of violence such as "corrective rape" which most if not all sexual minorities face.  

 

  We do not know about science and diagnosis, but we do like to see affirmatively non-clinical language which helps us to self-report more accurately and precisely what we want to share and know about one another, particularly in the interest of appreciating human diversity and learning not to make things more complicated than they have to be; "If I don't wanna do this thing, it doesn't mean I'm not head over heels for you, it doesn't mean I have some kinda traumatic injury, it just means I'm not into that."  Lotsa heartache comes from expecting others to feel what we blithely take for granted and from failing to meet those expectations, not to mention all the weird depressing stuff that comes from fear of the unknown.  Boop.

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roland.o
16 hours ago, QueenOfTheRats said:

for me, grey sexuality means 1)not being sexually attracted to people 2)getting aroused by scenarios that may or may not involve other people, and may or may not be possible in real life.

Hmm. Not being sexually attracted to people is basically the definition and only criterion for asexuality around here. AIUI, there's some disagreement about whether it should be "sexual attraction" or "sexual desire". But either way, its total absence is asexuality.

 

Arousal is explicitly mentioned in the wiki as something asexuals can experience. That does not make them sexual.

http://wiki.asexuality.org/Asexuality#Arousal

The examples given for Gray-A all mention sexual attraction or desire.

http://wiki.asexuality.org/Gray-A/Grey-A

Of course that's not an exhaustive list. And if the lady you mentioned identifies as greysexual, I will not contradict her. But I find it questionable to use a biological phenomenon as the criterion for a sexual orientation. If I'd take viagra or put on a penis ring, I would get aroused. But that means nothing with respect to my sexual orientation. I wonder if "getting aroused" is something more than a biological phenomenon to you?

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Alejandrogynous
6 hours ago, QueenOfTheRats said:

According to your definition of fetish: yes.

 

Though, I would assume that would be a very small percentage of people.

True, actual fetishism isn't very common. But anyway, I wasn't trying to debate the definition of a fetish with you, the only reason I brought up the distinction was because that's what your example seemed to demonstrate. Your friend can ID however she wants, obviously. I was just trying to say that 'only being aroused by one single thing' isn't it's own sexual orientation. It's a fetish. That's the word we already have for that experience. And even if we're using the term as a synonym for kink (to mean 'a thing that arouses me' rather than 'the only thing that arouses me'), that still isn't its own sexual orientation either.

 

The biggest point I was trying to make is that arousal is a really faulty meter in determining sexual orientation. An asexual can feel a lot of arousal, a sexual can struggle with feeling any, a lesbian can be aroused by gay male porn and vice versa. It doesn't make the sexual person asexual or the lesbian actually straight. What arouses people in fantasy doesn't always match up with what they want in reality.

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QueenOfTheRats

The gray-A spectrum usually includes individuals who "experience sexual attraction very rarely, only under specific circumstances, or of an intensity so low that it’s ignorable".[6] -Wikipedia

 

Quote

I was just trying to say that 'only being aroused by one single thing' isn't it's own sexual orientation. It's a fetish.

Dude, I think fetishism fit under the definition of greysexuality, which is an orientation.

 

Though if you like we could further clarify by saying: ALL fetishests are greysexual, but not all greysexuals are fetishists.

 

 

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Alejandrogynous
19 hours ago, QueenOfTheRats said:

The gray-A spectrum usually includes individuals who "experience sexual attraction very rarely, only under specific circumstances, or of an intensity so low that it’s ignorable".[6] -Wikipedia

 

Dude, I think fetishism fit under the definition of greysexuality, which is an orientation.

 

Though if you like we could further clarify by saying: ALL fetishests are greysexual, but not all greysexuals are fetishists.

I definitely think that's wrong, but we can agree to disagree. Regardless, it still doesn't make sense to use arousal and/or fantasies to determine whether someone is ace, grey, or sexual.

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QueenOfTheRats
1 hour ago, Alejandrogynous said:

I definitely think that's wrong, but we can agree to disagree. Regardless, it still doesn't make sense to use arousal and/or fantasies to determine whether someone is ace, grey, or sexual.

Well what the fuck else IS sexuality OTHER than arousal and fantasies?

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FictoVore.
8 minutes ago, QueenOfTheRats said:

Well what the fuck else IS sexuality OTHER than arousal and fantasies?

hetero/homo/bi/pansexuality = People who desire sexual intimacy with certain other people for pleasure (under certain circumstances). Asexuality - people who have no desire to connect sexually with other people for pleasure.

 

21 hours ago, QueenOfTheRats said:

The gray-A spectrum usually includes individuals who "experience sexual attraction very rarely, only under specific circumstances, or of an intensity so low that it’s ignorable".[6] -Wikipedia

 

Dude, I think fetishism fit under the definition of greysexuality, which is an orientation.

 

Though if you like we could further clarify by saying: ALL fetishests are greysexual, but not all greysexuals are fetishists.

 

 

That 'specific circumstances' part of the quote sounds like it's written by someone who thinks sexual people want sex all the time with every attractive person they see. It doesn't work like that. Most sexual people only want sex with specific people under certain circumstances.

 

No, not all fetishests are greysexual.. Just because you prefer a different kind of sex (say, sex with women dressed as dogs) doesn't somehow change your sexuality. You're still a sexual person with a fetish. A fetish is only 'grey' if you find it very arousing but it doesn't actually lead to you wanting to have sex with someone else. If it leads to you actively wanting to have sex with someone then it's just a regular sexual fetish.

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QueenOfTheRats
4 minutes ago, FictoVore. said:

hetero/homo/bi/pansexuality = People who desire sexual intimacy with certain other people for pleasure (under certain circumstances). Asexuality - people who have no desire to connect sexually with other people for pleasure.

 

That 'specific circumstances' part of the quote sounds like it's written by someone who thinks sexual people want sex all the time with every attractive person they see. It doesn't work like that. Most sexual people only want sex with specific people under certain circumstances.

 

No, not all fetishests are greysexual.. Just because you prefer a different kind of sex (say, sex with women dressed as dogs) doesn't somehow change your sexuality. You're still a sexual person with a fetish. A fetish is only 'grey' if you find it very arousing but it doesn't actually lead to you wanting to have sex with someone else. If it leads to you actively wanting to have sex with someone then it's just a regular sexual fetish.

Not all sexual fetishes are possible in real life, not all fetishes even involve sex.

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Star Bit
On 11/1/2017 at 10:29 PM, QueenOfTheRats said:

for me, grey sexuality means 1)not being sexually attracted to people 2)getting aroused by scenarios that may or may not involve other people, and may or may not be possible in real life.

No. Gray people either feel sexual attraction/desire but dont want it IRL or desire sex IRL under an unusual point in time. Getting turned on by sexual scinarios is normal regardless of orietnation. There are a ton of gay women who get turned on by straight and male on male erotica. There are a tone of straight women who get turned on by male on male and female on female erotica. They are not bi, it is simply how the brain works toward sexually relavent material; specifically a majority of women and a minority of men according to studies. A perfectly sexual women could meet both of your criteria because most women dont look at others and have the desire for sex evoked; most need sexual arousal or foreplay in order to trigger their sexual desire according to many studies. Demisexuals are under the Gray umbrella and they desire sex/feel sexual attraction.

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FictoVore.
3 hours ago, QueenOfTheRats said:

Not all sexual fetishes are possible in real life, not all fetishes even involve sex.

yes and ones Iike that couId potentiaIIy faII under greysexuaIity - Iike if someone Ioves naked BDSM and may even get aroused from being bound and whipped, but it doesn't Iead to a desire to actuaIIy have partnered sex and the person never desires partnered sex with anyone for pIeasure.. that wouId be a greyish fetish.

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Star Bit

But are they partaking in the BDSM for the arousal or is it an undesired sideeffect? If the former then that's desired sexual activity. If the latter, well, the line between the two is really questionable. We once had someone post about their partner enacting their foot fetish and then needing to fap afterward. Even if the fapping/arousal isnt intentional, the fact is that the person desires sexual activity in a responsive desire kind of situation. But if their desire to enact this doesnt happen at an abnormal point in time then its just how they enact their sexual activity and isnt under Gray.

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QueenOfTheRats
51 minutes ago, Star Bit said:

No. Gray people either feel sexual attraction/desire but dont want it IRL or desire sex IRL under an unusual point in time. Getting turned on by sexual scinarios is normal regardless of orietnation. There are a ton of gay women who get turned on by straight and male on male erotica. There are a tone of straight women who get turned on by male on male and female on female erotica. They are not bi, it is simply how the brain works toward sexually relavent material; specifically a majority of women and a minority of men according to studies. A perfectly sexual women could meet both of your criteria because most women dont look at others and have the desire for sex evoked; most need sexual arousal or foreplay in order to trigger their sexual desire according to many studies. Demisexuals are under the Gray umbrella and they desire sex/feel sexual attraction.

Personally I don't think "choosing" to partake or not partake in any sexual act is a good way to define someone's orientation. I don't think orientations are a choice.

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FictoVore.
2 hours ago, Star Bit said:

But are they partaking in the BDSM for the arousal or is it an undesired sideeffect? If the former then that's desired sexual activity. If the latter, well, the line between the two is really questionable. We once had someone post about their partner enacting their foot fetish and then needing to fap afterward. Even if the fapping/arousal isnt intentional, the fact is that the person desires sexual activity in a responsive desire kind of situation. But if their desire to enact this doesnt happen at an abnormal point in time then its just how they enact their sexual activity and isnt under Gray.

Nah see my definition of gray (I've never agreed with yours or many of the ways asexuaIs attempt to define it) is someone who faIIs between sexual and ace. It's that simpIe reaIIy. They're too sexual to be fuIIy ace, but too ace to be fuIIy sexual (fuIIy sexual being someone who actively desires partnered sexual interaction for pleasure under certain circumstances).

 

A gray person wouldn't be comfortable saying 'I'm asexual' nor 'I'm (aIIo)sexual' because neither would be entirely accurate. That's where the description I gave in my previous comment comes in. Someone Iike I described probably would be able to have a relationship with an asexual if the asexual was okay with whipping them, BUT they would not be able to have a sexualIy compatible relationship with a sexuaI person due to massive sexual disparity (because this person has no desire to connect sexuaIIy with other people for pIeasure). They're stiII not exactly asexual though because yes they do experience arousal from the BDSM and may even enjoy the arousal to the extent of actively desiring the whipping, so no they're not ace. But they're missing the fundamental thing that actuaIIy makes sexual people 'sexual', which is an innate desire to connect sexuaIIy with certain other people for pleasure (experiencing sexuaI pIeasure together as an intimate act, not just one person whipping the other then them going their separate ways without either person being stimulated sexuaIIy or orgasming - Yes some sexuaI peopIe desire that kind of thing sometimes, but if it's the onIy thing you ever desire then you wouId onIy be abIe to have a compatibIe reIationship with asexuaIs, not sexuaIs).

 

I have met sooo many peopIe on AVEN who faII into this category - they are in no way sexuaI enough to actuaIIy be sexuaIIy compatibIe with a sexuaI person so both partners in that reIationship wouId experience the same pain that asexuaI/sexuaI coupIes experience, but at the same time they know they're not actuaIIy asexuaI due to certain things about them that are indeed very sexuaI. So they faII somewhere in the foggy area in between. I'm not saying 'gray' is an orientation on it's own (I don't personaIIy adhere to that idea) but that it's just a word you can use to describe the confusing, foggy area that you faII into which is too ace to be sexuaI but too sexuaI to be ace.

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Star Bit
11 hours ago, QueenOfTheRats said:

Personally I don't think "choosing" to partake or not partake in any sexual act is a good way to define someone's orientation. I don't think orientations are a choice.

Wrong wording on my part. They are not choosing to find the actual act undesirable/indifferent of satisfying their desires.

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Theheartyaerie

Grey Asexual- An umbrella term used to describe someone who experiences sexual attraction less and/or differently than typically sexual people, but does still experience it at certain points. 

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roland.o
16 hours ago, Theheartyaerie said:

Grey Asexual- An umbrella term used to describe someone who experiences sexual attraction less and/or differently than typically sexual people, but does still experience it at certain points.

We're trying to find a definition that does not require an understanding of what "typically sexual people" are... :-)

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Star Bit

@FictoVore. But with your definition (past defining what's normal for sexual people) means any sexual person who feels abnormal or has their normal sexuality cause problems could identify as Gray. If someone's just into facesitting and the desire for this specific type of sex causes problems in their sexual relationships they could then be Gray. If someone frequently loses interest because the people they're interested in turn out to actually be otherwise then they could be Gray. It's too vague.

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Theheartyaerie
On 11/5/2017 at 4:13 PM, roland.o said:

We're trying to find a definition that does not require an understanding of what "typically sexual people" are... :-)

Everyone knows what typically sexual is. 

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Graceful
27 minutes ago, Theheartyaerie said:

Everyone knows what typically sexual is. 

Honestly, I wonder if most AVENites actually do...

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Puck
14 hours ago, Theheartyaerie said:

Everyone knows what typically sexual is. 

Yeah, I would disagree with this :P

 

I honestly think people don't. I think people have different ideas of what makes one sexual. 

 

An example I've seen on AVEN a lot is that some feel you only experience sexual attraction if you are sexually attracted to another person visually, while many people are sexually attracted to people based on their personality, mannerisms, intellect.... many factors.

 

Because of this confusion, grey-sexual gets extra challenging to define. Some folks might identify as grey for the same reasons that another person who identify as a sexual....

 

Honestly, I personally think the more research that is done about how people experience sexuality as a whole, the more well defined all sexualities will be :)

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Pramana

I came across a 2017 paper (qualitative research, structured interviews with thirty participants recruited from AVEN), which considers gray-asexuality in the context of arguing against a categorical approach to defining sexual orientations. (Kristina Gupta, “And Now I’m Just Different, but There’s Nothing Actually Wrong With Me”: Asexual Marginalization and Resistance, Journal of Homosexuality, 2017, Volume 64, Issue 8, pages 991-1013).
 

"Perhaps it is, in part, a reaction to these limits that the online asexual community has developed the categories of “demisexual” (to describe those who may feel sexual attraction in certain contexts) and “Gray-A/Grey-A” (to describe people who consider themselves to fall in the gray area between sexuality and asexuality), categories that were used by some of the interviewees in this study. Although this may be a positive development (including some who would otherwise be excluded), in my estimation replacing a two-category system with a multicategory system does not eliminate the problems that come from using a categorical system in the first place."


The author proceeds to criticize categorical definitions on the grounds that:
 

"This may obscure the possibility that many people experience periods of asexuality at different points in their lives."
 

I thought that last point was interesting, since I recently talked to a sociologist who suggested that in light of current research on sexual fluidity (such as Lisa Diamond's), it could be argued that everyone is gray-area because everyone may have asexual experiences at some points during their lives. I think that comment was intended as a bit of an exaggeration, but it goes to show that more research on sexualities may in fact be moving towards definitions that are actually more vague, rather than less.

 

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Snao Cone

Hahahaha, so much for getting people to stop using the "It's just a phase, you'll get over it" argument when people come out as asexual. :mellow:

 

(It's a valid criticism, it's just not something I want people sexplaining to me [get it, like mansplaining but for sexual people??? lol i'm so clever] when I tell them I have no interest in sexual relationships.)

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Apathetic Echidna

Just to add as I have my own question going about interchangeability of terms. 

I have used graysexual/grayasexual/gray A/gray ace (and their grey counterparts) interchangeably in the past. I use it specifically as a cover term, in it's spectrum/umbrella function. So I say I am Gray generally instead of saying I am Apressexual. I have friends who use Gray as a specific orientation so this defining would probably be most helpful to them to have a definition that doesn't require spilling lots of personal information (which incidentally is mainly why I don't say Apressexual ~ most people don't need to know the specifics of my orientation, and in real life the most important part of my orientation is the aromantic one anyway)

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FictoVore.
On 11/6/2017 at 2:06 PM, Star Bit said:

@FictoVore. But with your definition (past defining what's normal for sexual people) means any sexual person who feels abnormal or has their normal sexuality cause problems could identify as Gray. If someone's just into facesitting and the desire for this specific type of sex causes problems in their sexual relationships they could then be Gray. If someone frequently loses interest because the people they're interested in turn out to actually be otherwise then they could be Gray. It's too vague.

Nah they'd just get with someone who is also into that, and you're good to go. To actually be gray, in my books, you have to be AS sexually incompatible with the rest of the population as an asexual (as in, you have no desire for partnered sexual intimacy and are happiest without it). Someone who is into something as sexual as sitting on your partners face (which heaps of people love) is no different than anyone else who is hardcore into sex that's not your average PiV. Also, someone who frequently 'loses interest' is still just as sexual as anyone else if to start with they did desire that partnered sexual interaction, it's very normal to get bored of someone once you get to know them better. A gray person is just as sexually incompatible with the rest of the population as an asexual, but if they get aroused from being whipped (and JUST whipped, they don't then have any desire for it to lead to any form of partnered sexual intimacy) then they're still not sexual enough to be, well, 'sexual'. They're also not ace enough to be fully ace.. So, grey. 

 

(sorry about late reply, I only just saw your response to me)

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FictoVore.
On 11/14/2017 at 2:19 PM, Pramana said:


 

I thought that last point was interesting, since I recently talked to a sociologist who suggested that in light of current research on sexual fluidity (such as Lisa Diamond's), it could be argued that everyone is gray-area because everyone may have asexual experiences at some points during their lives. 

 

Wow it's amazing how intelligent all these people are you're talking to, what a brilliant mind that person has - everyone may have asexual experiences at some points in their lives, mind literally blown. I mean, my hypersexual ex partner literally didn't want to have sex right after he'd cum. For like 4 hours after he'd cum he was totally asexual, oh and when he was so hungover he couldn't even move, he never wanted sex then either. And I have known quite a few women who didn't want sex right after they'd had a baby, sometimes for like a year due to stress, post natal depression etc, oh and also people who didn't want to have sex after they'd experienced the death of a loved one or pet or whatever.. it's somehow like the pain of grief itself stopped them from wanting sex. And did you know, I also know some people who got really, really sick and were in so much pain they didn't want sex. So NOW I understand, the truth is actually that the whole planet is made of people who are in the gray area because EVERYONE IS ASEXUAL SOMETIMES... such a revelation!!! *needs to have a little lie-down because my worldview has just been shattered*

 

...oh wait, wait, wait. No, sorry. Reality just slapped me in the face.

 

Not one person alive literally wants to fuck 24/7. Everyone has times (sometimes even months or years) where they don't feel like having sex and aren't thinking about it or interested in anything to do with sex, even hypersexual people. This already has a label: It's called 'Humanus Normalus'. I gave you the fancy sounding version of the term because you seem more likely to listen to people who pretend they're smart by making up nonsense.

 

'Sexual fluidity' (the way it's often defined) is also just another way to describe Humanus Normalus but that's a different topic.

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Pramana
26 minutes ago, FictoVore. said:

Wow it's amazing how intelligent all these people are you're talking to, what a brilliant mind that person has - everyone may have asexual experiences at some points in their lives, mind literally blown. I mean, my hypersexual ex partner literally didn't want to have sex right after he'd cum. For like 4 hours after he'd cum he was totally asexual, oh and when he was so hungover he couldn't even move, he never wanted sex then either. And I have known quite a few women who didn't want sex right after they'd had a baby, sometimes for like a year due to stress, post natal depression etc, oh and also people who didn't want to have sex after they'd experienced the death of a loved one or pet or whatever.. it's somehow like the pain of grief itself stopped them from wanting sex. And did you know, I also know some people who got really, really sick and were in so much pain they didn't want sex.

I think the examples you describe have more to do with loss of libido than loss of attraction, although if one were to include sexual desire (in the sense of libido/sex drive) within one's definition of asexuality as some feminist writers are inclined to do, then I suppose at least some of those examples really would count as examples of sexual fluidity. Extrapolating from the logic of arguments made with respect to asexuality and HSDD, I can imagine a feminist author contending that a woman who loses interest in sex for an extended period of time following childbirth could claim an asexual identity during that period as a way of resisting patriarchal sexual expectations. In fact, I would actually be surprised if we don't see a paper like that from a feminist author at some point in the near to mid future. There're a lot of people looking for angles to publish papers, so where there's an opening that no one has taken yet, chances are it will be occupied eventually. Practically speaking, I don't think any of those examples have ever been common reasons for people to identify as asexual, although one case that does arise from time to time in community discourse concerns women who have lost interest in sex following menopause, suggesting there is at least some precedent for people to identify as asexual as a result of sexual fluidity connected to loss of libido.

The writing on sexual fluidity from Lisa Diamond focuses on developing new attractions, particularly heterosexual women who develop sexual attractions towards other women by way of emotional/romantic attractions. This might provide a theoretical explanation for demi-romantic/sexual experiences, and might suggest that those experiences are more common and also that more people have the capacity for that type of experience. It is a controversial theory that relies on some complex evolutionary psychology arguments, but her book from Harvard University Press received good reviews: http://www.hup.harvard.edu/catalog.php?isbn=9780674032262&content=reviews

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Apathetic Echidna
On 14/11/2017 at 11:49 AM, Pramana said:

"in my estimation replacing a two-category system with a multicategory system does not eliminate the problems that come from using a categorical system in the first place."


The author proceeds to criticize categorical definitions on the grounds that:
 

"This may obscure the possibility that many people experience periods of asexuality at different points in their lives."
 

I thought that last point was interesting, since I recently talked to a sociologist who suggested that in light of current research on sexual fluidity (such as Lisa Diamond's), it could be argued that everyone is gray-area because everyone may have asexual experiences at some points during their lives. I think that comment was intended as a bit of an exaggeration, but it goes to show that more research on sexualities may in fact be moving towards definitions that are actually more vague, rather than less.

That article seems to completely ignore the community acceptance of label change in the face of sexual fluidity. An asexual could discover they are demisexual, a hypersexual could become a Requiesssexual. Sure the argument that everyone is gray-area could be made in the same way that all the humans on Earth could be described as 'Earthlings', completely ignoring the helpful specific terms and labels that have developed for communication within and between communities and individuals.  If some sociologists want a two-category term to describe a lifetime of experience, growth and change in the vaguest and widest terms possible I think they should go and make up their own term and not appropriate one that is currently used as a specific orientation by people. How about 'General Human Sexuality'? or better yet 'Variable Attraction Generated, Understood and Experienced', giving the acronym V.A.G.U.E. 

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Pramana
19 hours ago, Apathetic Echidna said:

That article seems to completely ignore the community acceptance of label change in the face of sexual fluidity. An asexual could discover they are demisexual, a hypersexual could become a Requiesssexual. Sure the argument that everyone is gray-area could be made in the same way that all the humans on Earth could be described as 'Earthlings', completely ignoring the helpful specific terms and labels that have developed for communication within and between communities and individuals.  If some sociologists want a two-category term to describe a lifetime of experience, growth and change in the vaguest and widest terms possible I think they should go and make up their own term and not appropriate one that is currently used as a specific orientation by people. How about 'General Human Sexuality'? or better yet 'Variable Attraction Generated, Understood and Experienced', giving the acronym V.A.G.U.E. 

I think Kristina Gupta's idea is that when you have a fixed category along a continuum like "gray-asexual" you're going to have divisions between lighter and darker shades of grey, and people arguing over whether gray-asexual itself should be defined in broader or narrower terms, or split into multiple categories yet again. Furthermore, she's focusing on identity politics cultures where self-meaning is generated through affiliation with identity labels, whereby people might self-regulate in order to maintain a sense of coherence and belonging within a particular community. In that regard, she found evidence that some AVEN members are reluctant to disclose aspects of their sexuality out of concern that doing so will lead people to say they're not asexual.

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