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How asexual (unaffectionate) are you?


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#1 frustr8ed

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Posted 02 February 2008 - 05:29 AM

How Asexual (unaffectionate) are you?

What do you not do?

-hold hands
-hug
-cuddle
-put your arm around someone
-kiss


I'm upset becuase my wife will never initiate any affection (nothing) I have to ask for hug --- it's kind of sad.

although i can tell she doesn't mind if i hug her she'll never spontaneously do it-- it really makes me sad.

#2 SuzH

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Posted 02 February 2008 - 07:34 AM

I am an affectionate asexual. Is that an oxymoron? But, having just been in a relationship with a sexual, affection usually led to him wanting sex. So, I quit being affectionate. Being affectionate is sometimes difficult for an asexual because of mixed signals. I love to hold hands, kiss, hug. But men usually think that means I want sex. Not so, I just want affection, closeness.

I feel so badly for you. I also know what it is like to not have affection. Since she is your wife and you know she is asexual and have accepted that (you have, right?), does she know that every hug, every kiss is not going to make you expect sex from her? That is the biggest hurdle.
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#3 tulip

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Posted 02 February 2008 - 09:39 AM

I do all those things, and enjoy them. I only get uncomfortable when sexual body parts get involved. But then not every A is the same.

Have you tried talking to your wife about how the lack of affection upsets you? Make it clear that it is affection rather than sex that you are missing, you'll be less likely to scare her off. Is everything otherwise ok in your relationship, or could the lack of affection be indicative of some greater problem?

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#4 Busrider

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Posted 02 February 2008 - 10:57 AM

I seem to be a close to unbearable cuddle slut. - Sorry I can't come up with an evaluation of a long term relationship.
The last GF couldn't stand the amount of affection I was seeking / giving. OTOH she was sexual and turned on quite quickly. - We didn't come to a point where I stopped wanting to hug and kiss her because of being fed up with sex, but living together for a while might have gotten me there. - I don't know for sure. The problem is affection seems to remind the other part of sex and once you aren't comfortable anymore with that you 'll try to avoid it.

I never remained in a relationship after ditching the pink glasses. But

does she know that every hug, every kiss is not going to make you expect sex from her? That is the biggest hurdle.

and seems pretty right.

#5 frustr8ed

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Posted 02 February 2008 - 01:02 PM

Have you tried talking to your wife about how the lack of affection upsets you? Make it clear that it is affection rather than sex that you are missing, you'll be less likely to scare her off. Is everything otherwise ok in your relationship, or could the lack of affection be indicative of some greater problem?

T x


My wife know how her lack of affection makes me feel..but you do have a good point she may be particularly unaffectionate because she thinks I'll want to have sex with her. i think our relationship is missing something other than sex--- it's like she is hiding something... to tell you the truth I've tried and she clammers up.

tulip --- you're very perceptive thanks

#6 emmarainbow

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Posted 02 February 2008 - 01:10 PM

I do all of those things, but I have to be very comfortable with the person to initiate it.

#7 DavidG

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Posted 02 February 2008 - 08:52 PM

I'd be happy with all of those, it's when genitals start getting involved that I'd be jumping out of an upstairs window.

#8 SuzH

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Posted 02 February 2008 - 09:18 PM

The man I was involved with kept telling me that sex was not important. That cuddling was enough and if he never had sex again he could die a happy man. That made me relax in the relationship. Until 2 weeks later he stated that he would like to have sex 3 times a week! He came up with other issues, but it really all came down to sex when we broke it off. But Frustr8ted, this does not sound like the case with you. It sounds like your wife may have other issues, as pointed out by tulip. It is time for a heart to heart attempt again. I have to keep telling my mom, who will not directly confront an issue, if I don't know what's wrong I don't know what to fix. It is frustrating when love is involved. Your level of understanding and acceptance is exactly what every human on this plant wishes to have in their lives. I applaud you.
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#9 Puzzle_chick

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Posted 02 February 2008 - 09:26 PM

I've gotta say...how affectionate a person is doesn't really determine "how" asexual they are. It's not like we're carrying around meters to colour in or anything. Besides, there's plenty of unaffectionate sexuals around...my dad being one of them. So affection or lack thereof does not equal asexuality.

That said, I'm sorry that you're lacking affection in your life, because as a super affectionate asexual I know I'd be sad if nobody was affectionate to me. I love to cuddle, hold hands, hug, pretty much anything up to serious kissing. Pecks are fine, anything involving an open mouth is where the line is drawn.

I also echo Tulip.
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#10 merkat82

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Posted 02 February 2008 - 09:56 PM

How Asexual (unaffectionate) are you?


I don't kiss, and I can only cuddle for a short amount of time, but I do all the other things you listed! I wish I could give some advice but even as an asexual I desire to touch someone I am close to in ways like hugging. I wonder if it's not so much an asexual thing with your wife as it might be other issues. I was in a relationship with someone who was sexual but did not want sex and was very uncomfortable with holding hands and hugging and it all stemmed from having been molested when he was a toddler.

Also, I just sat here for about 2 minutes watching your avatar and laughing so hard. Very clever!

#11 SuzH

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Posted 02 February 2008 - 10:42 PM

I've gotta say...how affectionate a person is doesn't really determine "how" asexual they are. It's not like we're carrying around meters to colour in or anything. Besides, there's plenty of unaffectionate sexuals around...my dad being one of them. So affection or lack thereof does not equal asexuality.


Well said!
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#12 mindlife

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Posted 02 February 2008 - 10:53 PM

-hold hands
I don't mind holding hands.
Sometimes, I'll hold a person's hand when I know that he or she is in distress.

-hug
More occasional. I don't initiate them very often at all.

-cuddle
Less often than hugging.

-put your arm around someone
Rarely.

-kiss
Almost never.
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#13 < retired >

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Posted 02 February 2008 - 11:32 PM

How Asexual (unaffectionate) are you?


Just to echo what the others said. To equate sex with affection, and lack of sex with lack of affection, is grossly oversimplifying things. When a man visits a prostitute, there may be sex, but far more rarely is there affection. And, some asexuals may even be more overtly affectionate than sexuals because we're less narrowly concentrated on the nether regions.

#14 Placebo

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Posted 03 February 2008 - 11:09 PM

-hold hands
-hug
-cuddle
-put your arm around someone
-kiss


I prefer the hugging/cuddling part a lot but that's mostly because I'm a little too shy to do things in public--holding hands is usually pretty public, but I'm OK with it if noone's around. I'd rather put an arm around them while we're walking or something, though. I have a rather harder time with fluid exchange, so fairly "chaste" kisses are fine, but I have a hard time with more--it makes me laugh but turn my face away.
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#15 isillote

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Posted 03 February 2008 - 11:26 PM

I'm not a particularly affectionate person in general, and even my close friends tend to keep away from the touchy-feely stuff. I just feel uncomfortable with it. I used to feel uncomfortable with affection from boyfriends too, because they seemed to take the slightest touch as an indication that I wanted 3 hours of rampant sex.
My current boyfriend is great, though - although he's sexual, he's very affectionate, but recognises that it's not an invitation to sex. And as I'm relaxed with him physically as well as mentally, when I feel the need for physical affection, I can get it from him and it's lovely.

Frustr8ted - does your wife perhaps feel guilty in some way that she's failing you because she's asexual? I avoided talking about sex for years with my partner because of that, which was wrong of me. Finding AVEN turned me around in that, and our relationship is much better, because we sat down and talked. Have you introduced her to the site?

#16 Hayley

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Posted 04 February 2008 - 01:06 AM

I'm an affectionate asexual, thank you very much.

It all depends on the person, I guess. I'm sure some sexual folks will dislike that kind of affection, it's just preference and comfort zones.
I reject physical affection from people that I don't feel comfortable with but otherwise am fairly comfortable with it and initiate certain types. I hug people that I really like quite often, and tend to just start things automatically with my partner.
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#17 chlirissa

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Posted 04 February 2008 - 01:36 AM

-hold hands
Hmm...I don't know if I've ever held anyone's hand except at protests, :o but it doesn't seem like a terribly intimate kind of contact.

-hug :D
I enjoy hugging people, though I'm often too shy to initiate it. I do find that I like people more who hug me.

-cuddle :?
I quite like cuddling but I have to feel comfy with someone and feel a certain connection with them. As others have said, I refrain from doing it often because don't want to send the wrong messages. I'm often afraid of leading someone on or confusing them, although after I've come out, this goes away.

-spending the night with 8)
I've spent the night in a bed cuddling with my best friend before and at first it was terrifying because I was afraid of how she would interpret the situation and stuff. In the end we did get closer and everytime I'm aorund her, I feel more and more comfy with all kinds of physical affection.

-put your arm around someone
Sometimes I initiate this to indicate familiarity with someone. It feels more ambiguous in its meaning than other forms of affection and so I feel better about "testing the waters" so to speak by doing this.

-kiss
Almost never. I've on occasion kissed a friend on the head when I was comforting them or on the cheek when greeting them.

-nuzzle :oops:
I reserve these for close friends but secretly I really enjoy it.

-poke

-bite
:twisted:

Does she perhaps do things that are less conventionally considered affectionate?

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#18 Sarafin

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Posted 04 February 2008 - 03:13 AM

Love: I fall in love just like most people, but when I do I fall hard, and it usually hurts.

Holding hands: I love holding hands, if it's with the right person.

Kissing: My favorite kind of kissing is the double cheek peck - sometimes a bit of tongue is okay, but usually it's eew - gross!

Hugging: I like hugs, unless they're from someone who gives me an odd feeling.

Ear nibbling: Gotta say - I love this!

Tickling: Hate it - too ticklish!

Massage: I'm always up for one of these - shoulder and feet are my fave. Foot fetishists give the best foot massages!

Masturbating: Have to do this about once or twice a week, on average, just to rid myself of the "sexies", or to relieve stress. If I'm pissed off and alone, I just grind until I orgasm, and then I calm down. I don't like penetration though.

Fetishes: If it's safe, sane, clean, and consensual, I'm up for satisfying anything. Strange fetishes can be a lot of fun if you're with a good partner, because they're something different.

Dry humping: Good for a lark with the right guy - that's as intimate as I get.

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#19 cait

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Posted 04 February 2008 - 03:14 AM

I'm upset becuase my wife will never initiate any affection (nothing) I have to ask for hug --- it's kind of sad.


Aww.

I am pretty darn unnaffectionate as well. I've always been very passive, and never innitiate anything. I'm very hesitant towards any sort of affection. I have recently gotten better at not being awkward about hugging. But it's still slightly awkward for me. I just have one friend who is always hugging so I have to make exceptions.

But anyway, for me it's just that my family was neeeeever affectionate, so I basically just never learned to be. I'm so reserved, that I almost never express my feelings in that way. I generally keep a ton of stuff to myself. It's not really because I don't want people to know how I feel, but more just that I never learned how to express myself. When it comes to being asked or being put on the spot about these feelings I tend to tense up and become very taciturn.

If your wife is anything like me at all, I think that what really needs to happen is you guys need to find out how she might be able to open up in other ways. Or you can just encourage her to do more spontaneous hugging. Because I know for myself I always have to be coaxed and reassured about stuff like constantly because i'm always second guessing about everything ever.

Well anyway, that's all I can really think to say. Good luck!
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#20 frustr8ed

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Posted 04 February 2008 - 03:27 AM

-
Does she perhaps do things that are less conventionally considered affectionate?

CHlirissa


It's sad but she will barly ever initiate any physical contact -- except maybe sometime while i'm driving she'll hold my hand -- I can tell that she doesn't mind if i hug her.

it's sad but I sometimes do it on purpose to not initiate contact and It can go on for weeks before she'll even touch me.

Is this typical asexual behavior?

#21 Midnight Violet

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Posted 04 February 2008 - 03:36 AM

I'm slow like honey :wink:

I'm not unaffectionate, I do however like things to build and grow.

I also like being the initiator..
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#22 frustr8ed

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Posted 04 February 2008 - 04:07 AM

Frustr8ted - does your wife perhaps feel guilty in some way that she's failing you because she's asexual? I avoided talking about sex for years with my partner because of that, which was wrong of me. Finding AVEN turned me around in that, and our relationship is much better, because we sat down and talked. Have you introduced her to the site?


You know I'm sure that my wife feels guilty about the fact that she is asexual. and I must say that I don't do anything to quell it. I feel guilty for being sexual. with regards to pointing my wife to this site. I truly have trouble this concept of asexuality --- particualarly with my wife i think it's something " a past experience" (did i mention she's had some issues with an eating disorder" ) that is making her like this...in her case i don't think it's asexuality. the more questions in the forum more extreme my wife's asexuality seems.

#23 isillote

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Posted 04 February 2008 - 05:36 PM

I think if both of you feel guilty, maybe that's what's inhibiting you from talking. My partner's very sexual, and although we are completely compatible in every other way, and can talk about anything together, we didn't talk about the fact that our sexlife was virtually non-existent until I found AVEN and realised I was not the only person on the planet who has no interest whatsoever in sex. I have no history of any abuse, but would imagine that abuse could take away your desire for sex. There are others on this site who have that experience, so hopefully some of them will answer you.

As for whether it's normal for asexuals not to initiate physical contact of any kind, I don't know. I know it's normal for me. I actively discourage contact from strangers/acquaintances, I tolerate it from friends, but feel awkward, but from my boyfriend I welcome it. But I must admit I rarely initiate it unless I'm feeling vulnerable, because I don't think about it much. I've got so accustomed to having no physical contact with people that it just doesn't occur to me that others might need it from me. Which is selfish, I admit.

#24 cijay

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Posted 05 February 2008 - 03:26 PM

How Asexual (unaffectionate) are you?

What do you not do?

-hold hands
-hug
-cuddle
-put your arm around someone
-kiss


I'm upset becuase my wife will never initiate any affection (nothing) I have to ask for hug --- it's kind of sad.

although i can tell she doesn't mind if i hug her she'll never spontaneously do it-- it really makes me sad.


I'm 100% asexual and I'm quite affectionate (I can do any of the above, I just don't because of what will be expected of me afterwards). So I don't see any connection between asexuality and affection.
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#25 Tangled trees

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Posted 05 February 2008 - 11:57 PM

Aromantic Asexual here, and I never initiate anything physical unless contact is required (like holding hands to guide a blind person, or holding someone around the shoulders when they have trouble walking). It's not out of a fear of contact, though, but out of a complete and utter lack of reaction to it.

I don't get any kind of feeling altogether from being held except the hold itself. To me all hugs do is impede movement; all that ever goes on in my head when hugged is how my arm is bending at the wrong angle or how I can't reach for my glass anymore. It feels exactly like someone suddenly tied a 100-pound rope around your arms for no understandable reason -- hardly something to appreciate or reciprocate.

I'm not introverted at all about my feelings, though. I simply speak them aloud, and tend to be very bluntly honest about them. I've always found it much clearer to plainly tell my friends I liked them than to put my arm around them, which could mean anything from "I like you" to "I'm tired, give me some support" to "I think you're sad, here, hug time !" or even "I'm secretely in love with you". Actually, I always wonder how hug-heavy people understand what hugs mean. Is everyone operating on blind guesswork, or is there a secret innate hug translator in people that I'm somehow lacking ? :?

#26 Peach

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Posted 08 February 2008 - 03:20 PM

I'd be happy with all of those, it's when genitals start getting involved that I'd be jumping out of an upstairs window.

hahaha! a brilliant description. i'll second that.
i love affection but unfortunately my affection is, more often than not, misread by my boyfriend :(
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#27 rosalie

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Posted 08 February 2008 - 06:28 PM

How Asexual (unaffectionate) are you?

What do you not do?

-hold hands
-hug
-cuddle
-put your arm around someone
-kiss


I'd do all of the above (enjoying it) and I would even initiate it as well.
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#28 Peach

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Posted 08 February 2008 - 10:15 PM

How Asexual (unaffectionate) are you?

What do you not do?

-hold hands
-hug
-cuddle
-put your arm around someone
-kiss


I'd do all of the above (enjoying it) and I would even initiate it as well.

and me :D
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#29 QueenOfSwords

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Posted 08 February 2008 - 11:33 PM

My husband and I are very affectionate and we'll both initiate hugs, kisses and touches. I like the touching, but then I'm a romantic grey-A so that won't apply to everyone.

Frustr8ed, I really feel for your situation, and that of your wife. Even though you consider her sexual feelings might be the result of a past experience, do you think AVEN might help her to explore her feelings? It really is difficult for you to define her sexuality although it is entirely possible that past experience has compounded her feelings toward sex.

There is also something else that has struck me through your postings. I have great difficulty with assessing human interaction; I suspect that I may have something like Aspergers' which can lead to a reduced ability to interact with other humans and feel comfortable about it. I can be very standoffish in social situations as I'm not sure what is expected and how to act. I also find myself constantly watching to be sure my actions are acceptable, and constantly assessing people's attitudes toward me in an attempt to fit in. This leads to an awful lot of mixed messages in my head. I am very comfortable with my husband, and over the past 14 years he has been very supportive of me in this regard. With other people, close friends included, this sometimes isn't the case and I feel very unsure and reserved.

While I'm not saying this is the situation with your wife, perhaps it is a combination of her sexual orientation and not really knowing when it is welcome for her to hug you. I know there probably isn't an inappropriate time for you, but that might not be clear to her and perhaps experiences in past relationships has made it difficult for her to assess.

I also second (third?) everyone else's opinions that hugging can lead to the expectation of sex - this has happened to me often enough. Might be worth making it clear to her that this isn't always the case.

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#30 BleedingThrough

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Posted 09 February 2008 - 12:36 AM

I don't like to kiss people or hug them unless it's a close friend or family member. I hate french kissing. And I don't like holding hands.




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