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Lydian

Stopping the Blame Game

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poindexter

I agree. And if a reasonable compromise isn't agreed upon, the relationship can't work no matter how much you may want it to, because there will always be underlying resentment from one or both sides.

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MXC

I think that sex can be very important on an intimacy level for sexual people, and the reason why they can get resentful is not because they only care about sex but probably because is like negate them the level of intimacy their "emotional relationship" needs to feel close to the other person. in a way is like keeping them on a distance.

on the other side putting pressure in an asexual partner can kill the joy or desire they may get from sex when they decide to go for it. if you know your partner will respect your choice on the moment you'll feel more relaxed, while if you feel every attempt to intimacy like a "war" you have to fight, always been on a defensive mode it will only make intimacy uncomfortable.

finding the right balance is really hard and probably love is not enough. giving someone else the blame never helped in any kind of relationship, it is always 50/50, and sometimes no one is to blame but life.

hope it makes sense :)

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MinkxAoba

This is something I've understood for awhile. It's why I cannot date someone who is sexual because I cannot have sex without feeling horribly used and mentally abused. I develop great resentment towards having to engage in sex. It was a big issue with my ex because he felt it was a bonding experience and he disliked that I thought it was something meaningless because, to me, it was meaningless in the sense that it wasn't intimate tome. Anyway, I know this about myself so if that means being single the rest of my life then so be it.

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RoL34

I don't see how this is such a problem. If you need sex to make a relationship feel complete, then that is your perogative. If sex is something you can never deal with, then you shouldn't feel like you have to do it. A relationship only works if both people are happy, and if people would just be up front about that sort of thing, there wouldn't be so many bitter and broken relationships. It's like wanting kids vs not wanting kids. Even though child rearing is supposed to be a natural desire of humans, nobody blames a person for never wanting to have kids.

I think where a lot of bitterness from avenites comes from though is not partners who need sex to make their relationships work, but people who feel entitled to sex. This is a special kind of sleazebag who thinks their self-worth is tied to how many people they bang, and that anyone who doesn't want to sleep with them are either playing hard to get or have something wrong with them. And this message is shoved down our throats in the media every day. You should WANT to be sexy and bang a lot of chicks or make guys want you, and if you don't, well, you're weird. That kind of attitude is something I really can't forgive.

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Lydian

I don't see how this is such a problem. If you need sex to make a relationship feel complete, then that is your perogative. If sex is something you can never deal with, then you shouldn't feel like you have to do it. A relationship only works if both people are happy, and if people would just be up front about that sort of thing, there wouldn't be so many bitter and broken relationships. It's like wanting kids vs not wanting kids. Even though child rearing is supposed to be a natural desire of humans, nobody blames a person for never wanting to have kids.

I think where a lot of bitterness from avenites comes from though is not partners who need sex to make their relationships work, but people who feel entitled to sex. This is a special kind of sleazebag who thinks their self-worth is tied to how many people they bang, and that anyone who doesn't want to sleep with them are either playing hard to get or have something wrong with them. And this message is shoved down our throats in the media every day. You should WANT to be sexy and bang a lot of chicks or make guys want you, and if you don't, well, you're weird. That kind of attitude is something I really can't forgive.

I definitely acknowledge that this happens. I have encountered a number of sex haters who say pretty nasty things about sexuals who ask for sex. My boyfriend is VERY respectful, and I make that clear, but I've heard from a few people how he's such a terrible sexual being for telling me he's not ok without sex. Love is about making your partner happy as I said. Acting entitled to how what you want isn't making your partner happy, and certainly doesn't follow the second part about respecting the asexual's wishes to not have sex. I wanted to make sure to address both sides, because I've seen hate towards both asexuals and sexuals for putting forward their desires. Obviously since there are less of us, we're more likely to be treated as wrong, but there are definitely some sexual haters here.

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Mapleleaf

Good post. ^_^ I agree with what you've said. And really, relationships are about compromise. If you're in a mixed relationship and find that you can't compromise if your partner does/doesn't want sex at a certain time, then that relationship probably isn't for you. I know that for me, I am going to have to compromise to have sex on a somewhat regular basis, because my husband is sexual and will need that. Do I have some resentment over that? Yeah, a little, because I don't want sex. But my love for him and desire for his happiness trumps that little bit of resentment. From what I understand, sexuals often need the physical release that sex brings (at least, men - and some women, but it's rarer among women, I think, or at least, not as strong of a drive). I know that if we never had sex again, my husband would be very unhappy in our relationship and would struggle with showing me love in the ways that I like having love shown to me, because his needs are not being met and... yeah. It could be a vicious cycle.

TL;DR ~ good post, and I agree with what you have to say. We need to look at the issue of sex from both perspectives, and accept each perspective as a truth for that particular orientation (or at least, truth for the majority of that orientation, since not all sexuals need sex and not all asexuals dislike sex). :cake:

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RoL34

I don't see how this is such a problem. If you need sex to make a relationship feel complete, then that is your perogative. If sex is something you can never deal with, then you shouldn't feel like you have to do it. A relationship only works if both people are happy, and if people would just be up front about that sort of thing, there wouldn't be so many bitter and broken relationships. It's like wanting kids vs not wanting kids. Even though child rearing is supposed to be a natural desire of humans, nobody blames a person for never wanting to have kids.

I think where a lot of bitterness from avenites comes from though is not partners who need sex to make their relationships work, but people who feel entitled to sex. This is a special kind of sleazebag who thinks their self-worth is tied to how many people they bang, and that anyone who doesn't want to sleep with them are either playing hard to get or have something wrong with them. And this message is shoved down our throats in the media every day. You should WANT to be sexy and bang a lot of chicks or make guys want you, and if you don't, well, you're weird. That kind of attitude is something I really can't forgive.

I definitely acknowledge that this happens. I have encountered a number of sex haters who say pretty nasty things about sexuals who ask for sex. My boyfriend is VERY respectful, and I make that clear, but I've heard from a few people how he's such a terrible sexual being for telling me he's not ok without sex. Love is about making your partner happy as I said. Acting entitled to how you feel isn't making your partner happy, and certainly doesn't follow the second part about respecting the asexual's wishes to not have sex. I wanted to make sure to address both sides, because I've seen hate towards both asexuals and sexuals for putting forward their desires. Obviously since there are less of us, we're more likely to be treated as wrong, but there are definitely some sexual haters here.

Well that's just crap. If he doesn't demand it of you and you guys work it out, they have no right to say those things about him. There are asexual elitists out there who think if you're asexual you shouldn't ever have to hear about sex, ever, and they're just not being realistic.

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Ravako

I have actually had this conversation nearly verbatim with my partner, who is sexual. Also he did come off as entitled at first, too, but that's not really a personal fault against his character. He believed it because that's what society teaches people. You're in a relationship, you basically get "rights" to another person's body. I stomped that notion flat as soon as it became too much to bear. No one, not even my partner, gets to touch me when I don't want to be touched. It is my damn body. Respect it. The way we handle this situation, because it's not like I never want to be touched, you know, is that he can touch me (non-sexually is mostly the case, anyway) without asking first (which is a HUGE thing to me. I don't allow just anyone to be that close physically to me. MAJOR trust thing), but if I say "no" or "please don't" he will stop. Basically, I don't want to discourage my partner from initiating things, because otherwise it just isn't as spontaneous/romantic, but I still reserve the right to say "no."

Anyway, before I even knew about asexuality, I still had a mind of my own, you know. I knew I didn't desire sex with him, and I wasn't going to go with it just because he and everyone else was pressuring me to do so. I am, and have always been, independent and strong-willed (like, even as an infant, telling from stories from my grandmother). I know what's mine is mine, and if I have a partner who can't respect that: dealbreaker. They can call me "frigid" or "prude" or a "bitch," but that just serves to validate my point anyway, so whatever. Fuck 'em (or not...harhar...har...erm, anyway).

Well, what I was setting out to say in my post is that my partner and I have an understanding. Mutual respect for each other's needs, basically. I know I've mostly outlined what lines in the sand I draw to you guys, and I know it probably comes off as like I'm really distant with my partner, but I really don't care to go into detail about other stuff (like it's much of anyone's business, besides). I think it is more important to say that it IS OKAY to say "no," even to someone you plan to spend the rest of your life with. Your body is your own, and no one--but NO ONE--has any "right" or "privilege" to it other than what you yourself say is okay. Making yourself uncomfortable is never ideal for any sort of relationship, and you'd honestly be surprised how many partners would wish they could have some sort of insight into what is okay and not okay before it's too late and you're majorly upset with them or too uncomfortable about being around them.

What I'm saying is this: communicate. Please, please, PLEASE be open with your partner about things. If you feel they aren't intimate enough with you, SAY SO. Don't let it fester and expect them to read your mind. They may think you are fine not being physically intimate and don't want to pressure you by initiating. Be open-minded and respect that your partner has feelings, wants, and needs that could be opposite of your own, but that doesn't make those feelings, wants, and needs any less valid. Just because my body is my own doesn't mean I just stomped my foot down and said "no." I explained why I felt that way and why it would mean a lot to me if they would respect my ability to say no. On the flipside, I also listened to my partner and we discussed why we agreed and disagreed about some points. I also realize some people wouldn't be okay with their partner being as "distant" as I am. Well, whatever. I just wouldn't be in a relationship with them. I wouldn't say they're wrong or their feelings are invalid, because those feelings come from somewhere, obviously. Those people want a physically intimate relationship. I don't. Neither of us are wrong. If we couldn't reach an understanding about how the relationship would go with both of us being satisfied and happy, well, I guess it's better to end it there, eh? No hard feelings. Both of us can find someone to meet our needs better rather than stick out a miserable relationship.

Talking. Communication. Mutual understanding. Respect.
These are all critically necessary for any relationship to succeed and flourish. I don't care if the topic is sex or someone-needs-to-do-the-damn-dishes-because-for-fuck's-sake-we're-out-of-spoons-and-I-can't-eat-soup-with-a-damn-fork. Talking. Do it. You are close to this person and should trust them with your life. Do not be afraid or intimidated by the idea of talking to this person openly and honestly.

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Lydian

Ravako, I'm not quoting because it would be too long but that sounds a LOT like what me and my partner have talked about and agreed upon as well. He may touch me but I reserve the right to say "no" and he'll respect that. You're also right for sure that your partner might assume certain things unless you tell them otherwise. "Talking. Communication. Mutual understanding. Respect." I like it!

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Mysticus Insanus

Don't really have anything to add, except suggesting this one gets pinned, maybe with a shadow in SPF&A. :cake:

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`Silver

That's what I've always thought too, yes. Even before I knew about asexuality, I respected everyone's sexual orientation and behaviour and thought it was just right for everyone else to do the same. As the current founder of AVEN Italy, I have gotten a few of these cases over the past months - a fwe asexual people blaming sexuals for being a bunch of horny sex machines, mostly. And I do get mad when I see something like that, though my policy is to keep polite and answer calmly, explaining why this kind of attitude isn't fair to sexuals. After all, asexuals should know better than anybody else how it feels to be invalidated and mocked for one's own sexuality.

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Lydian

Don't really have anything to add, except suggesting this one gets pinned, maybe with a shadow in SPF&A. :cake:

I don't know if that would happen but I'm very happy you think so. :blush:

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realcooldude

Don't really have anything to add, except suggesting this one gets pinned, maybe with a shadow in SPF&A. :cake:

I really agree, I can easily see how this would be something that would give a lot of much needed insight to both newcomers, ace or otherwise.

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The Great WTF

If I had a way to pin shadows, I would ask LG to pin this in SPFA. Unfortunately, that's beyond our magical modly abilities.

*pins*

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Philiarocks

Lydian, I really do agree with your post! I have been thinking about this a lot lately. I've come to realise that so long as it's negotiated honestly and both parties are willing, compromise doesn't have to be about giving something up-- sometimes it's just love. :)

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Anhamirak

Wow, this sounds so much like me and my ex, it's not even funny. I wasn't even aware that asexuality existed back then, but it explains why I always felt like he was pressuring me to do things I didn't really want to do. I didn't understand why all the sexual stuff was such a big deal and why he couldn't seem to ever think about anything else, and I ended up feeling like that was all he wanted out of our relationship. I'm sure he was just as baffled and frustrated by my total lack of interest in anything beyond kissing and cuddling.

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hansamuariga

I completely agree with this, but at the same time, let's all acknowledge that asexuals are the marginalized group. It's been incredibly difficult for me growing up and being force fed this idea that women should focus on looking good and pleasing their partner sexually. I tried to go along with this and ended up doing many sexual things that I've regretted and that still traumatize me to this day.

Sexuals are the dominant group in this situation, so I think it's even more important for them to recognize their own power and make absolutely damn well sure (if they care about their partner) that their partner is okay with whatever kind of compromise that the couple comes up with.

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Glitter Spock

I completely agree with this, but at the same time, let's all acknowledge that asexuals are the marginalized group. It's been incredibly difficult for me growing up and being force fed this idea that women should focus on looking good and pleasing their partner sexually. I tried to go along with this and ended up doing many sexual things that I've regretted and that still traumatize me to this day.

Sexuals are the dominant group in this situation, so I think it's even more important for them to recognize their own power and make absolutely damn well sure (if they care about their partner) that their partner is okay with whatever kind of compromise that the couple comes up with.

I agree 100% with hansamuariga. We are on the receiving end of the cultural message that we are supposed to want x amount of sex, and when we actually want none of it, we are shamed for it.

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Lydian

I completely agree with this, but at the same time, let's all acknowledge that asexuals are the marginalized group. It's been incredibly difficult for me growing up and being force fed this idea that women should focus on looking good and pleasing their partner sexually. I tried to go along with this and ended up doing many sexual things that I've regretted and that still traumatize me to this day.

Sexuals are the dominant group in this situation, so I think it's even more important for them to recognize their own power and make absolutely damn well sure (if they care about their partner) that their partner is okay with whatever kind of compromise that the couple comes up with.

I agree 100% with hansamuariga. We are on the receiving end of the cultural message that we are supposed to want x amount of sex, and when we actually want none of it, we are shamed for it.

This is definitely true. I wanted to make sure my post remained unbiased though as I wanted to make sure I couldn't be misread as blaming either side. Since on AVEN things are reversed and we're the majority sometimes it's easy to turn on the sexuals. We're definitely the targets most the time of the shaming thing, but I wanted to make sure I addressed the cases where sexuals come here only to be treated poorly. For the most part that doesn't happen, but I have seen it a few times. There's definitely a lot of pressure on the asexual and it's for sure important for the sexual to recognise that and respect their partner.

As I said, I wanted to make sure I didn't sound biased since relationships are a two-person thing and also didn't want to make my post too painfully long as I tend to do. v.v;

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KittenPuff

Lydian, thank you for this post. Everything you've said--and said so eloquently, gracefully, and humbly--is right on target. Well done!

I've seen a lot of shaming and blaming. There's plenty enough of that in the real world. We are all here looking for a safe place to talk about ourselves. We should also strive to provide a safe place for sexuals to learn how to understand us. After all, that's usually why they end up here.

I'm on my phone, so don't think I can post pictures, but lots and lots of cake to you for bringing this up!! And cake for Mysticus, too, for suggesting it be pinned. :)

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sound_the_bugle

Yeah, I'm just going to be like everyone else here, agree whole-heartedly with everything said, and applaud Lydian for putting all of this to words.

I fully believe it is no one's fault when things go wrong in a relationship, especially physically, and especially there when it's a mixed relationship. (Read: Rape is different. Rape leaves a relationship because it is about power, not about intimacy.) It's the fault of the situation. Could one person have done something different? Yes, probably. Could this have happened differently if the second person did this? Yes, probably. But it's still the fault of the situation, not of the individuals.

Furthermore, if we're looking for acceptance and respect from the sexual community (which does, I concur, outnumber us by an impossible amount), we need to show acceptance and respect for them.

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Woodworker1968

I think where a lot of bitterness from avenites comes from though is not partners who need sex to make their relationships work, but people who feel entitled to sex. This is a special kind of sleazebag who thinks their self-worth is tied to how many people they bang, and that anyone who doesn't want to sleep with them are either playing hard to get or have something wrong with them. And this message is shoved down our throats in the media every day. You should WANT to be sexy and bang a lot of chicks or make guys want you, and if you don't, well, you're weird. That kind of attitude is something I really can't forgive.

I couldn't have said it better myself. Unfortunately, that describes a sizable percentage of the men who regularly post on the S&D boards, plus at least 4 I can name IRL.

You left something out though... such men act so entitled that they get cranky and whiny when they're denied sex by some Barbie-doll-like woman or other. They really do sound like little kids who are told they're not getting any dessert.

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RoL34

I think where a lot of bitterness from avenites comes from though is not partners who need sex to make their relationships work, but people who feel entitled to sex. This is a special kind of sleazebag who thinks their self-worth is tied to how many people they bang, and that anyone who doesn't want to sleep with them are either playing hard to get or have something wrong with them. And this message is shoved down our throats in the media every day. You should WANT to be sexy and bang a lot of chicks or make guys want you, and if you don't, well, you're weird. That kind of attitude is something I really can't forgive.

I couldn't have said it better myself. Unfortunately, that describes a sizable percentage of the men who regularly post on the S&D boards, plus at least 4 I can name IRL.

You left something out though... such men act so entitled that they get cranky and whiny when they're denied sex by some Barbie-doll-like woman or other. They really do sound like little kids who are told they're not getting any dessert.

Oh, I've met those guys too. They are now afraid of me, because I don't put up with that shit. I have no problem cutting a dude out of my life if he can't respect me on this ONE thing, I am that protective of my personal space. But you can't go through life thinking EVERY dude is like that, because one, it's not true, and two, you will make it impossible for yourself to have a normal relationship.

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Leelian

I agree wholeheartedly with what Lydian and Ravako said, even though it should not need to be said. Goes for all sexualities, just work with your partner(s) to find something that fulfills both of your needs. I'm seeing it with my friend complain about sex with her boyfriend, just actually discuss it with him and you'll both be a lot happier. Don't blame someone when they're not in the mood at the same time as you, maybe discuss why that is instead.

I count myself lucky that I have never dealt with the 'blame game' on a personal level. I respect my boyfriend's desire for sex as a bonding experience, and he respects my feeling that I can live with out sex.

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Gremory

Great post ^.^

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Anajna

To me personally, I think the more pressure applied, the more withdrawl it can create. Neither side it to blame, this is just really something where putting yourself into the shoes of another is indeed almost impossible. I gues this is where true love splits from just 'a relationship'. A true love relationship will work out compromises, to not lose what is overall nonetheless bringing huge happiness, while just 'a relationship' will eventually fall apart, more than likely with each side walking away from it frustrated and blaming the other.

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daisylove

This is something I've understood for awhile. It's why I cannot date someone who is sexual because I cannot have sex without feeling horribly used and mentally abused. I develop great resentment towards having to engage in sex. It was a big issue with my ex because he felt it was a bonding experience and he disliked that I thought it was something meaningless because, to me, it was meaningless in the sense that it wasn't intimate tome. Anyway, I know this about myself so if that means being single the rest of my life then so be it.

Ive already mentioned this a number of times in the very very brief time that I have been a member here, but as someone who has "compromised" by having sex because it was expected/wanted/requested,however you choose to phrase it, it was never a good or bonding experience.

When you see asexuals react, I think its important to note that many of us feel that it is and always will be US that are expected to compromise, otherwise we would basically be with another asexual.

This is what I dont get about asexuals that choose to have sex. You're basically rendering your asexuality moot. To me its almost like a gay person forcing themselves to be with the opposite sex because there arent many gays in their area/vicinity.

Sorry if that offends anyone. Its not intended to.

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Anajna

I think where a lot of bitterness from avenites comes from though is not partners who need sex to make their relationships work, but people who feel entitled to sex. This is a special kind of sleazebag who thinks their self-worth is tied to how many people they bang, and that anyone who doesn't want to sleep with them are either playing hard to get or have something wrong with them. And this message is shoved down our throats in the media every day. You should WANT to be sexy and bang a lot of chicks or make guys want you, and if you don't, well, you're weird. That kind of attitude is something I really can't forgive.

I couldn't have said it better myself. Unfortunately, that describes a sizable percentage of the men who regularly post on the S&D boards, plus at least 4 I can name IRL.

You left something out though... such men act so entitled that they get cranky and whiny when they're denied sex by some Barbie-doll-like woman or other. They really do sound like little kids who are told they're not getting any dessert.

Definitely all of that, both posts, but it has also to do, I think, with those type of males in truth often having insecurity issues, and a rejection rattles them badly.

My last partner constantely told me what a hunk he was, and how he could have any female, and he'd get extremely angry and verbally abusive towards me, as his deep inside insecurity could not handle that I didn't wish to have my hands between his legs 24/7. He'd force it there, I think in the expectation that just feeling 'how big he was' (something he also constantly demanded reassurance on), I'd pounce on him. The fact that I didn't, gave him real problems, and while he honestly believed that all this was part of 'love', in truth it was just about his ego, and him needing that reassurance to feel like 'a man'.

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RoL34

That's just gross >.< What a prick, glad you're not with him anymore.

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