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A/Sexuality & Sexual Orientation Lexicon [READ ME]

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Welcome to The Gray Area, Sex, and Related Discussions forum!

This forum is a place to discuss anything related to a/sexuality. All are welcome to participate!

Because so many AVEN members have questions about their sexualities, we have created this lexicon to help you in your journey of personal discovery. Below you will find a list of sexual orientation labels, other words related to sexuality, an FAQ, and helpful links. Keep in mind that no one can "tell you" which orientations or words are correct for you. Whether or not you use labels, and what those labels are, can only be decided by you.


Please remember when discussing sex that we have people of all sexual orientations and preferences on AVEN. Your choice of a label (or your choice of no labels) is your choice. You cannot, and should not, belittle or put down another person because of their choice of labels. When you post, please be mindful of the members of AVEN who may not want to read sexual details. We use TMI, TW, or spoiler tags to let other members know when sensitive information may be coming.


This thread will be locked so that it will only be used as a resource and not as a discussion. If you notice any errors, or if you have any information that you would like to add, please PM the current mod. 


If you are interested in romantic and aromantic information, please see this thread: http://www.asexuality.org/en/topic/76092-romantic-and-aromantic-lexicon-and-faq/


Or for gender information, go here: http://www.asexuality.org/en/topic/120155-gender-definitions-master-list-draft/


Special thanks to the following members for helping to put this lexicon together --- Lost247365, Amy Ghost, Kendra_P_M, Lady Girl, Heart, SkyWorld, CosineTheCat, Star Bit

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Sexualities master list


Asexual - A person who does not experience sexual attraction at all, but still might experience romantic or platonic attraction, and still may participate in sexual activities.


Bisexual - A person who experiences sexual attraction to 2 or more genders

Heterosexual - A person who experiences sexual attraction to the opposite gender

Homosexual - A person who experiences sexual attraction to the same gender

Pansexual - A person who experiences sexual attraction to people regardless of their gender



Abrosexual- A person who experiences a fluid or rapidly changing sexual attraction to different gender expressions.

Acosexual- A person whose negative experiences with sex has alienated them from their allo-romanticism

Adfectual/Adfectusexual/Affectusexual/Adfsexual- A person whose sexual attraction is affected by their neurodivergency

Aegosexual/Autochorissexual- A person with a disconnect between themselves and the target of their sexual attractions/desires

Akoi(ne)sexual / Aposexual aka Lithsexual- A person who experiences sexual attraction to others but does not care or does not want that person to reciprocate

Allosexual- A person who experiences sexual attractions

Androgynosexual - A person who is attracted to androgynous people

Androsexual - A person who is sexually attracted to males

Antisexual - A person who is opposed to sexuality

Apathsexual- A person who is indifferent/apathetic to sexual attraction

Apothisexual - A person who does not experiences sexual attraction and does not want others to be sexually involved with them


Apressexual- A person who only experiences a sexual attraction after another form of attraction is felt. The original attraction may or may not fade/be replaced by the new attraction.

Autosexual - A person who is sexually attracted to oneself, or a person who can experience sexual satisfaction mainly through masturbation

Bellussexual- A person who enjoys the endearing aesthetics of romance/sexual courtship but does not want a sexual relationship.

Boreasexual- A person who has a set sexual orientation but with an exception

Burstsexual - A person who experiences sudden idiopathic and sporadic episodes of sexual attraction.

Caedsexual/Kalossexual- A person who used to experience sexual attractions, but no longer does due to past trauma.

Cupiosexual - A person who does not experience sexual attractions but wants to be in a sexual relationship

Demisexual - A person who only become sexually attracted to someone else after creating a strong emotional bond with that person. The sexual attraction does not exist before the two have created an emotional bond. (opposite of fraysexual)

Ensenisexual - A person who experiences sexual attraction and/or desire only when feeling very emotional. The emotions could include sadness, anxiety/fear, anger, jealousy, humiliation, compassion, joy, etc.

Fraysexual - A person who experiences sexual attraction to others inversely proportional to their familiarity with said person. The sexual attraction decreases as they become more emotionally involved. (opposite of demisexual)

Gray-asexual - A person whose sexuality is somewhere in between sexual and asexual, can have many different definitions

Gynosexual - A person who is sexually attracted to females

Heteroflexible - A person who is heterosexual but willing to engage in a homosexual relationship/activity on occasion.

Homoflexible - A person who is homosexual but willing to engage in a heterosexual relationship/activity on occasion.

Hypersexual - A person who experiences a high degree of sexual attractions.

Hyposexual - A person who experiences a low degree of sexual attractions.

Nebulasexual - A person who has a hard time or cannot tell sexual attraction apart from platonic due to being quoirorsexual or due to their neurodivergency.

Novisexual - A person who experiences a complicated sexual attraction (or lack thereof) such that they do not feel it can be described in a single term

Omniasexual / Omnia / Omniaelxi - A person who does not experience sexual, romantic, sensual, or aesthetic attractions.

Placiosexual - A person who wishes to perform sexual acts toward others, but does not want to receive sexual acts toward themselves

Post rubor - A person who quickly gets crushes/squishes/etc on others, but after the initial excitement of said crush/etc vanishes, so do their feelings.

Polysexual - A person who experiences sexual attraction to people they perceive of one of multiple different genders

Proquusexual - A masculine person who only experiences sexual attractions to those perceived as also being masculine.

Quassexual - A person who experiences nontraditional sexual attractions

Quoisexual aka WTFsexuals - A person who has trouble distinguishing between sexual attraction and other forms of attraction (platonic, romantic, etc.)


Requiesssexual - A person who does not experiences sexual attraction due to emotional exhaustion

Sapiosexual - A person who is sexually attracted to people who they perceive to be intelligent.

Skoliosexual/Ceterosexual - A person who experiences sexual attractions toward people that have an a nonbinary gender.

Zedsexual - A person who is not asexual. (Alternative term for allosexual)

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AVEN FAQs: http://www.asexuality.org/wiki/index.php?title=General_FAQ

Asexual specific questions

Is it okay to not want sex? Like ever?

Yes. Asexual people do not experience sexual attraction. Many asexuals also do not ever want to have sex, ever. You are not alone. While many mean people on the internet may claim different things about asexuality, the truth is that it is a sexual orientation, just like heterosexual or homosexual or bisexual.

I'm only [insert age] years old. Can I say that I am asexual? How do I know it won't change?

Do you experience sexual attraction? If your answer is no, you are probably asexual. The final answer is up to you. It is okay if you change your mind over time as you explore yourself. No one is expecting you to pick one answer and stay that way forever and ever. If the word "asexual" works for you right now, take it. If another word makes more sense as you age, then pick another word. It's as simple as that.

I enjoy [insert sexual activity here]. Does that mean that I'm not asexual?

This is debatable, and many aces have different opinions. Some asexuals do enjoy the act of sex, but still do not experience sexual attraction. Some asexuals are sex repulsed and experience no sexual attraction. There is a difference between the action of sex and the desire to find someone sexually attractive. If you do not experience sexual attraction, but you still enjoy sex in its own right, then you could still be considered asexual.

I have a libido. Am I still an ace?

You might be. This issue is debatable in the ace community. By definition, an asexual is someone who does not experience sexual attraction. A libido means that you have a desire for sexual activity. This is separate from your attraction to other people. It is possible to not be sexually attracted to people, but still want to perform sex acts.

I've had sex in the past. Can I say that I am asexual?

Absolutely. If you feel that you do not have any sexual attraction, you are still an asexual, regardless of your previous acts. If you feel some kind of sexual attraction, a word like "demisexual" or "grey" might be better words for you. The word you choose are up to you.

I masturbate and/or watch porn. Am I still asexual?

Asexual people do not experience sexual attraction. Notice the word attraction. This is different than behavior. Many people may find masturbation pleasurable on its own and don't link it to their sexual orientation. Many people enjoy porn, but still do not find any people to be sexually attractive. It is entirely possible to be asexual and still enjoy masturbation or porn. It is also possible to be asexual and to NOT enjoy masturbation or porn. Either way is normal and still a part of the asexual spectrum.

I think I may be asexual as a result of sexual trauma that I experienced (abuse, etc). How can I tell?

We at AVEN are not able to completely diagnose the affects that a trauma may have had on your sexuality. Please know that it is possible to be asexual with or without a past sexual trauma. Whether or not your trauma changed your sexuality is a decision you will have to make, perhaps with the help of a therapist or a good friend. AVEN has anti violence links here if you are interested in seeking help: http://www.asexuality.org/en/topic/118532-anti-violence-resource/

I only have interest in sex after a romantic attraction has developed. Am I still an ace?

You may be asexual. Also consider the labels "demisexual" or "grey-asexual". Remember that asexuality is a spectrum and you do not necessarily have to be 100% asexual to still be considered an ace.

Is it possible to be sex-positive but still asexual?

Sex-positive means that the general idea of sex is okay in your mind. You don't see sex as a bad thing. Yes, you can still be asexual and sex-positive. Essentially it means that you are okay with people in general having sex - you just don't want to participate in it yourself.

If I am asexual, does that make me aromantic by default?

No. Sexual orientation, romantic orientation, and gender are three separate things that don't have to agree. You can be any combination. For instance, it is possible to be asexual, homoromantic, and transgendered (or any other combination that is right for you!)

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Gray-A specific questions

I've heard about this "asexual umbrella". What is that?

Sexuality is not strictly sexual and asexual. There is a whole middle area called "gray". People who identify in the gray may be more or less sexual than your average person, but they still generally relate to asexuality. The ace umbrella encompasses all asexuals and grey-asexuals.

How is a grey-a different from an asexual?

Many grey-a's still experience sexual attraction. An asexual is defined as a person who does not experience sexual attraction.

How is a grey-a different from sexual?

The grey umbrella is very large and the answer to this question is very complicated. Each grey may have varying reasons ranging from not experiencing sexual attraction to the same degree as sexual people, not experiencing sexual attraction as often, or something completely different.

What is the difference between a grey-a and a demisexual?

A demisexual is a type of grey-a. Just like all squares are rectangles, but not all rectangles are squares, you can say that all demisexuals fall under the gray-a umbrella, but not all grey-as are demisexual.

Can grey-a's be aromantic?

Yes they can. A grey-a can be anywhere on the a/romantic spectrum.

I masturbate; does this mean I'm not completely asexual?

The definition of asexuality is "not experiencing sexual attraction". Therefore, masturbation does not mean that a person is any less asexual than somebody else. Furthermore, many people may find masturbation pleasurable on its own and don't link it to their sexual orientation.

Isn't grey-asexual just normal? Most people aren't sexually attracted all the time.

It is true that most people don't feel constant sexual attraction. However, a sexual person still feels sexual attraction fairly frequently. It may be from their partner, or maybe from that hot guy walking down the street, or maybe from their new coworker. Even if sexual people don't act on it, the attraction is still there.

For people who identify as grey-asexual or demisexual, it may take several YEARS before they find ANYONE to be sexually attractive. They may appreciate that a person is aesthetically attractive (i.e. "I think she is pretty"), but they will not necessarily find that person sexually attractive (i.e. "I would totally have sex with her"). Even in a relationship, it could take a very long time for grey-asexuals to find their partners sexually attractive.

How can you tell if you are some kind of gray-asexual?

If you experience some kind of sexual attraction, even if that attraction happens only under certain conditions, then that could be a sign that you are some kind of gray. Remember that asexual is defined as "does not experience sexual attraction".

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Demisexual specific questions

Can demisexuals experience aesthetic or romantic attraction?

Demisexuals can experience any type of primary attraction besides sexual attraction. This includes aesthetic and romantic attraction.

How long does it take for a demisexual to form an emotional attachment?

It depends on the people involved. Just as different people form friendships at different rates, different people will form sexual relationships at different rates.

Is demisexuality a choice?

Some people may choose not to pursue a sexual relationship until later on in a relationship, or marriage for various reasons. That does not automatically mean a person is demisexual. A demisexual is a person who does not experience sexual attraction until that point. Thus, it's an orientation, not a behavior.

So being demisexual...that means that you're not into anything sexual right?

Being demisexual doesn't mean a person isn't into sexual things. It means a person isn't into sexual things unless the context is right. In fact, there are many demisexuals who identify more with sexuals than asexuals.

It seems like demisexual people are trying to make themselves "special" because they only have sex with people they love.

It's about orientation, not action. Demisexual does not mean that they are being picky, or that they are "saving themselves" for one person. When someone is demisexual, they CANNOT experience sexual attraction unless they are first emotionally close to someone. The sexual attraction does not exist before that point. They are not choosing to repress sexual feelings until the timing is appropriate.

Also, demisexuality says nothing about who the person has sex with or when they have sex. It is possible to be demisexual and a virgin. It is possible to be demisexual and sex-repulsed. It is possible to be demisexual and have loads of sex all the time with your special person.

Demisexuality is also not a judgement against sexual people. Just because they only develop sexual attraction after an emotional bond has formed does not mean that they think anything is wrong with people who feel sexual attraction right away.

If you are demisexual, do you also have to be demiromantic?

Not necessarily. Sexual orientation and romantic orientation are two different things.

Can I be demisexual and transgender, third gender, agender, etc...?

Yes. Sexual orientation and gender are two different things.

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Other questions/wonderings

Is there such a thing as trans-sexual?

That would be transgender, which is a gender and not a sexual orientation. Transgender people can be any type of sexuality. There are sexual labels for people who find transgender people sexually attractive, including transfan/transphilia/transerotic/transsensual/andromimetophillia/gynemimetophillia/gynandromorphophilia.

I don't want to tell anyone that I am asexual. Is that okay?

Some aces want to tell their friends and family that they are asexual. Some do not. Either way the decision is yours. It is important to discuss your sexual orientation with your sexual/romantic partner, if you have one.

What is the difference between sexuality, gender, and romantic orientations?

The exact definition of these words can be debatable, because it does depend a lot on your personal feelings. Whatever definition you prefer, keep in mind that these are three separate things that don't have to agree. (i.e. If you are heterosexual, you are not, by default, heteroromantic or cis-gendered.)

Sexuality - capacity for sexual feelings; a person's sexual orientation or preferences; involvement/un-involvement in sexual activities. Words include asexual, heterosexual, homosexual, pansexual, etc.

Gender - a way to identify yourself that may (or may not) agree with your biological sex; a set of nouns or pronouns that you use to identify yourself. Words include man/masculine, woman/feminine, neutral/neuter, transgender, third gender, agender, etc.

Romanticism - desire to have something more intimate than friendship; involvement/un-involvement in romantic behaviors. Words include romantic, aromantic, biromantic, homoromantic, heteroromantic, panromantic, etc.

What is the difference between being celibate and being asexual?

Someone who is celibate chooses not to engage in sexual activities. It is a choice to be celibate. Someone who is asexual does not experience sexual attraction. Asexual is a sexual orientation and is not a choice.

I used to think that I was asexual, but now I've changed my mind. What happened!?

It is normal to change as you grow and learn more about yourself. No one would expect you to stay exactly the same for your entire life. Sexuality changes, just like everything else. It is okay to identify as asexual now and change your mind later. The great thing about labels is that you (and ONLY you) get to pick which one you use!

I am [insert sexual orientation], but my partner is not. What should we do?

Being of two different sexualities does not automatically cancel out a relationship. The two of you have different expectations and needs when it comes to a relationship. It is important to have a real, honest conversation with your partner. Discuss your (plural) needs. Discuss what to do about it. We can give you advice on AVEN, but only you and your partner can determine the best course for your relationship.

I am a sexual person. Am I welcome on AVEN?

Of course! All are welcome on AVEN! Please be mindful of everyone's differences here. Some people who post on AVEN may not be as open to sexual discussion as you are.

What is aesthetic attraction, and how is it different from sexual attraction?

Aesthetic attraction means that you find a person to look nice. You may say that this person is "pretty" or "handsome" or "hot". This is different from sexual attraction though. Aesthetic attraction is recognizing that a person is nice looking. Sexual attraction means that you want to do sexual things with that person. It is possible to find a person aesthetically attractive, but not have any desire to do sexual acts with that person.

Why so many labels?

There is a rather large list of possible sexual labels that you can choose from. Some people like to have a specific name for what they are. It helps them to feel like they are a part of a community. For some people, having the right label is incredibly freeing because they now realize that they are not alone or "strange".

Some people don't want any labels at all. They feel that labeling a person's orientation is not right. It all comes down to personal preference. If you would like to have a label for your sexuality, feel free to take one, or even invent your own!

Please remember that AVEN is open to all, whether you want a label or not. It is not okay to criticize someone for using labels or for choosing certain labels.

Help! I can't decide which word is right for me!

The labels you chose to use are entirely your choice. No one else can tell you which word is right for you. It can be daunting to look at so many terms and try to pick just one. It is absolutely okay to not know which word you want to use. It is also okay to change your mind over time. It is all up to you. Don't stress if you don't have a "place" yet. Take the time to reflect on your own, and choose the word that is the best for you.

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Other words dealing with a/sexuality (not labels) master list

Ally - someone who advocates for and supports members of a community other than their own; reaching across differences to achieve mutual goals

Fluid sexuality - a person whose sexual identity is a mixture of different sexualities

Intersex - Intersexuality is a set of medical conditions that feature congenital anomaly of the reproductive and sexual system. That is, intersex people are born with “sex chromosomes,” external genitalia, or internal reproductive systems that are not considered “standard” for either male or female

LGBTIQ - Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex, Queer.

Sex-positive - so long as it is between consenting adults, sex-positive individuals don't think sex is an inherently bad thing for individual people and society in general, and might even be beneficial. Someone who believes that people should have as much or as little safe, consensual sex as they want. Sex is not a plague on society, it is part of it no matter what.

Sex-negative - people who believe that sex is an inherently negative thing for people and society, and sex leads more problems than solutions. Someone who believes that people shouldn't have sex, that it should be highly limited and removed from society as much as possible or even entirely.

Sex-favorable - people who find sex a pleasant/favorable activity even if they don't have any desire for it.

Sex-neutral/indifferent - people who are apathetic to the act of sex

Sex-averse - people who personally dislike sex or find the idea of them having sex revolting. They may talk about sex, but the idea of THEM doing those things makes them sick.

Sex-repulsed - the very thought or sight of sex makes them feel disgusted or sickened. Merely talking about sex can bring on these feelings of disgust. Someone who is repulsed or disgusted by the idea of themselves having sex or being in a sexual situation.

Questioning - the process of exploring and identifying your own sexual orientation

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