BrokenPrince

Coming out to your family as Asexual

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BrokenPrince

How did your peers and parents react when you came out to them? My mom constantly invalidates my decisions on everything I'm doing and it's driving me insane. And would like some Advice, cause at this point I'm thinking about getting emancipated and living on my own cause this isn't something i want to deal with any longer.

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Karoushi

I just told my sister in such a weird way without using the term asexual and she seemed pretty chill with it. My closer friends seemed chill with it as well. They all seem to have the consensus that I never seemed interested in people so me being ace wasn't much of a surprise. I don't think I'll ever tell my parents though. They're not as accepting with LGBT stuff much less a lesser known sexuality like asexuality. As for your problem with you mom, if you're really having a hard time living with her then I would say leave if you actually have the means to support yourself. It can seem stressful living with a parent like that but it'll be even worse when you can't support yourself and have to move back in. 

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BrokenPrince
2 minutes ago, Karoushi said:

I just told my sister in such a weird way without using the term asexual and she seemed pretty chill with it. My closer friends seemed chill with it as well. They all seem to have the consensus that I never seemed interested in people so me being ace wasn't much of a surprise. I don't think I'll ever tell my parents though. They're not as accepting with LGBT stuff much less a lesser known sexuality like asexuality. As for your problem with you mom, if you're really having a hard time living with her then I would say leave if you actually have the means to support yourself. It can seem stressful living with a parent like that but it'll be even worse when you can't support yourself and have to move back in. 

Thanks, and that is true.

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Biblioromantic

Whoa, whoa, whoa. That's a lot of heavy stuff packed into very few words. I'm going to address a few things from what you've said one at a time.

 

First, coming out is a big deal, and there's absolutely no pressure to do it if it's not safe for you to do so. It sounds like you're already struggling with your parents. If they're not going to be supportive of your orientation, why do you need to tell them about it? No one wants to put themselves in a bad situation, least of all if you're going to make a bad situation worse for yourself. This is even more important since you're a minor. If they invalidate your orientation, they can make life even more difficult for you, and it's probably not worth it to come out to them until you're a legal adult living away from home. Give yourself a cushion of safety before you bare your soul, especially if you're unsure of how they're going to react.

 

So sure, if you're comfortable with it and have thought out all the ramifications for yourself and feel you could answer people's questions, by all means come out to your best friend, your sibling, or another adult you trust. Join an online community like AVEN. Meet up with other aces locally when you can. But wait to come out to your parents for a little while longer.

 

On the issue of emancipation, if you're under 18, there's a reason you're not considered a legal adult. I know life can be hard. I know parents can be...well, parents. But you're still very, very young. You're not the first teen to disagree with their parents. You're not the first to want independence. But think realistically about what being an adult means. It means holding a steady job with enough income to support yourself, and since you're too young to have a college degree or any serious job training, that will be extremely difficult. It means finding a safe place to live and paying rent and utilities. It means getting health insurance in case you get sick or injured. It means a million other things that will be almost impossible for you to do on your own at such a young age, which is why almost no judge or attorney will take you seriously if you approach them about emancipation.

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CierraJasmineJ

Hi! I don’t know if this is a good suggestion or not, it’s sort of just part of how I deal with things. Now, I’m not exactly “out” to anyone, because I’m still not sure of it myself, although a few close friends do know I’m questioning. However, I’ve sort of just told my parents that I don’t feel ready to even consider the prospect of dating yet. I’ve told them I’m focusing on other things right now, like my studies and developing my own independence. They’ve accepted that I simply do not feel as though I am mature enough to enter into any sort of dating relationship yet. Now, I don’t really know their opinions on aces and stuff, and I don’t know if I’d feel comfortable telling them I was ace even if I was certain of it myself. However, my explanation has kept them from looking too deeply into things. Obviously this won’t work for everyone, and it may not be the best solution for you, but it’s what I’ve done. It’s by no means a permanent answer, but it’s held up so far, and I think it should be fine at least until I’ve figured myself out more and become more confident in my identity. So, you could try that? Not come out as ace, but if they ask you anything about relationships, just give an answer like you aren’t ready? I agree with @Biblioromantic that coming out is a big thing, and perhaps it might not be the safest thing to come out if it would not be a good environment. If you truly feel like you still want to, maybe do a few testers here and there? Gauge responses to vague comments about asexuality? As for peers, it can be hard to come out to friends because you don’t want to lose their friendship. However, if you think they are good friends and will understand, that might be a good thing to do. Having support from friends can really help a lot. If there’s somebody you trust and want to tell, I think that would be a great way to gain some support. 

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Dark Heart

Personally, I'm a pretty private person, so unless I say otherwise, most just assume I'm straight. Because I do have a romantic interest in guys and I don't think what I do or do not do behind closed door is anyone else' business, I don't try to correct them.

 

When I first started to identify as Ace a couple months ago, I told my oldest brother. Because he is in an alternative relationship, I wasn't worried about how he would react.

I slowly made my parents aware of my preferences in a "if this were to happen, how would you feel" kind of way over the course of a couple years. Their general response was that they just wanted me to be happy (though my mom asked that if I did enter into a relationship with a female partner that I not show physical affection when I'm in her presence - my mom was raise in a highly religious household, so she holds more conservative views). I only just told them the labels for my preferences last night. I debated doing so because I didn't really see the point - they knew the meaning behind the labels already, so why confuse them with putting a label to it?

 

I did tell one of my friends, and she was very supportive. I haven't told either of my other siblings definitively (though I've made the rare comment here and there to my sister indicating my openness to relationships with a variety of sexes/genders - positive reaction), but I will be doing so soon.

 

I know that there are some people in my life that I won't tell until I have to and others that I will never tell because I know they can't accept it.

 

Coming out is often a very emotional process. It is all about what you are comfortable with and what is safe for you.

 

Whatever you do I wish you the best. Remember that if nothing else you always have us here at AVEN.

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Bronztrooper

In my family, I've only told my dad and my sister.  With my sister it went well, but with my dad...

 

Well, he didn't believe me, and the last time it was brought up he told me "You'll change your mind when you get laid".  I never said anything to my mom about it because I'm not really close to her, but I think she might be ok with it, though, I won't know for sure until I tell her and I'm not about to do that (she once yelled at me and my sister for using our Christmas gift cards to buy gifts for other people- I still don't get why she was mad about it).

 

The thing is, since I'm heteromantic, I might as well being straight because I'm not romantically interested in men, which means that I'd only really end up in a relationship with a woman.  I don't really tell people I meet irl that I'm ace until I've talked with them long enough to get a feel about how they might react to it (in my experience, other guys generally aren't suitable for me to come out to, so I'm much more likely to come out to women, but even then I'm still picky about who I tell).  I work in a warehouse and I talk with a few people there- I don't consider them to be friends-, but I've only told one of them that I'm ace and she didn't really react (hell, we actually agree on a lot of societal issues and stuff like that).  The others I either still don't have a good enough idea of how they'd react or are people I'm pretty sure would react poorly.

 

As for friends, I have a small and close-knit group of friends online and they're perfectly fine with me being ace, even if some of them may not fully understand it.  And honestly, if it wasn't for them, I probably wouldn't have found out that I was ace (indirectly, but still).

 

I've found that being selective about who you tell will save you a lot of hassle (and, in the worst case, harm) in the long run, but even if you think someone might be ok with it, it'll help to test the waters and see how they feel about the concept of asexuality first.  Besides, it's not something that would really affect other people unless they decide they want to pursue a relationship with you, so you don't have to tell other people if you don't want to.  It doesn't really change who you are on the whole- it just gives you another term to use to describe yourself.

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DoYouUnderstand

My mom cried, so I never told anyone else.

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IcyZorua

I've only ever come out to two people using the word "asexual". I'm... pretty sure my brother knows. He understands that I'd be okay with staying single, and in one conversation he did seem to know what the word meant (he said that our dog was a lesbian because she was uninterested in males, but I said she could be asexual because that's an option too. My brother said that our dog being asexual was also a possibility, and that's the most we've discussed it.) My mom also understands-- I basically came out to her by saying I don't feel sexual desires, and that I wasn't going to pursue sex. My dad, on the other hand... He thinks I'm not interested in boys because they're hormonal and do stupid things at this age. Which is a fair point, but not the whole reason. I think I'm going to wait to come out to him.

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Athena32

I've come out to a few friends and my cousin, but I'm not sure about coming out to my parents. I know they'll be supportive. Last year I actually got the "If you want to tell us anything" talk, but that was before I thought I was ace. I told them that I was pretty sure I was straight, and that I was almost definitely sure I was cis. However, I'm not sure how to bring it up. My mom's pretty perceptive (she's a councilor), so the "I learned about something cool called asexuality" route probably won't work. I don't want to just blurt it out or send a text or a letter, and I'm not sure if I want to come out at all. However, that would mean that I could stop hiding my computer and phone when I'm on AVEN or reading tumblr posts about asexuality. 

I don't really care about coming out to people beyond my family, and I honestly wouldn't mind just shouting it to the rooftops as long as my parents wouldn't hear it. I guess that their judgement just means so much more to me. I also know that it might be a difficult statement to take from their fifteen year old (even though I went through puberty in fifth grade) who's never had sex. And I'm still not completely sure-- I'm almost completely sure, but I still have doubts and fears. The thing is, it feels like coming out to my parents makes my asexuality set in stone, and I'm afraid of coming out and then realizing that I was wrong. I haven't felt sexual attraction yet, but it could still happen (it probably won't, though). I know that sexuality is fluid, but I'm still afraid. 

Do others struggle with this when thinking about coming out? Any advice? Knowing that I'm not alone in this and that others have these problems too would really help me right now. 

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atticus_the_porg

My mom didn't care nearly as much about my asexuality as she did about me being gay. Apparently she doesn't care much about how much sex I am or am not having as long as I'm straight. 

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Caterina Agap F.

I came out to my family as bisexual because it seemed easier than starting to explain the whole matter of the sexuality spectrum, but I did come out as ace to both my sister and all my friends. While the latters were quite chill about the whole matter and are very supportive, my sis took some time to come around, even got to tell me I was being "selfish" for withholding sex from my (hypothetical, since I was single at the time) partner. It's not easy, at all, because we'd want the closest people in our life to support us and be on our side, especially on such a delicate matter as our sexuality.

 

I can only say, for as cliché as it may be, that it does get easier. And in the end, your sexual life is your business and no one else's, even more so than your romantic orientation though both are absolutely private and people shouldn't feel entitled to having a say in that. My first relationship with another asexual girl taught me that in the end all that matters is honestly just finding someone you can be openly you with, and being firm that what you are, your gender and your sexual/romantic orientation, is NOT up for debate.

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BrokenPrince
On 5/16/2018 at 7:36 PM, Biblioromantic said:

Whoa, whoa, whoa. That's a lot of heavy stuff packed into very few words. I'm going to address a few things from what you've said one at a time.

 

First, coming out is a big deal, and there's absolutely no pressure to do it if it's not safe for you to do so. It sounds like you're already struggling with your parents. If they're not going to be supportive of your orientation, why do you need to tell them about it? No one wants to put themselves in a bad situation, least of all if you're going to make a bad situation worse for yourself. This is even more important since you're a minor. If they invalidate your orientation, they can make life even more difficult for you, and it's probably not worth it to come out to them until you're a legal adult living away from home. Give yourself a cushion of safety before you bare your soul, especially if you're unsure of how they're going to react.

 

So sure, if you're comfortable with it and have thought out all the ramifications for yourself and feel you could answer people's questions, by all means come out to your best friend, your sibling, or another adult you trust. Join an online community like AVEN. Meet up with other aces locally when you can. But wait to come out to your parents for a little while longer.

 

On the issue of emancipation, if you're under 18, there's a reason you're not considered a legal adult. I know life can be hard. I know parents can be...well, parents. But you're still very, very young. You're not the first teen to disagree with their parents. You're not the first to want independence. But think realistically about what being an adult means. It means holding a steady job with enough income to support yourself, and since you're too young to have a college degree or any serious job training, that will be extremely difficult. It means finding a safe place to live and paying rent and utilities. It means getting health insurance in case you get sick or injured. It means a million other things that will be almost impossible for you to do on your own at such a young age, which is why almost no judge or attorney will take you seriously if you approach them about emancipation.

I can support myself just fine, besides my mom isn't the only reason i wish to move out her boyfriend is constantly threatening me whenever i tell my mom how bad a parent she is, and i wouldn't be the only person supporting myself my grandma would help too because she knows that i can't stand it anymore and i wouldn't leave my house unless it meant helping my mental health it's not about disagreement i've been out to her and the rest of my immediate family for years none of them respect me besides my aunt and grandma, i am tired of living in a toxic place just to get by in life, i want out. In my state 16 is the age to get emancipated and i could do all that you mentioned by myself, grandma would still be very in my life because she cares unlike my bitch of a mother who disagrees with everything i am going through i am sick and tired of living where she is if she doesn't move out soon i will get emancipated. 

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OwenM

I tend not to actively bring any personal stuff up until it's relevant to a conversation already ongoing, so the only people I've really directly come out to are my parents, after they asked a couple of times about my black ring.

Went basically fine after taking me ages to work up to, their attitude was mostly "well, it's good you know what you want" (though I did need to pause a moment to think how to explain when I decided to add I wasn't aromantic and this led them to assume I meant agender by asexual). I think it did take Dad in particular a while to get it (helped by the iPM episode). I think my sister possibly gets it best of my immediate family (she's bi and from comments she's made I think she actually finds it easier to understand asexuality than heterosexuality or homosexuality). Never really talked about it with my brother at all (though), we tend not to do personal stuff.

I don't think any of my extended family know, but one of my aunts might suspect from a conversation I was trial ballooning in.

My main online friendship group I think it was more a series of comments (.... some of which were probably before I realised, on reflection). I think when it ended up becoming more explicit was when someone made a comment about someone he considered the NZ version of me being even more like me than he thought after he came out to him as ace, and I started actually using the word asexual with them after that (there was also a round of me and someone else asexual there proceeding to call ourselves Asexual Social Democrats after someone shared a post about I think a Danish film producer saying that was what #MeToo was saying everybody should be, or something similarly disturbing, which in hindsight feels a bit bad taste).

Offline, I think at least a couple of people in each group probably

 suspect from ways I've brought it up in general/know from polls in weird Facebook groups, but I'm not actually sure who.

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