Kayla15

Asexuality and LGBTQIA+ community

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Kayla15

Hello everybody!

Since I'm asking these question in order to write a university paper I would be very pleased to have as many answers as possible. The more people telling their own experiences/opinions, the better.   

Of course I'm also asking for your permission to write your answers in something that will be read by other people, just to be sure.

I apologize if someone already posted something similar, in that case I'd love if you tell me where to find the topic.

Thanks everybody!

Do you personally feel, as an asexual, part of the LGBTQIA+ community?

Do you personally feel represented by it?

Have you ever experienced any discrimination in the queer community for being ace?                   

What do you feel about the "A" in the acronym? Is it useless/useful?

Do you think it's important for the LGBTQIA+ community to include asexuals? How much?

Do you think that asexuals are actually included in the bigger group? (apart from your personal experience/thoughts, in a more "objective" way", and as a whole, not only individually)

If not, what can be done to improve it? (If you personally think that asexuals should be included. It's absolutely fine to say  the opposite, I'm here to collect data. In this case, the question can be referred to the improvement of asexual visibility in general)

Thanks to everyone who sent a reply ❤️ if someone knows about any article that touches this matter I would be really glad if they shared it under this post!

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AwkwardSquid

Hi

 

1. Nope I do not.

2. Nope

3. Yes, seems like they would rather have me label as bi or gay or anything that doesn't have ace in it. 

4. I feel it to be useless as you could scream A stands for Ace and then hundreds would say nooo it is for allies.

5. At this point I honestly don't care anymore. Used to the abuse. 

 

Thats all I can think to answer. 

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wayward_zombie

heyo! I'll try to aswer as best as I can based on my own experience

 

Do you personally feel, as an asexual, part of the LGBTQIA+ community? I do

Do you personally feel represented by it? Not as much as I would like to, I stil don't feel 100% included but I recognize that it's getting better and even though there's still a lot of stigma and predjudice around asexuality people are getting more aware that we exist in some way

Have you ever experienced any discrimination in the queer community for being ace?  I think in a  subtle not so aggressive way, but still discrimination enough that you feel like people are just avoiding the topic or saying you're right just cause they think you're just making things up and that you're a weirdo with serious problems for not feeling sexual attraction             

What do you feel about the "A" in the acronym? Is it useless/useful? I think it's useful but again too many people aren't educated on the subject yet and assume it's only about allies. I also feel like a lot of people don't even try to understand cause they just can't imagine a world without sex or romance so they could tend to ignore it altogether or just pretend it isn't real and focus on other sexualities (hope I explained myself well enough ;-;)

Do you think it's important for the LGBTQIA+ community to include asexuals? How much?  Yes, and a lot too. We might not face the same discrimination as other sexualities but that doesn't mean we're not valid enough to be included.

Do you think that asexuals are actually included in the bigger group? Again, sometimes they are but I still don't feel like we're there yet, actually I think we still have a super long way to go before people recognize asexuality as much as being gay or anything else

If not, what can be done to improve it? we need to educate people on the subject. I understan it isn't always easy unfortunately, cause some people don't even care about trying to understand what another person is going through and have ittle to no empathy, but still I feel like if we started teaching kids about this in schools too it would be normalized even more, intstead of just be look weirdly upon or ignored completely.

 

hope that helped and good luck with your paper! let us know how it goes!

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Tessc

Do you personally feel, as an asexual, part of the LGBTQIA+ community? Yes, but only technically. I have a group of ace friends who all seem to consider us part of the wider community.

Do you personally feel represented by it? No, not at all.

Have you ever experienced any discrimination in the queer community for being ace? Yes. Mostly it was online by people who could hide behind their accounts rather than in person. The one time it happened in person was at a fair for the pride parade. This woman came up to us (we had a stall for visibility) and declared that we are all delusional, basically. She believes that everyone chooses their sexuality. She identifies as a lesbian and told me when I asked that yes, she could wake up the next day and just decide to be straight. -_-

What do you feel about the "A" in the acronym? Is it useless/useful? It will only be truly useful when people realise that it actually stands for asexual, not ally.

Do you think it's important for the LGBTQIA+ community to include asexuals? How much? Yes, because we are marginalised. We are a smaller part of the community, so I obviously don't think we will ever be "important" in it. But let's start with recognition that we aren't actually delusional.

Do you think that asexuals are actually included in the bigger group? No.

If not, what can be done to improve it? That is, sadly, like asking how to change a bigot's mind about the thing they don't like. We have visibility blogs and try to be part of the parades, but beyond that, I have no ideas, sorry! 😕

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Laurann
6 hours ago, Kayla15 said:

Do you personally feel, as an asexual, part of the LGBTQIA+ community?

Yes. And not just because of my other queer identities. Being ace makes me feel queer, because it's a sexual minority and because it's heavily othered by society.

 

6 hours ago, Kayla15 said:

Do you personally feel represented by it?

No. Not usually. I think most LGBT members don't want us there. But when I do see asexuality represented (or honestly even just mentioned) within queer discourse, that feels good. 

 

6 hours ago, Kayla15 said:

Have you ever experienced any discrimination in the queer community for being ace?           

I don't make a habit out of going to queer community events other than pride. Aces are very much not included in Amsterdam pride. In online communities discrimination and exclusion is rife. When I just randomly meet other queer people they usually don't know that asexuality exists.

 

6 hours ago, Kayla15 said:

What do you feel about the "A" in the acronym? Is it useless/useful?

It should be there, because we're a sexual minority just like the rest of them. It's a statement. I hate that it's often given to the A of Allies.

 

6 hours ago, Kayla15 said:

Do you think it's important for the LGBTQIA+ community to include asexuals? How much?

It's important for asexuals to be included, but I don't think the other letters care much. Being included gives us a community to go to for support. The largest Dutch LGBT organization (COC, oldest LGBT organization in the world) only started including asexuals in their activism last year, and this is a significant change, because they have real political influence and an air of legitimacy. If we ever want asexuals to be included in school sex-ed programs, in psychology classes for future therapists (because those tend to just want to cure their patients of their asexuality) and in anti-discrimination laws, we need the help of these types of organizations. And I think the fact that the Trevor project decided to explicitly include asexuals because there were so many calling their hotline also says something about how much this is needed. There is no ace-specific hotline. If a vulnerable, possibly suicidal, asexual teen needs to vent about their asexuality, now there's a hotline that has people trained to deal with that. That could quite literally save lives. 

Being included in the larger LGBT+ community gives us a fasttrack towards asexual infrastructure, political influence and support systems, and we need that.

 

6 hours ago, Kayla15 said:

Do you think that asexuals are actually included in the bigger group?

I don't understand this question. Included according to who? Some people like to include us, others like to exclude us. There is no consensus on this yet, but it seems to slowly be moving in the direction of inclusion. 

See a much more thorough response here:

 

 

6 hours ago, Kayla15 said:

If not, what can be done to improve it?

What can be done by who? By us asexuals? Or by the larger LGBT+ community? Or by society in general?

As aces all we can do is more activism and awareness initiatives, or we could start showing up to LGBT+ events more often just to make it known there that we exist (dunno how welcome we would be). 

The LGBT+ community can put in more effort to include us (dunno if they want to though). Invite asexual speakers to events. Include asexuality in proposed legislation they're fighting for. Include asexuality in pride events.

Society in general could give us more (and more accurate) media representation.

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Andiamo

Do you personally feel, as an asexual, part of the LGBTQIA+ community?

 

Yes, because my personal experience being asexual is a queer experience. I figured out that I'm ace because I felt othered in terms of sexuality in all related conversations and situations.  I do have other queer identities, but I am speaking only from a perspective of asexuality.

 

 

Do you personally feel represented by it?

 

Sometimes, but very, very rarely. I do think it's important to specify LGBTQIA+ community, because shorter versions of the acronym always exclude asexuality.

 

 

Have you ever experienced any discrimination in the queer community for being ace?

 

Not actively, but in passive ways.

        

 

What do you feel about the "A" in the acronym? Is it useless/useful?

 

I believe that it is very useful. It helps fight erasure and create representation. It also positions asexuality as distinct from and equally valid to all the other identities included.

 

 

Do you think it's important for the LGBTQIA+ community to include asexuals? How much?

 

I believe that it is important for the LGBTQIA+ community to not exclude asexuals. I know that some ace people do not feel that they are queer; that is valid. The problem is when we are excluded as a group by other queer individuals.

 

 

Do you think that asexuals are actually included in the bigger group?

 

I'm not sure what you mean by this. Is this more related to your representation question or your discrimination question?

 

 

If not, what can be done to improve it?

 

Still not sure what the original question was, sorry.

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Galactic Turtle
3 hours ago, Kayla15 said:

Do you personally feel, as an asexual, part of the LGBTQIA+ community?

No.

 

3 hours ago, Kayla15 said:

Do you personally feel represented by it?

No.

 

3 hours ago, Kayla15 said:

Have you ever experienced any discrimination in the queer community for being ace? 

No.

 

3 hours ago, Kayla15 said:

What do you feel about the "A" in the acronym? Is it useless/useful?

It exists.

 

3 hours ago, Kayla15 said:

Do you think it's important for the LGBTQIA+ community to include asexuals? How much?

No.

 

3 hours ago, Kayla15 said:

Do you think that asexuals are actually included in the bigger group? (apart from your personal experience/thoughts, in a more "objective" way", and as a whole, not only individually)

Given how many ace flags I see in pride merch these days I'd say it is, generally speaking, included. I don't feel any particular way about it.

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Falafelphy

Do you personally feel, as an asexual, part of the LGBTQIA+ community?

Yes. I'm not straight, so I'm part of the community.

Do you personally feel represented by it?

Not as much as I would like. I know that a lot of people are aware and accepting, but there are also plenty of people who are either not accepting or just generally unaware of asexuality to begin with. Especially with the overly sexualized nature often present at pride parades, I think that we absolutely need more ace representation.

Have you ever experienced any discrimination in the queer community for being ace? 

I personally have not. I'm lucky that since I've come out, people have been pretty accepting. I'm actually treasurer of the Pride club at my college, and although it's a small club, the people there are super accepting.                  

What do you feel about the "A" in the acronym? Is it useless/useful?

I think the A in the acronym is great for bringing visibility not only to asexuals, but also to aromantics and agender people. There just needs to be more awareness that it means those three things rather than allies.

Do you think it's important for the LGBTQIA+ community to include asexuals? How much?

It's very important. Many asexuals grow up thinking they're broken, and they need the reassurance of a community like that to show then they're not alone and they're just a different sexuality. Although there is a strong asexual community here and other places on the internet, it's often a matter of luck that an asexual finds places like AVEN unless they hear about asexuality through the queer community first.

Do you think that asexuals are actually included in the bigger group? (apart from your personal experience/thoughts, in a more "objective" way", and as a whole, not only individually)

Asexuals are included, but as an afterthought. From my observation, the majority of people are pretty accepting, but asexuality is just one of the last things they think of under the queer umbrella.

If not, what can be done to improve it? (If you personally think that asexuals should be included. It's absolutely fine to say  the opposite, I'm here to collect data. In this case, the question can be referred to the improvement of asexual visibility in general)

Suicide rates are higher among asexuals than among straight people, much like the rest of the queer community. Happiness rates are down. Children grow up believing that they are in some way wrong, and then have to "come out" to friends and family because they aren't cishet. Discrimination still happens against asexuals. As much as it can seem like asexuals are just straight people who don't have sex, this is very far from the case, even among heteroromantic asexuals.

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Homer
4 hours ago, Kayla15 said:

Do you personally feel, as an asexual, part of the LGBTQIA+ community?

Disclaimer - I don't know (and I don't care) whether I "count" as asexual.

 

No, I don't. I don't have any issues related to my feelings about sex. I don't feel like I need to be heard or that I need special protection.

 

4 hours ago, Kayla15 said:

Do you personally feel represented by it? 

No, but I don't need representation.

 

4 hours ago, Kayla15 said:

Have you ever experienced any discrimination in the queer community for being ace?     

I'm not part of this community. Those of my friends/acquaintances who are don't care at all.

 

4 hours ago, Kayla15 said:

What do you feel about the "A" in the acronym? Is it useless/useful? 

Historically, the A has always stood for 'ally'. I think that fighting for a letter in an acronym does not help asexuality to be recognized as something valid and worth being taken serious. Personally I never used anything else than LGBT+ anyway.

 

4 hours ago, Kayla15 said:

Do you think it's important for the LGBTQIA+ community to include asexuals? How much?

Do you think that asexuals are actually included in the bigger group? (apart from your personal experience/thoughts, in a more "objective" way", and as a whole, not only individually)

If not, what can be done to improve it? (If you personally think that asexuals should be included. It's absolutely fine to say  the opposite, I'm here to collect data. In this case, the question can be referred to the improvement of asexual visibility in general)

It totally depends on the particular group you're in touch with. There's no sense in trying to force your way into a group if they're not open to it. "Look, I've found this chart on the internet and it says that asexuals belong here" won't magically make people truly accept you. It's fine if they do but I'm not going to spend my time fighting my way into a group I haven't been part of in more than 30 years.

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TheAP

I guess I would consider myself LGBT+, since I'm asexual and definitely not straight. I have noticed some people on sites like Tumblr are nasty towards aces and aros, which is borne out of the opinion that they don't think we should be automatically included, but they take it too far and start insulting aces and aros and telling us we can't talk about our experiences. I do think aces and aros should be part of the community, because we're a minority orientation and face stigma and need acceptance. I think whether aces and aros are inherently part of the community or not, people should be accepting of us and our identities. A lot of ace/aro people are gay/bi/trans as well, and it's important that they feel accepted in their community, and not face prejudice for being ace/aro. It's important to recognize the diverse ways in which sexuality and romanticism can present.

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To Each Their Own

I may not personally need representation now because I am a grown adult. But when I was 14 and suicidal and didn’t know what was wrong with me...and that feeling followed me for decades...YES, representation for Asexuals in general would have been great!

 

Of course, when I was 14 there wasn’t really the word ‘Asexual’ yet for me to find.  But for the people out there that are still suffering because they don’t know what is ‘wrong’ with them, for the kids that are calling the Trevor hotline...YES, I want there to be Asexual representation out there for them to find.

 

In my case, I was medically intervened upon by doctors and therapists that didn’t know anything about Asexuals, either. Those were some of the most hellish years that really messed me up even more. And for the other people out there that are going to therapists to figure out what is wrong with them...YES, I want there to be Asexual representation out there so doctors and therapists can stop diagnosing us as disordered and broken! 

 

Can we only get that visibility in the LGBT+ acronym? I don’t know. But even if we’re arguing about what the A stands for with other people...at least they are hearing the words asexual, aromantic. I’m not sure how much visibility AVEN has on it’s own.

 

I do consider myself as part of the LGBT+ community. I’ve been hanging out here for the better part of 30 years because it’s the only safe place I’ve ever felt. And here is where I’m going to stay.

 

ETA: Not every asexual has a need or a want to be included in the LGBT+ community, and that’s perfectly legitimate. Asexuality covers a wide range of different (a)romantically attractioned people. But even aside from that, some will want it, some will not.

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Hazel_Elise

1. I strongly identify as LGBTQ. Considering the fact that I am both panromantic and genderqueer in addition to being asexual, I definitely belong in the LGBTQ community. I think that asexual by itself is also LGBTQ, though.

2. I suppose? I think asexuality still needs more visibility. But I do feel represented.   

3. Yeah, I’ve had fellow queer people tell me that asexuality isn’t real (e.g. I’m pansexual but don’t want sex), or that asexuality isn’t LGBT, or that I’m just trying to be special.             

4. I think it’s useless as ‘ally’ and useful as ‘asexual.’

5. Yes, because of the discrimination and confusion that some asexuals face, I think it is very important for our community.

6. I think that they are included overall, but visibility and education still have a long way to go.

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Deus Ex Infinity
6 hours ago, Kayla15 said:

Hello everybody!

Since I'm asking these question in order to write a university paper I would be very pleased to have as many answers as possible. The more people telling their own experiences/opinions, the better.   

Of course I'm also asking for your permission to write your answers in something that will be read by other people, just to be sure.

I apologize if someone already posted something similar, in that case I'd love if you tell me where to find the topic.

Thanks everybody!

Do you personally feel, as an asexual, part of the LGBTQIA+ community?

Do you personally feel represented by it?

Have you ever experienced any discrimination in the queer community for being ace?                   

What do you feel about the "A" in the acronym? Is it useless/useful?

Do you think it's important for the LGBTQIA+ community to include asexuals? How much?

Do you think that asexuals are actually included in the bigger group? (apart from your personal experience/thoughts, in a more "objective" way", and as a whole, not only individually)

If not, what can be done to improve it? (If you personally think that asexuals should be included. It's absolutely fine to say  the opposite, I'm here to collect data. In this case, the question can be referred to the improvement of asexual visibility in general)

I'm not ace but I do feel as part of the LGBTQIA+ community. Asexuality is still quite unknown but I think it's slowly on the way to become more recognized which is a very good thing. I've seen a lot more ace flags at pride parades over the last 1-2 years with mutual acceptance but zero discrimination so far. Thumbs up!

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IcyZorua

1. Do you personally feel, as an asexual, part of the LGBTQIA+ community?

Sort of. I do not identify as straight AT ALL, but at the same time, I'm not really gay either. So I'm stuck in the middle

 

2. Do you personally feel represented by it?

Eh, not really There's a reason asexuality is known as the invisible orientation. It's hard to find places I'm represented.

 

3. Have you ever experienced any discrimination in the queer community for being ace?

No, but I'm only out to one person who isn't straight.

                   

4. What do you feel about the "A" in the acronym? Is it useless/useful?

It doesn't stand for Ally. It would be more useful if people knew what it meant, but at least we have a letter.

 

5. Do you think it's important for the LGBTQIA+ community to include asexuals? How much?

I understand that the situations are different, and a lot of things that apply to one group don't apply to another, but it's important for the community to acknowledge that we exist, because we're in this together.

 

6. Do you think that asexuals are actually included in the bigger group? (apart from your personal experience/thoughts, in a more "objective" way", and as a whole, not only individually)

It really depends.

 

7. If not, what can be done to improve it? (If you personally think that asexuals should be included. It's absolutely fine to say  the opposite, I'm here to collect data. In this case, the question can be referred to the improvement of asexual visibility in general)

Quite simply, we need visibility.

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zandwitch

Do you personally feel, as an asexual, part of the LGBTQIA+ community? I do, but primarily because of my (homo)romantic orientation and my non-binary_trans identity.

 

Do you personally feel represented by it? So no, I don't feel particularly represented as ace_aro in the LGBTQIA+ community.

 

Have you ever experienced any discrimination in the queer community for being ace?  I agree to the previous posts saying that it happens in a very subtle way. For example through not being mentioned or included in language and assumptions LGBTQIA+ folks have. I participate in an project which does educational work on the subject of sexual_romantic orientations and gender identities - and even my colleagues often don't mention ace_aro if I do not ask for it.

 

What do you feel about the "A" in the acronym? Is it useless/useful? In my opinion it could be useful - but most seem to interprete it as A_lly. I think this has a lot to do with the lack of representation and knowledge.

 

Do you think it's important for the LGBTQIA+ community to include asexuals? How much?  Yes, totally. LGBTQIA+ can't claim to be inclusive, if only part of the spectrum is allowed_visible. I'm so tired of all the gatekeeping and the fear of other subgroups taking something (attention, representation, spaces, support...) away from them. We have to focus on what we want to achieve and realize that together we are unstoppable.

 

Do you think that asexuals are actually included in the bigger group? I think that aces_aros are inlcuding theirselfs in the bigger group more than the bigger group is actively including them. There's still a long way to go.

 

If not, what can be done to improve it? Those of us who are able_capable of being visible help all of us to gain space_s and attention. It's important to inform and sensitize members of the LGBTQIA+ community as well as everybody else. And it's important that there are projects like the one I participate in to reach institiutions_classes_children as well.

 

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Cee Fox
On 7/12/2018 at 10:53 AM, Kayla15 said:

Do you personally feel, as an asexual, part of the LGBTQIA+ community?

 

That's a hard one to answer. I, personally, don't identify as part of the community just yet since I'm still coming to terms with being asexual but I feel like in a few years or so I'll be able to answer that with a yes.

 

On 7/12/2018 at 10:53 AM, Kayla15 said:

Do you personally feel represented by it?

 

That ^^ being said, yeah I do feel represented by it. I always used to see asexuality as part of the community but it's somewhat still surprising but pleasant when someone else acknowledges it.

 

On 7/12/2018 at 10:53 AM, Kayla15 said:

Have you ever experienced any discrimination in the queer community for being ace?       

 

I've seen the recent discourse and even as an aroace I do feel a bit attacked by it. I'm already 'straight-passing' and there is a possibility that I might turn out to be heteroromantic in the future so it's a bit upsetting that that's a reason for me not to be included. Nonetheless I disregard it and go on with my life.

 

On 7/12/2018 at 10:53 AM, Kayla15 said:

 What do you feel about the "A" in the acronym? Is it useless/useful?

 

It's useful to have it there and I generally do list the full acronym if I'm not talking about a specific part of it. I'm not going to fight over who the 'A' is shared with though.

 

On 7/12/2018 at 10:53 AM, Kayla15 said:

Do you think it's important for the LGBTQIA+ community to include asexuals? How much?

 

It's inherently important for asexuals to be included not only for questioning aces (like I was) but for our visibility as a whole because we only really get that from being seen as part of the community.

 

On 7/12/2018 at 10:53 AM, Kayla15 said:

Do you think that asexuals are actually included in the bigger group?

 

Yes, asexuals are included in the bigger group, at least externally in any case. I know I'm supposed to answer this barring my personal experience but before I really even understood what asexuality really meant I immediately knew it as part of the LGBTQIA+ community and I'm sure a lot of other people think the same. It's only once I entered the community that I noticed any conflict, so if there's any exclusion it definitely comes from within.

 

Hope those answers help!

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