Prydonax

Trauma and Asexuality?

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Prydonax

Hey guys! So I've been having some anxiety about this lately. Recently, I told one of my therapists that I was ace, but she claimed that it was due to the trauma I have suffered. Two years ago my dad passed away, and before that he was dealing with cancer for 2 more years, and obviously it's been kind of tough for me. I'm kind of worried that I'm only ace due to 'trauma', even though that doesn't really sound right to me. I don't remember ever feeling sexual attraction. I'm not sure when it's supposed to start, but I am 17 now, and all that stuff started around the time I was 14. Do you guys think this is due to trauma? Or should I have been feeling sexual attraction well before the age of 14? 

 

Thanks!

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Phoenix the II

What happens to you... when you think/imagine of having sex with someone? What feeling goes through you? 

 

Let that feeling guide you... It's not wrong... 

 

If it's just no desire for it.. That's fine

If it's just not important to you.. That's fine

If it's anxiety that comes up, you're not forced to have sex.. That's fine

 

But probably your therapist is thinking the latter, because it can signal trauma. 

 

It's ok if you haven't been feeling sexual attraction... There's no, "you should's". Do what you feel comfortable doing for yourself.. Of yourself.

 

And welcome! :cake: 

 

 

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Aebt
3 minutes ago, Prydonax said:

she claimed that it was due to the trauma

That sounds bizarre. I know sometimes therapists try to link every reason for something back to some specific external event, but many times those external events had no effect.

6 minutes ago, Prydonax said:

I'm not sure when it's supposed to start, but I am 17 now

I sometimes worry about that too. I am 18 and it has yet to hit me. If it does eventually then okay, but in the meantime I will continue as asexual.

8 minutes ago, Prydonax said:

Do you guys think this is due to trauma? Or should I have been feeling sexual attraction well before the age of 14? 

I doubt it is from trauma, but in theory it could be. Always remember, you know yourself better than anyone else can. I don't think there is a magical age where sexual attraction starts, I believe it would vary based off when one enters puberty, but I am not quite sure.

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RiddleMeThisTom

It's possible but I doubt it. I'm not trying to discredit your therapist or anything though. Are you fine with being ace? If you don't mind then don't worry about it, even if it is trauma induced. And if you change later down the road, that's great! Sexualities change, even if it's not because of your trauma. 

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Prydonax
24 minutes ago, Aebt said:

That sounds bizarre. I know sometimes therapists try to link every reason for something back to some specific external event, but many times those external events had no effect.

I sometimes worry about that too. I am 18 and it has yet to hit me. If it does eventually then okay, but in the meantime I will continue as asexual.

I doubt it is from trauma, but in theory it could be. Always remember, you know yourself better than anyone else can. I don't think there is a magical age where sexual attraction starts, I believe it would vary based off when one enters puberty, but I am not quite sure.

@RiddleMeThisTom I'm actually really proud to be ace, and that's one of the reasons why I'm afraid. Thanks for the advice, all of you! I feel a bit better now, I guess change kind of scares me,  but hey, maybe I'll get used to it someday.  @Phoenix the II @Aebt

 

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Madao

I can't judge whether you being asexual is caused by trauma or not, but if you think asexuality is perfect label for you, keep using it. It doesn't matter whether your sexuality might change or is different in future. I had suffered some trauma few years ago, but I know I was more interested in studying and my own world rather than other boys and sexual stuff. Even if you are ace because of trauma, it doesn't matter :)

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TheAP

It's hard to know whether your asexuality is due to trauma. But if you don't feel sexual attraction, feel free to identify as ace. If your trauma is causing you distress, it would be a good idea to seek help, but there's nothing wrong with being asexual.

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TheLastOfSheila
57 minutes ago, RiddleMeThisTom said:

It's possible but I doubt it. I'm not trying to discredit your therapist or anything though. Are you fine with being ace? If you don't mind then don't worry about it, even if it is trauma induced. And if you change later down the road, that's great! Sexualities change, even if it's not because of your trauma. 

 

31 minutes ago, Madao said:

Even if you are ace because of trauma, it doesn't matter :)

 Wonderful replies to Prydonax's post!  When I first came to AVEN, there seemed to be a very vocal contingent saying that unless one was "born that way", one couldn't truly be asexual, an opinion that I heartily disagreed with.  It is encouraging and comforting to see young Aces with a much more enlightened and intelligent attitude!

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Homer

I guess the only way to know is to go through with therapy and see how you feel afterwards. It's possible that your feelings are caused by trauma, but it's not necessary.

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Bejawa

If saying you are ace helps to explain your experience use it. It's so much harder to say "I dont want sex and it might be because of trauma" than just saying I'm ace.

It might give people false hope you'll change or that they can "fix" you even more so than some already do when one claims they are ace. 

If your happy without sex I really wouldn't worry about it.

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Simplefun

I can definitely relate because lately I have been wondering if I am actually asexual or if it's because of a trauma from when I was young. When I thought about it though I think it doesn't matter why I am asexual, all that matters is that this is how I identify now. But obviously if the trauma is something that is affecting you then you should seek help about it. Sexualities can change too. Honestly I'm still not really sure where I fit in but I feel that all that matters is that people respect what I feel. Idk if that helps at all since I'm just as confused as you are haha

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InquisitivePhilosopher
3 hours ago, Prydonax said:

...Recently, I told one of my therapists that I was ace, but she claimed that it was due to the trauma I have suffered. Two years ago my dad passed away, and before that he was dealing with cancer for 2 more years, and obviously it's been kind of tough for me. I'm kind of worried that I'm only ace due to 'trauma', even though that doesn't really sound right to me. I don't remember ever feeling sexual attraction. I'm not sure when it's supposed to start, but I am 17 now, and all that stuff started around the time I was 14. Do you guys think this is due to trauma?...

Hi. You don't have to answer this, but do you mean the trauma of your dad having cancer and passing away or some other trauma, like physical or sexual abuse? If you meant the trauma of witnessing your dad's cancer, I had cousins who were also teens when their father had cancer and died, too. One cousin dated during their teen years, had a sexual relationship with someone, had a child at 19, then married at 20. (I'm unsure about the other one's dating and sexual relationship history, as he was younger).

 

 

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planetexpllorer

Hmm, I see how that could be a common misconception about asexuality but that doesn't mean it has to apply to you. I've known I was ace since I was 14 and what solidified that as valid for me was that I had friends who were already in intimate relationships (of sorts) so I knew that it was okay to be ace. I've never suffered immense trauma, yet I knew that about myself from a young age. Regardless of all that, even if this is a phase or something related to your past (which it may or may not be and that's okay), it's still a part of you and something that you are exploring and trying to understand. Most importantly! If you are ace do not let anyone tell you otherwise because no one knows you better than you. Believe in what your body tells you. :) 

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hamm.ster

My first sexual encounter was being raped when I was 17, and I wonder the same thing. I’m 24 now. 

It seems silly to me that your therapist would link a non-related trauma to your sexual identity. I understand that it’s possible for trauma to show itself in categories that aren’t connected, but that seems strange to me. I also lost my dad 3 years ago, and I’m sorry for your loss. I don’t personally think me losing my dad was a trauma that has had an effect on my sexuality.

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MichaelTannock

I think it's more likely that your therapist doesn't accept Asexuality is real and latched onto trauma as the explanation for your lack of Sexual Attraction.
The thing is, an Asexual is someone who doesn't experience Sexual Attraction, so whether your lack of Sexual Attraction caused by trauma or not, you're Asexual.
I have an instance of sexual trauma in my past that I wondered if it made me Asexual, but I consider myself Asexual either way because I don't experience Sexual Attraction.

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Serran

Depression can cause lack of sexual feelings, so in that way maaaybe. 

 

But... it doesnt have to and a lot of people who suffer trauma are sexual. 

 

Just dont worry about that part and continue getting help about your traumas. If you one day develop sexual attraction, yay. If not, yay. It doesnt change how you feel now. And you dont have to be gold star to be ace. 

 

As for age - 14 and younger is really young for sexual attraction. Some do develop it that young but not all. Personally, my sexual feelings started at 30. So, you never really know, but you cant what if about a potential future. You can only make decisions based on the now. 

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Deus Ex Infinity

I once had a similiar situation going on where I was wondering if my past childhood abuse might have cause to put me somewhere on the asexual spectrum but I couldn't find any evidence or scientific proof of it till nowadays so I don't believe that there's an actual connection between trauma and your orientation as being asexual.

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Vårin

It could be connected, but it does not seem likely based on your description.

 

On 11/9/2018 at 3:57 PM, Prydonax said:

I'm kind of worried that I'm only ace due to 'trauma', even though that doesn't really sound right to me.

It may be that the therapist is just confusing you because they are suppose be knowlagable about such things, but only you can know really. Call yourself ace if you feel it is right.

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Breathing....

I have had this experience with a therapist. This therapist saved my life and I’ll always have a place in my heart for them. But we rarely discussed my sexuality, it seems odd to connect it to your father though (I’m very sorry for your loss).

My therapist connected it to continued emotional abuse and not feeling worthy, and fear of being in a relationship like my parents. They explained their thoughts on the connection very well and took my disagreement well too. It was a good discussion, fraught and difficult but fair and mutual learning, as therapy should be.

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