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Whatnext

Why hurt sexuals?

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Lucinda

So, he begs and pursues relationships because he wants to be pursued and desired? Yet when someone expresses words or actions of desire, which is what he wants, he reacts with derision? It sounds like there are opposing forces at work here.

He is pensive one day and the next he is unruly. He trusts you blindly yet has his doubts about you. He tells you that you are Mr. Perfect yet treats you rudely. These contradictory thought patterns do seem rather opposing, don't they?

His condescending and sarcastic comments were, in effect, questioning your sincerity ... am I correct? Yet, he is the one who turns out to be a rather insincere person, wouldn't you agree? Sometimes when people seem to be talking to us, or even scolding us, they are really talking to themselves about themselves ... especially when their words seem totally irrelevant to us.

Lucinda

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Whatnext

So, he begs and pursues relationships because he wants to be pursued and desired? Yet when someone expresses words or actions of desire, which is what he wants, he reacts with derision? It sounds like there are opposing forces at work here.

He is pensive one day and the next he is unruly. He trusts you blindly yet has his doubts about you. He tells you that you are Mr. Perfect yet treats you rudely. These contradictory thought patterns do seem rather opposing, don't they?

His condescending and sarcastic comments were, in effect, questioning your sincerity ... am I correct? Yet, he is the one who turns out to be a rather insincere person, wouldn't you agree? Sometimes when people seem to be talking to us, or even scolding us, they are really talking to themselves about themselves ... especially when their words seem totally irrelevant to us.

Lucinda

Yet again you are right. You have been all along and I think your words make an incredible amount of sense. I really think that the guy has a character disorder somehow that he has 2 personalities. This has nothing to do with his orientation. I totally agree with you that he is the one who is insincere and after all the rudeness he displayed he hugged me and kissed me on his way out thanking me for everything. I was as cold as a block of ice and didn't lift my hands out of my pockets and just wanted him to leave. I appreciate your insight and I would hope that we can somehow stay in touch.

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Nezumi

I kinda believe that a/sexual relationships are doomed from the start--these are two people who are a) never going to be able to really understand each other and b) never going to be completely satisfied with the relationship. I'm not sure how to make that work.

As far as "the compromise" goes, the thing we sexual folks need to realize is that, while going without sex for longer than we'd like is fucking horrible for us, the asexual partner is being asked to submit to pseudo-rape. Being forced to be celibate is awful, but being forced to give your body to somebody (even if it is somebody you love) is even worse.

I just don't think a/sexual relationships are a good idea unless they involve some pretty unique people.

I wouldn't say unique people as much as asexuals that don't hate sex. I'm in an a/s relationship and have been for 3 threes. While I don't enjoy sex, I still have it with my fiance because I don't hate it either. It doesn't do anything for me. And while he doesn't get sexy time everynight. I do try to give it at least once a week. And I don't feel raped. lol

I only think a/s relationships are hard when it's an asexual that despises sex and doesn't even want to think about doing it. Or a sexual person who needs it every night or whenever they are 'in the mood'.

And trying to understand each other to the best of our abilities helps.

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Sally

I kinda believe that a/sexual relationships are doomed from the start--these are two people who are a) never going to be able to really understand each other and b) never going to be completely satisfied with the relationship. I'm not sure how to make that work.

As far as "the compromise" goes, the thing we sexual folks need to realize is that, while going without sex for longer than we'd like is fucking horrible for us, the asexual partner is being asked to submit to pseudo-rape. Being forced to be celibate is awful, but being forced to give your body to somebody (even if it is somebody you love) is even worse.

I just don't think a/sexual relationships are a good idea unless they involve some pretty unique people.

I wouldn't say unique people as much as asexuals that don't hate sex. I'm in an a/s relationship and have been for 3 threes. While I don't enjoy sex, I still have it with my fiance because I don't hate it either. It doesn't do anything for me. And while he doesn't get sexy time everynight. I do try to give it at least once a week. And I don't feel raped. lol

I only think a/s relationships are hard when it's an asexual that despises sex and doesn't even want to think about doing it. Or a sexual person who needs it every night or whenever they are 'in the mood'.

And trying to understand each other to the best of our abilities helps.

The words "hate" and "despise" are pretty strong. Just because an asexual doesn't want to have sex--and therefore the mixed relationship doesn't work--doesn't mean the asexual hates sex. It can simply mean the asexual doesn't want to use their body for something they don't desire, and decides not to do so anymore. You can't really make judgments about other A/S relationships based only on yours.

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BlackRose

Just because an asexual doesn't want to have sex--and therefore the mixed relationship doesn't work--doesn't mean the asexual hates sex. It can simply mean the asexual doesn't want to use their body for something they don't desire, and decides not to do so anymore. You can't really make judgments about other A/S relationships based only on yours.

Well, since relationships are generally based on giving and taking, and doing what you can to help the other person out, it seems to me that just not wanting to have sex isn't a good reason to not have sex, if your partner wants it. I can understand not having sex if you hate and despise it, but if it's just neutral to you, and you don't feel like it, and it would make the relationship work, why not just do it, if you care about the relationship?

This also made me think that the real obstacle in a relationship isn't about attraction, or orientations: it really is about behavior. A sexual might be more compatible with an asexual willing to have sex regularly than with a sexual with a low sex drive, for instance.

So maybe it's not ace/sexual relationships that are hard: maybe what matters is the difference in what you want (or are willing to do) sexually.

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Sally

Well, since relationships are generally based on giving and taking, and doing what you can to help the other person out, it seems to me that just not wanting to have sex isn't a good reason to not have sex, if your partner wants it. I can understand not having sex if you hate and despise it, but if it's just neutral to you, and you don't feel like it, and it would make the relationship work, why not just do it, if you care about the relationship?

This also made me think that the real obstacle in a relationship isn't about attraction, or orientations: it really is about behavior. A sexual might be more compatible with an asexual willing to have sex regularly than with a sexual with a low sex drive, for instance.

So maybe it's not ace/sexual relationships that are hard: maybe what matters is the difference in what you want (or are willing to do) sexually.

You're probably right: the amount/type/reciprocity of sex desired/not desired is probably key, not necessarily the orientation.

However, let me change your paragraph thusly:

Well, since relationships are generally based on giving and taking, and doing what you can to help the other person out, it seems to nme that just wanting to have sex isn't a good reason to have sex, if your partner doesn't want it. I can understand wanting to have sex if you like it, but why do it, if you care about the relationship?

Does that still seem reasonable? If its not reasonable for the sexual, why would your proposition be reasonable for the asexual? Is the sexual inherently more important than the asexual?

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BlackRose

Well, since relationships are generally based on giving and taking, and doing what you can to help the other person out, it seems to me that just not wanting to have sex isn't a good reason to not have sex, if your partner wants it. I can understand not having sex if you hate and despise it, but if it's just neutral to you, and you don't feel like it, and it would make the relationship work, why not just do it, if you care about the relationship?

This also made me think that the real obstacle in a relationship isn't about attraction, or orientations: it really is about behavior. A sexual might be more compatible with an asexual willing to have sex regularly than with a sexual with a low sex drive, for instance.

So maybe it's not ace/sexual relationships that are hard: maybe what matters is the difference in what you want (or are willing to do) sexually.

You're probably right: the amount/type/reciprocity of sex desired/not desired is probably key, not necessarily the orientation.

However, let me change your paragraph thusly:

Well, since relationships are generally based on giving and taking, and doing what you can to help the other person out, it seems to nme that just wanting to have sex isn't a good reason to have sex, if your partner doesn't want it. I can understand wanting to have sex if you like it, but why do it, if you care about the relationship?

Does that still seem reasonable? If its not reasonable for the sexual, why would your proposition be reasonable for the asexual? Is the sexual inherently more important than the asexual?

I think you missed my point. I was talking about an asexual who didn't find sex painful or revolting or anything like that. One who was neutral towards sex. (Notice you deleted that part of what I said in your quote.) The reversal of what I said would be a sexual who didn't really like or want sex. In such a case, yes, it would seem silly for a sexual who didn't really like sex to stubbornly insist on sex, just as it seems silly for an asexual who doesn't have any objection to sex to stubbornly refuse to have sex.

However, it does make sense for an asexual who has a problem with sex to refuse to have sex (which would damage or end the relationship) and it does make sense for a sexual who does really need sex to insist on sex (which could also harm the relationship) because in those cases, there's something more important than the relationship (getting or being free from sex).

I see your point; it can be just as difficult from the asexual's point of view. But there is one difference, which is that both people have to agree to have sex. The asexual doesn't have to worry about having sex when s/he doesn't agree, whereas the sexual needs the asexual's permission to have sex with him/her. So the asexual (or low sex drive partner) has control of the situation in a way that the sexual doesn't. All the sexual can do is insist, demand, or make threats, whereas the asexual is actually in a position to deprive the sexual.

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nleseul

I think you missed my point. I was talking about an asexual who didn't find sex painful or revolting or anything like that. One who was neutral towards sex.

There's no such thing as someone who is totally neutral towards sex. Even someone who doesn't actually have a problem with it still incurs opportunity cost by doing it when they'd rather be doing something else. Which isn't so bad if it just happens once, but it can wear you down over the course of a relationship if your partner is constantly pestering you for sex.

In a way, it's like any of the other silly household chores that often become a point of conflict in relationships. No one really has a moral problem with taking out the garbage or whatever, but if you're constantly being told to do it when you have other things on your mind, it becomes a symbol of your lost autonomy in the relationship and develops into an irrationally huge thing.

I see your point; it can be just as difficult from the asexual's point of view. But there is one difference, which is that both people have to agree to have sex. The asexual doesn't have to worry about having sex when s/he doesn't agree, whereas the sexual needs the asexual's permission to have sex with him/her. So the asexual (or low sex drive partner) has control of the situation in a way that the sexual doesn't. All the sexual can do is insist, demand, or make threats, whereas the asexual is actually in a position to deprive the sexual.

This is starting to sound suspiciously like the "Men's Rights" rhetoric about how women secretly rule the world with their power to deny men sex. Why can't you adapt this same argument to claim that women should have no problem with having sex with every man who wants them, so long as they don't find the man in question completely repulsive?

Remember, even if the sexual can't really do anything besides beg or threaten, their position is going to have backing from all of society's institutions. The world is run by sexuals, and there's a very good chance that any friends, family members, therapists, or whatever from whom this couple seeks advice is going to automatically conclude that there's clearly something wrong with the asexual partner. It's an entire social apparatus up against one asexual person's own sense of self and of boundaries. That is not an equal bargaining position.

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Larien

I see your point; it can be just as difficult from the asexual's point of view. But there is one difference, which is that both people have to agree to have sex. The asexual doesn't have to worry about having sex when s/he doesn't agree, whereas the sexual needs the asexual's permission to have sex with him/her. So the asexual (or low sex drive partner) has control of the situation in a way that the sexual doesn't. All the sexual can do is insist, demand, or make threats, whereas the asexual is actually in a position to deprive the sexual.

I know you probably don't mean to belittle the "demanding and making threats" part, but you say that like it's not a big deal if that occurs. If my partner made threats/demands to me over sex, if I felt the situation was actually becoming that dangerous, I'm pretty sure I'd leave for the sake of my own safety. Unless by "making threats" you meant something like, "Do this with me or I won't do the dishes tonight," in which case feel free to ignore that. :P

You're forgetting rape, though. While I prefer seeing that as an extreme circumstance, as a female ace (or as any female who says "no") it's something to worry about and, unfortunately, it does happen.

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Vampyremage

I think you missed my point. I was talking about an asexual who didn't find sex painful or revolting or anything like that. One who was neutral towards sex.

There's no such thing as someone who is totally neutral towards sex. Even someone who doesn't actually have a problem with it still incurs opportunity cost by doing it when they'd rather be doing something else. Which isn't so bad if it just happens once, but it can wear you down over the course of a relationship if your partner is constantly pestering you for sex.

In a way, it's like any of the other silly household chores that often become a point of conflict in relationships. No one really has a moral problem with taking out the garbage or whatever, but if you're constantly being told to do it when you have other things on your mind, it becomes a symbol of your lost autonomy in the relationship and develops into an irrationally huge thing.

I see your point; it can be just as difficult from the asexual's point of view. But there is one difference, which is that both people have to agree to have sex. The asexual doesn't have to worry about having sex when s/he doesn't agree, whereas the sexual needs the asexual's permission to have sex with him/her. So the asexual (or low sex drive partner) has control of the situation in a way that the sexual doesn't. All the sexual can do is insist, demand, or make threats, whereas the asexual is actually in a position to deprive the sexual.

This is starting to sound suspiciously like the "Men's Rights" rhetoric about how women secretly rule the world with their power to deny men sex. Why can't you adapt this same argument to claim that women should have no problem with having sex with every man who wants them, so long as they don't find the man in question completely repulsive?

Remember, even if the sexual can't really do anything besides beg or threaten, their position is going to have backing from all of society's institutions. The world is run by sexuals, and there's a very good chance that any friends, family members, therapists, or whatever from whom this couple seeks advice is going to automatically conclude that there's clearly something wrong with the asexual partner. It's an entire social apparatus up against one asexual person's own sense of self and of boundaries. That is not an equal bargaining position.

As someone who views sex more or less neutrally, as opposed to those repulsed by it, I just want to affirm what Nieseul is trying to say. I may not be actively disgusted by it, but that doesn't mean I want to engage it. To me, sex is boring and, more often than not, actually engaging in it isn't particularly pleasant. Even on those occasions when I get physical pleasure from it, mentally it just doesn't do anything for me. While I may be willing to have sex with someone I care deeply about, its not something I desire to do. To me, it feels like a sacrifice or an obligation and very rarely will I find it to be pleasant to do so.

I have been in sexual relationships in the past and made that sacrifice (and yes that is how I perceive it) in having sex with them somewhat regularly (if once a week or two is considered regularly). In the end, however, its one of the things that contributed to the end of the relationship. Its not nearly as simple as a neutral asexual being willing to have sex with their partner. In my case at least, the long term effect of constantly giving in to engage in an act that I found to be largely unappealing in order to help maintain the contentedness of my partner eventually added up to the point that it was (one of several) reasons why the relationship eventually ended.

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Siggy

This thread confused me because the OP says this:

I started a topic earlier about my problem with my asexual partner. I am sexual. He basically would not admit his asexuality, refuses to discuss it and I have been more than accommodating respecting his guidelines and rules.

What I read here is, "I told my partner he is asexual, and he denied it." I realize that he's your partner and all, but you're not supposed to pin labels on other people. Yes, lots of people are closeted to themselves, but let's not assume that we always know better than they do.

And then I read this:

You may be surprised to know that I met him by coincidence 2 days ago in public and he felt very uncomfortable just like I did and I said that I wanted to speak to him. He admitted his mistake and his asexuality yet the part I did not understand is blaming me for not making contact with him after he stormed out! He said that I was always the mature person in the relationship and he simply doies not look back, apologize to people or correct mistakes which I found unreasonable. When I faced him; yet delicately; with the asexuality issue he claimed to have been impressed by how much I know and how I handled him. I gave him advise about relationships generally and showed him how much I care for him. He said that he would need few days to process teh infomation becasue it made sense and would be back in touch with me. The next day he got in touch and was a completely differnet person - ultra rude, unyielding and admitted that no one would be able to live with him with his aromantic asexual manner.

I'm really unclear on the situation, but it sounds like he finally admitted it to himself? Good for him.

If he just admitted to himself that he is asexual, it doesn't surprise me that there are problems. For many asexuals, it's a bit of an earth-shattering revelation, and it takes a while to fully be comfortable with all the implications.

Let me say, I think sexual/asexual relationships can work, sometimes. But much more troublesome is a relationship between a sexual and an asexual who is still uncomfortable with the concept of asexuality.

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Lucinda

You are right, Siggy, you are really unclear on the situation. This could be because you left out the next statement in the quoted paragraph. It explains much. :)

And before you explain or apologize for this guy, tell me, would you be interested in being in a relationship with him?

Lucinda

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Sally

The asexual doesn't have to worry about having sex when s/he doesn't agree, whereas the sexual needs the asexual's permission to have sex with him/her. So the asexual (or low sex drive partner) has control of the situation in a way that the sexual doesn't. All the sexual can do is insist, demand, or make threats, whereas the asexual is actually in a position to deprive the sexual.

Yes, the asexual DOES have to worry about it when they don't agree to have sex, because the sexual is upset and the asexual knows it, whether the sexual makes a big deal about it or not. If you're "depriving" someone you love of something they feel they need, it does affect you as well as them.

Perhaps asexuals can't realize how important sex can be to a sexual. But similarly, sexuals can't realize how important it can be to an asexual that they aren't expected to do something with their body that they're not interested in doing. Even if they don't "hate" it. The with their body is a really, really important concept for you to get, because you want to have sex with your body, and we don't.

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Siggy

You are right, Siggy, you are really unclear on the situation. This could be because you left out the next statement in the quoted paragraph. It explains much. :)

And before you explain or apologize for this guy, tell me, would you be interested in being in a relationship with him?

Lucinda

Which statement, this one?

When I asked him why do you pursue relationships then he said that he wanted to feel desired but was unwilling to react back emotionally or physically.

He sounds really confused, like he doesn't know how to deal with his newfound aromantic asexuality. He still hasn't figured out the answer to "How can I feel desired without having to react in a way that feels unnatural to me?" so his current response is anger.

Would I be interested in a relationship with this guy? No. It sucks to be in a relationship with a confused person. They can act irrationally, communicate badly, go through different moods. It doesn't matter if they have good reasons for being confused, it's their own responsibility to figure it out.

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Whatnext

You are right, Siggy, you are really unclear on the situation. This could be because you left out the next statement in the quoted paragraph. It explains much. :)

And before you explain or apologize for this guy, tell me, would you be interested in being in a relationship with him?

Lucinda

Thanks a million once again for your response to Siggy. You are right. Siggy - your response is valid too, it is very frustrating to be with a confused person who doesn't know what to do and being aromantic means he cannot relate emotionally to a partner irrespective of sex.

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Siggy

Thanks a million once again for your response to Siggy. You are right. Siggy - your response is valid too, it is very frustrating to be with a confused person who doesn't know what to do and being aromantic means he cannot relate emotionally to a partner irrespective of sex.

No, aromantics can relate emotionally to people. If this guy we're talking about says otherwise, then he's confused. It's possible he's still stuck in a mindset where romantic relationships are the only way to really connect with people. But there is more to life than romantic relationships, and many other ways to connect with people. He just hasn't figured them out yet.

But figuring this stuff out is his journey, not yours, and you shouldn't feel obliged to him.

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Asexy Existentialist

The asexual doesn't have to worry about having sex when s/he doesn't agree, whereas the sexual needs the asexual's permission to have sex with him/her. So the asexual (or low sex drive partner) has control of the situation in a way that the sexual doesn't. All the sexual can do is insist, demand, or make threats, whereas the asexual is actually in a position to deprive the sexual.

Yes, the asexual DOES have to worry about it when they don't agree to have sex, because the sexual is upset and the asexual knows it, whether the sexual makes a big deal about it or not. If you're "depriving" someone you love of something they feel they need, it does affect you as well as them.

Perhaps asexuals can't realize how important sex can be to a sexual. But similarly, sexuals can't realize how important it can be to an asexual that they aren't expected to do something with their body that they're not interested in doing. Even if they don't "hate" it. The with their body is a really, really important concept for you to get, because you want to have sex with your body, and we don't.

Beautifully said, Sally. :cake:

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