ithaca

Marie Claire publishes a GREAT article in Italian on asexuality!

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ithaca

Yes guys, I'm not kidding. This article is just absolutely awesome.

And who do we have to thank for this? Our dearest SilverKitsune, AVEN member here and awesome admin on AVEN Italy :wub: who was interviewed and managed to make this journalist grab nuances of asexuality that I would have never expected in my country and on this magazine!

The journalist has also spent a couple of weeks on Acebook, and starts the article saying how weird it was that no one asked her what she was wearing or when they could meet up :lol:

Here is the article, and here is an amusing quiz they've added to it ^_^

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Philip027

Aww man, I really wish I could read that D:

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sinisterporpoise

I can't read Italian either, but it's probably just a reprint of the English version that was published a while ago.

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byanyotherusername

Awesome article. :) I had to use Google Translate for some of it because my Italian is pretty rusty (and I was never fluent), but it was more than worth it to learn the Italian word for cuddles! Le coccole! XD

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ithaca

I can't read Italian either, but it's probably just a reprint of the English version that was published a while ago.

It's actually not, as they interviewed italian people :)

I will translate it when I have time!

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5_♦♣

Fun quiz. I tried reading the article, but it was too long. To me, the only thing worse than no paragraphs is really long paragraphs.

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ithaca

ASEXUALS UNITE!

Asessuali-unitevi_main_image_object.jpg
Wednesday, January 30, 2013

It's been already two weeks on the dating site, and no one has asked me what I'm wearing while we chat. Neither they have expressed the irrepressible desire to meet in real life.
I should have expected it, since I registered incognito on Acebook, where you meet asexual people from all over the world. I chose this platform because it has more than 10 thousand members, is free, and its name sounds familiar, but there were also the English site Platonic Partners, Asexualitic and the official forum of the community, Aven (Asexuality Visibility and Education Network) .

Yes, it seems that people who do not feel any sexual attraction and are happy that way, there's a lot of them. Around 1,5 percent of the population, according to a study by Professor Anthony Bogaert published in the Journal of Sex Research in 2004. But go and learn what is submerged in the data.

In fact, here intervenes David Jay, 30 year-old from San Francisco who in 2001 founded Aven and has seen a multiplication of members (up to 41,600 in the U.S. today, plus all the "ribs" in other countries, including Italy) and the interest on the subject. On January 27th, Jay and his team will be in Atlanta at Creating Change, the Conference on LGBT Equality, with the mission of gaining public acceptance of asexuality as the fourth sexual orientation. Ok, it may seem a paradox, but in a sex centric society where we talk about 69 and partouze as if wondering "How much sugar?" the most logical way to express the right not to want to be part of eros, is to obtain the status of sexual minority.

How do you find out and come out as Ace? (short for asexual, complete with international symbol of ace in the playing cards. Notice it, if you see them around: other symbols of recognition are a black ring on the right middle finger, a black white gray purple striped flag and a slice of cake, with the happy anonymous statement: "Between sex and a slice of cake? I would certainly choose the cake")

I asked Alice, a student in Rome, artist, twenty years old, thin and pretty, hetero-romantic and one of the admins of Aven Italia. "My journey started around 12-13 years. My peers began to talk about sex on a theoretical level, and I did not understand. At age 15, some of my classmates had the first sexual relationships, and there I started to have serious doubts: I was in the middle of my hormonal stage, visibly growing up in height, and yet ... No sexual stimuli? No. I could not conceive how sex would be an enjoyable or useful activity to cement a romantic relationship. I told myself that perhaps, after finding the right person, things would change. Then at seventeen I had my first boyfriend, I loved him very much, I fantasized about the day when we would get married and we would live in our house, and all the experiences that we would share, but sex was not part of my thoughts, ever. Instead, it was part of his thoughts, and the pressure grew enormously in our relationship, till the point it break it."

Ace dating sites have basic rules for the interaction between asexual and sexual people. Because one of the thorny issues is to make the partner-with-impulses understand that love, there is much of it, but sex is not an option. "Several people I know have had intercourse in otder not to lose a loved one," says Alice, "and they didn't have a good experience. But the 'blame' is not theirs or their partners. An asexual making that choice is usually indifferent to the act. They prove neither interest nor aversion, they see it only as a way to make the other happy. It happened to me: I agreed to some foreplay, and it was not disgusting, but not interesting. I prefer cuddling!"

If you're thinking "Poor girl, she has yet to grow" or "so cute, maybe she's a lesbian" or "poor thing, she must have suffered a trauma", beware: your comments may be among Myths and other ignorant things that people say to asexual. But as long as it's us common people thinking this, we always have time to redeem us, and move on. But when it's eminent psychologists, the question can trigger an uproar. In May 2013 the U.S. will release the fifth revised edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, called DSM, since 1952 the Bible of psychiatry worldwide. And guess what? The lack of horniness is listed under Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder. Since the review was announced, the group of Aven, supported by scientific studies, is leading the fight with petitions to the American Psychiatric Association asking that asexuality, as natural orientation that unlike diseases does not "cause high stress", is explicitly excluded from the definition. It is not just a theoretical technicality. It's real life.

Until 1973 even homosexuality was considered a mental disorder. And, despite the zillions of kilometers, the tendency to "cure" behaviors considered deviant from the norm, is rampant. Alice knows: "I spoke with my parents and they suggested I see a psychologist to 'fix' my situation, even though I was good with it. I agreed to show them that I had no problems with confronting this directly. I went to the meetings for two months but the situation, as expected, did not change one iota."

It was Grey one of the guys with whom I chatted on Acebook. Not the famous shades of Grey. In the idealistic enthusiasm for the nascent neo-orientation, Aces are open to all and make of fluidity a key characteristic. Their community embraces, among others, the romantics (who have romantic relationships: hetero, homo, bi or pan), the aromantics (only friendships, for heaven's sake), the demisexuals (those who are not so inclined, but after forming a strong emo.intellectual bond they start having itches) and Grey-A, indeed. Men and women who live somewhere between desire and the peace of mind, who very rarely compete in cavorting between the sheets, or who once did, and now, for now, not anymore. It does not seem very different from being single, or disappointed, or focused on something vital that leaves no time to get excited at every step, right?

The nice thing is that for them going through one of those stages is normal, and sacrosanct. One certainty: the Aces we meet online are ready to welcome us, and to accept any self-labeling helps us to be at peace. I do not know if this indefiniteness is good for the identification and recognition of the group. But for me, as an incentive to stay in chat a little more, it works fine.

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Vega91

That's a great article. Thanks for translating it! It's always nice to see more exposure for ace people. :)

I also tried to take the quiz since Chrome will automatically offer to translate pages. Hilarious, this is the first question:

Your personal "rule of the third round" is?
A. Never staying home to watch a movie, unless it is first sprinkled the floor with rose petals. B. It pays to Roman times.Which is the same as the rule for the second and the fourth meeting. C. shave their legs. More than a rule, an automatic, because old habits die hard. D. It takes spontaneity! No rules before the number one hundred. How sweet would you be?

Online translators are always good for a laugh :P

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Jubbles

hahaha so even my test was complicated! But apparently I'm not aromantic :O

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`Silver

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