Demisexual: meaning, frequently asked questions

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Demisexuality is a sexual orientation that is sometimes considered asexual . A person is considered demisexual if they experience sexual attraction and desire only in the context of a strong emotional and / or romantic connection.

A person can be demisexual and hetero-romantic, hom-romantic, bi-romantic, or pan-romantic. Sometimes demisexuality is considered part of gray asexuality, where gray asexuality is the gray area between sexuality and asexuality.

People who are not on the asexual or demisexual spectrum are more likely to experience sexual attraction and desire. This does not necessarily mean that they are acting on this sex drive.

However, they may be attracted to strangers, celebrities, people they don't know, and even potentially people they don't like. By comparison, demisexuals experience sexual attraction to people only after forming a strong bond with them.

Teraphim / Getty Images

What is the romantic orientation?

People's sexual orientation may or may not be the same as their romantic orientation. Romantic orientation is the gender-based way that people experience romantic attraction.

Heteromantic people are attracted to the other sex, while homomantic people are attracted to the same sex. Pan-romance and bi-romance attract people of different genders.

Since demisexuals experience sexual attraction only in the context of a romantic or emotional relationship, their romantic orientation generally determines the gender in which they are sexually interested.

What does the research say about demisexuality?

There is not much research on demisexuality. While the orientation to demisexuality is not new, there is a word to describe it. It is believed that this term was not coined until 2006. Since then, it has expanded significantly.

A study that examined the personalities and behavior of individuals on the asexual spectrum found that demisexuals have a wide range of romantic orientations. In addition, many have had or sought romantic and sexual relationships .

Can men be semi-sexual?

There is a cultural stereotype that women are only interested in sex when they are in love and men are interested in sex all the time. However, this is imprecise and reflects a problematic gender essentialism . Gender identity and sexual orientation are two different things.

Both men and women, cisgender and transgender , can be demisexual. Some people just aren't sexually attracted until they make an emotional connection. Others experience sexual attraction easily and frequently. Both are part of normal sexual interest.

Do demisexuals enjoy sex?

Like people of other sexual orientations, demisexuals differ in the degree of pleasure from sex and in their desire. In the context of romantic relationships, some demisexuals may have a strong sexual desire and enthusiasm for sex.

Others may enjoy sex, but are primarily interested in the context of their partner's desire, not the spontaneous desire for themselves.

In general, sex is less important to demisexuals and other people on the asexual spectrum than it is to people who identify as fully sexual. However, this does not mean that they cannot and do not experience sexual pleasure.

What are the signs of demisexuality?

Are you trying to find out if you can be demisexual? The most important clue is if you are not sexually attracted to people, if you are not yet emotionally attached to them. Other signs may include:

  • Your sexual relationship always begins with friendship.
  • The more you know about them, the more you are attracted to the people you are connected with (not just because of demisexuality).
  • It takes time to understand the idea of having sex with someone, even if you really enjoy it.
  • Sex is not that important to you, especially when you are single. You may not think about sex if you are not in a relationship.

Is there a flag of demisexuality?

The demisexual flag has a black triangle or chevron that begins at the left edge. You are in a field that consists of three vertical stripes: a wide white stripe, a narrow purple stripe, and a wide gray stripe.

These are the same colors as the asexual sex flag, but the design is different. This reflects that demisexuals are part of the asexual community, but that demisexuality is different from asexuality.

The demisexual flag is painted on a stone wall. Raphael Randy Cardoso García / Getty Images

LGBT Demisexuals?

There is no consensus on whether people on the asexual spectrum, including demisexuals, are LGBT. Many people consider demisexuals to be part of the LGBT community, but not everyone.

Demisexuals who are homromantic, bi-romantic, panromantic, and / or gender diverse may be more likely to consider themselves part of the LGBT community. There is no one-size-fits-all answer.

What is forced demisexuality?

In 2014, an Australian researcher described a concept they called "forced demisexuality" as a component of many popular romance novels. Forced demisexuality is the idea that, for women at least, sex can only be truly enjoyable when it is in the context of love, ideally true love.

In many romance novels, previously fully sexual men become demisexual when they fall in love. In other words, they are no longer sexually attracted to any woman other than their partner.

While this can happen to some people, in the real world it is a potentially very troublesome narrative that fosters a culture of rape. This can fuel the idea that people who have sexual desire, especially men who have sexual desire, can do nothing but act on it.

In fact, people can choose to be romantically and sexually faithful while being sexually attracted to others, regardless of gender or gender.

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Not all people who fall under the definition of demisexual relate to him in this way. For some people, the fact that they only experience sexual attraction in the context of a romantic or emotional bond does not seem to be an important component of their personality.

Instead, they may identify themselves with a different sexual orientation when the context of their desire is that context. For others, the fact that they only experience sexual attraction in the context of a relationship is critical to the way they view themselves.

What people think of themselves is not right or wrong, neither better nor worse. What matters is that people have the space to understand and define themselves, and not to apply definitions or labels to them.

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