“Not everyone will accept you, but that’s okay”.
I knew I was asexual but I thought I was the only one.
I suppose I first realised I was different from most people when I was around thirteen. My friends had already had their first kisses and always talked about boys that were hot. I just didn’t feel the same. I thought about going along with it, and talking like they did about the boys in our class, but I just couldn’t. I remember looking in the mirror and asking myself, ‘Who are you? You don’t find anyone sexy. Why do you have to be different?’
I was afraid to tell people that kissing and sex wasn’t on my radar – at all. I thought there was a problem with me and I hated myself for being different. I wondered if it was a phase, but I knew deep down that I’d never be into sex, kissing or even holding hands. People would get so excited about all this stuff. I didn’t feel repulsed by it – I guess I just felt numb. It did nothing for me.
When everything in the media is so sexualised, it can be hard to not feel like a weirdo. Sex is used to sell everything, and I was always thinking – why is this thing called sex rated so highly? I didn’t even believe in love, because I thought love and sex were the same thing.
As I got older people kept telling me I had a problem – that I needed to go to the doctor. It was obvious I was different from other people, and the bullies picked up on that. They called me a lesbian, I knew they were wrong… I felt so alone.
It was four years later that I found out there was a label for how I felt. One day I was watching a teen soap opera in my house in Brazil. One of the characters had this thing called ‘asexuality’. I looked it up on the internet and found a report all about this sexual orientation I’d never heard of before. Then I found a website created by David Jay – an asexual man. As soon as I started reading it I felt overwhelmed with relief. I wasn’t alone – there were other people out there like me. It was the happiest day of my life – everything changed from that day forward. Finally I could read about and talk to other people who felt how I did.
I am so grateful to David. He is my hero. If I hadn’t found that website then I believe I wouldn’t be here today. It was suffocating not knowing who I was. Being part of this online network inspired me to create a Facebook group for asexual people. It has over a thousand members now. It was important for me to connect with other asexuals, but even more for other asexuals to have somewhere to go and know they are not alone.
I decided I had to come out because I didn’t want to hide who I am anymore.I was so nervous when I came out to my family. It took so much courage to be open with them. Luckily they were accepting and were happy seeing how much more comfortable I was with myself, knowing who I really was.
One of the best things about discovering my sexual orientation was realising I could still have a relationship. I’m a hetero-romantic asexual which means I’m not interested in sex or kissing, but I do believe in romance and love with a guy – and I do want that to happen. It’s just a different kind of love. To me, sex and kissing are unimportant. I’ve never kissed anyone or had sex with anyone, and I know I never will. I don’t want children either. But I do want to experience falling in love, and having a partner by my side. If a guy chats me up then I tell him straight away that I’m asexual. So it hasn’t been surprising that I haven’t met a boyfriend yet. But I’m still hopeful I will find someone who wants a relationship without all the physical stuff.
Discovering my sexuality inspired me to stand up for who I am, and not be ashamed of it. I’m so happy to have truly discovered myself and I want people to know that it’s okay to be asexual. Not everyone will accept you, but that’s okay. Being yourself is the most important thing – and there will always be people out there to support you. And, like those who told me I was weird, and had a problem – you can prove people wrong too.