For most people, sexual preference is that of a heterosexual nature: being attracted to the opposite gender. Other preferences are now being understood, and in some cases, being accepted as norms in society despite opposition. The Inquisitr reported on differing forms of sexual preferences and/or the outcomes of its acceptance. One such example is the argument that pedophilia, or the sexual attraction to younger people such as children, is not a crime but a mental condition. A counter argument states that such a classification may result in sexual abuse of minors (especially children) no longer being considered a crime but an outcome of ill-treatment.
Now there is another classification of sexual preference being recognized, thanks to a personal story by a girl identified as Brie. What is Brie’s sexual preference? Demisexuality. In this light, what does it mean to be demisexual, and what is life like for one who is demisexual?
According to the Asexuality Wikipedia, an individual who is demisexual is one who doesn’t experience sexual attraction unless a strong emotional connection is formed. This preference is often recognized as being “halfway between” sexual and asexual, but should be noted that such a simplistic explanation does not equate to an individual being incomplete in their sexuality. It should also be noted that any form of sexual attraction for a demisexual is not exclusive to heterosexuality. Summarized, a demisexual individual must feel feelings such as romantic love or deep friendship for their partner to develop a desire sex with said partner.
The definition of being demisexual is truly bare-bones and to the point, but does nothing in painting the picture of an demisexual individual’s everyday life. Fortunately, the Huffington Post for the past few months is highlighting the way teenagers think and feel about sex through anecdotes written by anonymous teenage authors. A 19-year-old girl named Brie, who is demisexual, explained what it is like for someone with her sexual preference to grow up in a sexual world.
According to Brie’s story, her views on sex have radically changed over the years. Growing up in a Christian home while going to public school that taught abstinence and secondary abstinence, Brie felt as if she was taught about sexuality by not experiencing sexuality. Brie eloquently used a simile of such education to teaching someone how to drive a car by telling them to just not drive so they don’t crash.
It probably didn’t help that other sexual nature details were either condemned without explanation or openly expressed with no substantial grounding. This includes the school’s condemnation of masturbation with no valid reason why it was condemned, Brie’s mother expressing the importance of independent thought about sex despite not establishing any base with “the birds and the bees talk,” and Brie’s father just handing her a book about puberty, which was probably a means to dodge answering any questions Brie may have. As a matter of fact, Brie received most of her knowledge about sex through honest conversations with her older sister.
From her experiences of sex attained from the childhood sources above, Brie’s sexual preference is now recognized as demisexual. She than gave the personal and emotional side of what a demisexual experiences by explaining her own experience.
“I didn’t know what was wrong with me that I seemed the only person in my high school who didn’t want sex for the sake of sex itself, and I struggled a lot with that until I went to college and learned more about the different sexualities. I haven’t had many relationships and I haven’t been attracted to all of them, but this is what I know: Sex means something very different to everyone, but there are a few constants. Enthusiastic and sober verbal consent is absolutely necessary; love and respect will only make it better; it should never be a measure of worth; foreplay is not optional; communication before and after sex is essential; judging people based on anything sex related – how little or how much or who with – is the height of stupidity.”
In conclusion, Brie wants what asexual people want as well: recognition. This is verified through her wishes that adults would respect her and other demisexuals as emerging leaders instead of acting like inmates-in-waiting. Also, Brie wants sexual education to be both proper and shameless, something she states she and her friends did not experience. Such an education would allow teenagers to be able to ask real questions and discuss among others in a constructive setting without being shamed at every point in the process. Most importantly, Brie doesn’t want the weird climate of terror that surrounds teen sexuality to exist because it is unhealthy and unhelpful.
You may read the entirety of Brie’s story of being demisexual along with other stories by teens on the topic of sex on the special by Huffpost Teen, “Teen Sex: It’s Complicated.”
Now that you’ve read Brie’s story of what it is like to be demisexual, what are your views? Do you think such a sexual preference should be respected instead of regulated to irregularity in sexual preference?
[Images via Bing]