I feel this discussion could well benefit from a more sympathetic view of asexuality.
Sexual therapists and sexologists have, since the inception of the discipline in the early 1900's, operated from a very sex-normative worldview. This is not how most people perhaps ever have viewed sex, in our culture or elsewhere. However, sexology succeeded in asserting itself as THE view on the reality of sex.
Most basic premises of sexology are:
1) Sexuality is an inborn need, operating according to an instinct model (libido).
2) If sexuality is not expressed via genital, orgasmic sex, it builds up and finds other outlets, possibly perverse, repressed or channeled (subliminated) modes of expression.
3) Sexuality is something everyone has, and it holds the ultimate truth of who and what we are.
The general critique of needs and instinct theories in psychology has not really affected the mainstream sexological discipline. Despite the abysmal failure of both psychoanalysis and its sub-discipline sexology to prove that genital orgasmic sexual expression is vital for human mental health and homeostasis (the balance of our bodily needs that allows us to survive), the school operates much like a religion: unbelievers are declared abnormal. They are repressing their true desires, which follow the religion's doctrine.
According to mainstream sexology, asexuality is sexual dysfunction, not a real, independent phenomenon. Asexual people have to deal with people judging them and devaluing their experience every day. Much like non-straight folks, they have to constantly face questions like "Are you sure this is not a phase?", "Maybe you just haven't met the right partner yet", or "So you occasionally enjoy the thought or actuality of straight sex, so YOU MUST BE STRAIGHT ALL ALONG".
Much like the majority of sexual people do not need to have actual genital contact with someone to determine that they, indeed, have sexual interest towards others, the majority of asexual people do not need to try sexuality on for size, while many do because societal pressure, curiosity and/or because they believe the sexological dogma that tells them they cannot be.
If you want to know more about asexuality, I suggest checking out the resources on asexuality.org and especially their forum.
Me: bi female in my twenties
Last edited by BlackUnicorn; 05-05-2012 at 06:37 PM.
Reason: hit the post button too early