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  #81  
Old 01-23-2013, 09:31 AM
InsaneMystic InsaneMystic is offline
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@Schrödinger & redpepper...
It sure is possible for sexual orientations to change, but it really isn't common. Yes, you can "become asexual"... but you can also be gay for 30 years and then suddenly "become straight". The fact that a lot of (normative/right winger) folks will more than happily jump at the chance to consider this a cue for all the "see, we can heal you and turn you normal! you just haven't found the right one yet!" talkage is the reason why I don't think it's a too productive idea, in terms of acceptance and visibility of non-heteronormative identities, to be too quick to mention fluidity of orientation. Yes, it exists, but in most cases, it's a too marginal phenomenon to be brought up without creating much more trouble than it's worth.


@soleil...
I'm in a similar situation; asexual with a sexual partner, R.. We don't have, and never had, sex with each other, but see e/o as "emotional primaries"; she's my only partner, currently - I'm open but not looking, and doubt I'm compatible with all that many folks anyway... basically, I feel a need for non-exclusitivity to be agreed on as the basis of any 'ship I'd see worth entering, but no need to act upon it by having (an)other partner(s) in my life right now.

We do not have a full-on DADT policy about other folks she sees (which is not limited to "just sex", R.'s had a 'ship with a woman for over one year of our four-plus years together), but I, too, will not question her on what she does with others, and certainly don't ever want to hear explicit bedroom details.

What we do have, though, is the knowledge that both of us are always open for the other to talk to if and when stressful situations with another partner come up. I trust her to be able to sort out the everyday goings on - being a grown-up woman and all - but I'm always there for her if she needs to talk about stuff, provided she leaves out the "explicit details". I wonder how you and your hubby would handle such a sitch, if you're stuck in a sore spot that way (which I'd daresay happens in any but the utmost casual hookups sooner or later)? Could you talk to him about it, or would he insist on the "don't tell" part? IMO, I'd think the latter would be worrying in terms of a basis of healthy, loving communication between the two of you.
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  #82  
Old 01-24-2013, 07:14 PM
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SchrodingersCat SchrodingersCat is offline
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Originally Posted by redpepper View Post
That's awesome. Good for you. I take offense that you say I'm policing. I thought perhaps it would of been of interest to the writer. I am only passing on what I've heard from people I know in the asexual community. What do I know, I'm not asexual. You can take it up with them as I am no expert.
Well, I said that's how it came across to me, which is slightly different from accusing you of doing it. But that can just as easily be turned around on me, as my statement came across to you as offensive. But I think we both know that no harm was meant in either case, and I apologize for being unclear.
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  #83  
Old 01-24-2013, 07:49 PM
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Originally Posted by InsaneMystic View Post
[FONT="Georgia"]@Schrödinger & redpepper...
It sure is possible for sexual orientations to change, but it really isn't common. Yes, you can "become asexual"... but you can also be gay for 30 years and then suddenly "become straight". The fact that a lot of (normative/right winger) folks will more than happily jump at the chance to consider this a cue for all the "see, we can heal you and turn you normal! you just haven't found the right one yet!" talkage is the reason why I don't think it's a too productive idea, in terms of acceptance and visibility of non-heteronormative identities, to be too quick to mention fluidity of orientation. Yes, it exists, but in most cases, it's a too marginal phenomenon to be brought up without creating much more trouble than it's worth.
I don't disagree that discussing orientation fluidity can have that effect on ignorant people. But frankly, the social responsibility is on those normative/right winger folks to pull their heads out of their asses. The solution is not to stifle all the people who don't fit into neat little boxes. If I didn't have the self-esteem that I do, I might take that as you telling me not to express myself, and that would probably hurt my feelings.

I have friends who are gender fluid and identify more as a male or female or neutral depending on where they are in life at the time. Does that mean they should stifle their identity as gender fluid just to avoid causing problems for trans* folks, who might be told "Look, this person used to feel like she was a boy, but now she feels like a girl. Just wait it out and you'll feel like a girl again." ?

But perhaps it's more accurate, then, to say that my orientation "is" something like "a/sexually fluid" (I don't know what asexual equivalent would be of gender fluid). I.e. it's not my "orientation" that changes, that would always be "fluid" ... but that means sometimes I'm a sexual and sometimes I'm an asexual. I don't know, I haven't thought about it that way before. I'm definitely going to give it some thought. Sorta like how a gender fluid person always "is gender fluid" and sometimes "feels more like a male" or "feels more like a female."

What I am going to say is this: It's not that I bring it up every time someone talks about asexuality, nor do I have a tendency of bringing up orientation fluidity whenever people talk about sexual orientation in general. I recognize that the majority of people who identify as asexual have always identified that way, and can't imagine ever identifying otherwise. But in this case, someone explicitly said "Asexual orientation cannot change." I had to pipe in that this was not always the case. As much as I agree with not giving the extreme Right more fodder for discrimination, I also don't want anyone to feel like they're "wrong" in feeling that their orientation is fluid, and feeling like they "have to choose" one or the other.
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Last edited by SchrodingersCat; 01-24-2013 at 08:03 PM.
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  #84  
Old 01-24-2013, 11:10 PM
opalescent opalescent is offline
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Originally Posted by InsaneMystic View Post
[FONT="Georgia"][COLOR="Purple"]@Schrödinger & redpepper...
It sure is possible for sexual orientations to change, but it really isn't common. Yes, you can "become asexual"... but you can also be gay for 30 years and then suddenly "become straight". The fact that a lot of (normative/right winger) folks will more than happily jump at the chance to consider this a cue for all the "see, we can heal you and turn you normal! you just haven't found the right one yet!" talkage is the reason why I don't think it's a too productive idea, in terms of acceptance and visibility of non-heteronormative identities, to be too quick to mention fluidity of orientation. Yes, it exists, but in most cases, it's a too marginal phenomenon to be brought up without creating much more trouble than it's worth.]
This statement really bothers me. First of all, it's just wrong. Many people experience and understand their sexuality as fluid. I identified as a lesbian for many years. Currently I date men and identify as bisexual/pansexual. I know many people like me. There is social pressure against acknowledging sexual fluidity from within gay communities and from heterosexual people. So many folks rarely talk openly about how their sexuality had changed over time. Dan Savage encourages bisexual people to come out - in part to show that het and homo are far from the only points on the continuum. The existence of bisexuals, asexuals, demisexuals, pansexuals and queers and other undefined folks highlights the fact that it's a continuum. As more people encounter and understand that sexuality can be fluid, more are being open about it. For example there are more men being more open about being bisexual.

Second, it is wrong to allow people like right wing fundamentalist to set the parameters of what is marginal. These people don't 'believe' in evolution, think the earth is 6000 years old and preventing any meaningful action in global warming. They are anti-science, anti-reason and can't find a fact with both hands if one should happen to hit them in the ass. Not talking about fluidity or other uncomfortable, uncommon topics gives these irresponsible, dangerous people too much power. Stop it.

Finally I resent being called marginal. I don't know anyone who identifies as asexual. Not even demisexual. I didn't realize for a long time that such folks exist. I was ignorant and once I heard the term I've learned about it and try to keep in mind that someone I know or meet could be asexual. For me, asexual are marginal in my life. But they exist. Not talking about them or dismissing them as a tiny minority is not useful. In fact it could be actually dangerous if this silence prevents someone from learning a critical fact about themselves.

I realize you had no intention of making this personal. You are not saying anything many gay rights people have also said. And obviously I have strong feelings about it.
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  #85  
Old 01-25-2013, 11:30 AM
InsaneMystic InsaneMystic is offline
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Originally Posted by SchrodingersCat View Post
I have friends who are gender fluid and identify more as a male or female or neutral depending on where they are in life at the time. Does that mean they should stifle their identity as gender fluid just to avoid causing problems for trans* folks, who might be told "Look, this person used to feel like she was a boy, but now she feels like a girl. Just wait it out and you'll feel like a girl again." ?

But perhaps it's more accurate, then, to say that my orientation "is" something like "a/sexually fluid" (I don't know what asexual equivalent would be of gender fluid). I.e. it's not my "orientation" that changes, that would always be "fluid" ... but that means sometimes I'm a sexual and sometimes I'm an asexual. I don't know, I haven't thought about it that way before. I'm definitely going to give it some thought. Sorta like how a gender fluid person always "is gender fluid" and sometimes "feels more like a male" or "feels more like a female."
I identify as genderqueer myself, actually. I don't think I could take myself serious if I ID'ed as trans one day, neutrois the other, and something yet more difficult to be put into words on a third day... I very much relate to how you put it in your second paragraph - the queerness/fluidity is my gender ID, the day-to-day differences are just "day-form" feelings.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SchrodingersCat View Post
What I am going to say is this: It's not that I bring it up every time someone talks about asexuality, nor do I have a tendency of bringing up orientation fluidity whenever people talk about sexual orientation in general. I recognize that the majority of people who identify as asexual have always identified that way, and can't imagine ever identifying otherwise. But in this case, someone explicitly said "Asexual orientation cannot change." I had to pipe in that this was not always the case. As much as I agree with not giving the extreme Right more fodder for discrimination, I also don't want anyone to feel like they're "wrong" in feeling that their orientation is fluid, and feeling like they "have to choose" one or the other.
Point taken. Put like this, I can completely agree with you.

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Originally Posted by opalescent View Post
This statement really bothers me. First of all, it's just wrong. Many people experience and understand their sexuality as fluid. I identified as a lesbian for many years. Currently I date men and identify as bisexual/pansexual. I know many people like me. There is social pressure against acknowledging sexual fluidity from within gay communities and from heterosexual people. So many folks rarely talk openly about how their sexuality had changed over time. Dan Savage encourages bisexual people to come out - in part to show that het and homo are far from the only points on the continuum. The existence of bisexuals, asexuals, demisexuals, pansexuals and queers and other undefined folks highlights the fact that it's a continuum. As more people encounter and understand that sexuality can be fluid, more are being open about it. For example there are more men being more open about being bisexual.
I don't really get your point here. Even if fluidity didn't exist at all, it would still be the same wide spectrum... just that one's own point on the spectrum would be fixed.

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Originally Posted by opalescent View Post
Second, it is wrong to allow people like right wing fundamentalist to set the parameters of what is marginal. These people don't 'believe' in evolution, think the earth is 6000 years old and preventing any meaningful action in global warming. They are anti-science, anti-reason and can't find a fact with both hands if one should happen to hit them in the ass. Not talking about fluidity or other uncomfortable, uncommon topics gives these irresponsible, dangerous people too much power. Stop it.

Finally I resent being called marginal. I don't know anyone who identifies as asexual. Not even demisexual. I didn't realize for a long time that such folks exist. I was ignorant and once I heard the term I've learned about it and try to keep in mind that someone I know or meet could be asexual. For me, asexual are marginal in my life. But they exist. Not talking about them or dismissing them as a tiny minority is not useful. In fact it could be actually dangerous if this silence prevents someone from learning a critical fact about themselves.

I realize you had no intention of making this personal. You are not saying anything many gay rights people have also said. And obviously I have strong feelings about it.
Huh. I guess we react to the word "marginal" quite differently. Being asexual - a spectrum that comprises an estimate of only 1% of all people - means that my experience is marginal, compared to the overwhelming majority of folks on this planet. That's just a statement of fact, I don't react negatively in any way to it.

Acknowledgement to exist is very important, I grant you that immediately - asexuality and bi/pan are easily the most ignored/erased minorities in that regard, not just by right wingers, but even by the gay and "sex-positive"* communities; in terms of being simply acknowledged to exist, even gay/Lesbian folks have a far easier time. And yet, that doesn't invalidate that a tiny minority is just that - a tiny minority. Should we be seen and heard? Yes, definitely. However, is our experience an adequate gauge to measure the majority of sexual identity on? Most probably not.

Overemphasis on fluidity, IMO, creates more problems than it solves - especially for aces and bi/pan people. I'd daresay we hear that "you'll grow out of it" way too often already (though at 38, it's finally dying down for me ); with fluidity being overstressed, I'd reckon we'd just get to hear it that much more often. I'd be afraid that not seeing fluidity as a comparatively rare occurrence and (semi-)permanency as statistically normal, brings too much a risk of ace and bi/pan identities becoming (further) invalidated and silenced.



* Putting "sex-positive" in airquotes there just for one single reason - true sex-positivity has to mean to support everyone's right and freedom to have as much or as little sex in their lives as they want (provided it's all SSC, of course). IMO, someone calling themselves "sex-positive", but who automatically ridicules folks who out of their own free choice remain virgins all their life, is false advertising.
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  #86  
Old 01-26-2013, 04:22 PM
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I am enjoying the "fluidity" conversation very much. I know so little about it that I'm reading it with both eyebrows up.

As to the earlier discussion of DADT.

I agree with some that an explicitly DADT policy is a sign that there is something wrong. That is to say that, if any direct conversation about other lovers is uncomfortable that is the same as saying "I am not ok with this arrangement, I cannot handle it, I need to pretend it doesn't exist". Having a relationship with someone who is expressly against the set-up seems like a half of a relationship. While this wouldn't necessarily mean the relationship couldn't work, it would put a hard limit on intimacy because their is a giant and important chunk of a persons life that is now just an elephant in the room.

Something I see as a stumbling block in this conversation is that people are conflating DADT with a persons desire for detail. For me, these two discussions are on the same spectrum but DADT is WAAAAY at the extreme end.

Personal Experience:
IV doesn't give any specific details about her sex life. We have conversations about sex and sex with other partners if it finds its way into the conversation, but there are no descriptions, specifics, or details that are not relevant to that particular conversation. It works for us, it's a balance that we found without discussing it. Fortunately for me, IV is sensitive to my expressions so maybe she just "picked up" on how much detail I was interested in. Either way, while there are details she could express to me which would prompt me to say "that's ok baby, I don't need that much detail" this is far from a DADT policy. This is just her being courteous.

This courtesy is not only for the person hearing the details, but the people she would be talking about. I presume that this courtesy is extended to me as well and that she does not share the intimate details of our sex life with other partners. Though even if she did I trust her judgment that the information expressed would be dealt with appropriately, otherwise she wouldn't risk expressing it.
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  #87  
Old 01-26-2013, 06:57 PM
beyondblueeyes beyondblueeyes is offline
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It is interesting to me as I read this thread...the question is usually asked to me from friends that are not in this LS.."Do you want to know what the other is doing" My situation is not really complicated...I have a husband and bf, and my bf has a wife ( his wife dates)..and my husband has a gf...(gf only sees my husband) So we have a very open and communicating life. However we also keep our relationships separate from each other out of respect for everyone. The only thing is there is an understanding with my bf and I that he there is no lying so we are upfront if we sleep with anyone else or see anyone else( in two years that has not happened) However before he went to Australia for 6 weeks he asked me if I wanted to know the details if anything was to happen when he was there. My answer was nope..just that it did happen. Now if I was to ask, he would tell me. Same rule is with my husband..However if something really hot sexualy happened with my h and his gf..he would tell me and it would not bother me at all..unless his gf is not comfortable having him share the details, he wont. It comes down to respect and honesty. To be honest...I love sex talk..give me the dirt on sex with others.. I will give you all the sex talk you want about me...but only if you want to......
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Old 01-26-2013, 11:51 PM
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I agree with Marcus.

DADT to me means secret.
There is a huge difference between a secret and privacy.

I'm not interested in details about sex and I don't need them.
But other partners aren't secret. The exciting "we had so much fun on xyz date" stories are enjoyable-because they are happy.

If you can't handle hearing about the other person's love-there's an issue. But that's not to say that one needs to talk nonstop about their other love or that they need to share personal details.

Additionally-I think it's important that new partners know what levels of privacy they can expect.

We are still struggling through leftover drama from LAST January because a potential thought that her every word was kept private from me (by my dh). When in fact, we both have free access to each others phones, email accounts etc. We rarely USE that access-but we don't keep secrets.
So when she started talking shit about me-I was WELL AWARE.
She felt that since she was talking shit TO HIM-then it wasn't "fair" that I knew.

Clear point of "make sure new potentials know what to expect" not being handled properly.
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  #89  
Old 01-27-2013, 05:34 AM
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When in fact, we both have free access to each others phones, email accounts etc. We rarely USE that access-but we don't keep secrets.
So when she started talking shit about me-I was WELL AWARE.
She felt that since she was talking shit TO HIM-then it wasn't "fair" that I knew.
LR, if I can ask, how did she become aware that you knew about her trash talking texts? Did he just mention it to her in passing at some point or did it "come up"?

No doubt letting new folks know that arrangement right out of the gate. That is a rather stark characteristic of a relationship and would hopefully cause a good conversation.
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Old 01-27-2013, 08:45 PM
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We have a family agreement that we don't promote contact between our kids and any person who is disrespectful to any one of the four parents. She was badmouthing me every time they were together. Thus-the kids weren't free to join. She wanted the youngest child to come and entertain her child so she could have more freedom to be with dh unhindered by her childs demands for attention.
When her pressure for that got significant-he started pressing me to talk to her and "resolve" the issues.

So I let her know that her derogatory comments bothered me. That pissed her off because she felt it was "private" and any derogatory comments she made were none of my business unless spoken directly to me.
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