Can I be asexual and gay or lesbian?
There are two main reasons why an asexual may consider themselves gay or lesbian.
The first is that while they may not experience sexual attraction, they may still feel some other form of attraction. Examples include:
- romantic attraction – an urge to engage in romance with someone
- sensual attraction – an urge to be physically intimate (e.g. cuddling)
- aesthetic attraction – a non-sexual attraction to someone based on their appearance.
None of these things is sexual attraction, and although asexuals may be less likely to experience them, the only thing that defines a person as asexual or not is the absence or presence of sexual attraction. An asexual who has these forms of attraction only towards their own gender may feel that their experience has many similarities to those of allosexual gay / lesbian people, meaning that those labels can communicate a lot – especially considering how asexuality is little known among the general public.
The second reason an asexual person might identify as gay or lesbian is that they may be grey-asexual in some way. For example, a person may experience sexual attraction only very rarely (or under specific circumstances), but when they do is might only be towards their own gender. 'Asexual' is often used as an umbrella term for the whole asexuality-spectrum.