Reproduction by Budding: Asexuality at Kenyon

This post has been authored anonymously as the second in a series of Thrill narratives about sex and sexuality.

The asexual pride flag.

The asexual pride flag.

“So, like, do you photosynthesize?”

Yes. I do. I am a plant. These limbs and this breathing thing and those eyeballs? Non-existent. I am a plant and not someone who just told you their biggest secret.

There are a lot of varying definitions of what asexuality is, most of which differ from person-to-person. But for me, it can be boiled down to this: I don’t want to have sex. I don’t feel sexual attraction. I don’t masturbate, I don’t hook-up. There are all sorts of facets of asexuality, which you can look at here.

Asexuality exists. You wouldn’t think I would need to say it, but I do. Bio major friends may think amoebas and reproduction by budding, but it is a valid sexuality, the same as any other. It would just be nice if people realized that asexuality is a thing and didn’t immediately assume that someone is either not human or broken when they say they identify as asexual. 1% of the world’s population are asexual. That means that there are at least 16 people at Kenyon who are asexual. I’m one of them.

One quick caveat: asexuality is not synonymous with aromanticism. People—like myself—can identity as being asexual whilst being romantically attracted to people. Others can be sexually attracted to people without romantic attraction. It’s confusing, but important to know. Also, asexuality isn’t celibacy. This isn’t a choice, and some asexual-identifying people have sex.

There’s almost no space on campus to talk about asexuality. While Unity House is such an important resource, none of the—admittedly few—asexual individuals that I know feel included there. And what makes me worry are the Kenyon Confessions by asexual individuals who don’t feel like they have any support and feel uncomfortable telling the people around them that they are asexual. So just… know that asexuality exists. And if someone tells you that they are asexual, don’t ask them if they reproduce by budding. It’s not clever. It’s not cute. It’s hurtful and invalidates things that they cannot change about themselves.

4 responses

  1. Great post. I remember former professor of musicology Henry Spiller, gay himself, saying “the “queerest” people are the asexuals.” Asexuals have less in common with gays or straights than gays and straights have in common with each other. Thanks for sharing.

  2. I completely agree with everything said in this article, and I think it’s wonderful that asexuals at Kenyon have started talking, even though it’s still all anonymous. I think we’re moving towards something happening, and that’s great because I think it’s important that we have a space to talk about our shared experiences. Something’s started, and I hope it doesn’t stop.

  3. Thank you. It’s hard to feel like there’s any welcome space anywhere because people seem to be very uncomfortable with the concept for some reason. It’s especially difficult to imagine trying to start a relationship at Kenyon when there are so many expectations that you’re certain everyone else has. I’m sure your contribution to the discussion will help alleviate some of the loneliness.

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