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I knew it was expected but it's not something I thought about most of the time.Woman B: I've never experienced sexual attraction to anyone else, regardless of gender, but that doesn't mean there's anything wrong with me — I'm not immature, or frigid, or broken."Asexual people have the same emotional needs as everybody else and are just as capable of forming intimate relationships."But like people of any sexual orientation, different asexual people experience asexuality differently.I spoke with two anonymous asexual women about labels, dating, and what it's like to be a twentysomething woman in a world that assumes that everyone wants sex.Even if I can tell a man or woman is physically attractive and dresses nice, I don't fantasize about doing anything sexual with them.In all my relationships I've been OK with nonsexual intimacy but I've never wanted to go beyond that.

"Unlike celibacy, which is a choice, asexuality is a sexual orientation," they explain.

It's useful and comforting to have a term for the way I feel (or don't feel) about different types of relationships.

How old were you when you started using the label asexual to describe yourself? Woman A: I was around 18 or 19 when a friend mentioned asexuality in an offhand way, but I didn't learn the actual definition and start identifying as asexual until I was 22. Woman B: I was 14 or so when I first saw the term online and said, "That's me!

Woman A: To me, it means that someone doesn't feel sexual attraction toward other people.

I don't think it means you can't tell when someone is attractive.

Woman A: Among my friends, I was usually dismissed.


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