The A in LGBTQIA is for Asexual, not Ally
What is asexuality?
Asexual people experience little or no sexual attraction. Asexuality is a type of sexual orientation, alongside other orientations such as gay, lesbian, bisexual and pansexual. It is not the same as celibacy or abstinence, which is behavioural and based in choice, situation or circumstance. In fact, some asexual people choose to have sex for a variety of reasons. Asexuality, like all sexual orientations, exists on a spectrum.
How common is asexuality?
At least 1% of people are believed to be asexual, but asexuality is often not recognised and misunderstood, both in heterosexual and LGBT spheres. The invisibility and erasure of asexuality is encapsulated by the common misconception that the A in LGBTQIA stands for ally, rather than asexual. Awareness has grown in recent years, but there is still a long way to go, including in the LGBT+ community. Read more on how to be an asexual ally.
Am I asexual?
Only you can decide which label fits you best, and where on the spectrum you fall. As with all sexual orientations, for some people this is static, and for others it is more fluid. There’s no one way to be asexual, and you can take all the time you need to determine if this fits you. What ever you determine, no-one has the right to belittle, undermine or disbelieve your identity. Everyone has the right to be themselves, free from violence, abuse and discrimination.
Visit The Asexual Visibility and Education Network, which hosts the world’s largest online asexual community and archive of resources on asexuality.