The Asexuality Armadillo


Hello pups! I am the Asexuality Armadillo, here to be a lovely resource of all things asexual and aromantic! Things to find: advice, comics and all sorts of little goodies.
I'm also a big and cuddly Mammadillo, and am always here to love you and care about you!
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This dude found out I wasn't attracted to anyone and I didn't care for masturbation. So he started trying to roleplay with me. I'm like 14 and I'm freaking out. Idk if this has to do with being ace tho...

@Anonymous

If you are feeling uncomfortable with what he is doing  - tell him. He needs to know that your asexuality is not something he can fix with ‘roleplay’. I’m not saying that roleplay is something you might grow to like or prefer to  sex but right now it is making you uncomfortable.

I believe it might not have something to do with your asexuality, it might just be you are not comfortable with him or roleplaying in general. 

Also, if he tries to force or persuade anything on you, you have the complete right to tell him no and that he is behaving very grossly. If he does not stop, make sure you have a support group of either family or friends that will back you up if you confront him or he reacts badly to your desicion.

Remember - stay safe and healthy! I love you pup!

1 week ago with 3 notes

Hi!!! So I identify as asexual and I'm completely repulsed by the idea of having sex with a guy (I'm female), but I'm curious about experimenting with a girl. It sounds like fun and I wanna try it, although I don't experience sexual attraction to girls either. Is that weird? I just feel like that's really weird...

@Anonymous

Not at all little pup! You are experimenting, and that’s perfectly fine. You just make sure what you do is safe and consensual, and it’s a-ok! Also, if you then realise you don’t like it then it doesn’t invalidate anything, it’s just another aspect of you!

Take care sweetie xxx

1 month ago with 0 notes

[1] Sometimes I feel like I should have sex. I mean I am okay with not having it, and I identify on the ace spectrum right now, but than I read how we're special snowflakes, especially if some have numerous identities like demisexual or blanksensual, and I think that maybe I should have sex so people won't suspect anything. It's not like I am actually going to have sex since I am a bit replused, it's just some thoughts that I have on and off.

@Anonymous

anagnori:

[2, ignore the other 2 if there is any] I think it is because there’s a small part of me that wants to please others but I’m getting better at ignoring it and doing whatever makes me comfortable. I was just wondering if anyone had similar thoughts, or were afraid of disclosing certain identities they had due to what they saw on the internet. I’m the type of person who doesn’t care what a person ids as, usually, but I know other people seem to care.

This is actually a really common problem. You are definitely not the only person who’s worried about being called a “special snowflake”.

It’s also extremely common for people to feel like they “ought” to have sex that they don’t actually want—that’s where the phrase “compulsory sexuality” comes from. It’s a cultural phenomenon that expects everyone to be sexually active, or want sexual activity, at least some of the time. (In particular, it emphasizes heterosexuality.) There are many asexual-spectrum and/or sex-repulsed people who feel like they’re broken, or weird, or somehow in the wrong for not wanting sex in the way our culture expects them to.

The “special snowflake” accusation is bullshit. It serves no purpose, except to make people afraid to identify as anything other than straight, cisgender or neurotypical. It’s a silencing tactic that is used to discourage people from exploring their identities, finding support among other people like themselves, and creating words to help them express their concerns and experiences.

That bit about words is important, because there’s more than just words at stake here. What’s at stake are millions of people who feel different or alienated from Western culture in some way, who need to articulate what they’re feeling and find other people who feel the same, and for whom the English language just isn’t working. These are people who feel like they are broken, freakish and alone because they have no words that can describe what they are. When you have no words that can describe a concept properly, it can trick you into not realizing the concept exists. Discovering a word can make you see the world, and yourself, in a whole new way.

Identity labels have power. Calling someone a “special snowflake” is usually done to attack the identity labels that person uses, dismissing them as fake, insincere or ridiculous. It is very much an issue of who should have the power to define words and influence the way we communicate.

I should also point out that you absolutely are not obligated to have sex, ever. You do not need to have sex in order to fit in, or deflect suspicion, or be “normal.” You do not need to have sex in order to prove yourself, or to make other people accept you. Anyone who tries to make you feel weird or bad for not having sex, is a person who doesn’t deserve to be your friend. You probably know this already, but I figure it’s worth repeating.

1 month ago with 72 notes

This isn't a question, but is it wrong to just wish there was an ongoing conversation with how asexuality and disability interacts ... i never want to step on any toes by hurting how aceness is portrayed as a orientation but at the same time ... it's really hard to unpack one without bringing out the other (for me), and just ghh, i'm not even sure what to think? when society desexualizes you pretty intensely on one hand but you're kinda sure you're sex repulsed on the other even after (1/2)

@Anonymous

anagnori:

(2/2) reading up on proper sex education and attempting to desensitize yourself on the internet, but at the same time being enough on the grey-a spectrum that you ~*notice*~ people in that way but still don’t want to engage relations because of everything from personal reasons to the desexualization thing to ‘that just sounds plain uncomfortable’ and i just UGH - sorry for this mini rant. you’re the only person that’s come near to talking about this, and i thank you. take care of yourself.

I agree, it is really important for us to talk about how disability and asexuality intersect, and the problems faced by disabled asexual-spectrum folks. There have been people talking about this—people far more qualified than I am—but we need more of it.

I’ve had quite a few asks from asexual-spectrum folks who were worried that their orientation was less legitimate or acceptable because of an illness or disability they had. Other asks were from people who’d been deeply hurt by their past experiences or upbringing, and who weren’t sure how to distinguish their own feelings about sexuality from trauma or cultural messages they’d internalized.

I think there’s an underlying worry for a lot of people that if your sexuality was influenced by something else, like trauma or illness or oppression, then your feelings are not “authentic,” or “truly you” anymore. We think that if we can attribute asexuality or sex-repulsion to another cause, it means the asexuality or sex-repulsion is less valid on its own. And this attitude is reinforced by how a lot of anti-asexual invalidation is based on attributing asexuality to another factor—“You’re not asexual, you’re just _______.”

I’ve always thought that attitude was beside the point, though. If a person is experiencing life like an asexual person does now, why should any of their other experiences make that any less meaningful? Their feelings, needs, worries and problems are still very real. If identifying as asexual-spectrum or sex-repulsed helps a person understand and feel good about themself, and cope with their experiences, why should we take that away from them? What right do we have, to demand that a person separate their sexuality from their life experiences and other problems that they face (like ableism), before we are willing to welcome and listen to them?

I really hate the idea that some asexual-spectrum people should have to be silent about their experiences in order to avoid “making asexuality look bad.” It’s wrong for our community to marginalize some of our own members for the sake of respectability politics.  You shouldn’t have to push your experiences with ableism and disability apart from your experiences with sexuality in order for your voice to be heard and your opinion to be respected. You’re not “stepping on toes” or harming asexuality just by talking about your own life and the problems that affect you.

Basically—no, you’re not wrong, and this is an important issue that needs to be addressed more often.

1 month ago with 87 notes

anagnori:

Oh, and while we’re talking about sex-repulsed people:

  • It’s okay if you’re sex-repulsed because you have experienced sexual abuse or trauma in your past.
  • It’s okay if you’re sex-repulsed because sex feels painful, uncomfortable or frightening to you.
  • It’s okay if you’re sex-repulsed and there’s no “cause” for it, it’s just how you’ve always been.
  • It’s okay if you feel sex-repulsed sometimes and not repulsed at other times, or if you’ve become more/less sex-repulsed over time.
  • It’s okay to be afraid of sex.
  • It’s okay to think that sex is disgusting.
  • It’s okay to like reading/watching fictional sex but not want it in real life.
  • It’s okay to be repulsed by some sexual things but not by other sexual things.
  • None of the above things make your feelings weird, messed-up or unhealthy.
  • You don’t need to “overcome” your dislike of sex. If you’re happier without sex, then that’s great, you don’t need to change.
  • If you want to become more comfortable with sex, or if you think therapy will help you be happier with yourself, then that’s fine, too.
  • If your partner wants you to do something sexual that you’re not comfortable with, then they’re the one in the wrong, and they need to stop. Your feelings and comfort are important, and you never owe sex to anyone.
  • If your partner wants you to change, or to stop being sex-repulsed or asexual, then they are wrong. You deserve a partner who loves you the way you are, respects your feelings, and doesn’t ask you to change for them.
  • You do not need to be sex-positive, or willing to have sex, in order to be a “healthy” or “normal” asexual person.
  • Some sex-repulsed people aren’t asexual-spectrum. All of the above applies to them, too!
  • Whatever your feelings about sex are, it is perfectly okay to feel the way you do, and there is nothing bad, abnormal or wrong about your feelings.

1 month ago with 14,910 notes

anagnori:

beranyth:

Some tumblr buddies have been discussing how to explicitly write a character as unmistakably ace/aro, and though I don’t have any clear-cut answers I do have some ideas to throw around that could be useful:

(note, this is to my fellow ace and aro writers, not a list of how to avoid problematic things for allo people)

  • Character just flat-out, explicitly identifies that way.  We’re really pushed to avoid this, but don’t have to.  Can either feature them explaining it or just put them in a (wonderful, lovely) place of everyone taking their word for it and respecting their identity.  
  • Working in a fictional setting?  Maybe worldbuild a little to allow that identity to be established in some way there.  Even if you call it something else to fit the tone of your world, the mere act of explaining what that means to the reader can nail it down as an unarguable fact.
  • If a character is hiding that part of themselves, the narrative can highlight the difference between how they act and how they want to act—what they feel they are and what they feel is expected of them.
  • This one’s really hard for us, but never hestitate to put as much of your own experiences as an ace/aro person into your writing as you want.  This is less “how to keep people from misinterpreting” and more just ways to connect with ace/aro readers.  

Another thing is how other characters understand and react to that character, which is one of the biggest tools a writer can use for establishing anything about a character.  Make use of it!  Some examples:

  • Friends that know what is ace- and aro-phobic or what might alienate them and tell others off when they see it happening, or know when they’ll need to be a shoulder to lean on when it dredges up dysphoria.
  • Others who understand what they are and aren’t interested in, and just treat it as established fact.  
  • Instead of trying to get that single friend to “find someone” so they “won’t be lonely,” they actually make them less lonely by being their friend and consider the idea of pushing them to date about as useful as dragging someone thoroughly disinterested in sports to marathon old taped football games for a week.
  • If your setting supports it, they use the terms for identities and treat them as valid!  Like “I can’t wait to see what [character’s] dream wedding is like”  ”I wouldn’t hold your breath, she’s aro” for a shoddy example
  • Allows more room for misinterpretation, but that method can be used whether identity labels are mentioned or not.  Writing characters that affirm that no, that character said they’re not intersted in relationships, stop trying to change them’ shows right off the bat you’re not diving into a plot of ‘this character thinks they don’t need ~love~ but ~just need to open their heeaaarttt~’ or ‘this character isn’t interested in sex but just doesn’t know how good it is' and so on

Unrelated notes: Remember that it is 100% up to you whether your setting has compulsory sexuality or amatonormativity.  Even if you set it in the real world, you are completely and unmistakably free to leave that shit out.  Meanwhile, writing those kinds of issues can be extremely suffocating, but it can also be cathartic, and reading about shared struggles can mean just as much to an ace/aro reader as rolling around in a world completely free of them.  Never feel guilty for preferring to write one over the other.

And remember that there really isn’t a way to keep people from ignoring all of the above and misinterpreting your character, purposefully or not.  ”I can ship ANYTHING” and “I will make porn of EVERYTHING” are things fandom takes blatant pride in no matter the context.  I’ve found it to be a lot less stressful to think “how do I write this character so that no allo person can possibly think they’re anything but ace/aro” and to think of writing the story that other ace/aro people would want to read about.

Fellow ace/aro writers, feel free to add your own suggestions!

(This is so going in my “writing tips” and “writing prompts” tags. There can never be too much of this stuff.)

A couple considerations I’d add:

It may be helpful to think of who your target audience is: Are you mostly writing for other ace/aro-spectrum people, or for alloromantic/allosexual people as well? Or just writing for your own pleasure, which is fine, too? I think that how familiar your audience is with asexual/aromantic issues can affect how much explaining you need to do in-story, how overt you need to be about the character’s identity, and how likely your audience is to interpret “subtle” ways of indicating the characters’ orientation correctly.

Also, how are you planning to publish the story? (Assuming you want to publish it.) On a website like AO3, you can tag your story as “asexual character,” or “aromantic character,” which makes things clear from the start and lets your audience know what to expect. But if you’re publishing a book “traditionally,” in printed format, you may not be able to do something like that, and your reader may not realize that character’s asexual/aromantic until halfway through the story.

This means your readers will have different expectations and reactions to your story depending on how they find it. You may need to alter your writing to account for this.

If you publish online, tagging the story, or mentioning asexuality/aromanticism in the story’s summary will help aro/ace-spectrum readers find and enjoy your work. Also, look for aro/ace story collections and try submitting your work to them.

1 month ago with 1,097 notes

anagnori:

Reading romantic fiction when you’re a sex-repulsed aro-ace is so weird. And frustrating, at times.

For me, it’s a bit like reading a book while walking—fun, relaxing, I like doing it, but sooner or later I will trip and fall down, and that will be a rude awakening and probably hurt a lot. I can’t fully concentrate on the book because I have to keep half my attention on the ground at all times. It takes away a lot of enjoyment from the story.

In romantic fiction, the “fall” I’m always afraid of is that the story will veer into a sex scene, or say something hurtful towards asexual or aromantic people. I often cringe as the story offhandedly says something that undermines my humanity (“[Romantic] love is what makes us human!”), implies that my life is worthless and incomplete (“A life without [a romantic partner] is not worth living!”), or erases the existence of people like me entirely.

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1 month ago with 253 notes

Hello followers,

I’m sorry if I haven’t been posting a lot, a new job and uni has taken up a lot of my time! I will post a few things here and there, more behind the scenes based :)

But remember: I am always here for you, no matter how big or small a problem. I love you all very much, and you should love yourselves too xx

1 month ago with 3 notes

Hello! How does one actually bring up the subject of asexuality? I want to ask someone if they know what "asexual" means without giving away the fact that I'm asexual first.... any ideas?

@Anonymous

Hmm, tricky! Maybe sometimes in conversation when the topic of sex comes up and someone makes a statement that is considered hetero-normative (everyone likes it/people who don’t are weird) you can just kindly remind them that this isn’t so. Then you can lead into explaining it.

Unfortunately, when you bring these things up, the first instinct is to say ‘Oh what, you’re asexual?’ and it is up to you to say either yes or no, there is no shame to hide this fact if it protects you! You are still brave and strong in your response to their previous statements. 

The conversations I’ve had around asexuality are either scholarly sense or informally with friends. 

Thanks for your question little pup! Mommadillo loves you :)

If any of my other pups have any ideas, feel free to share!

1 month ago with 0 notes

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