I have decided to stop identifying as a sex-positive asexual. Why? Why not? Why would anyone identify as sex-positive in the first place?
I won’t identify as sex-positive because there is no reason to. None. Having sex is an activity, like any other, and shouldn’t be seen as holding an inherent moral value or any other value.
As a moral nihilist, I have, at least in my own mind, always refused to assign moral meaning or value to anything, regardless of the effect it has had on my own life, and no matter how positive or negative others in society may view that thing.
Why should sex be a thing that I view as having an inherent meaning (a “positive” thing) when nothing else gets that special treatment?
I love writing; yet I don’t make absolute statements about it’s worth or morality or value as an activity. I hated being abused, but I refuse to assign inherent meaning to that as well; I will not define it as either a good or bad thing that happened in my life, to me it is simply something that happened.
So why did sex get this special treatment from me? Why did it get to be assigned as a positive when nothing else did? There is a pretty simple answer. That is, the stereotyping of asexuals as anti-sex, and the continued stigma applied to sex-negative asexuals in our community, creates a pressure to identify as sex-positive, because we don’t want to be seen as one of the “bad” asexuals. One of the ones that cause the stereotypes, one of the ones who think sex is icky, one of the ones who think they are morally above people who have sex…
Well, I’m sick of it. I am sex-neutral now. I know I am hardly breaking new ground here, that other asexuals before me have argued for sex-neutrality rather than sex-positivity or sex-negativity. But, better late than never.
And further, I am tired of the eternal pressure against asexual sex-negatives. Who cares if some people see sex as a bad thing, or an inherently negative thing? For instance, a person may find watching movies to be a boring, stupid, and unendurable activity. Making such statements as “Movies are boring.” “Movies are stupid.” may be considered rude, but they are also considered an opinion that we have a right to. However, were we to say “Sex is boring and stupid.” we would be jumped on for being sex-negative, shaming, and oppressive. What is the difference? Why is the other one simply a rude opinion, and the other such a big deal?
Obvious answer is obvious; sex as a recreational activity, unlike watching movies, has a history of being restricted and of people being persecuted for doing it. Therefore, to a sex-negative asexual, while they may to themselves simply be offering up a rude opinion on sex, to others it is making a statement that reinforces a belief (sex = wrong) that has centuries of history behind it, that is indelibly embedded in many cultural practices and mores, that still causes people a lot of shame and negative feelings.
But you know what? I am tired of it. I am sorry that people are sensitive to apparent criticism of what is a very important activity in their life. But at some point, you have to realize: to people who don’t have sexual feelings, or for who sex has no meaning, there is no good reason why we should see sex as a good thing, or have respect for it. There is no reason why it shouldn’t seem boring or stupid or silly to us. All those are valid opinions and feelings. They have such impact today simply because of attitudes and ideas created long before we were born by the majority population; non-asexual heterosexuals. It is not our baggage.
To a non-asexual, it can feel like a revolutionary statement simply to say that sex is a good thing, to say that it is a positive thing, to say that it feels good, and what feels good IS good. Such a statement is reclaiming one’s sexuality’s from society’s bullshit.
To an asexual, it can be a revolutionary statement to say that sex isn’t an inherently good thing, that it not necessarily a positive thing, to say that it doesn’t feel good for everyone, and for the people for whom it does not feel good, it is not good. Such a statement is reclaiming one’s sexuality’s from society’s bullshit.
Our society’s attitudes towards sex have hurt non-asexuals by shaming them for enjoying sex. And our society’s attitudes towards sex have hurt asexuals by shaming them for not enjoying sex.
There is a big difference when a non-asexual, for whom sex is a pleasurable experience, and who believes it is a pleasurable experience for most people, states that sex is a bad thing. Such a non-asexual would be condemning the pleasure as well. It is going against the innate moral sense that most people seem to follow (That what feels good is good).
An asexual making such a statement is not doing so. They are not condemning pleasure or what feels good. Sex simply does not feel good for them, so why should it be a good thing? In this they are following the innate moral sense that most people follow (what feels good is good.)
Most things that we do not enjoy we often consider boring, stupid, or bad. (“Sports is so boring, how can you watch that?” “Ugh, Harry Potter is fucking stupid. Who cares about some wizard kid?” “Country music SUCKS.”) At some point a person will usually hit a point where they realize the great truth of: different strokes for different folks, and gain a respect for the things others enjoy that they do not themselves enjoy.
A sex-negative asexual making such a statement has most likely not hit that point of respect yet. Should we see their statements as an oppressive, harmful mindset, or should we treat it as simply a rude opinion by people who have not yet learned to have respect for other interests that they do not share?
It doesn’t matter to me what people decide to do. I am after all, a nihilist, and we are not exactly known for the amount of fucks we give about things. I usually tend to write about things with the dominant moral viewpoint in mind (what feels good IS good, and what makes the most people feel good is best, right to pursuit of happiness blahblah) but today I was inspired by meeting another of those rarities of rarities, an asexual with a respect for nihilism, and so I decided to indulge myself and write with my own ethical stance in mind.
P.S: I don’t hate sex. Sex-neutral, remember?