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A Sexual Positivity: Asexual Positivity as Sex Positivity

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To the uninformed individual, asexuality is usually misinterpreted as either nonexistent, a sickness, or a disapproval of sex. The first two are easily refuted; medically speaking, asexuality has been validated through scientific and psychological research, and tests have shown that it is not a result of mental or physical illness. As an individual who has had their asexuality supported by therapists and their health assured by examination and testing, I can assure you that asexuality is simply one of many natural sexualities. (While it is unfair and a shame that I need to bring up my medical history to reassure others that my identity is valid, I will do what I must to defend myself.) The third argument--the disapproval of sex--lies in a deep rooted misunderstanding of what asexuality is, and what sexual acceptance and sex positivity entails.

Sex positivity is the support of the individual to use their body as they see fit, and to support all forms of consensual sex practices. It is the defense of men, women, and non-binary individuals to express their sexual desires and opinions, and to allow them to act on said desires without shame. It is not, as many seem to assume, simply saying HAVE SEX. It is the liberation of all to sexually express themselves in a way that makes them happy and satisfied. This expression may take the form of a fetish, of vanilla sex, of a non-monogamous relationship, of a monogamous relationship, of a non-committal relationship, of a committal relationship, of a polyamorous relationship, of a homosexual relationship, of a bisexual relationship, of a heterosexual relationship, of masturbation, or of a personal choice to abstain. It is giving the choice of sexual expression to the individual, not to society.

If you wish to support the individual's right to sexually express themselves, you must support the individual's right to abstain. Sexual acceptance is accepting not only of the act, but of the individual's right to choose. If an individual chooses to not have sex, calling them a prude is not a form of sex positivity. Sex positivity is not the shaming of those that do not wish to have sex, it is the support of everyone to pick their own sexual roles. By shaming someone who chooses not to have sex, you are taking away the main lesson of sex positivity which is ALLOWING THE INDIVIDUAL TO CHOOSE THEIR SEXUAL EXPRESSION. Shaming for not wanting to have sex is similar to shaming someone for wanting to have sex: it is completely taking away the freewill of the individual to choose in preference to the opinions of a third-party. 

Understand that asexuality and celibacy is not about restricting the sexual practices of others. An asexual or celibate individual may not want to have sex, or may choose to not have sex, but it does not and should not involve anyone but the asexual or celibate individual, and should not inhibit anyone else from engaging in their desired sexual practices.  If an asexual or a celibate person shames another person for having sex, this is not connected to their celibacy or asexuality, it is connected to that person being disrespectful and bigoted; not surprisingly, bigotry can exist in all sexualities and lifestyles. Slut shaming and sex shaming is not directly connected to any sexuality. Period. 

Thus arguing that asexuals are restricting sex positivity is simply illogical. Asexuality is simply another way of sexual expression, that being, for many, the lack of sexual action. This in itself is a sexually liberating experience. For someone such as myself who felt obligated to have sex and ashamed that I did not desire it, being assured that I had control over my body and my desires was empowering. This is exactly what sex positivity is all about. It is about telling the individual, "Yes, this is your body, and you can do with it what you want. You are the one in control." The ability to say "no" is just as important as the ability to say "yes." 

Sex positivity is about the freedom to choose, not about the pressure to act. To liberate someone sexually, you must give them the freedom to express themselves as they wish. Sex positivity is about leaving the control and care of someone's body to the individual. And sometimes the individual may not want to have sex. And that is okay. You cannot support an individual's right to choose but insult someone for choosing. That is not logical. That is not choosing. That is not support. That is bigotry, and telling another the proper way to use their body.

And that is a hinderance to everyone. 
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