Carnival of Aces: The Next Generation
This is for April’s Carnival of Aces.
I think it’s important to acknowledge that there are young teens in the asexual community, and I think it’s important to welcome them. While it is true that a young person’s asexual identification may change, when I discovered the online asexual community at age 14, I found it immensely empowering to learn that I was not ever required to have sex in order to be a full person.
Now that I am almost 24 and have been steeping in online asexual communities for nine years, I am appalled at the people who today would have turned a 14-year-old me away from their community. Everyone around me at that time was telling me “You’re too young to know you’re asexual,” and it would have been extremely unhelpful (and even more devastating) for the online asexual community to tell me that as well.
I look forward to the asexual community becoming more sensitive toward young people who are exploring an asexual-spectrum identity. I will always defend the agency of young people to self-identify with whatever sexual orientation labels make sense to them, and I will respect their current self-identification because that matters more than what it may become in the future. I also believe in any person’s agency to dis-identify with sexuality, especially young people’s agency, because it is extremely disempowering and absolutely a symptom of rape culture to tell someone “No, of course you’re not asexual; you have to be a sexual being; you’re too young to say you’re not currently a sexual being.”