No clue about my sexuality

This turned into a fairly long post, skip straight to the end for a short, simple explanation of my dilemma.
I’m a 23yo male and not sure how to classify myself. Since I’ve been told that by being specific, I can help you tailor your advice (if that’s what you feel like responding with) to my needs. I will start in high school and try to include any relevant information.
First, I never masturbated until I was 17. This was not because I thought it was a bad thing, it just never really occurred to me that it was something I ought to try. I was not a social person in high school. I usually found other people boring, and so I didn’t really have a chance to have crushes with everybody else. Eventually, when I was a senior, one of my few close friends asked me to be her boyfriend, and because of some terrible reasons that seemed good at the time, I agreed. I wasn’t really unhappy with the relationship, but I wasn’t very enthusiastic about it either. I had been perfectly content before the transition and didn’t really see the point of spending so much time kissing. Eventually she got fed up and we ended things but remained friends.
In college I started to be much more outgoing, and had more chances to notice that there seemed to be something wrong with me. For the first year, I saw that everybody else in my groups of friends tended to pair off within a few months, and concerned roommates and neighbors would offer to set me up with somebody on a regular basis, or tell me that so and so was into me and I should ask her out. I was annoyed that they thought that was more important than letting me read in peace. Eventually I caved to pressure and said yes to somebody who asked me out. That time, we didn’t have a decade-old connection to prevent it from being a complete disaster, and it was over in about a week. We had little in common and I was only doing it to try to fit in.
From then up to now, I’ve been single and for the most part people have stopped thinking it’s odd. However, I’m about to graduate and move on to a new set of people who will all likely think that I’m strange. I’m hopeful that grad school will be demanding enough that they won’t have time to care, but people always seem to find time to care about other peoples’ business.

Those are the facts/history, but obviously you can’t say a lot about me based on the just the events of two relationships. So now I get to talk about how I feel. I couldn’t have cared less about sex for the first 18ish years of my life. When I first had a girlfriend, I was aware that sex was something that was supposed to be on my mind and I was worried about it. We talked about it on a few occasions, and she said it was fine when I said I didn’t think our relationship had progressed far enough yet and didn’t have any specific criteria in mind for what “far enough” meant. That was when I started seriously wondering if I was gay, since I had rarely heard of the guy being the one who isn’t ready for a sexual relationship. Obviously my second relationship didn’t last long enough for that to ever become an issue, but I still didn’t really have any way of telling whether or not I was gay.

Since then I’ve spent some time trying to figure this out but made little progress. There are men and women whom I find attractive and likable, but I don’t ask any of them out because I don’t really feel like I care about being more than friends, and I don’t want to put them through a relationship with me. I’ve spent some time on aven, since it seemed possible that I could just be asexual, but I wasn’t satisfied with that. I was worried that I might just be using the term asexual as an excuse not to approach people, and that by labelling myself asexual I would be limiting my options.

So now my dilemma is this. Should I just try to find a male and a female and use them as guinea pigs to test whether or not I want a sexual relationship? It seems like it would be unfair to have a relationship for that reason, and I’m not the sort of person who could pull off a one-night stand. So I would have to explain my situation to each person I asked to make sure they knew what was going on. I could continue being happy without any sort of relationship, but then there’s the chance that I’m not as happy as I would be with one.

If you’re trying to skip straight to the dilemma, you’ve gone just a bit too far. Any advice, comments, questions, personal anecdotes, or (funny) jokes at my expense are welcome.

3 thoughts on “No clue about my sexuality

  1. EricaSwagger says:

    [Some people just aren’t sexual. I’m troubled that you think you need to be, and I don’t think you should force it by trying to start fake relationships with anyone, because that completely defeats the purpose, and could be so damaging to everyone.

    If you’re not satisfied classifying yourself as asexual, don’t classify yourself. You should just let things happen naturally. If you’re happy being single and not concerned with sex, then that’s fine for you. You shouldn’t be stressing yourself out for no reason. If you’re happy now, just let yourself be happy! Don’t worry about what you think your life should be like.

    And if/when you meet someone that makes you want to be sexual with them, then there’s your answer.

    The thing that most concerned me in your blurb was “…I don’t want to put them through a relationship with me.” The wording there is very negative. It makes me wonder if you’ve got some self-esteem issues or repressed feelings from a painful relationship (romantic, platonic, or familial — doesn’t matter) that make you feel like you aren’t worth it. Has someone said something to make you feel like you wasted their time? I’d consider that first, then worry about classifying yourself.

  2. Taurwen says:

    [Well, from your description I’d say you sound pretty A sexual. If that’s true (And heck, even if it’s not) it’s important to realize there’s nothing wrong with you. Plenty of people aren’t interested in sex.
    If you’re merely concerned about whether or not you’re gay, straight or bi then I’d say being upfront with people would be the easiest thing for you to do without feeling bad about using people. I’ve not done very much internet dating, but that might be the place to start .

    As for being unsatisfied with the label asexual I must say, there’s a big difference between asexuality and being an introvert or completely lacking the desire to be social. Just like you get a range of personalities in all sexuality types (Despite what stereotypes might have you believe), asexuality is no different. If anything it doesn’t sound like you’re unsatisfied with your sexuality it sounds like you’re frustrated with your lack of socializations desires. I don’t know what you’re circumstances are, but perhaps counselling will be your best bet for understanding (and possibly changing if that’s what would make you happy) your personality/personal desires.

  3. Matt Sanchelli says:

    [First off, Erica pressed on a lot of items I was/am going to comment on, but wanted to pretty much 2nd everything she said.

    Everyone has a different sex drive. Some like to have sex daily. Others a few times a week. Others once a week. There isn’t really a “standard” to define what is “normal”; because let’s face it…there’s no such thing as normal. There’s nothing wrong with you if sex, and sexuality, don’t occupy your mind all of the time.

    Things commonly are not problematic unless they interfere with your everyday life. What I see more-so problematic is your focus on your lack of sexuality; or desire for it. The way you presented it made me believe that you spend a lot of time dwelling on this because you believe there’s something wrong. Dwelling on the need to classify yourself in some category. As Erica said, if you don’t want to be labeled in one way (asexual), then don’t.

    There’s nothing wrong. You’re simply just trying to figure things out, and figure yourself out. You are trying to find you.

    Be the you that makes you happy? When are you most happy? When are you most content? That’s who you need to be.

    I, too, was taken-a-back by your statement regarding not wanting to burden others by going through a relationship with you. Thinking that was is pretty defeatist and establishing the outcome that things are going to fail before they even begin.

    Have you spoken to anyone professionally about these particular thoughts and feelings? It definitely seems like there are some esteem and confidence issues in the realm of socializing and building relationships with others; something deeper than just personal confusion. A licensed professional may be able to provide some insight regarding steps to not only help socialize, but find the personal answers you’re looking for.

    In the meantime, I say don’t push any relationships that you’re uncertain about. However, if you do find yourself wanting to try and gain some clarity regarding your thoughts on what a sexual relationship, stick with your plan to be honest with those whom you are interested in. You may very well be met with resistance, and negative remarks, but that’s much better than deceit.

    Good luck.

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