By way of introduction…

Introduce yourself to the community here.
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Belle
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By way of introduction…

Postby Belle » Fri May 13, 2011 4:28 pm

By way of introduction…

I’m Belle, I turned 40 last week… I’m enjoying it a lot. I work as a teaching linguist. I love watching people go from dreading a compulsory subject to getting an appreciation for what language really is, and how incredible it is to watch children learn to use it. I think it’s criminal to love my job so much, but I do.

I’ve only recently discovered my sexuality, and because I work with words in my job, I’ve been trying to write / think about my sexuality in positive terms. Sure there are things I’m not interested in doing, but thinking about it, and more importantly feeling about it, I see a positive side.

I’ve been in romantic friend relationship with a man with Asperger’s for 8 years. I was the one who discovered how incredibly clever he’d been in hiding what was happening for him. I took him to the psychiatrist, and he, the compassionate soul that he is, took me to the psychologist after I lost my mum. So it’s like we have each other’s back, I like that. I call him The Fellow. The other night I asked him how his day was and he excitedly told me that Queen’s Park Rangers had made it to the top flight of the English Premier League (Soccer / Football). And that’s how his day was; I wouldn’t want him any other way. (I understand that Asperger's is different for different people, I'm just talking about The Fellow's experience.)

Not so long ago the thought occurred to me that The Fellow and I had never talked about sex. (Mind you it didn’t occur to me at the time that it had taken a whole 8 years for me to think about that!)

So okay, I put it down to the fact that both of us are Christians, and there’s a culture of abstinence here, but there was more to it. I got restless, because I expected that relationships ‘progress’… But this one wasn’t, and apart from my restlessness, things were going really well. I like the way The Fellow and I relate to each other. We’re neighbours, but our doors are a couple of meters apart, so I can say, ‘I like coming home to him’.

So here I was, restless. Asking myself what was wrong with me if I accepted being in a celibate relationship for 8 years. (Of course now I recognise what it actually is… :) ) I couldn’t ask him, because he struggles with talking about some topics, so I’ve decided I’ll accept his sexuality when he starts talking about it.

But for me the ‘Big Brain Click’ happened in a way I would have never thought of...

Just before my 40th, I was watching an episode of Glee. I’m not even a Glee fan, but a couple of episodes before they did a brilliant cover of Paul McCartney’s ‘Silly Love Songs’, I’m a huge Sir Paul / Wings fan, so I thought I’d keep watching.

Then I saw ‘Original Song’… OMGosh, it was like a tonne of soft comfortable bricks had fallen on me… I watched it about 3 times off the digital TV recording then thought “Arrggh, I’ll buy it on iTunes”, then I watched that about 15 times more. The next day, (hadn’t slept at all) wasn’t a teaching day, so I told my work friends that I wouldn’t be in at work.

So I thought about why this particular Kurt / Blaine thing had hit me so hard.

I figure, since I’m Australian and not American that their relationship was quite a big deal in the U.S., and that’s why it was written the way it was written. I’m not sure if I’m reading it correctly, but for me the ‘sex’ part had to be written out, the kiss was scandalous enough. But I think what hit me so hard so that because the ‘sex’ part (not their sexuality though) was written out, what was left was a romantic friendship, which looked very much like what The Fellow and I have. It was the first time I had seen a de-sexed intimate relationship on TV. And I fell in love with it, it was very familiar and attractive.

So the cogs in my love saturated brain kicked in. (I was romantically attracted to the relationship, not the characters themselves, although I admit I’m becoming a Chris Colfer and a Darren Criss fan.) Because I found it so attractive, did that mean I was gay? Well no because I’m not a guy and I’m not sexually attracted to men… So I'm not 'straight' either... OOOOKKKAAAYY… Am I lesbian? No, because I’m not sexually attracted to women. (I’m thinking Huh? by this stage) Is it possible to be not sexually attracted to any person? Was I attracted to gay men without the need to turn them?… Nope.

And why did I find this abstinence thing so incredibly easy? Could it be…? But what about the random sexual feeling, directed at no-one that hit me about once or twice a year for a couple of days when my hormones did something diabetically random? Even that was a ‘meh’…

I did what any university trained researcher would do on their day off – I went to Google. I had heard of the term ‘Grey-A’ or ‘Grey Asexual’ before, so I started there. And I’d found the answer! I was bouncing off the walls, I was so happy.

So after a few weeks of mulling and checking with great friends who are doctors and are great at questions like “Are you afraid of sex?” (No, they can go and enjoy it, me I’d rather interview people.) I decided to ‘come out’.

I told The Fellow first, who first shrugged his shoulders, then said while he didn’t get it, he’d support me. (Bless him!)

And now I’ve told a few friends, who have supported my discovery. And questioned me about it, and finally most of them have said that totally get the way I’ve acted in the past in light of this.

So today I’m having a couple of workmates over to my place (it's Saturday). I’ve been saying things like “I’ve fallen in love with an idea…” on Facebook a few times, and these two lovely people have been asking me what I mean. So they don’t have me out myself in front of the boss in the work lunch room, which almost happened the other day, I’ve invited them to coffee.

So fortunately I’ve had a really positive reaction to this. And I personally think that ‘a’ in this case doesn’t mean ‘non’, I believe I have a sexuality, but for me, it’s about finding the best things about intimacy in friendship and ‘using my words’ to explore other people’s worlds, and how they see things. It can be a physical thing, like dancing, but it's like I'm happily blind to physical sex. (I have had sexual experiences before, so it's not a lack of experience... and again... meh...)

I’m really not sure how to end this intro, except to say that for me it has opened a huge door to who I am, and I am buying an iPad so I can get all this flow of words down that are flowing out of me now that this part of me has been unlocked…

I’ve always liked myself… And now I have something new to like about me!

Thanks, Belle.

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Dargon
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Re: By way of introduction…

Postby Dargon » Fri May 13, 2011 5:59 pm

Hello and welcome. It's nice to see a story of finding one's (a)sexuality that is so positive. Glad those who you've told have been quite supportive.

Here's hoping you like it here, I look forward to seeing you around the forums.

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Belle
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Re: By way of introduction…

Postby Belle » Sat May 14, 2011 1:07 am

Postscript:

Had a couple of workmates over for coffee and cake... Before I told them, they tried to guess what 'the gossip' was, or what I'd been hinting at in my Facebook posts. Was I pregnant? lol Was I getting married? lol again... They are both 'word-nerds' so when I did tell them I was coming out as an Grey Asexual, the look wasn't shock, (They are pretty open minded) but you could see the brains trying to define the term.

One of the interesting things was that I had to define Grey A in sexual terms at first. (I'm not interested, I'm not gay and I'm not straight either) And then explain it my own way. I basically said, (and it's okay if you the reader don't agree), that I was everybody's 'gay friend'. I am the person who it's safe to talk to because there is no way I'm attracted to them sexually, there's no sexual 'charge' in the air, they don't need to impress me, they can relax. (Regardless of whether they were straight make / female or LGBTQ.

They were okay with that. They know I get my intimacy from talking with people about where they are at. So as my friends said, it matters to me whether I care about what they are saying. It isn't on the way to somewhere else, it is the intimacy.

All that to say, they were fully with it, when I'd explained what in earth I was talking about. A lovely afternoon was had by all.

Belle :)

michaels
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Re: By way of introduction…

Postby michaels » Sat May 14, 2011 6:04 am

Congratulations on your discovery and the positive experience that it has been for you.

Please keep posting (maybe in the Asexuality subforum), because you're very articulate and well-spoken, and IMO your account of your asexual journey would be valuable reading.

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KAGU143
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Re: By way of introduction…

Postby KAGU143 » Mon Jul 11, 2011 5:28 pm

Wow ... I have really been in a time warp or something ... how did I miss this?
A much-belated welcome to Apositive, Belle.
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I have to confess, I have not yet seen a single episode of Glee, and I'm not familiar with the song you mentioned, but the idea of experiencing different types of intimacy is one that is a common topic among asexuals.
Seriously, that is one area where I think we could even teach the sexual world a few things ... if they would only listen.
If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all.