Demisexual Meaning – You may be aware of certain sexual attraction descriptors that have become more prevalent in the mainstream recently, such as asexuality and grey asexuality. Just as there are limitless ways to be gay, trans, kinky, etc., asexuality also exists on a spectrum, and these ways of describing degrees of attraction don’t usually coincide with specific orientations regarding the gender someone is attracted to. But what does it mean when people say they are “halfway in-between” asexual and allosexual? Let’s unpack demisexuality.
Asexual refers to a total lack of sexual attraction or drive. Allosexual refers to the opposite – a generally consistent presence of sexual attraction or drive. Grey A’s exist under an umbrella comprised of several more niche descriptors. One of these attraction orientations is called demisexuality, or simply demisexual.
According to Dictionary.com demisexual means “a sexual orientation characterized by only experiencing sexual attraction after forming a strong emotional connection with a specific person.” In other words:
"a demisexual person would not feel the urge to engage in sexual activities with someone unless a solid emotional bond was formed previously."
Think of it like this: to build a house that is safe, comfortable, and long-lasting, a foundation must first be laid down and then the house built upon it.
I can hear you asking the question already, “but isn’t everyone like that?” Well, yes and no. Many people make the personal choice not to engage in hook-ups or sex on the first date. But the difference is that demisexuals don’t actively make that choice. Just as being gay or transgender is not a choice, neither is the orientation to demisexuality.
For someone that is demi, having sex with someone before first forming a strong bond could be uncomfortable at best and traumatic at worst. This is because both their attraction and their sex drive are not activated until they know the object of their desire on a deep or personal level. They need to have some trust between them already. Now that you understand what demisexual means, what are some signs that it could be you?
Firstly, you may notice a lack of attraction to total strangers, such as celebrities and other people you see in public. It is not a rare thing to spot a group of pubescent teens staring broodingly at the television as a certain shimmering vampire makes his entrance. Or for consenting adults to lock eyes from across the bar and decide to go home with each other.
If you are demisexual, there’s a good chance these types of behaviors might make little sense to you, or are just not very relatable. Another factor that might point toward you being demi is if many of your past crushes have been on people who started as a friend or acquaintance. Many romantic tropes describe being in love with your best friend, but in demisexuality the idea is integral. It is less common to see a demi person absentmindedly swiping on Tinder than it is in the general population.
Feeling “meh” or repulsed by the idea of having sex with someone you don’t have a preexisting connection with. In other words, bumping body parts with a stranger just may not be your idea of a good time. You’d likely rather have a date with the Netflix catalog and a glass of wine.
You can be straight or queer, kinky or polyamorous, and also be demisexual. You already know that it’s not okay to slut-shame anybody for their sexual choices or orientation. The same goes for demisexuality! The need for an emotional bond with their sexual partners should be respected and celebrated.
With labels, remember their usefulness for self-exploration and helping others get to know you better. Still, don’t cling too tightly to any one label or personal descriptor. Human beings are capable of a wide variety of emotions, attachments, attractions, and preferences. Give yourself the room to explore each side of yourself with flexibility and curiosity!
Sometimes a kiss is just a kiss. And sometimes a kiss does not exist without an emotional connection between two (or more) consenting adults