Making Your Community & Activism More Inclusive
This page is meant to be a collection of resources for…
- People who are part of the asexual community who are trying to become more actively inclusive and sensitive to ace survivors among them
- People who are part of other activist communities (like MOGAI, feminist, anti-racist, disability, etc.) or survivor support groups who are interested in making their communities more inclusive and supportive to ace people
- People who are doing presentations, outreach, or other kinds of activism about asexuality
Below you will find a collection of links, printable resources, and posts from our blog geared towards making safer spaces for ace survivors in any kind of community where we may be found—and since we are incredibly diverse, and sexual violence and abuse are entirely too common, it is very possible that your community could have (or once have had) some ace survivors that might feel alienated. Please do not assume that just because you don’t know of any ace survivors in your community, they must not be there. Most of us do not disclose our trauma to very many people (especially since it is frequently used against us to say that we can’t “really” be asexual), and many of us choose not to come out as asexual in communities that don’t explicitly include asexuals.
This page is a work-in-progress, and we welcome suggestions and submissions.
- Asexuality: Basics For Health Professionals (8 x 11)
- Asexualidad: Información Básica para Profesionales de la Salud (8 x 11 PDF) – Spanish translation by Chrysocolla Town
- Asexualität: Grundlegende Informationen für Heilberufe (8 x 11 PDF) – German translation by AktivistA (also available here on their site)
- 10 Things You Should Never Say to Someone Who’s Asexual by Julie Sondra Decker (author of The Invisible Orientation)
- A guide to including asexuals in social justice movements by Sophia Philemon
- Challenges Face by Ace Survivors series by Queenie
- Using Ace Survivors as Rhetorical Devices series by Queenie
- Here goes everything by Queenie
- Disingenuous, Shallow “Support” by Elizabeth
Hermeneutical Injustice in Consent and Asexuality
I was introduced to the concept of hermeneutical injustice a couple days ago and it’s been blowing my mind. I’ve been struggling for a while to reconcile consent and asexuality, specifically in the context where asexuality isn’t known. If asexuality isn’t an option, how can someone’s consent be truly free?
Ace Survivors as Rhetorical Devices (part four): Avoiding Using Ace Survivors Rhetorically
In the last two posts I’ve outlined two of the major ways in which ace survivors are used as rhetorical devices--by using them to win political arguments and by creating a monolithic narrative of The Way Sexual Violence Happens to Aces. If you’ve read this far, you might be worrying about whether you’ve done either of these things in your own writing. You might be wondering how to avoid using aces as rhetorical devices while still writing forceful, argumentative pieces. This part is for you.
Ace Survivors as Rhetorical Devices (part three): The One True Narrative of Sexual Violence Against Aces
In this post I’m going to discuss the way bloggers construct The One True Narrative of The Way Sexual Violence Happens to Aces. This can take several forms. First, the author may assume that all ace survivors fit into a particular narrative of sexual violence (usually corrective rape by an allosexual romantic partner). Second, the author may acknowledge that sexual violence against aces may happen in multiple ways, but may highlight one way as more important or “real” than the rest.
Ace Survivors as Rhetorical Devices (part two): Using Ace Survivors to Win Political Arguments
Can you replace ace survivors in your arguments with an Oppressed Lamp—i.e. is your argument drawing on something specific about the experiences and feelings of ace survivors or is it using ace survivors as short-hand for “oppressed, beaten, helpless things you should pity”? If you’re using “ace survivors” to mean “super oppressed aces you should feel really bad for,” you’re probably using ace survivors as rhetorical devices.
Responsible Sharing: When to Avoid Linking a Survivor’s Story
It's important not to speak over survivors. Sometimes people speak of "protecting" ace survivors but then don't listen to what we actually have to say. We are the experts, and we have been the ones to create nearly all resources currently available for other survivors. If you want to help us, then it is a good idea to link to things we've already written. But sharing links to our posts can also be inappropriate or dangerous, exposing us only to further harm. It's important to take care with what you share and where you share it. If you can remember these three rules, you should be able to figure out whether linking to a post made by a survivor is appropriate—and if not, please just ask permission!
Ace Survivors as Rhetorical Devices (part one): Introduction
This series is about the way ace survivors are used as rhetorical devices in ace communities. I will be directly quoting ace bloggers, deconstructing their statements, and pointing out how they are using ace survivors as rhetorical devices. I’ve been very deliberate in who I quote; I decided from the start that I would only quote bloggers who have repeatedly made the same sort of problematic statements about ace survivors, operating off the assumption that while someone might easily say something clueless about ace survivors once accidentally, if there’s a pattern to it, there is probably an underlying belief structure that needs to be addressed.
Asexuality Basics for Health Professionals Printable Info Sheet
A resource for those who: Need to come out to their therapists about asexuality, but aren’t up for fielding 101 questions Want their doctors to understand asexuality to avoid misdiagnosis, bad assumptions, or awkward questions Simply want to do activism to promote better understanding of asexuality and competent treatment of [...]
Here goes everything
I discovered the Wikipedia page for asexuality in January of 2008. By September of the same year, I had PTSD. These two facts are not unrelated. The story is sickeningly cliche, to be honest. Young Queenie discovers asexuality a month and a half into her first romantic relationship. When she comes out to her boyfriend, he tells her, “You’re not asexual; we just haven’t tried the right things yet.” Young Queenie doesn’t have enough knowledge or self-confidence to stand her ground. Boyfriend pushes at her boundaries, seeing how far he can overstep them before Queenie freaks out and throws him off her or…
Disingenuous, Shallow “Support”
Ah, yes. Facebook Activism. Because sharing something on Facebook for others to automatically click "like" without even reading is clearly the most effective way to promote real engagement with anti-violence work, and genuine support to survivors. The idea that a brand is all that's needed to get others to care, rather than something that is just there for others to adopt in order to look like they care, is so incredibly vile to me. Why? Because it's exactly the sort of thing that makes it easier for abusers to gaslight their victims.