This is a guest post for our intersectional ace survivor story series by someone who wishes to remain anonymous. Please respect their privacy and do not speculate about their identity. Trigger warnings: intimate partner abuse, gaslighting, invalidation of ace identity, mentions of CoCSA and parental abuse, personality disorders […]
Being non-binary makes things really hard. Almost all of the help for victims of sexual assault are gendered. The general mental health care professionals are fine with my asexuality at first — but as soon as I bring up what happened it becomes something to be cured.
I questioned for a long time whether or not I was sex repulsed or simply sex averse. A quick Google search will tell you that repulsion and aversion are synonyms, but our community hasn’t always used them in their dictionary defined sense. I think that we’ve differentiated these terms to help us better describe ourselves. In most contexts “aversion” has been used to mean “strong dislike” whereas “repulsion” implies physical reaction involving disgust. In theory, neither of these things actually involve sexual attraction (which we define sexual orientation on), they just happen to frequently accompany the asexual experience. Unfortunately sex aversion/repulsion also frequently accompanies the aftermath of sexual assault. This posed a dilemma for me: If I did feel sexual aversion, was it the result of my asexuality or sexual trauma?