Asexuality

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Nyarlathotep
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Asexuality

Postby Nyarlathotep » Thu May 24, 2007 1:48 am UTC

If this is improper forum posting protocol, I apologize - I am always nervous about sticking new topics in "serious" sections of forums.

I just wanted to have an open forum of discussion on the topic of asexuality.

I myself am... questioning, quite a lot. For most of my life I've been asexual - in my case, I am not sexually attracted to people or interested in sexual relations with other people (... or animals, you perverts).

This year I questioned that for a few months. I opened up more, and then... when it came right down to it, realized that after all, that wasn't what I wanted.

I still question a little, and I still think perhaps, someday, I might at least try sex just to see, but it'd have to be with someone I trusted and loved VERY much. It's still not something I'm interested in at all.

Anyone else here similar?
'Gehȳrst þū, sǣlida, hwæt þis folc segeð?
hī willað ēow tō gafole gāras syllan,
ǣttrynne ord and ealde swurd,
þā heregeatu þe ēow æt hilde ne dēah.

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Postby Belial » Thu May 24, 2007 2:20 am UTC

If this is improper forum posting protocol, I apologize - I am always nervous about sticking new topics in "serious" sections of forums.


Nah. It's all good.

Otherwise, I have no contribution here. I'm very much on the "yay, sex" side of things.

::vanish::
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Postby ArchangelShrike » Thu May 24, 2007 2:22 am UTC

Fourth rule of Internet Posting: When you post something to tell them otherwise a la "animals" comment they haven't actually thought of that until it shows up. Ya pervert.

As for asexuality... it maybe be that later you'll get the urge and want someone, or not. I can't say if you've dated or not, what your experiences are, but some will tell you that once you find that special person, everything will unlock and you'll be attracted sexually to him/her/it. (I never thought of it until you brought it up.)

Maybe not, maybe you'll never find that special someone or get that loving feeling. Or have Tom Cruise sing to you in a bar. If you don't enjoy it, you're not missing anything.

Maybe, and I hope not, something incredibly wrong happens to you... I'm sure you can guess. It'll probably be ruined for the rest of your life, but oh well.

There are people that will tell you all of this, more in detail than I can. There are also people will tell you "great!", smile and go on their way.

I'm one of those people. :D Whatever makes you happy, do so. But really, if you're not missing anything if you don't enjoy it. And it should be with someone you trust and love, otherwise if you can't get pleasure out of it well then...

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Postby Anmorata » Thu May 24, 2007 2:35 am UTC

Belial wrote:Otherwise, I have no contribution here. I'm very much on the "yay, sex" side of things.


That was my thoughts on it, as well. I always have been. Sure, there's been times in my life that I wasn't interested in sex, but you can chalk that up to other issues in life causing problems (bad marriage = who wants to bother with it? And within 2 weeks of filing for divorce? Hello, libido!).. subconscious emotional stuff, I guess. But I wouldn't consider that asexual.. just not interested with *that* partner.
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Postby Nyarlathotep » Thu May 24, 2007 2:39 am UTC

See, I'm far happier without sex, is the thing. Every time I get exposed to a situation where I could potentially be involved in it, or to things like, say, erotic fiction (talking about the sorts of things we find in Neil Gaiman books, rather than, say, pr0n. ok, sometimes you can find pr0n in Neil Gaiman books: see Smoke and Mirrors) I'm immediately repulsed. The difference is, I'm not... upset about being asexual. Quite the contrary: I'd rather be this than anyone else. I'm not interested in meeting that "Special someone" - I already love quite a few people VERY deeply, without that aspect of it.

And I find that without that on my mind, I'm a lot more free to devote my brain to other things. ;)

(also, it's not to say that I'm not a pervert. I sometimes shock my friends by making incredibly obscene jokes - they're all well aware of my non-sexuality, so it makes it even funnier when I do something stupid like that)
'Gehȳrst þū, sǣlida, hwæt þis folc segeð?
hī willað ēow tō gafole gāras syllan,
ǣttrynne ord and ealde swurd,
þā heregeatu þe ēow æt hilde ne dēah.

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Postby ArchangelShrike » Thu May 24, 2007 2:46 am UTC

That's good. You have time to do what you want, so don't worry about what others think. And sex in fiction is just like gratuitous violence, so please don't come like the MPAA and mark up books because they gots sex in them.

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Postby Nyarlathotep » Thu May 24, 2007 2:54 am UTC

ArchangelShrike wrote:That's good. You have time to do what you want, so don't worry about what others think. And sex in fiction is just like gratuitous violence, so please don't come like the MPAA and mark up books because they gots sex in them.


Pfft, I'm not going to do that. I happen to like my gratuitous violence, and if people want their sex then let them have it. I can abstain myself, I don't need some organization to do it for me.
'Gehȳrst þū, sǣlida, hwæt þis folc segeð?
hī willað ēow tō gafole gāras syllan,
ǣttrynne ord and ealde swurd,
þā heregeatu þe ēow æt hilde ne dēah.

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Postby Belial » Thu May 24, 2007 3:42 am UTC

Morbid, inappropriate curiousity about the asexual types*: Is it that you never get aroused/never masturbate, or do you just not feel attraction to other people?

*right now, this appears to be just Nyarl, mostly because we haven't seen Pau! around these parts in forever
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Postby 3.14159265... » Thu May 24, 2007 4:05 am UTC

I think sex is over-rated. Fun, but over-rated kinda like love.

The reason they are over-rated, is because people have nothing better to do.

The only line I like from Sartre is from his "Nausea" Where he is sitting in a cafe and sees a couple, and they are basicly flirting and he say to himself and I paraphrase here "Why are they going through courting, they know they will have sex, why waste the time, ah the time, well they have nothing better to do with the time than to go through these rituals"

Basicly the whole social game of love/sex is based on over-rating sex and when you think logically, you only need so much sex, and it should be very readily available as condoms are so available, but then not everyone would be happy, because there will be alot of bored people.

So: Over-rate sex -> Make a big social game out of sex -> Society

I must admit, a certain amount of sex is necessary to be able to concentrate on other stuff.
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Postby liza » Thu May 24, 2007 4:39 am UTC

While I myself am not asexual I have met those who are and I must say they were completely normal. I went to this conference called the Oregon Queer Youth Conference (yes, they gave themselves the name "Queer Youth") for people of sexual minorities.

For example, I met this one guy. He was eighteen and said he never felt sexual attraction to anyone. When he was younger he dated some girls out of peer pressure but never felt anything toward them. After that, he assumed he was gay, never having felt anything for girls, and "came out" and started dating guys. Upon discovering he felt nothing for guys either he got frustrated and started having sex with a few people, assuming that would help the situation. About a year later he finally announced his asexuality and claimed that he was happier than ever. He still dates, but it's purely social. Oh, and he said he would have no issue with having a "life-companion" (his words) for support, but in a nonsexual way.

I don't know, asexuality seemed to be working for him.

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Postby VannA » Thu May 24, 2007 5:52 am UTC

While I'd be likely to base real asexuality on glandular imbalance/genetic deformity, more than choice/conscious approach.

More power to you, in any case.

I, personally, don't fathom it.
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Postby Jauss » Thu May 24, 2007 9:27 am UTC

One of my housemates identified as asexual and I believe they still do. (Oh the fun of "they" as a singular prounoun!) They used to date and have sexual relations with boys, girls, and others, but then stopped a couple years ago. They appear to be pretty happy with this. They still fall in love and show affection, but without sex or making out or open mouth kisses or any of that stuff. It's interesting. I wouldn't be surprised if it was due to a variety of issues they have, but who knows? People are weird, many things are possible.

Two of my best friends have been together for almost 6 years and married for 4 of them and the girl isn't into sex at all. Kissing and cuddling, but not sex. She engages sometimes for him, but doesn't enjoy it outside of the fact that she likes to make him happy. (He's also allowed to sleep with someone else should he want to if it's someone she approves of.) She's very romantic, but I think she considers herself pretty asexual too.
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Postby Nyarlathotep » Thu May 24, 2007 2:17 pm UTC

Belial wrote:Morbid, inappropriate curiousity about the asexual types*: Is it that you never get aroused/never masturbate, or do you just not feel attraction to other people?


As far as I can tell it's different for everyone. I get aroused, but not usually by other people - excellent writing, beautiful architecture, or occasionally fictional characters (this is usually becuase of good writing) will do it. So... yeah, it's that I don't feel attraction to other people.

@ VannA - It's not really a "choice", any more than homosexuality is a choice. It's simply a way one is.
'Gehȳrst þū, sǣlida, hwæt þis folc segeð?
hī willað ēow tō gafole gāras syllan,
ǣttrynne ord and ealde swurd,
þā heregeatu þe ēow æt hilde ne dēah.

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Postby Pixel » Thu May 24, 2007 3:44 pm UTC

I know of one asexual person (biologically female, prefers the pronoun "it"). they have a partner they live with, but it isn't a sexual relationship.

It is very successful in it's chosen career, does blacksmithing, artwork and a ton of other stuff. Is very well read and educated and fascinating to talk to. I once mentioned to someone how envious I was of all the stuff it was able to do Their reply was "think how much free time you'd have if you weren't putting effort into getting sex/sexual partners."

So yeah, if asexuality works for you, then that's awesome.
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Postby Vaniver » Thu May 24, 2007 5:54 pm UTC

It's not really a "choice", any more than homosexuality is a choice. It's simply a way one is.
Isn't that what she said?
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Postby Nyarlathotep » Thu May 24, 2007 6:23 pm UTC

Vaniver wrote:
It's not really a "choice", any more than homosexuality is a choice. It's simply a way one is.
Isn't that what she said?


I... don't think so? ... damn the interwebs and my inability to discern meaning properly!
'Gehȳrst þū, sǣlida, hwæt þis folc segeð?
hī willað ēow tō gafole gāras syllan,
ǣttrynne ord and ealde swurd,
þā heregeatu þe ēow æt hilde ne dēah.

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Postby Vaniver » Thu May 24, 2007 6:30 pm UTC

Nyarlathotep wrote:
Vaniver wrote:
It's not really a "choice", any more than homosexuality is a choice. It's simply a way one is.
Isn't that what she said?


I... don't think so? ... damn the interwebs and my inability to discern meaning properly!
To be fair, I would accept "glandular imbalance/genetic deformity" as a correct, if insulting, way to describe the cause of homosexuality.
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Postby Belial » Thu May 24, 2007 6:40 pm UTC

The difference being that the glandular imbalance that might lead to asexuality (especially if it also entailed a lack of arousal in general) might actually have health consequences. Reduced testosterone, estrogen, and other such fun chemicals can have weird adverse effects on things completely unrelated to sex.
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Postby Vaniver » Thu May 24, 2007 6:42 pm UTC

The difference being that the glandular imbalance that might lead to asexuality (especially if it also entailed a lack of arousal in general) might actually have health consequences.
This is true, but the only ones that are coming to mind are depression (or various menopausal things). Is there something else you're thinking of?
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Postby Belial » Thu May 24, 2007 6:43 pm UTC

Bone density issues. Weight issues. Reduced energy. That sort of thing.
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Postby Nyarlathotep » Thu May 24, 2007 6:55 pm UTC

Belial wrote:Bone density issues. Weight issues. Reduced energy. That sort of thing.


Heh, I do have weight issues - I'm mildly underweight no matter what I do to correct it.

But I rather doubt that's what you meant. Other than that I'm pretty sure I'm damn normal.

...
Ok, not normal, but for unrelated reasons.
'Gehȳrst þū, sǣlida, hwæt þis folc segeð?
hī willað ēow tō gafole gāras syllan,
ǣttrynne ord and ealde swurd,
þā heregeatu þe ēow æt hilde ne dēah.

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Postby Belial » Thu May 24, 2007 7:04 pm UTC

Nyarlathotep wrote:
Belial wrote:Bone density issues. Weight issues. Reduced energy. That sort of thing.


Heh, I do have weight issues - I'm mildly underweight no matter what I do to correct it.

But I rather doubt that's what you meant.


Actually, I don't incredibly know what I mean. I'm not an endocrinologist by any stretch of the imagination. I just know that those hormones that contribute to sexual arousal contribute to a number of other metabolic and brain-chemistry related thingummies*. I have no idea how the dynamics of it work.

*Scientific terminology, there.
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Postby Nyarlathotep » Thu May 24, 2007 7:22 pm UTC

Belial wrote:
Nyarlathotep wrote:
Belial wrote:Bone density issues. Weight issues. Reduced energy. That sort of thing.


Heh, I do have weight issues - I'm mildly underweight no matter what I do to correct it.

But I rather doubt that's what you meant.


Actually, I don't incredibly know what I mean. I'm not an endocrinologist by any stretch of the imagination. I just know that those hormones that contribute to sexual arousal contribute to a number of other metabolic and brain-chemistry related thingummies*. I have no idea how the dynamics of it work.

*Scientific terminology, there.


TO THE WIKIMOBILE!

...
Actually, I'm even too lazy to check wiki right now.
'Gehȳrst þū, sǣlida, hwæt þis folc segeð?
hī willað ēow tō gafole gāras syllan,
ǣttrynne ord and ealde swurd,
þā heregeatu þe ēow æt hilde ne dēah.

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Postby Zen_Lunatic » Sat May 26, 2007 2:11 am UTC

TO THE WIKIMOBILE!

Hehehehehehe *wipes away a tear*

Hi, I'm new here. Been lurking for a couple of weeks now (mostly around Serious Business). Anyways, back on topic:

I'm not asexual, and don't personally know anyone who is, but I think it's a really interesting subject. I don't have any profound thoughts on the subject, other than: "I think it would be neat (and convenient) if I could turn off my sex drive." I thought I'd share with you my ten minutes of googling (since Nyarlathotep is too lazy ;) ).

The Asexuality Wiki

This page from the wiki has links to articles concerning asexuality research.

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Postby Castaway » Sat May 26, 2007 3:04 am UTC

Pixel wrote:biologically female, prefers the pronoun "it"

This brings up something that I have no tolerance for. You cannot decide what pronoun you are referred to by. If you have a vagina, you are a "she". If you have a penis, you are a "he". If you think you're special because your penis/vagina doesn't react like the majority of other people's penes/vaginae(?), IT DOES NOT NEGATE THE FACT THAT YOU HAVE ONE. If you want to get into things like hermaphrodites, they get to choose, but as far as I am concerned "it" is not a choice if you are a mammal.

fuck, i'm angry. sorry.
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Postby Belial » Sat May 26, 2007 3:40 am UTC

I honestly don't care if you select the pronoun you want. I would prefer people pick from "he" and "she" though, because "it" is grammatically awkward for sentence construction. And it's really, really hard to add new structure class words to a language, so adding a new pronoun is a bad plan too.

Aside from that, do what you want.
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Postby Narsil » Sat May 26, 2007 3:53 am UTC

Castaway wrote:
Pixel wrote:biologically female, prefers the pronoun "it"

This brings up something that I have no tolerance for. You cannot decide what pronoun you are referred to by. If you have a vagina, you are a "she". If you have a penis, you are a "he". If you think you're special because your penis/vagina doesn't react like the majority of other people's penes/vaginae(?), IT DOES NOT NEGATE THE FACT THAT YOU HAVE ONE. If you want to get into things like hermaphrodites, they get to choose, but as far as I am concerned "it" is not a choice if you are a mammal.

fuck, i'm angry. sorry.
Yeah, it's kind of...I don't know, gross too. Like I don't know how to explain it, but it's fundamentally wrong.
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Postby Nyarlathotep » Sat May 26, 2007 4:13 am UTC

Ok. Hypothetical question:

What if someone were to entirely remove all that identified them as having a gender: no penis, no vagina, no breasts. To quote Dogma, "Anatomically correct as a Ken doll."

What then?
'Gehȳrst þū, sǣlida, hwæt þis folc segeð?
hī willað ēow tō gafole gāras syllan,
ǣttrynne ord and ealde swurd,
þā heregeatu þe ēow æt hilde ne dēah.

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Postby Peshmerga » Sat May 26, 2007 4:17 am UTC

...then you'd classify them by their original gender. Don't men *always* have their XY allele, and the women their XX?
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Postby 3.14159265... » Sat May 26, 2007 4:17 am UTC

Call them by what they were originally.

Their genes will still have XX chromosomes or XY or XXX or XXY but those are still identifiable with a he or she.
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Postby Nyarlathotep » Sat May 26, 2007 4:24 am UTC

Oh boy.

if I wasn't about to pass out, I'd bring up a wonderful Neil Gaiman short story in which a drug existed that actually re-booted your chromosomes, and led to all sorts of classification problems. Not to mention unusual... hobbies...

but I'm tired.
'Gehȳrst þū, sǣlida, hwæt þis folc segeð?
hī willað ēow tō gafole gāras syllan,
ǣttrynne ord and ealde swurd,
þā heregeatu þe ēow æt hilde ne dēah.

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Postby Anmorata » Sat May 26, 2007 4:24 am UTC

Nyarlathotep wrote:What then?


I've seen some people opt for a "gender-neutral" pronoun: zie or zir.
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Postby Weasel » Sat May 26, 2007 5:01 am UTC

Asexuality. It's not my sexuality, but I think it's a legitimate one for people to have. Some might only have it due to imbalance in the brain, but I think that's usually included with other side effects. So if your only "symptom" is asexuality, meh. more sex for me!

It gets me defensive when people act like Asexuality doesn't exist or something. And that anyone who claims to be so is just in denial.

If you don't find yourself sexually attracted to people (or animals), then you aren't. I don't think sexually repressed people would take the stance of asexuality, since don't most cultures that repress it, also push towards heterosexuality?

If you're not interested in sex, don't have sex. And don't let yourself be pressured into it. Having sex just for the sake of sex ruins the point.

Also? You're attracted to buildings? Ew! (lol, sorry, someone had to say it. And I can get what you're meaning.)

Oh. But on the other half of this thread's topic: I figure, if someone can pick what nickname they go by, they can pick their gender term. If someone HONESTLY prefers the term 'It' then I guess I'll call them that (although I'd probably slip up a lot and feel really awkward till I got used to the idea). Transgendered are allowed to take on the terms He or She, despite what's between their legs. If you prefer to go Ungendered, so be it.

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Postby Pixel » Sat May 26, 2007 11:53 am UTC

I will be the first to concede that "it" is awkward. By the person I'm referring to doesn't force people to use that, it is just their preferred pronoun. I personally had little trouble remapping my brain for it after a bit of time.

For all those who want to refer to people by their DNA gender, what about Transsexual and Transgender people?

If someone feels very strongly that they aren't the gender they happen to have been born with, even to the point of going to significant effort to appear the gender they wish to be. And if they can manage it getting sexual reassignment treatment/surgery. Are you going to keep referring to that person by the biological gender pronoun even if their personal identification, physical appearance and (possibly) genitalia no longer match it?
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Postby Belial » Sat May 26, 2007 1:16 pm UTC

For all those who want to refer to people by their DNA gender, what about Transsexual and Transgender people?


Yeah. That makes that stance kindof dumb. I have no problem referring to someone born male as "she" if that's what they want, or vice versa.

I'm just resistant to referring to people as "it", because it's awkward, and generally reserved for objects. We don't have a gender neutral pronoun for people. And as I said, languages *really* don't like to have new structure class (pronouns, prepositions, etcetera) words grafted into them. They don't catch on.
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Postby Vaniver » Sat May 26, 2007 1:40 pm UTC

Yeah, it's kind of...I don't know, gross too. Like I don't know how to explain it, but it's fundamentally wrong.
English comes from Germanic languages, in which there are three types; male, female, and object. To an English-speaker, there's a significant difference between a female and an object, and so for someone to willingly take that leap downward seems... wrong.
I mostly post over at LessWrong now.

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mqarcus
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Postby mqarcus » Sat May 26, 2007 6:56 pm UTC

Castaway wrote:
Pixel wrote:biologically female, prefers the pronoun "it"

This brings up something that I have no tolerance for. You cannot decide what pronoun you are referred to by. If you have a vagina, you are a "she". If you have a penis, you are a "he". If you think you're special because your penis/vagina doesn't react like the majority of other people's penes/vaginae(?), IT DOES NOT NEGATE THE FACT THAT YOU HAVE ONE. If you want to get into things like hermaphrodites, they get to choose, but as far as I am concerned "it" is not a choice if you are a mammal.


Argh, me too. It just... makes me angry.

Back to the topic: Good to see someone not reacting with "You are WHAT?! Not interested... What do you MEAN?!!!!1".

The truth is - I'm not interested in sexual intercourse. Of course, I realise I one day will have to engage in it to breed, but I would not do it for fun or pleasure.
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Narsil
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Postby Narsil » Sat May 26, 2007 7:38 pm UTC

mqarcus wrote:
Castaway wrote:
Pixel wrote:biologically female, prefers the pronoun "it"

This brings up something that I have no tolerance for. You cannot decide what pronoun you are referred to by. If you have a vagina, you are a "she". If you have a penis, you are a "he". If you think you're special because your penis/vagina doesn't react like the majority of other people's penes/vaginae(?), IT DOES NOT NEGATE THE FACT THAT YOU HAVE ONE. If you want to get into things like hermaphrodites, they get to choose, but as far as I am concerned "it" is not a choice if you are a mammal.


Argh, me too. It just... makes me angry.

Back to the topic: Good to see someone not reacting with "You are WHAT?! Not interested... What do you MEAN?!!!!1".

The truth is - I'm not interested in sexual intercourse. Of course, I realise I one day will have to engage in it to breed, but I would not do it for fun or pleasure.
Hahahahahahahahaha
Oh man, sorry it's just *snicker* hahahahaha HA ha
God, that's a good one.

Just you wait then.

Seriously though, I wouldn't advise it unless you really care about the person you're doing it with.
Spoiler:
EsotericWombat wrote:MORE JUNK THAN YOUR BODY HAS ROOM FOR

Mother Superior wrote:What's he got that I dont?
*sees Narsil's sig*
Oh... that.

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Postby Nyarlathotep » Sun May 27, 2007 4:49 am UTC

mqarcus wrote:
Castaway wrote:
Pixel wrote:biologically female, prefers the pronoun "it"

This brings up something that I have no tolerance for. You cannot decide what pronoun you are referred to by. If you have a vagina, you are a "she". If you have a penis, you are a "he". If you think you're special because your penis/vagina doesn't react like the majority of other people's penes/vaginae(?), IT DOES NOT NEGATE THE FACT THAT YOU HAVE ONE. If you want to get into things like hermaphrodites, they get to choose, but as far as I am concerned "it" is not a choice if you are a mammal.


Argh, me too. It just... makes me angry.

Back to the topic: Good to see someone not reacting with "You are WHAT?! Not interested... What do you MEAN?!!!!1".

The truth is - I'm not interested in sexual intercourse. Of course, I realise I one day will have to engage in it to breed, but I would not do it for fun or pleasure.


Dude, just do it the artificial way. Science can do that now, if you're that desperate to have children.

Myself, I don't want to be pregnant or have to take care of something like that, though I have a desire to pass on my DNA. Likely I'll just donate my eggs somewhere so that I have some descendants. Maybe even go so far as to put fetuses up for adoption. I'd just make such a godawful mother...
'Gehȳrst þū, sǣlida, hwæt þis folc segeð?
hī willað ēow tō gafole gāras syllan,
ǣttrynne ord and ealde swurd,
þā heregeatu þe ēow æt hilde ne dēah.

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Postby Vaniver » Sun May 27, 2007 5:56 am UTC

Dude, just do it the artificial way. Science can do that now, if you're that desperate to have children.
I don't see the point of paying that much money to avoid having sex. I mean, is it physically repulsive, or just "meh"?
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