Demisexual is a sexual orientation where a person feels sexual attraction to someone with whom they have an emotional bond. It can be a type of graysexuality, where a person may experience rare sexual attractions but not interested in sexual activities.
In addition, demisexual individuals do not experience primary attraction; they are not attracted to someone they just met. However, they instead experience secondary attraction, where they become sexually attracted if there’s an emotional bond.
If you think you could be demisexual, some signs could indicate whether you are demisexual. These signs are a guide for exploring your sexual orientation and can provide some insight into demisexuality. If you think you are demisexual and want to learn more about it, you can always talk to an LGBTQ+-friendly mental health professional like those verified on LGBTQ and ALL.
Myths and Misconceptions About Demisexuality
Before we dive into some signs of being demisexual, we will first dispel some myths about demisexuality. For example, being demisexual does not mean someone is afraid to have sex. In fact, demisexual people do not feel sexually attracted to people with which they do not have an emotional bond.
In addition, demisexuality is not related to religious or moral beliefs about sexual activities. In other words, it’s a sexual orientation, not a choice.
Some other myths about demisexuality include that people think it is a sign of low libido when it is not the case. Like anyone else, once they are in a sexual relationship, demisexuals have varying levels of sex drive. For example, some may engage in frequent sexual activities while others may not. In essence, demisexuality only refers to attraction experienced by a person, not how often they engage in sex.
Another common misconception about demisexual people is that they must be in love with a person to form sexual attraction. However, demisexuals only require close connections, like friendships, and not necessarily romantic relationships.
Another important fact to consider is that choosing to engage in sex with people you’ve known for a long time does not mean you are demisexual. Instead, demisexuality focuses on the attraction that comes before sexual relationships.
What are some Other Names for Demisexuality?
Demisexuality is the exclusive name for needing to have an emotional connection with someone before feeling attraction. On the other hand, some people might include terms for modes of graysexuality to refer to demisexuality. These can include the following:
- Low sexual intensity
There is also the notion of demiromanticism to consider. This concept is related to demisexuality but is different from it. For example, demiromantic people need to connect emotionally with someone before feeling romantic toward them.
Where Does the Term Demisexual Come From?
When uncovering the history of demisexuality, the earliest example dates back to 2006, when it was mentioned in the Asexuality Visibility & Education Network forums.
By 2008, demisexuality had become more mainstream likely due to others identifying with the term. There are even some dating websites out there that allow people to select ‘demisexual’ as their sexual orientation.
Signs you could be demisexual
These questions can help explore whether you might be demisexual:
- Is sexual attraction important to me overall?
- Is sexual attraction essential to me in my relationships or the ones I want to have?
- Who have I been sexually attracted to in the past? What was our relationship like? Did I feel attracted to them initially as I was getting to know them, or did feelings emerge later?
- Do I ever feel attraction to random people or people I don’t know that well?
- How well do I know someone before I feel interested in them?
- When I envision my future, are relationships crucial to the story? If so, what kinds of relationships do I imagine myself in?
Here are some other signs that you could potentially be demisexual:
- You enjoy sex and want it, but only in certain situations. It also isn’t the most important factor to you.
- It takes time for you to develop sexual attraction.
- You don’t have celebrity crushes.
- You have feelings for people in your circle and most of your relationships begin as friendships
- You’re not interested in hookups with random people.
- You like intimate activities for dates
- You don’t have a physical type and looks are irrelevant to you
- Physical attraction is less important than other types of attraction.
These signs are just a few indicators of potentially being demisexual. If you think you are demisexual, you can do further research and as previously mentioned, contact an LGBTQ+-friendly mental health professional if you want to discuss and explore your sexual orientation.
Places You Can Research Being Demisexual
Our article What is Demisexual at LGBTQ and All can provide you with background about this concept. In addition, you can learn more about demisexuality online or at in-person meetups in your area. Depending on where you live, if you have a local LGBTQ+ community, you can connect with other demisexual people.
Here are some other amazing resources for demisexual people or allies trying to learn:
- Asexual Visibility and Education Network
- Asexuality subreddit
- Demi Grace
- Demi Gray
- Asexuality Archive
- Demisexuality Resource Center
- “Sounds Fake But Okay “(podcast)
- AVEN forum and Demisexuality subreddit
- Facebook groups and other online platforms for demisexual people
As mentioned in the article, a person that identifies as demisexual will only develop sexual feelings toward someone if they have a close emotional connection with them. However, this sexual attraction doesn’t mean that the person necessarily wants to engage in sex with the other person.
Demisexuality is within the asexual spectrum, meaning that a person identifying as demisexual will likely have a sex drive that is lower than average. In addition, a demisexual person may engage in sexual activity once an emotional bond has developed.
If you are questioning whether you are demisexual, some of the signs we mentioned may be a potential indicator and can help you on your journey of self-discovery.
Be sure to follow our LGBTQ+ Lifestyle Guide for more information about LGBTQ+ terms and concepts, and other relevant information.