Bisensuality (or That Little Nuance I like to Ignore)

I’m very, aromantic. Out of all of my identities that one is the loudest. My asexuality and agenderness are barely more than a whisper most days while my aroness is constantly shouting into a megaphone. In between those two extremes is my sensual attraction. It’s there, but I ignore it because without romantic or sexual attraction to give it some oomph I can usually tune it out. It’s just this weirdness that pops up and makes things awkward because I can’t act on it and still exist within the bounds of social niceties. I’m aromantic, asexual, agender, and bisensual and it’s just there to be weird. For me sensual attraction makes me want to get all up in your business, proximity is important, as more than platonic touching, but not quite sexual and definitely not romantic. It’s weird, it’s nuanced, and not something I generally trust people to understand. It just gives me a tiny view into the world of attraction.

I think I’ve mentioned it before when I was thinking back to puberty and I was getting flashes of sensual attraction towards my classmates, but without the romantic or sexual attraction to give it context it would just freak me out because I sort of knew it wasn’t “normal”. Learning about sensual attraction as an adult finally gave me the context and was a sigh of relief because it meant there wasn’t anything wrong with me, it just meant that my identity had a nuance to it. It’s weird, it’s there, and honestly I’m not sure what to do about it so I just accept it and ignore it. I do wish more people would talk about these little nuances, though.

5 thoughts on “Bisensuality (or That Little Nuance I like to Ignore)

  1. Pingback: Linkspam: October 18th, 2019 | The Asexual Agenda

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  3. reinaash

    hi there. i just want to say that i genuinely appreciate this post because it’s helping me understand the nuances of my attraction in ways that i never got to consider before. i identify as queer/gay/lesbian but have had experiences of sensual attraction (i.e. enjoy/desire cuddles and kissing) to guys. I never understood them, so i tried to just ignore them and focus on being gay. however, one of these experiences was quite recent and it led me down this internet search that brought me here.

    i really relate to two points you make: “It’s just this weirdness that pops up and makes things awkward because I can’t act on it and still exist within the bounds of social niceties” and “Learning about sensual attraction as an adult finally gave me the context and was a sigh of relief because it meant there wasn’t anything wrong with me, it just meant that my identity had a nuance to it. It’s weird, it’s there, and honestly I’m not sure what to do about it so I just accept it and ignore it. I do wish more people would talk about these little nuances, though.”

    an earlier version of my comment got lost in the process of logging into wordpress and i can’t quite remember everything i had initially written, but i basically just wanted to say thank you. i know that sensual attraction is a term most often used in the ace/aro community, so i hope i’m not imposing or using the term wrongly! learning that there is more to attraction than sexual and romantic attraction has really helped me to make more sense of myself. thanks again!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello!

      I’m glad you found my post helpful and I do want to touch on the myth that the split attraction model that includes the spectrum of quasiplatonic attractions, like sensual attraction, was “created for aces/aros” or is “only for aces/aros”. Anyone who says that has only learned about splitting attraction from hearsay and ignores some critical history like the fact that it wasn’t even coined by the ace community. “Romantic attraction” is the ace community originated term and isn’t ace exclusive because it’s used by the bisexual community too. The split attraction model is, literally, a tumblr thing, BUT it was actually coined by by anti-ace/anti-bi reactionaries in a fake smear campaign against romantic attraction. In what is my absolute favorite backfire of all time, the fake smear campaign actually popularized the term and it was later reclaimed by the ace and bisexual communities because for many of us it accurately describes some of the confusion nuances that don’t want to fit in nice and neat little lesbian, gay, bisexual, and binary trans boxes. The term has gotten so popular that I’ve found two mainstream psychology platforms that are taking it seriously. Not bad for a tumblr thing.

      Like any tool the split attraction model is there for those who need it. Some aces know the history and don’t use it becauseof that, some bisexuals swear by it, and it gets a lot of hate from the people who feel it threatens the safety of their orderly boxes.

      I’m in the camp of “this mine now”, but if you want some more insights and perspectives on the split attraction model both Siggy on The Asexual Agenda and Coyote, author of The Ace Theist have written enough on the split attraction model between the two of them that they really should just coauthor a book in my opinion. Otherwise if anyone tells you the split attraction model is “just for aces and aros” you have my full permission to laugh in their face because of the irony.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. hi there! thank you so much for responding! it is about time that mainstream psychology platforms start considering these nuances and topics, and i did take a look at some of the posts by Coyote that you linked! very interesting and informative. will definitely be laughing at anyone who asserts that the split attraction model can’t apply to more than ace/aro folks. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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