Voices

October 18, 2019

When Your Identity Changes From Slut To Asexual

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Ah, my 20s. They were a frivolous time, an exciting time, filled with multiple lovers, creative role play, and — because I was a sex toy reviewer — expensive luxury sexcessories. Companies regularly sent me hundreds of dollars worth of vibrators, lingerie, and products that were way out of my freelancer budget. Weekends were spent wearing costumes at sex- and kink-filled parties and weekdays were spent doing consent activism and blogging about my experiences for the education and titillation of others. Responsible hedonism was the order of the day.

But what do you do when you hit your 30s and realize that, while all that was fun in the moment, it’s just not who you are anymore? How do you begin to reconfigure your life when everyone you know is more familiar to you in states of undress than they are in everyday clothing? It’s a long process and a complex one. In many ways, it was freeing to realize that most of the sex I had was ultimately not for the sake of orgasms, but for the sense of connection. I was usually seeking orgasms for the chemical high, not because I desired sex itself.

These realizations were somewhat terrifying. The signs, I would later learn from other asexuals, were always there: I had never had a crush on a celebrity, I was academic during sexual conversations with my friends, sex scenes in media made me roll my eyes. I felt that I was performing when I had erotic encounters, but didn’t everyone? I never really thought to ask. I had grown into adulthood defining myself by the sex I had and didn’t have, never questioning if my peers had the same blasé apathy for the actual sex part. Who was I when I no longer centered that kind of intimacy, when I transitioned from out and proud slut to out and proud asexual?

A few things happened as I came to terms with my asexuality. 

I started to exchange pretty lacy lingerie that perked me up or flattened me down for underwear sets that put comfort before cuteness. I shut down my Tinder because while people sometimes say they’re on the app for a relationship or for friends.. let’s be real. It feels like almost everyone is looking for a late-night booty call — and more power to ‘em! I’m very lucky to be in a relationship with a partner who is about as asexual as I am. It's not that we all don’t have sex or that we don’t enjoy it (some asexuals watch porn, some masturbate, some have sex for a variety of reasons) — we’d just rather spend our quality time pursuing hobbies and other types of intimacy, like making art or playing games. However, that led me to the unexpected main lifestyle shift I experienced: What can I do with these piles of sex toys and play equipment now that my life doesn’t revolve around sexuality? 

I’m sure you’ve seen the jokes about using dildos as art pieces (which, to be real, some of them are) or using them as ineffectual suction cup coat hangers. And who among us hasn’t accidentally grabbed the sex blindfold for a red-eye flight instead of the sleep mask? 

But you might be surprised that there are more practical uses for your old toys. Many adult-oriented things have found much more mundane uses in my everyday life!

Take, for example, my Liberator sex ramp, which is a firm pillow that raises your hips off the bed to make some positions easier and more comfortable. It’s HUGE. It’s not exactly subtle, either, especially not the one I have with additional cuffs. I’m slightly ashamed to admit this product sat in my storage unit for several years because I just didn’t know what else to do with it. Until! Until I began to struggle with acid reflux. When you have acid reflux, it’s recommended that you sleep with your head higher than your stomach so acid has a harder time creeping up your esophagus. The ramp is perfect for that, firm yet comfy. You know what’s hot? A good night’s sleep.

Also from Liberator is one of my favorite items: The Throw, a water-resistant and super comfy blanket you can use to keep your sheets dry and clean while having sexytimes. I have several of these from when I used to host my own sex parties so that I could quickly and easily cover the furniture. I would also carry these to parties because I’m a squirter, and leaving a wet spot in a public space is rude. Imagine my surprise when I discovered that, if left on my bed, my cat Foucault would insist on sleeping on The Throw! The velveteen material acts as an attractant for cat hair, so he does all his shedding in one place, making for easy cleanup when I have company over. Perhaps because it’s water-resistant, it also seems to work well when my cat decides to have, shall we say, a hissy fit and pee on my bed cause I didn’t feed him quickly enough. Joke’s on you, cat!

What I still use most often, though, is my favorite all-natural lubricant, The Butters, created by a Black queer person. Full disclosure — I love this lubricant so much that my positive review is printed on the container. What makes The Butters my favorite isn’t just how much my body loves it as a lube, though, but how many other uses I’ve found for it. Chub rub getting me down? The Butters soothes it. Makeup in need of removing? The Butters will help. Boots looking dull? Rub The Butters on there. I won’t go on a trip without it because it’s a product I use daily, whether or not I’m having sex. (It’s important to note that this great lubricant is not latex-tested. I pretty much exclusively use SKYN condoms, so no big deal for me, but vital info if you're relying on latex condoms for safer sex).

While I still have a chest full of vibrators and dildos that are really good for masturbation but not super useful to me currently, it’s nice that my transition from slut to asexual has helped me look at my life in a different, more creative light. It can be scary to rediscover who you are, but it’s also refreshing. Though, frankly, if you need a coat rack… just buy one!

Related Content:

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How To Use A Vibrator Creatively

Kitty Stryker is a queer, asexual, Juggalo anthropologist and an anarchist cat mom prepping a doomsday bunker in the East Bay. Her first book, "Ask: Building Consent Culture" was published through Thorntree Press in 2017. You can follow her hashtag #KittyStryker.

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