Yes, your whole childhood was a lie!
Sexuality and romantic orientations are two different things. A person can be romantically attracted to a person or many people, yet rarely feel sexual attraction for them. Similarly, a person may feel sexually attracted to a person or many people, but rarely feel romantic attraction for them.
Much to our surprise, there are more than 20 types of sexualities and romantic orientations. Each one is different from the other. This abundance in types of sexual & romantic orientations makes it tough to get our ‘sex’ definitions right.
Let us begin the romantic orientations list or sexual orientations list, with the three sexuality types, which are commonly known. (Thanks to the media for highlighting this during the recent LGBT movement!)
People with bisexual sexual orientation feel romantic attraction towards two or more genders. Generally, bisexual sexuality is characterised by romantic attraction towards both males and females. But this was what you knew.
The interesting part is the bisexual romantic orientation flag, which is used as a pride symbol by people with this type of sexuality.
People with homosexual sexual orientation feel romantic attraction towards people of same sex (gender). They feel a hormonal rush and sensual sensation only when they are intimate with same sex people. You might have heard about lesbians and gay people – they are homosexuals.
They do same-sex marriages, which was a taboo for many years. Today, we also have gay romantic orientation flag and lesbian romantic orientation flag.
People with heterosexual sexual orientation feel romantic attraction towards people of opposite sex (gender). In general, heterosexual sexuality is characterised by romantic attraction of a male towards a female and a female towards a male.
And nearly 97% people in the world are born heterosexuals. Since this was very common, no special attention was demanded. So, there is no pride flag for heterosexuals.
These are the supersets, or the major types of sexual orientations that people have. You can know ‘what is your romantic and sexual orientation’ with the help of these.
But, the question ‘what attracts your sexual partner’ might not be answered yet. For this, we need to have a look at the subsets of the ‘sexuality types’ and understand a bit about the ‘romantic orientations’.
An abrosexual person experiences fluctuations in sexuality. Their sexual identity keeps changing between many different sexual orientations. They might be exclusively attracted to boys one day, and then girls only on another day. But abrosexuality is not a choice, it is a separate orientation. It might take a while to figure out that one is abrosexual.
A demisexual person experiences sexual attraction only after the formation of a strong emotional bond with their partner. They take their time to know the person better and see if they can emotionally connect to them. Once the emotional bond is formed, their sexual attraction is unlocked.
Yet again, such people are very less in number. And so, we have the demisexual pride flag!
A sapiosexual person is sexually attracted to another person’s intelligence and not gender. The appearance, credentials, or behaviour of the other person does not matter to them. The mind matters. They are sexually and mentally turned on by a smart, clever and wise person. In short, to sapiosexual orientation people, brain is the largest sex organ.
A sociosexual person is a normal being who rejects the idea of involving in sexual activity outside of their committed relationship. They are less willing to engage in casual sex; they prefer greater love, commitment and emotional closeness before having sex with romantic partners. They are loyal to their partners and expect loyalty in return.
A cupiosexual person is one who desires a sexual relationship but does not experience sexual attraction at all. Basically, this means that they enjoy the experience of having sex and they want to have a sexual relationship with their partner, but they are not actually sexually attracted to anyone.
Cupiosexual was originally ‘kalosexual’.
A fraysexual person is sexually attracted to someone they are less familiar with. They lose interest in the person as they come closer i.e. get to know the person better. As soon as a bond is formed with the other person, their feelings and attraction disappears.
A lithrosexual person is romantically and sexually attracted, but does not want it to be reciprocated. They love to be in one-sided relationships and are perfectly fine with nothing ever “happening”.
A reciprosexual or recipsexual individual will only feel sexual or romantic attraction to someone once they find out the other person likes them.
It may be combined with other sexual orientations such as homosexual, meaning that a person indulges in love making only towards people of the same gender, who experience sexual attraction towards him.
An autosexual person is sexually attracted to oneself i.e. self-gratification. They love to be intimate with themselves and prefer masturbation over sexual activity. Autosexual individuals are never satisfied by any gender.
They may get turned when they look at the mirror, fantasize about their looks and their naked bodies, have thoughts about having a doppelgänger/clone of themselves to have sex with it and even think about marrying themselves (this has actually happened in Taiwan: A woman married herself!).
Often, people become autosexual after numerous failed attempts at interpersonal relationships. They consciously chose being autosexual rather than facing disappointment and frustration yet again.
So far, we have talked about sexual orientations. Yet, this is not the end of sexual orientations list. Have you ever thought ‘why your partner is not sexually attracted towards you?’ We got the answer below.
An asexual person does not experiences sexual attraction to others. In other worlds, asexual sexual orientation is characterised by no desire for sexual activity. They are fertile and can do sex, but do not feel like indulging in sexual acts.
Also, you should note, being asexual is not the same thing as being a celibate (abstention from sexual activity).
A graysexual person occasionally experiences sexual attraction to others. They sometimes have sexual attraction and/or feelings, but usually not. It is very difficult to sexually arouse graysexual orientation individuals. They are people who have traits midway between asexual and sexual people.
A semisexual person feels sexual attraction but has no desire to act on it. They are sexual individuals, fully capable of experiencing romantic feelings towards others, but choose to refrain from doing so due to discomfort or a strong feeling of being judged by someone else. Semisexuals may or may not experience love.
An apothisexual individual finds sex more unappealing and disgusting than other sexual orientations. They are sex repulsed individuals i.e. they always step back when it comes to having sex in a relationship. Their singular feeling towards sex is such that they don’t care what others are doing as long as it doesn’t concern them.
All apothisexual individuals find the act and idea boring and unimportant. Some of them even vomit when listening to a discussion about sex.
A requiessexual individual has limited or no sexual attraction or interest or activity due to some form of emotional exhaustion. This type of sexual orientation may be the result of previous sexual journeys and past experiences dealing with sexuality, or from something else just as emotionally draining.
They feel so guilty that can't see sexual attraction anymore.
More weird sexual orientations are yet to come. You might wish that they do not exist, but your wish will remain a wish forever.
Those with pansexual orientation, experience sexual attraction regardless of their sex or gender identity. You can call them gender blind. They are romantically attracted to all people. Though many pansexual people have “bisexual” attractions and behaviours, pansexual is not the same thing as bisexual.
Surprisingly, many celebrities including Miley Cyrus have spoken out about embracing pansexual preferences. This minority sexual orientation has a pansexual pride flag too.
Those with polysexual orientation, experience sexual attraction to multiple, but not all genders. This is not to be confused with bisexuality, which is attraction to the two binary genders. Polysexual individuals have their own preferences and inclinations towards other genders.
You may find polysexual orientation people with successful consensual relations that involve multiple partners. And, they also got a polysexual pride flag.
Those with monosexual orientation are attracted to people of only one gender. It can be heterosexual or homosexual, but not both sexual orientations. They masturbate all the time but do not sexually intercourse.
Those with pomosexual orientation do not want the society to identify them with a conventional sexuality label. They have mixed characteristics and hence, do not want to reveal it to the world.
Those with skoliosexual orientation, feel sexual attraction towards transgender or non-binary objects. The attraction is potentially strong, and does not generally describe an attraction to specific genitalia or birth assignments. This was previously known as ceterosexual.
Those with placiosexual orientation feel little to no desire to receive sexual pleasures but express interest in performing them on someone else. They are more inclined in satisfying others during sex and are really small in number. Hence, they have a placiosexual pride flag.
Those with objectosexual orientation feel sexual pull towards inanimate objects rather than live beings such as other humans or animals or plants. They develop emotional and romantic attachment with specific objects. They admire them, spend time with them and share their conversations.
Some of the objectosexual individuals even marry the objects they fall in love with!
Those with quoisexual orientation don't relate to, don’t understand and don’t experience sexual attraction and orientation. They always feel confused about their own feelings of sexual orientation or attraction, unable to distinguish sexual attraction from another type of attraction.
The autochorissexual individuals feel a disassociation between the object of attraction and themselves. They can be aroused by porn or masturbation but does not look for sexual relations with a partner. They are the common consumers of sexual fan fiction, art, porn, etc. but do not find any attachment in them.
They may involve in sexual fantasies or arousal in response to erotica or pornography, but lack any desire to be a participant in the sexual activities therein.
Let us now talk about the romantic orientations, which has nothing to do with the sexuality of an individual.
Romantic orientation indicates a situation in which a person is most likely to fall in love, i.e. have a romantic relationship. It stresses on affective emotional component, which relates to attractions and relationships.
Surprisingly, a person may feel romantically attracted but not sexually attracted to a person. Let us have a look at the romantic orientations list.
Androsexual individuals feel romantically attracted to masculinity i.e. manly features. People with powerful body, bold look, thick moustaches, and good height, attract androsexual orientation people. Interestingly, at times, androsexual individuals are attracted to women with manly features.
Gynosexual individuals feel romantically attracted to feminism i.e. womanly features. People with long hair, curved eyebrows, pink lips, fair complexion and shaped body attract gynosexual orientation people. Interestingly, at time, gynosexual individuals are attracted to men with womanly features.
Metrosexual individuals feel romantically devoted to their grooming and appearance, typically spending a significant amount of time and money on shopping as part of this. They care about their colour-coordinates, body shape and care deeply about exfoliation, moisturisation, & hair removal, too.
They have dozens of accessories and a special purse, all purchased from good brands.
And we have a special sexual orientation remaining.
People with transsexual orientation have a sexual orientation opposite to the sex they were identified having at the time of birth. Transsexual people literally feel like they were born in the wrong body, and their outside appearance doesn't match their inner gender identity.
They undergo surgery or chemical treatment to change their sexual identity, to obtain their desired sex. Generally, there are two types of transsexuals – male to females and female to male.
As a child, sex or sexuality didn't mean much - they were just words for adults.
Now, they mean a lot.