Friday, 15 March 2013

Sexual & Romantic Orientation Gone Wild

I was on my beloved Wikipedia a few days ago, when I wandered off into the sexuality department. I was having a blast (yep, I do actually get joy from reading for hours on Wikipedia) reading up on homosexuality, heterosexuality and bisexuality when I read something interesting.

According to Wikipedia, and this is backed up by professionals (in other words, what I'm about to say is not bullshit), there is an even deeper level to terms used to describe affectional/romantic orientation. If you don't know what 'affectional orientation' or 'romantic orientation' is, then let me fill you in: it is like sexual orientation, except instead of sex it focuses on affection and love. So an asexual can be romantically interested in women but not feel anything sexually, rather they fall in love but do not have any sexual desires.

As I said above, this ties into deeper terms that can be used to describe people's orientation with different genders.

The more I read and learned, the more I realised how shallow and non descriptive the term 'heterosexual' or 'bisexual' or 'homosexual' is. In fact, these terms simply mean that the person is sexually, and pretty much only sexually, interested in people of that/those genders. No romance is felt.

However the terms: 'heteroromantic', 'biromantic' and 'homoromantic' mean that the person is romantically interested in people of that/those genders.

When describing their sexuality, unless someone really doesn't feel romantic emotions for other people,  they should always use 'sexual' and 'romantic' terms to describe their orientation.

So it goes like this: If Jim says to someone he is heterosexual, technically he is saying he is sexually, and only sexually, interested in women. What he should say is that he is a; heterosexual heteroromantic. This now means that wishes to have sex with women but also have a romantic and loving relationship with them.

Crazy huh?

This is really intriguing and there are a good few variations you can come up with and it also does an incredible job of properly describing how people feel about other people they are attracted to in different ways. So if you are, like me, a male bisexual but lean towards women sexually and do not wish to have sexual intercourse with males, you just feel romantically towards them (and women) then that makes you, and me: heterosexual biromantic.

You can be: asexual heteroromantic, or asexual homoromantic, or bisexual homoromantic, or homosexual heteroromantic. There are loads of variations.

So here, I challenge you: what is your sexual and romantic orientation? Write your 'results' down in the comments!

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