Does Asexuality Meet the Stability Criterion for a Sexual Orientation?
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One of the generally accepted criteria for categorizing a sexual desire as an orientation is its relative stability across time (Moser, 2016; Seto, 2012). However, there is no set quantitative standard for how long a sexual desire must last before it is considered stable or intrinsic enough to be considered an orientation, and it is worth considering what kind of evidence would be required for any candidate orientation to meet that standard and, more to the point of Brotto and Yule’s (2016) article, whether asexuality meets that standard.
More generally, as homosexuality and heterosexuality are the archetypal sexual orientations against which other candidate orientations are compared, it is crucial to carefully consider the analogs between asexuality and homosexuality/heterosexuality. However, there are a number of distinctions between asexuality and homosexuality/heterosexuality that present real complications, both conceptually as well as in terms of operationalization and...
KeywordsSexual Orientation Sexual Desire Sexual Attraction Personal Distress Candidate Orientation
The author thanks Paul L. Vasey and Kenneth J. Zucker for their helpful suggestions.
- Diamond, L. M. (2014). Gender and same-sex sexuality. In D. T. Tolman & L. M. Diamond (Eds.), APA handbook on sexuality and psychology (pp. 629–652). Washington, DC: APA Press.Google Scholar