Just One Role Model
I come online every once in awhile to post a random, generic message about how I wish there was more asexual representation on TV/Film. Each time I feel silly afterwards because it’s really not something that explicitly bothers me everyday. But it got me thinking; why do I keep getting worked up about this issue?
I think I finally have an answer. I don’t often mind being a part of an invisible identity, but what I’ve realized is that I mind the subconscious effects of belonging to a group that is either nonexistent or “freaks”. It’s not something I think about on a daily basis but I am a person who is deeply romantic and wants to find a partner to love and support through everything. When I see possibly asexual characters become sexual or hear writers brush aside the possibility of asexual characters, what I really hear is a chorus of viewers in the world who, like me, had no idea that they were asexual instead of BROKEN, and who don’t have someone to look to for inspiration.
Every time I hear of a young black man representing hope or a fantastic Asian woman lifting the spirits of young girls, I feel that swell of pride. That feeling that it’s ok to be who you are and it’s ok to use the words to describe yourself without shame. When I have those moments I realize that, yes, I do want others like me to feel safe and whole and worthy of self-care. More than that though, I have to admit there’s a selfish side in me that wants to see positive asexual role models in media. I want it to be fine. I want others to be fine with who they are. I want, for my own personal happiness, a pool of possible partners to build a life with. I know they’re out there, but we don’t talk about it openly. How do you suppose that conversation starts with a stranger?
I’m a queer life raft in a sea of heterosexuals who think they can handle me but quickly learn that I’m not kidding when I say asexual. I want children to learn it’s one of the possible things someone can be so they grow into adults who love themselves, and not college students who stumble onto the right word of the day. I think this in a millisecond every time I lose an asexual character. I’m ready to take the next step. I just hope I’m not alone in this walk.