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Asexual Female
November 2002

Q. I am 23-year-old female. I have no desire to have sex, or to be in a sexual relationship. I have never been sexually attracted to anyone, desired a relationship or had fantasies. I only have the slightest sexual impulse of complete physical nature on the day before my period, like a throb - I don't know if it has to do with sex. I am perfectly happy just being myself, with no need for sexuality, until someone asks me WHY I don't want to get involved with men (or women). I really can't answer, and feel a bit abnormal. I think I am straight, but I have so little sexual feelings that I don't really know. I feel more "a-sexual" almost. Needless to say I am a virgin. I don't really want sexuality. Is this normal?

A. Sexual desire, libido, has a strong physical basis due to the hormone surges that begin in adolescence. The physical component is then influenced by a variety of psychological and social factors including one's family, religious, social, and ethnic upbringing. So the situation you describe is very unusual for a 23 year old. You should see your doctor for a physical exam which will include some basic lab tests. This can determine if the hormones are being produced in normal amounts. The physical exam should occur before the other factors are investigated, though they may also need attention.



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