"Scientifically prove that asexuality exists…"

and why this does not lead to productive dialogue. (I’m bouncing off polisci-prelaw’s recent post and some of the arguments we were having re: educating as well as some of the recent trolls in the asexual tag.)

Lately, I’ve seen some people go “okay, you say you’re asexual? I want to see scientific evidence that asexuality is real before I believe you.” And whenever I see this, I, personally, take this as a sign that this person cannot be argued with and is best ignored and I should spend my energy in more promising and less frustrating areas.

Because the thing is? Asexuality isn’t something diagnosed by a blood test or MRI scan or wtfever. Definition of asexuality is “lack of sexual attraction”, another one I’ve seen and like is “you’re asexual if you think the label fits and is useful for you.” Neither of those are in any way something science can *confirm*. Both of those are something that each person knows for themselves.

As a result, anytime you enter a discussion about asexuality going “first, prove to me that asexuality is real!”, what you are implicitly saying is that you are seriously entertaining the idea that every single person claiming to be asexual is either lying or has their own feelings wrong (I hereby dub this the ninja model of sexual attraction - no matter how hard you look you can’t seem to find it but people are still certain it’s there…). This is your starting assumption, and you are asking asexual people to convince you to change that or (in the “but science!” variant) asking asexual people to find (presumably) sexual authorities to convince you to change that.

One of the conditions that I consider necessary to have productive dialogue is that everybody assumes everyone else is telling the truth, at the very least about things like one’s basic experiences. If you ask me to prove asexuality exists - to prove that *what I say I feel and experience* is actually true - then you’ve just failed that massively and I am not interested in talking with you. All the stuff like “dude, asking us to scientifically show *anything* about asexuality is screwed up when we have a time and a half getting academics to even accept our existence let alone take us seriously” is just the cherry on top of the can-you-*be*-more-disrespectful cake.

…mmm, cake.