Happy pride month - an important reminder for those with marginalized gender/sexual identities not to be afraid to show their true colours.
These kinds of identities are complicated and multifaceted, and the traditional binaries and dichotomies with which we tend to categorize people are largely socially constructed. As a math & CS guy, I've spent my life working within binaries and dichotomies, so broaching these kinds of topics has always made me a bit squeamish, but I'll do my best here in summarizing my own personal experience.
Until this point, I've never been fully open about my asexuality. Not because I feared, or had any reason to fear, the kind of persecution, discrimination, or ostracism that some unfortunate asexuals go through; for those of us lucky enough to have grown up in more tolerant environments in a more tolerant era, part of the LGBTQIA+ experience is counting our blessings and grappling with our own privilege.
For me, I guess the hesitation to "come out" was twofold. In part, it was the feeling of needing to "justify" my self-application of the label; to sufficiently rationalize, not only to others but also to myself, why I'm not just one of those "Tumblr snowflakes" who suppsedly just give themselves labels to feel special and substitute for a personality. These are the kind of intrusive thoughts that I know a lot of others deal with as well, on a much stronger level.
Mostly, though, I just always have hangups about discussing sexuality "outside of the bedroom". Why do my friends, or anyone around me, need to know anything about this private aspect of my life? I imagine that some of this hesitation is healthy and appropriate, and it's tough for me to tell how much of it is, and how much (if any) is just me internalizing the same kind of mentality that leads people to say things like "oh, I'm fine with gay people, but do they have to be so in your face about it all the time?"
For me - and I imagine others like me - it's particularly difficult to judge this, because I flinch at almost any discussion of sex and sexuality, no matter the context - and I have to qualify that I'm not one of those people who think that decreased visibility is the solution.
This leads to the even more complicated issue of asexual inclusion/exclusion in LGBT spaces... which is another issue where from my armchair I can definitely see both sides. I've not been in any such spaces myself, but it seems entirely reasonable to me that my presence there would make others less comfortable, and I've talked with LGBT friends who have definitely felt that way. In all other aspects, I'm a straight cis guy with every conceivable type of privilege, and LGBT people have had certain experiences and faced certain challenges that I, and most asexual people, inherently won't be able to understand. But on the other hand, there are experiences and challenges that we have in common, and having more inclusive spaces to talk about these issues is definitely useful as well. And maybe these more inclusive spaces are much more important on a practical level, and me detachedly playing "both sides" on this issue is only lending credence to the unwarranted exclusionism that I see a lot of asexuals complain about. Again, it's hard for me to tell without experience.
In any case, I feel like there's no reason why pride month shouldn't be as inclusive as possible, and June 10 is apparently asexual pride day, so I figured it's an opportunity to share my scattered thoughts. I was gonna conclude this with some sort of humorous message to all the women who I'm sure are heartbroken by this news, but I guess I'm too much of a beta to do that even as a bit. However I can say, after being in a committed relationship for almost two years and reeling from it for a year afterwards, that I'm definitely not aromantic - so feel free to still hmu if you like long walks, cuddles, video games, and hours of meandering phone conversations. ;)