What Is the Meaning of Demisexual?

Medically Reviewed on 10/28/2021
what is demisexual
Demisexual means a person only feels sexually attracted to another person after forming an emotional bond with them.

A demisexual person is someone who only feels sexually attracted to another person after developing an emotional bond with them.

  • Demisexuals may prefer to avoid sex until they have formed a close bond with another person.
  • There is no attraction before emotional bonding.

According to studies, this type of sexuality is very common among people who are raised with traditional values (no sex until marriage could be a version of this).

Demisexuality is not a passing fancy or personality trait. It describes psychological attraction rather than physical behavior. In general, a person’s sexual orientation or gender has no bearing. 

Demisexual people can be straight, bisexual, gay, lesbian, or queer, or have any other sexual orientation as long as they require an emotional bond with another person to feel sexually attracted to them.

What are the common signs of a demisexual?

Demisexuality may be a part of the asexual spectrum. However, demisexuals are not asexual, per se.

Demisexual people typically exhibit the following signs:

  • Can be uninterested in the hookup scene.
  • Doesn't experience sexual attraction unless they have a strong emotional connection.
  • Is not attracted to physical characteristics or one gender.
  • Could be described as prudish or old-fashioned.
  • Doesn't have many sexual desires or a high sex drive and is fine with that.
  • Doesn't like being flirted with and doesn't flirt casually either.
  • May enjoy the concept of sex and be curious about it but cannot think of anyone fit for it.
  • May have a hard time dating and may be afraid of having sex.
  • Is more likely to date their buddies.

Relationships can be difficult for demisexuals since their attention can be misunderstood as entirely platonic unless they're very outgoing, which many people aren't. For demisexual people, a relationship usually begins as a friendship and develops into something more.

Sex is still vital, and demisexuals have a healthy sex drive. However, rather than a toned figure or physical appearance, what turns them on sexually are intelligence and personality. They have to get to know someone to feel sexually attracted to them.

How can I find a partner if I am a demisexual?

The most useful thing a demisexual person can do for themselves while looking for a romantic relationship is to be honest about their sexual orientation.

Here are some recommendations for a good relationship if you are a demisexual or are in a relationship with one:

Be open about your needs

  • You must be open about your needs. Because demisexuals require an emotional connection to feel sexual attraction, trust and being intentional are essential.
  • If your partner is more sexual, this does not always imply that you are incompatible. It simply means that you and your partner must be able to communicate your emotional and physical needs.

Keep an open mind

  • Some difficulties for demisexuals stem from hesitation or pressure to refrain from dating within a friend group. However, as a demisexual, the only people you are interested in pursuing a relationship with are friends or people you know well.

Don’t let someone else dictate your relationship

  • Even well-meaning friends, family, and peers may put pressure on you to do things that are outside of your comfort zone. They may encourage you to dress or act in a more sexual manner than what feels natural to you. You are not required to explain yourself to anyone.

Connect with other demisexuals

  • This isn't to say that demisexuals should only date other demisexuals although it can help with understanding emotional and sexual attraction. However, finding and connecting with the demisexual and asexual community can aid in the development of a better understanding of oneself and sexual expression.
  • Additionally, it can be beneficial to seek advice from others who have had more experience navigating dating and relationships as a demisexual.

Use an app with a demisexual category

  • Dating apps let you specify your sexual orientation as a demisexual, which can help you find like-minded souls.

Tell people you're looking for friendship first

  • In general, the best policy is to be truthful. Being upfront about your desire to form friendships first can relieve some of the pressure on prospective dates and assist you in filtering out less-compatible people.

Expand your social circle

  • Make some new friends if you like to date people you already know. Hatch plans to hang out with friends of friends and broaden your social circle.

To summarize, a demisexual person should have the patience to explain their needs and boundaries. Don't make assumptions that your other half will instinctively see where you're coming from. Staying informed and accepting are healthy ways forward for any relationship.


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Medically Reviewed on 10/28/2021
Image Source: Hinterhaus Productions / Getty Images

What Is Demisexuality? https://www.webmd.com/sex/what-is-demisexual-demisexuality#

What does it mean to be a demisexual? And are you one? https://www.abc.net.au/triple j/programs/the-hook-up/what-does-it-mean-to-be-a-demisexual-and-are-you-one/11130718

Demisexual: https://neologisms.blogs.wm.edu/2016/05/05/demisexual/