You may have ever wondered what the signs of being autosexual are. That curiosity or need to know yourself better in this area is promoted by an advance in our culture. Not long ago, there only seemed to be room for one type of sexuality, but right now, other types of identities and ways of living, feeling, and bonding are becoming normalized.
Autosexuality defines people who are attracted to themselves and who derive greater pleasure from masturbation. This orientation falls within a spectrum; in other words, there’ll be those who are happy with their partner and there are those who opt for a rigorous and satisfactory “exclusivity”. Let’s dive into this feature.
How do I know if I’m autosexual?
We live in a society that imposes on us what’s normative and what’s not. This leads us to assume that sexual behavior always starts from an attraction towards other people different from us, facilitating our connection. Now, thinking that someone feels desire and arousal towards themself attracts attention.
There’s a very interesting book called Ace: What Asexuality Reveals About Desire, Society, and the Meaning of Sex, by journalist Angela Chen, who addresses her own experience.
Many autosexuals sometimes consider that they have some sort of physical or mental problem. But it’s not like that. Autosexuality is one more way of experiencing sexuality, and it’s more diverse than we think. So, how do you know if you’re autosexual? The following are some signs.
1. You get turned on by looking at your own body
You like to look at yourself, contemplate your face, physique, and form in the mirror. The pleasure is such that you usually feel turned on, and that intense and sudden sensation makes you uneasy for a while. Little by little, you discover that it’s more gratifying to contemplate your body than that of other people, no matter how attractive they are.
2. You prefer masturbation to other sexual practices
A study published by the East China Normal University in Shanghai points out that masturbation is a common practice among most people, regardless of whether or not they have a partner. In their case, autosexuals find greater pleasure in this practice and not so much in shared experiences with others. Self-pleasure is the most satisfying.
3. You desire yourself more
Autosexuality doesn’t completely exclude other potential sexual partners. However, you feel more pleasure and connection in solitude, in contact with your own body, and admiring yourself. It’s an experience that you’ve always felt, and that becomes more evident during adolescence.
4. You have sexual fantasies about yourself
Another sign of autosexuality is sent by the dream universe. In the context of your fantasies, the figure that always appears is yourself. Sometimes someone else may appear, but in your conscious and unconscious, the greatest source of desire and attraction is your own self.
5. You can have partners and be happy
As we pointed out, this sexual identity falls within a spectrum, and it’s common for many people to have, in turn, a stable and happy sexual-affective relationship. Desiring yourself doesn’t exclude also desiring someone else.
In these cases, very satisfactory links are achieved as long as there’s proper knowledge and communication regarding this characteristic.
6. For a while, you thought you had a problem
Why do I feel excited when looking in the mirror? How is it possible that I fantasize about myself so often and not about that desirable college roommate? Autosexuality doesn’t constitute any psychological disorder.
For example, a study published in the journal PLOS ONE points out that there’s a clear distinction between sexual interest/arousal disorder and asexuality. They’re not the same thing. Therefore, there’s no need to pathologize a behavior that does nothing more than express another way of feeling sexual identity.
7. You can love other people
Desiring yourself doesn’t exclude being able to love others. This characteristic is often assumed to imply not feeling love and emotional connection, which isn’t true. So remember, you have a very special gift, and it’s the ability to be attracted to yourself while also being able to love others.
Many people find relief knowing that what they feel and their way of experiencing sexuality has a name.
8. Being autosexual means enjoying time with yourself
Traveling alone, weekends at home with no one else around, sleeping alone, enjoying those moments with yourself. Autosexuality also means preferring, in many cases, to be alone than with other people. This doesn’t mean that you avoid socializing, as you also like it and enjoy it, but you opt to a greater degree for those moments without company.
9. You often feel the stigma of autosexuality
Nowadays, nothing is as common as assuming that there are multiple gender identities and sexual preferences. However, the LGTBIQ collective still resists including the “A” in the acronym, due to a lack of understanding of autosexuality itself. They believe that it’s a form of narcissism and not another sexual identity. This often frustrates and contradicts you.
10. Autosexuality isn’t about being narcissistic
It’s important to clarify this aspect: Autosexuals aren’t the same as narcissists. As an article in Borderline Personality Disorder and Emotion Dysregulation explains to us, a narcissist defines a very pathological personality pattern, and the impact on others is immense.
Narcisists are hypersensitive, unstable, aggressive, and manipulative people with a contingent self-esteem and a high level of internal anger. Autosexual people don’t cause any psychological damage to others. Feeling sexual desire for yourself doesn’t mean that you don’t appreciate, respect, or know how to take care of interpersonal relationships.
11. You’re afraid of being judged
If there’s something that worries you and bothers you, it’s that others don’t understand how you feel about sexuality. It’s true that this is part of our intimacy, but while others can be very open when it comes to expressing their tastes and preferences, you’ve always seen a barrier in that regard.
12. You’re not attracted to porn
Adult content isn’t of interest to you, as it doesn’t generate much sexual arousal. Little by little, you’ve discovered that looking in the mirror is more arousing than watching pornography online.
13. You often wonder if there are other people like you
Are there more people who prefer masturbation to another type of sexual practice? Is there someone else who feels the same as me when looking in the mirror? We know you’ve spent a lot of time thinking that your way of experiencing eroticism and sexuality was something bizarre. Now you know that there’s nothing wrong with you: There are many autosexuals, and it’s not something exclusive to yourself.
Autosexuals can find themselves with many challenges, and one of them is expressing their way of living sexuality to their potential partners.
Being Autosexual: Romantic Life and Intimate Relationships
Being autosexual doesn’t go against having a partner and falling in love. This sexual identity consists of a broad spectrum. There are those who are unable to love and desire others and there are those who manage to maintain a stable relationship.
However, it’s necessary to take into account a series of keys. The first is not to be afraid to express how you feel about sexuality; This requires open communication with your potential partners so that the intimacy of both is satisfactory. Lastly, seek support from autosexual groups; This will allow them to get to know you better and even obtain valuable advice on affective sex.
Today, we have more information and resources to understand autosexuality. If you have questions or are dealing with a personal or interrelational challenge, contact professionals in the field. There are psychologists who specialize in the LGTBIQ+ community who can help you.