My mother is one of the reasons I delayed identifying as asexual.
When I was about 16 years old, my mother told me that it was okay that I wasn’t having sex and that I wasn’t interested in sex. She said that she was the same way when she was that age. Then she told me that she only started having sex when she was 22. And when she started having sex, it was because of peer pressure, not an inner desire to start having sex. However, she eventually found men she really wanted to have sex with. In other words, my mother was a late-bloomer.
So for years I thought I was just like my mother. I figured that since she was a late-bloomer, I was probably just a late-bloomer myself.
A few years later, my mother asked me if I liked any boys. I didn’t have much to say. I mentioned one boy who I thought was good-looking, and she asked me what color his eyes were. I answered that I didn’t know. She replied that if I didn’t know what color his eyes were, I didn’t really have a crush on him (while I think it’s possible to crush on people without knowing what color their eyes are, she was correct as far as me not having a crush on that particular boy).
My mother was surprised by my lack of interest in boys, and she said that when she was my age that she had lots of crushes on boys. I was surprised that she had had that much interest in boys. I had been thinking that she had been just like me. Apparently not.
I started to suspect that I was not actually a “late-bloomer”.
About a couple years ago, I came out as asexual to my mother. I generally do not think it’s important for people to know I am asexual, though I also don’t try to hide it (except for in one situation I will probably describe in a future post). I thought she ought to know because she had expressed interest in my love life (or lack thereof), but mostly I thought it was important because it was a way for me to finally settle, between the two of us, that we were different; she is the late-bloomer; I am the asexual.
Immediately, she said that I was really just a late-bloomer, just like her. I expected this reply. I had to give her a little Asexuality 101, which I was also prepared for. Once she got used to the idea, however, I think she accepted that I am asexual. I think she might still think of me as a late-bloomer, but she is at least open to the possibility that I might never “bloom”.
I am no longer 22 years old. I’ve been blooming for a long time, just not in a sexual way.