When I read this post by Ace Muslim about Hashimoto’s disease, I had no idea that in less than two months I would get diagnosed with a thyroid auto-immune disease myself (I still have not been diagnosed with a specific auto-immune thyroid disease, but the endocrinologist is convinced that I have one).
The publication of the post was delayed by the “Beidawushan Series”. When I wrote this post, I didn’t know my thyroid hormone test results yet. Now I do know, and it doesn’t change what I wanted to express.
My mother has been diagnosed with Hashimoto’s disease, and my grandfather had it too. Maybe I got DNA which predisposed me to thyroid auto-immune diseases. Maybe I got Hashimoto antibodies by drinking my mother’s breast milk (though I think this is unlikely).
As I’ve noted before, my mother considers herself a late bloomer. Due to details I will not disclose here, it is probably a coincidence that she ‘bloomed late’ and has Hashimoto’s disease, but it is probably possible for Hashimoto’s to delay the onset of sexual attraction/sex drive/etc.
When my mom first told me about her diagnosis, she mentioned that loss of interest in sex is a symptom. I do not know why she pointed that out. Perhaps she mentioned it because she experienced it (I don’t know whether or not she has experienced a loss of interest in sex). Or maybe she was making a hint about my asexuality (i.e. maybe I’m asexual because of this thyroid thing). I sent her a link to that post at Notes of an Asexual Muslim, so if she ever did think about linking this thyroid thing to my asexuality (and I don’t know if it ever occurred to her) … she is now informed.
I think it is possible that my hormones are connected to my asexuality. As someone who has a low sex drive in addition to a lack of sexual attraction, it’s sometimes hard for me to tell ‘low sex drive’ and ‘lack of sexual attraction’ apart.
Scratch that, I’m certain that my hormones are connected to my asexuality. Hormones are a part of who I am – if my hormone levels were different, I would become a bit different. Asexuality is also a part of who I am. Hormones affect how I express myself, and I am asexual.
Of course, when most people suggest that hormones are related to asexuality, what they are really saying is that ‘abnormal’ hormone levels ’cause’ asexuality.
It doesn’t matter.
Even if my asexuality is 100% caused by my hormone levels, my asexuality is just as real as if it were 0% caused by my hormone levels. I experience the world as an asexual, regardless of the ’cause’ (by the way, what causes people to be heterosexual? Why is it that people only ask about the causes of non-heterosexual orientations?)
I’m never going to ‘defend’ my asexuality by commenting on my hormone test results. I have deliberately avoided mentioning the results precisely because it is not important whether I have hyper-, eu-, or hypo-thyroidism (okay, it is important for my health/well-being, but it’s totally unimportant for determining the ‘validity’ of my asexuality). Instead, if asked, I’m going to say that asexuality is real, whatever the ’cause’.