As mentioned during the planning stages, I spoke at Wellesley College on October 14, 2018. I had an excellent time being hosted by the Wellesley Wildcards, who showed me incredible hospitality and made me feel very welcome through an overnight stay, a presentation, a lunch and dinner, and a hangout with the students.
It’s been a while since I’ve accepted an invitation for a speaking opportunity, but I’m particularly excited about this upcoming talk!
I have been invited to Wellesley College later this month and will be giving a presentation/lecture entitled “Asexuality and the LGBTQ+ Community: Past, Present, and Future.”
I will discuss asexual- and aromantic-spectrum inclusion in broader LGBTQIA communities, covering a brief history of the asexual movement, ace/aro participation in activist and support spaces, the controversies and benefits associated with ace/aro inclusion, how heteronormativity affects our communities, and the future of ace/aro-friendly activism, education, and media. Plus I will have some social time with Wellesley’s asexual/aromantic organization, the Wellesley Wildcards.
This event is on October 16, 2018, at about 4:30 on a Tuesday.
My talk will be similar in content to the presentation I gave at University of Minnesota Twin Cities, but I will be attempting to focus more on where we’ve come from, where we are now, and where we want to see ourselves in the future. I hope to record my talk in a similar capacity to share it with my YouTube channel. I’ll bring a couple copies of my book to look at, provide “Asexual Bingo” freebies to take, and hopefully have time to do questions and answers at the end.
After a few back-and-forth discussions and some delay on this story, an interview I gave to Tech Insider a while back got published. It’s mostly about some perspectives and experiences that have applied to me as an asexual person in a world that’s largely not asexual.
My workshop was very low-key; I just passed out index cards, got people to write down a comment that had been said to them about their asexual-spectrum or aromantic-spectrum identity, and collected them in an envelope, then pulled them out one by one to talk about them with the attendees. I had a pretty big audience and everyone was very responsive; I was only talking maybe half the time. I enjoyed hearing everyone’s perspectives and trying to give some advice on how to handle these comments. It went very well.
Besides my workshop, I had a table for my book.
I collected names to give away two hardcovers and two audio copies of the book. Quite a few people already owned the book and had brought it with them, and they got me to sign it. It was pretty amazing.
Besides those two things, I went to several other workshops: Explaining Asexuality to Non-Aces, Ace-Friendly LGBTQ Organizations, Asexuality and Social Media, and Asexuality and Feminism. Plus I got to make some new friends, hang out at restaurants, collect some great items from other aces, and have some wonderful conversations. Asexual Outreach did a great thing here and I hope they continue to get the message out there.
I have a new interview published in US News and World Report. It’s just a light overview of asexuality with a humanizing stance and an examination by professionals who validate the orientation as legitimate.
The University of Minnesota Twin Cities flew me up to the chilly north to participate in their Pride Week on April 13, 2015. I was invited by the asexuality group, fACES—a division of the Queer Student Cultural Center—to do a one-hour talk on asexual, aromantic, and demi/gray inclusion in LGBTQ spaces.
The presentation went very well and everyone was really nice! They were super receptive to my message and my visit, and very friendly during the hangout times we had before the event. I also got to go to a trans inclusivity presentation that I enjoyed as well.
I made a recording of my presentation:
I even got to pick the audience’s brains at the end to discuss one thing I want to revise in the next edition of my book, so that was great too! And while I’m honestly not that big on going around personally making appearances because I prefer content creation, this certainly felt worthwhile. (And I didn’t get lost even though I had to ride the train.)
For the record, the presentation was primarily about the objections some people have to including asexual, aromantic, demisexual/demiromantic, and/or graysexual/grayromantic people in their larger LGBTQ groups; there are some folks who feel that ace/aro-spectrum people don’t belong except as allies. My presentation discussed why I do not believe this is an appropriate way to approach ace/aro issues, and it highlighted both what LGBTQ and ace/aro folks have in common and discussed what we can each learn from each other.
And it didn’t hurt that they had a welcoming and attractive cultural center room. 🙂
Several asexual people, with me among them, gave an interview to Toronto-based writer Iris Robin for an article in The Varsity. It’s a lovely overview of asexual experience and terminology. My book is mentioned as a resource.