All Or Nothing

Dev | she/her | asexual panromantic

Dev
Hi, I’m Dev. I identify as asexual panromantic, and my pronouns are she/her.

Nathan
Cool, hi!

Dev
Hewwoo.

Nathan
So, talk to me a bit about like, how you came to understand your identity, and what your identity means to you. Like, how do you define being asexual panromantic?

Dev
Uhh. I was asexual first, and basically ‘cause I’ve been more aware of it than I have [of] the panromantic side. Just because of… how I’ve been treated? Especially in terms of like, romantic interest. Like say at school, when other girls were talking about like celebrities and stuff and they would say like “he’s really hot” and stuff, and I just would not understand. And then so, when they showed me pictures and I’m just like “yeah, I guess he’s alright, I can understand the appeal”, they’d probably in response to that say something along the lines of “oh you probably just haven’t met the guy or anything”. So I’m just there like, “fair assumption, it makes sense”.

And then when I was seventeen [at the time of this interview, Dev is 21] I was doing an essay – which honestly, had nothing to do with like, sexuality for what it is, but it was like a major theme in the book. Except I wasn’t aware of what sexuality was, I just thought it was like, you know, actual intercourse, at the time –

[both laugh lightly]

– so I looked it up, and god knows how I ended up on a website that was talking about asexuality. And I was reading through it and I was like, “holy shit, that’s me!!” And so like, I was really excited over that, and – yeah. That’s how my asexuality came to be, and like how I identified.

Whereas with panromanticism, it was literally only like what, couple months ago? Like, I’ve been thinking about it since the end of 2017 probably [more than seven months before this interview took place], I just never told anyone about this ‘cause the whole idea was still relatively new to me? I used to think I was like, demi-heteroromantic, ‘cause I’ve never really – ‘cause I’ve only exclusively really just felt about guys in that way, and not anyone else? And then… the more I read up on it, and the more media I was exposed to and all that, I realised that “yeah… everyone’s hot, just gotta deal with it – ”

[Nathan laughs]

Dev
“– Yeah, yeah, this is what I’m like. Yeah, good!” So that’s basically how it is. There!

Nathan
Makes sense.

[Dev laughs]

[pause]

Dev
I mean, I used to be like really big on labels. Just ‘cause like – when people ask, it’d be like “here is a word!” and I’d kinda like, take pride in it.

Nathan
Yeah.

Dev [laughs at accidental pun]
But now I’m like, I am who I am. And if someone asks, I do have a word for it. I just, you know – I don’t really like, attach myself to it as much as I used to? ‘Cause like, way back when, I was still very new to the whole LGBTQ+ thing. Therefore when I found like, you know, something – a word, a term, anything, that describes what I am exactly, to a T, it’s something that was just like, shocking – but also like in a really good way?

Nathan
Yeah.

Dev
Whereas now, I’ve been exposed to this for like, a number of years. And while I, obviously, I’m still extremely supportive of like how everyone identifies, and like transitions, and a whole bunch of other things, for myself personally it’s not something that like completely defines who I am? It is just a part of who I am, and so like – it’s more of a “yeah, this is like a part of me, and if you ask about it I can definitely explain myself”, but also at the same time there are other things that like, I also can like focus on and identify as. And not just the LGBTQ+ part of me anymore?

Nathan
Yeah.

Dev
So like, I’ve basically branched out –

[Nathan laughs]

Dev
– in a way!

Nathan
Sure!

Dev
Well, I don’t know! If there’s like a better word for it, feel free!

Nathan
Nah, it makes sense! It makes sense, dude.

[both laugh]

Dev
Yeah yeah yeah, ‘cause like, way back when – this is just another example, not LGBTQ+-related, but like, I think I was like, depressed and all that. But I didn’t know about depression until I was in my late teens, and then I spent a few good years being in denial, just like “oh, I’m not depressed, I just had a really bad couple of years”, and then it took another few years to [be] like “oh, it probably was [depression]”. It’s something like that, but less sad?

[both laugh]

Nathan
Sure, yeah!

Dev
So it’s like, yeah, I mean, this is what I am, this is what happened – all that. It is what it is. Basically. I take pride in it, clearly, but also I’m like, I’m currently focusing on other things that like, will improve me as a human being.

Dev and Nathan
[echoing each other] Eeeeyyyy

Nathan
Cool! Thank you so much!

[Dev clicks tongue as audio fades out]

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