What is 'greysexuality'? Canadian medical journal recognizes lesser-known sexual orientation

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Canada’s top medical journal recognized ‘greysexuality,’ a relatively new sexual orientation that is a subset of asexuality in a new paper.

The Canadian Medical Association Journal article published on Dec. 4 defines greysexuality as “experiencing sexual attraction rarely or under specific circumstances.”

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The definition appeared in an article on asexuality, “an umbrella term” referring to those who either only form sexual attraction when emotional bonding needs are met or those who are greysexual. The article cites the Journal of Gay & Lesbian Mental Health in reference to greysexuality.

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It goes on to outline the challenges of those who are asexual. This can include mental stress and the feeling of stigma from discrimination, the researchers state.

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“Asexual people also have unique physical and sexual health needs, such as navigating arousal without attraction and learning to set boundaries in relationships,” they add.

Many asexual people have reported being treated as having a disorder in healthcare settings, which can lead to avoidance of medical care, the authors write.

Healthcare providers can employ more inclusive language to avoid stigmatization, they add.

“Using ‘if’ rather than ‘when’ for questions about sex … allow patients to self-identify (and) avoid assuming lack of sex is problematic,” are ways to provide better care for asexual people, according to the authors.

Doctors should go beyond simply providing medical care and also take a more active role in providing support to asexual people, they add.

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“Connect patients to asexual communities; ensure approaches are asexual-specific rather than generalized to the entire LGBTQIA2S+ community,” the article advises.

Out of 30 countries surveyed, 1 per cent of the population is asexual, an Ipsos poll published earlier this year found.

According to the article, demisexual and greysexual people could still “engage in sex and experience romantic attraction.”

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