Pin It

Asexual and aromantic folks claim their place at Pride 

Exploring the “A” in LGBTQIA.

click to enlarge Ky Greyson wants to talk about the A. - ASHLEY CORBETT
  • Ky Greyson wants to talk about the A.
  • Ashley Corbett

On the first day of Halifax Pride week, Ky Greyson arrives at a coffee shop sporting a huge smile, freshly dyed cotton candy hair with matching pink eyebrows, and black leggings that read “unavailable.” He’s bursting with enthusiasm when he asks me what gender pronouns I prefer.

Although some people don’t like labels, Greyson finds them validating.

“I like having a jewelry box of options, and being able to use words to define how I feel,” he says. “I find it very powerful.”

Greyson identifies as an aromantic, asexual trans dude. There’s a lot of stigma around these labels, both within and outside of the LGBTQIA community, he says. This Pride week, he wants to remind people that with sexual liberty also comes the freedom to abstain.

Greyson helped organize a panel that’s taking place this Tuesday at the Central Library, from 12-1pm, titled, “Along the Asexual & Aromantic spectrum: ACE&ARO Experiences,” as part of Halifax Pride. The speakers, including Greyson himself, will explore the impacts of stereotypes, and suggest how to make spaces within queer and trans communities welcoming for asexual and aromantic people.

“People think it is not natural, that likely you just haven’t found the right person yet,” he says. “There’s this idea that without this other person, romantically, you’re not living your life.”

Greyson says that many queer spaces, such as clubs and bars, can be hyper-sexualized, in his opinion. This makes him uncomfortable.

“To a certain degree, I think that is obviously understandable. Because for so long gay, lesbian, bi, [and] trans people were demonized for their sexuality, so wanting to reclaim that makes a lot of sense,” he says. “But that being said, for me at least, being in spaces where there may be hook-up culture, or expectation of sex or touching…things like that don’t necessarily translate to feeling safe. I think sex is expected from a lot of people, and consent is really hard to navigate with the way, or lack of way we’re educating people.”

click to enlarge Greyson is straight up. - ASHLEY CORBETT
  • Greyson is straight up.
  • Ashley Corbett

Tuesday’s panel, among other events such as “Beyond Asexuality 101” and “Aromantic & Asexual Closed Space,” (both hosted by Rad Pride), are chances to discuss and teach about the intersections and diversities of the queer community.

A safe place for aro/asex folks within queer spaces is crucial, he says, and achieving that can only come with open and frank discussion, and active awareness of language.

The spectrum of LGBTQIA identities is so large, he says, that there's always more work to be done.

Pin It

Latest in Halifax Pride

Comments (8)

Showing 1-8 of 8

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-8 of 8

Add a comment

More by Ashley Corbett

Survey Asks

What else should Nova Scotia set on fire as an “alternative” fuel source instead of burning tires?

  • Donair sauce
  • Expired bus transfers
  • Our children's futures
  • Cornwallis statue

View Results

Coast Top Ten

  1. Top 10 dog-friendly events in Halifax   (Hot Summer Guide)
  2. Mending fences at Pride   (Halifax Pride)
  3. 20 spots to go swimming   (Hot Summer Guide)
  4. Pride Guide 2017   (Halifax Pride)
  5. Kamal Al-Solaylee is erasing borders   (Halifax Pride)
  6. We’ve got spirit, yes we do; we’ve got spirit, up to two!   (Halifax Pride)
  7. Give me all the bacon and eggs you have   (Cheap Eats)
  8. Six beaches worth the drive   (Hot Summer Guide)
  9. Believe in Magic   (Halifax Pride)
  10. Saint Mary's University Sobey School of Business   (Career Minded (Sponsor Content))

In Print This Week

Vol 25, No 8
July 20, 2017

Cover Gallery »

Real Time Web Analytics

© 2017 Coast Publishing Ltd.