Greysexual or greyasexual, also spelled graysexual or grayasexual (shortened to grey ace or grace) is a sexual orientation on the asexual spectrum, referring to those who relate to asexuality, yet feel that there are parts of their experience that aren't fully described by the word asexual. Greysexual can be used as a specific identity, or as an umbrella term for any ace-spec identity that isn't purely asexual, including demisexual and others.
A common reason someone may identify as greysexual is that they experience sexual attraction but very infrequently. Some greysexual individuals may only feel sexual attraction once or twice in their life. Others may experience it more frequently, but still not as frequently as allosexual individuals. Some other possible greysexual experiences may include:
- Experiencing sexual attraction infrequently.
- Experiencing sexual attraction very weakly.
- Experiencing sexual attraction only in specific circumstances.
- Feeling uncertain about whether they experience sexual attraction.
- Experiencing attraction that is only ambiguously sexual.
- Experiencing sexual attraction but not desiring a sexual relationship.
- Feeling alienated from sexual attraction.
- Otherwise relating to aspects of asexuality, even if it isn't a perfect fit.
Greyasexual can be an orientation on its own or be combined with other sexual orientations. For example, one could be greysexual and pansexual (greypansexual), meaning that when someone does experience sexual attraction it is towards individuals of any genders, no matter what. The romantic counterpart to greysexual is greyromantic.
The concept of gray-asexuality developed in the early 2000s on the AVEN forums. In 2003, an AVEN member proposed the concept of "semisexuality," naming a half-way point between being asexual and not. Later, in 2006, AVEN member KSpaz proposed the term "gray-a" to describe the "fuzzy" space in the asexual spectrum.
The greysexual flag was designed by Milith Rusignuolo and was via upload to Wikipedia on June 21, 2013. It was supposed to be symbolic of someone starting out with no sexual attraction, represented by purple representing asexuality, then entering a single episode of it attraction (grey to white) with white representing allosexuality from the asexual flag, and then going back to being asexual.
On December 3rd, 2020 a second greyasexual flag was coined by a user going by Angel. The darker shades represent occasional sexual attraction, the mid-way shades represent being on the ace spectrum, the lightest shades represent feeling no sexual attraction, and the white represents community.
The second alternate greysexual flag was designed by Reddit user U/AkidIguess on November 22, 2020. The third alternate greysexual flag was designed by Reddit user u/adeltae on April 19, 2021. The black represents no sexual attraction, the dark grey represents very little sexual attraction, the purple represents conditional sexual attraction, the light grey represents some sexual attraction, but not as much as allosexual individuals, and the white represents community.
On June 27, 2021, another flag was submitted by nyoomster on the LGBTA+ wiki discord. The flag should recapture the feeling that comes with being in a grey zone, signalised by the grey boarders surrounding the purple colors of the ace spectrum. The purples have been given a slightly darker and refined shade to hint at the uncertainty that may come with being greysexual and to give it a more modern and easy to recognise look.
Another grey-ace alternative flag by u/droppedyourcutlery on reddit.
- You all seemed to enjoy my new grayromantic flag proposal, and I was requested to make a grayasexual version, so here it is! : QueerVexillology (reddit.com)
- Greyness: 301
- Many ways to be between
- The development of gray asexuality and demisexuality as identity terms
- Milith Rusignuolo flags