I Fell in Love with an Asexual

couple lying in bed, one awake and one asleep

Are you in a sexless marriage or relationship with a partner who may be asexual?

It’s challenging for both partners, especially when you love each other very much.

Drawing upon firsthand experience and psychology training, I’ve written you the self-help book I wish had been there for me.

“A trail-blazing, comprehensive book that will speak to anyone who wants credible insight into asexuality in all its facets.”

Ian Kerner, PhD, LMFT, sex therapist and NY Times best-selling author of She Comes First

Winner, Sexuality, 6th Annual Beverly Hills Book Awards

BHBA book awards winner medal

Millions worldwide may be asexual. They generally do not experience sexual attraction, and only a small minority desire sex.

Asexuality, the “invisible orientation,” remains largely unknown and misunderstood. Also in the shadows are many sexually motivated partners of asexuals in sexless marriages. Sometimes both partners are unaware of their differences until a sexless relationship creates frustration. And it can happen with couples of any sex and gender combination.

For both people to be happy, something needs to shift.

I Fell in Love with an Asexual, a self-help memoir from the sexual partner’s perspective, is a first.

Evan Ocean’s life partner of many years makes a startling revelation: They have never felt physically attracted to Evan—or to anyone else, ever. Blending elements of Evan’s story with his own, Dave Wheitner shares expertise and perspective from his training and similar firsthand experiences. The book cites 120+ sources.

The revised second edition incorporates community feedback.

Lori Brotto

“Outstanding! Elegantly weaves personal exploration with concrete education and scientific data on asexuality. I wish I had this book as a resource to offer several former sexual-asexual couples I have seen in my practice.

While written with the sexual partner in mind, it is a valuable book for asexuals who desire romantic attraction as well, as they are most likely to find themselves in partnerships with sexual individuals. This book has provided some concrete recommendations for future clients.”

Lori A. Brotto, PhD, R Psych, Professor, Division Head, Gynaecologic Specialties, Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, University of British Columbia, Director, UBC Sexual Health Laboratory

I Fell in Love with an Asexual Gives You These Tools

The dynamics of a sexless (and possibly mixed-orientation) marriage can be challenging. This book provides a wealth of guidance and tools:

  • a fresh perspective and support during a difficult time
  • an understanding of what asexuality is and is not, and how to recognize if your partner is asexual
  • strategies for clarifying what you want out of your relationship
  • additional insight into your own sexuality
  • the ability to recognize internalized sexual guilt and shame dynamics that may be affecting you
  • process for beginning to accept and forgive your partner–and yourself–so that you can look to the future
  • an understanding of why traditional relationship boxes don’t always work, and options for thinking outside those binary boxes if needed
  • new ways to expand your world of physical intimacy and enhance connection
  • strategies for becoming a better sex partner and lover
  • guidance on talking with your partner, coming out to others, enlisting additional support, and modifying or ending the relationship if necessary
  • knowledge of potential emotional and sexual baggage to avoid carrying into future relationships
  • ideas for meaningfully placing your struggles into a larger context
  • lists of additional resources

Whether you’re a frustrated partner or a relationship professional, the candid story, insights, tools, and suggestions will resonate with you.

More Praise from Experts

Carol Grever

“This authoritative exploration of mismatched sexuality…is a unique addition to the literature on sexuality, addressing a range of human variation usually ignored or misunderstood. Its broad overview offers creative self-help guides for anyone engaged in mixed-orientation intimacy.

Above all, it assures readers that they are not alone in their hidden journey.”

– Carol Grever, author, When Your Spouse Comes Out, and My Husband Is Gay

Karla Baur

“The first book to explore the dilemmas of sexually motivated partners who have asexual partners . . . skillfully offers the reader opportunities for self-reflection by asking hard questions in a remarkably supportive manner . . . thoroughly details the myriad options involved in staying in or leaving the relationship . . . offers heartfelt support in the process of reintegrating one’s sexuality.

The integration of [personal] experiences makes the book especially salient and gives others lots of permission to be human!”

– Karla Baur, MSW, sex therapist and co-author of Our Sexuality, the best-selling college textbook

Mixed-Orientation Marriages & Relationships Have Challenges

I Fell in Love with an Asexual addresses these challenges:

  • Understanding and acceptance of asexuality is still limited. Finding support can be difficult.
  • Some sex therapy approaches that work for many sexless relationships may simply frustrate asexual-sexual couples.
  • It can take time and effort to rule out other possibilities, some of which are often confused with asexuality.
  • We usually assume that everyone must be attracted to someone. Fully accepting a partner’s asexuality can take a while.
  • The language of asexuality is still evolving, which can create confusion.
  • Both partners may face shame and guilt around what they want.
  • The asexual partner may fear misunderstanding and judgment from others if they come out: Were they traumatized or abused and “made” asexual? Do they just need to find the right person or have good sex?
  • The sexual partner may feel trapped in a closet if the asexual partner is not out.
  • Both partners may carry rejection, shame, and guilt into future relationships.

Detailed Overview of Book Contents

Click on headings below to read a description of each section.

Part One: Lay the Foundation

Part One shares a firsthand account of some of the challenges of a mixed-orientation relationship, illustrating that you are not alone in your struggles. It also provides a detailed explanation of what asexuality is and what it is not.

Having a handle on the basic concepts can help you in discussing things with your partner, making important decisions, and recruiting professional support if you choose. It may even provide you with additional insight into your sexuality.

Part Two: Look Within

Part Two guides you to clarify what you want out of your relationship, courageously explore some of your sex-related attitudes, and approach your situation with refreshed perspective.

You’ll learn to recognize and understand common sexual guilt and shame dynamics that affect many of us, regardless of orientation. This can help you to appreciate your own sexuality more. You’ll also learn how to begin the process of accepting and forgiving your partner–and yourself–so that you can look to the future.

Part Three: Broaden Your Possibilities

Part Three recognizes that traditional relationship boxes don’t always fit uncommon relationship situations. It presents new ways of approaching your dilemma and options for thinking outside the box.

You’ll learn new ways to expand your world of physical intimacy, approaches for enhancing connection beyond physical intimacy, and options for thinking beyond the binary relationship box.

Part Four: Improve Your Sexual Abilities

Part Four covers a broad range of topics and strategies for becoming a better partner in the bedroom. Many are tailored specifically to partners of potential asexuals. Focus on what you have the ability to change, whether you remain in your current relationship or ultimately transition into another.

You’ll learn more about enhancing communication and negotiation skills, how to be fully present and aware, options for managing porn and masturbation, ways to enlist creativity and variety, tips for managing common fears and insecurities about the body, the importance of making time for sex, and much more.

Part Five: Connect, Integrate, & Look Ahead

Part Five provides guidance on talking more with your partner, coming out to others, enlisting additional support, and amicably ending the relationship if necessary.

You’ll learn about potential baggage to avoid carrying into future relationships. You’ll gain ideas for meaningfully placing your struggles into a larger context. You’ll learn about the “sexual control matrix” and how to begin loosening its grip.

Part Six: End Matter

The End Matter includes a broad range of additional resources for extending your exploration. Topics include Tantric and Taoist approaches to sex, increasing touch and other connection, ethical non-monogamy, finding professional support, and general sexuality and relationship self-help texts.

You’re not alone.

Book FAQs

While the revised second addition addresses many prior concerns, I’ve left up the FAQs page created for the first edition.