By Meghna Mehra
Nepali.Asexuality is the first of its kind attempt towards Asexuality Awareness and Communion. It is an Instagram based social media representation of Asexuals in Nepal. It is fairly new and was started 2 months back solely by the founder and admin of the page Manita Newa Khadgi keeping in mind the lack of visibility and representation of asexuals in the nepali society, real and virtual alike. It is in its beginning phase with focus more towards spreading awareness and building a safe space for aces.
1. what inspired you to start Nepali asexuality community ?
Dr. Manita: My inspiration for starting a community for Nepali Asexuals has to be the fact that asexuality is a very misunderstood and invisible orientation not just in the general public but in queer spaces too. This is an attempt to provide legit resources for anyone willing to know and learn about it. I basically felt the need to bridge this gap so that aces and the public both have a source to rely on plus an opportunity to make connections and build up a safe ace community.
2. How are asexuals treated in Nepal?
Dr. Manita: To be frank there are not many openly out and front runner aces in our community and so the society isn’t aware enough for us to comment on how they see aces. In individual experiences of Nepali aces, it ranges from empathy and support to learn about Asexuality to blatant disbelief and ridicule. Some think that Asexuality is not a real thing, some confusion sexual attraction with sex drive, some think aces are just late bloomers or haven’t found the right person yet.
3. From which sources you got your knowledge about asexuality ?
Dr. Manita: I came across Asexuality as a sexual orientation from a YouTube influencer, The Closet historian who posted an Ace Awareness Video addressing her followers about her orientation. It was followed by detailed research on AVEN and other Ace Activists like David Jay, Amelia Ace, Ash Hardell, Yasmin Benoit.
4.What are the problems that you think are all asexuals facing in Nepal and Asia alike ?
Dr. Manita: The problems I think Nepali, as well as other Asians, are facing are very diverse given the intersectionality. Some of it may be as basic as not knowing about the orientation and option, not being taken seriously or their orientation respected by friends, family, queer circles, and society at large. Others however deal with TW sexual coercion, marital rape, sex-shaming, and discrimination based on their orientation.
5.What is goal of Nepali asexuals?
Dr. Manita: The goal of Nepali.asexuals is to spread awareness about Asexuality and its nuances to the aces as well as non-aces in order to normalize it in society. The other major goal is to provide a safe space for Nepali aces and to build a community of asexuals.
6.Tell a bit about your struggle, how you realized that you are an asexual?
Dr. Manita: To be honest I haven’t much-faced struggles because of my Asexuality and I have been privileged about that. I knew early on as a child that I did not fit in normative society. I never thought of it as anything separate from my quirky personality and my nature in general. My attitude towards sex, religion, marriage, the world view, and my role in it has always been different than my peers since childhood so I haven’t had much to point out as a struggle.
7. Any message for Asexuals across the globe that you want to share?
Dr. Manita: My message to all asexuals all across the globe is that you are valid, you are awesome and you shine