Autosexuality is a sexual orientation. A person who is autosexual is primarily sexually attracted to themselves rather than another individual.
People who are autosexual have a greater sexual attraction to themselves than others. This may involve masturbation or sexual fantasies about themselves rather than sexual activities with another person.
This article looks at what autosexuality is, myths and misconceptions around autosexuality, and how people might know if they are autosexual.
Autosexuality is a sexual orientation where people are more sexually attracted to themselves than others.
For example, an autosexual person may feel aroused while looking at naked images of themselves rather than another individual.
Forms of attraction or desire may fall into many different categories, including sexual, physical, romantic, and emotional. They can also be different for everyone.
Autosexual vs. autoromantic
A person who is autoromantic has a romantic attraction to themselves. People who are autosexual may also be autoromantic, be autosexual but not autoromantic, or vice versa.
People can experience romantic attraction in a different way than sexual attraction. Romantic attraction is a desire for a romantic relationship or romantic intimacy, such as going on dates.
A person who is autoromantic may consider their relationship with themselves to be romantic. This may involve feeling and receiving romantic love for oneself, going on dates by oneself, and taking care of oneself.
Autosexuality vs. autoeroticism
Autoeroticism is an action, while autosexuality is a sexual orientation.
The American Psychological Association defines autoeroticism as a person generating sexual excitement and sexual gratification for themselves.
People may do this through masturbation, stimulating parts of the body, or through daydreams or fantasies. For example, autoeroticism may involve a person masturbating in front of a mirror or to videos of themselves.
There may be an overlap between autoeroticism and autosexuality. But for the most part, autoeroticism is an action or feeling that anyone may undertake or experience every so often.
In comparison with a thought, feeling, or action, autosexuality is an identity that defines a consistent sexual attraction to oneself.
Autosexuality vs. narcissism
Autosexuality is the way a person experiences sexual attraction, whereas narcissism is a personality disorder.
People with narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) may display the following characteristics:
- need for admiration
- lack of empathy
People may be autosexual if they enjoy solo sex more than partnered sex most of the time.
Autosexual individuals may also have sexual fantasies about themselves and feel a high level of sexual attraction toward their own bodies.
However, having these traits does not necessarily mean someone is autosexual.
If people are unsure of their sexual orientation, the Trevor Project suggests they ask themselves questions about sexual attraction, such as:
- Do they want to be sexually intimate with other people?
- Who do they find physically attractive?
- How often do they experience feelings of sexual attraction or desire?
Autosexuality may be different for each person. It is up to each individual to choose the terms they feel best describe their sexuality.
If people feel the term autosexual is a suitable fit for them, they may want to use that term to describe their sexual orientation.
What to do if a partner is autosexual
If a person is autosexual, they may still want to engage in sexual activities with their partner or partners, but they may find arousal from their own body.
Tips for supporting a partner with their sexuality include listening, being open-minded, and being willing to talk.
If a partner is autosexual, communicating each other’s sexual desires, feelings, and needs is an important part of developing intimacy in a relationship.
If people feel a partner does not understand them, it may be difficult to maintain a healthy, positive relationship.
Creating intimacy in a relationship may also involve:
- developing trust and being vulnerable with each other
- talking openly about what each person wants from the relationship and how they feel
- creating emotional and spiritual intimacy
- sharing love and affection through different forms of physical contact
- telling a partner what you appreciate and value about them
People can be curious about what being autosexual means to their partner and support them in sharing this with them.
Many people do not fully understand autosexuality, so many may find there are many myths and misconceptions about the subject.
Autosexuality is not atypical or unhealthy. People may confuse it with high self-esteem or narcissism, but they are different. Autosexuality is a sexual orientation, not a character trait or personality disorder.
Autosexuality is also different from asexuality. An asexual person does not experience sexual attraction, while autosexual people experience sexual attraction toward themselves.
Autosexual individuals may also choose to have relationships with others, which may be sexual or romantic.
This section answers some frequently asked questions about autosexuality.
What is the autosexual flag?
According to online sources, a user of an unspecified online site may have created the autosexual flag.
There are different versions of the autosexual flag, but in most cases, it consists of blue and gray horizontal stripes. Some flags also feature a red heart with an arrow around it in the middle.
To some, the blue may symbolize the relationship autosexual people have with themselves.
The gray may represent the asexual spectrum, as some autosexual people may identify with being on the asexual spectrum.
Is autosexual invalid?
Autosexuality is a valid sexual orientation. As the Trevor Project notes, a person’s sexual orientation is valid regardless of how others understand or view it.
Autosexuality is a sexual orientation in which people primarily experience sexual attraction toward themselves.
People who are autosexual may still desire sexual or romantic relationships with others.
Sexual orientation occurs on a spectrum, and autosexuality may differ for each individual.