“And then things clicked” – Developing a Measure of Asexual Identity Development


  • Sinead Kelleher University College Cork




Psychometrics, Identity Development, Internalisation, Gender, Sexuality


Asexuality is best defined as a lack of sexual attraction towards other people that is not explained by a physical or psychological disorder. Like homosexuality and bisexuality, asexuality is recognised as a minority sexual orientation, with approximately 1.05% of the population (70 million) believed to be asexual. Recent research suggests that asexual people experience heightened levels of anxiety and depression when compared to both their heterosexual (i.e., straight) and non-heterosexual (i.e., lesbian, gay and bisexual) peers. This may be as a result of negative attitudes held towards asexual people, and a lack of recognition of asexuality as a legitimate sexual orientation. My research comprises of the steps taken to develop a psychometric tool to identify aspects of asexual identity development and internalisation. This will provide a theoretical foundation to inform sex education as well as the application of theory and knowledge within clinical settings to better evaluate the processes contributing to such heightened levels of depression and anxiety amongst asexual individuals.


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