Concordance Between Romantic Orientations and Sexual Attitudes: Comparing Allosexual and Asexual Adults

Alyssa N. Clark, Corinne Zimmerman

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Articlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Sexual and romantic orientations are often considered one and the same, and attitudes about engaging in sexual behavior are assumed to be predominantly positive. The current study explored the concordance between sexual and romantic orientations among allosexual and asexual adults as well as the frequency with which they identify as having a sex-positive, sex-neutral, or sex-averse attitude. As expected, allosexual adults were largely sex-positive (82%) and almost all (89%) had a romantic orientation that matched their sexual orientation. In contrast, we found that only 37% of asexual adults had concordant sexual and romantic orientations and that most asexual adults self-identify as either sex-neutral (41%) or sex-averse (54%). Further, we used a semantic differential task to assess sexual intimacy attitudes and how they varied for adults based on sexual attitude. Asexual adults, regardless of sexual attitude, had less positive attitudes overall than allosexual adults. Interestingly, aromantic asexual adults did not have more negative attitudes about sexual intimacy than romantic asexual participants. Although asexual adults held less positive attitudes about sex than allosexual adults, there was considerable heterogeneity within our asexual sample. The current study provides further insight into the concordance between romantic and sexual orientation, and the associations among sexual and intimacy attitudes for both allosexual and asexual adults. These findings will have implications for future research on how asexual adults navigate romantic relationships.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2147-2157
Number of pages11
JournalArchives of Sexual Behavior
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 5 Apr 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • Asexuality
  • Romantic orientation
  • Sexual attitudes
  • Sexual orientation


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