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demi·​sex·​u·​al ˌde-mē-ˈsek-sh(ə-)wəl How to pronounce demisexual (audio)
: feeling sexual attraction towards another person only after establishing an emotional bond with that person
People who identify as demisexual only feel sexual attraction to another person if they form a strong emotional bond or connection with them first. Medical News Today
For example, there are many asexual and demisexual people who consider themselves polyamorous. These are people who don't really consider sex part of how they form romantic relationships, or don't feel sexual desire whatsoever. Lindsay Dodgson


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plural demisexuals
: a person who feels sexual attraction towards another person only after establishing an emotional bond with that person
Some people under the asexual umbrella may identify as being a demisexual and can only experience sexual attraction when they have a … connection with another person. Amber Leventry
To put it simply, demisexuals only like someone once they've formed a strong emotional connection. Then, and only then, can the possibility of sexual attraction arise. Katie O'Malley and Becky Burgum
Demisexuals typically don't do one-night stands or have flings. We build our physical relationships from pieces of our emotional ones. Amanda Finn

Word History



demi- + sexual (after asexual, heterosexual entry 1, etc.)


derivative of demisexual entry 1

First Known Use


2007, in the meaning defined above


2006, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of demisexual was in 2006

Dictionary Entries Near demisexual

Cite this Entry

“Demisexual.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Dec. 2022.

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