“Embrace,” a short film created and directed by Latesha Merkel for her grad school thesis, beautifully portrays the journey of a young woman as she explores and embraces her asexuality. The title cleverly plays on the word “ace,” colloquially used to describe individuals who identify as asexual, while also highlighting the significance of sexual minorities understanding and accepting themselves for who they are.

The animation in the film is simple yet clear, and the story begins like any other romantic tale—a young woman goes on a date with a man and enjoys his company. However, as their physical connection deepens, she experiences a sense of discomfort, leaving her questioning what might be wrong with her.

With a concise runtime of just five minutes, “Embrace” effectively conveys the confusion and anxiety that many young individuals face when they realize that sexual intimacy is not something they desire. The film concludes on a joyous note, with the protagonist fully embracing herself and understanding that she is not alone. It beautifully portrays the message that despite her asexuality, she can still have a fulfilling romantic life.

You can watch the short film on YouTube or it’s also embedded below.