When you see or meet a disabled person that you find attractive what are your thoughts?
Would you consider asking them out? What if they asked you out? Would you go?
Is disability an automatic dating deal breaker for you?
Do you wonder what your friends/family would think about you dating a person with a disability?
Do you wonder if they have sex or what sex would be like with them?
Do you think it would be too physically complicated?
Sexuality and disability are not oxymoronic! A person can be sexually active AND disabled! It’s not necessarily an either-or proposition! There are people with disabilities who have very healthy sex lives, some within the bond of marriage and some not. There are disabled people on Tinder right now AND having a blast (no, I am not on Tinder people!).
A recent TedTalk I listened to on the topic of sexuality and disability revealed that sex with a disabled person might be more fun. Apparently, some disabled people have to be creative sexually due to their perceived limitations! I’ll leave that to your imagination. Brings a whole new meaning to CreativelyAble huh? Ha!
In another TedTalk, a beautiful, educated, paraplegic woman told a story about a guy she was dating. Her story went something like this…
…By the fourth or fifth date, I was sure he was all in and tonight
would be the night! During dinner, he started asking questions
about marriage and raising a family. I was surprised, but not
put off by the conversation.
He asked, “What kind of mother will you be? I mean,
how will you take care of children?”
I replied, “I’ll hire a nanny, like every other working mommy in New York!”
…I never heard from him again!
She thought, and I agree that he was afraid of intimacy with her. He was a single, 30 something-year-old attractive man so it certainly wasn’t sex in general! Yes, it may have been a different experience for him, but what was he afraid of exactly? Well, we will never know, but this “fear” is more common than you think.
Recently, I had a dating prospect ask me if I thought my dating life has been hindered by my disability. The answer is “hells yeah!” BUT not solely for the most popular assumption. I find that people assume that I am “rejected” because of my disability. While this is very likely true, I have found that I am in the position of “rejector” most of the time. I have no idea how many people never make the attempt. I hope dudes like the one above pass me by! Honestly, with a few exceptions, I do believe that my disability has weeded out much of the “riff-raff.”
Although I have not found “the one” (whatever that means), I’ll bet, I meet more quality prospects than most of the walking single daters in my age group.
BUT, dating is one thing, sex is something else entirely.
Intimacy can be a sticky consideration in the disabled community. We need to trust a partner at a much deeper level in an intimate setting. An able-bodied person has a better chance of running away from a bad situation.
If a person cannot get around without a wheelchair, and the chair is out of reach, this can be dangerous.
It may take extra effort and time to get to the chair (or another device). And that is “if” getting to it is possible at all without help.
This represents an extra level of vulnerability, made worse by nudity (just sayin’). And unfortunately, the statistics on disabled people having experienced sexual abuse is staggering.
Additionally, there are folks out there who have fetishes for people with certain disabilities. Creepy to the nth degree! Serious discernment is necessary. And this is true for both men and women.
If you find yourself in a first time intimate situation with a disabled person, first of all, lucky you! Second, consider the following:
Be kind and considerate as you would with any new lover
- Hold the teasing until you know the person better
- Ask them if there is anything you can do to make them more comfortable
- If they use an apparatus like a wheelchair or a prosthetic DO NOT touch it without their clear verbal consent (a playful game of “Keep Away” with a prosthetic is NOT funny!)
- If their body behaves or responds in a way you don’t expect, discuss it with them gently LATER (yelling “What the eff?” in the middle of an event will likely kill the mood)
- If they change their mind about continuing or say “no” (do I really have to say this?) STOP!
Also, during the “pre-sex” dating period, don’t be afraid to discuss sex so that you both know what to expect from each other.
If you meet a person with a disability that gives you a spark, stop, and say hello, click “like” or swipe appropriately!
Get to know them.
Sex and trust may take time and might be worth the wait.
You could have the best sex ever.
You might even find your soul-mate wrapped in an unexpected package!
Love, Light & Intimacy