When you spend your life on a wheelchair, or if you have a disability, curious people might often ask you a lot of questions – too many questions, in fact. Personal questions that nobody would ever dream asking people without a disability.
Just as it happens with myths and legends, question marks about sex spring up like mushrooms: “Is that really possible?”, “Can it be true?”, “How do they manage?”.
Yet, although some can be incredibly curious about the intimate life of people with disabilities, making them feel as if they were some kind of alien creature, they often lose steam once they get some answers. As we well know, many approach the erotic sphere of people with disabilities carrying a lot of prejudices, full of misconceptions and urban myths to be debunked.
Believe me, relationships involving two wheels, artificial limbs, syndromes or any other kind of disability are not that different from all other relationships. And even if at times they require some alternative solutions, people with disabilities have sex, too – you bet they do.
Let's try and be a bit more specific, and let's see what happens when a person with disabilities decides to have sex.
The First Time
Sex you see in films and sex that happens in real life are two very different things (especially because films very rarely show people with disabilities, especially in sex scenes).
Clothes get tangled in the spokes of the wheels, stuck in artificial limbs or any other mechanical apparatus; the embarrassment one feels about the first time combines with very little practice; there's a danger of accidents and tumbles (and not just in terms of style); some awkward movements will make you laugh, which spoil the erotic mood – and these are just some of the drawbacks that might occur. Still, the important thing is to remember that this is all part of the fun.
Here, you might also expect some of the ‘calamities’ above, but not as bad as during the first time – in fact, if you have a good eye for it and a good amount of savoir-faire things might go rather well. However, my dear people with disabilities, it's actually likely that you might have to put your partner at ease. Most probably, your partner will fear they might break your bones just by looking at you – so, emphasise that applying some sense it's always a good thing and remind them that a disability parking badge is not a contraceptive and doesn't protect from STDs.
Sex Within A Relationship
Here we are, the grand finale. If you have a disability and decide to introduce your partner to friends and relatives, here's where the barriers spring up, alarms go off and soldiers will line up in defence formation with their weapons at the ready, with your poor partner getting a lot of dirty looks.
And your privacy? Forget about it. You might find that your relatives, crazed by anxiety, are waiting for you in the bedroom, as if a person with disabilities having sex could make the universe collapse. I strongly suggest putting your phone on airplane mode and double-locking your doors.
In the end, the only thing that's really worth knowing is that sex is one of life's pleasures, with a partner or partners, or by yourself. Although at times we people with disabilities might look very different, we're nonetheless fully equipped to make love just like everyone else.
And, above all, we like doing it, just like everyone else.
Article by Marina Cuollo – Writer