The Joys and Difficulties of Dating While Queer and Disabled

The Joys and Difficulties of Dating While Queer and Disabled

Andrew Gurza, joys and difficulties of disability - She Ready Image - Q Care Plus - Featured Image

The Joys and Difficulties of Dating While Queer and Disabled

In Honor of International Day for Persons with Disabilities, Let’s Talk about Queer, Disabled Dating!

Happy International Day of Persons with Disabilities! In this blog, I want to explore some of the joys of dating while disabled and queer, while highlighting some of the difficulties that disabled people experience plunging into the dating pool. So, let’s dive right in, shall we?

The Joys of Dating While Disabled and Queer

One of my most favorite joys of dating while disabled, is the opportunity that I have to teach someone about disability as it applies to my life.

So many people have misconceptions about disability, and so being able to show them that my disability is nothing like they might have imagined brings me joy.

I get to bring them into a world that they may have been afraid to enter, and I get to watch their worldview on disability crack wide open. That feeling of knowing that just by being with me, whether that be for a date or just one night, has changed them for the better.

Introducing People to Sex and Disability

Another thing that brings me joy in dating is that I get to introduce my dates to the joys of disabled sex. What could be hotter than blowing … your mind with how perfect disabled sex can be? Did you know that disabled people are the best lovers?

I also love involving my partners in my safe sex practices and making it something we can experience together.  In my sex life as a result of my disability, I have bad dexterity so I need my partner to help me put on a condom.

But I’ve learned that needing that kind of help can be sensual. I also really like that I can take my sexual health in my own hands by at-home testing kits like the ones offered by Q Care Plus.

Being disabled like I am, going to a sexual health clinic is usually inaccessible for me, so at-home testing and the virtual provider visits Q Care Plus offers with sexual health experts allows me to know what’s up so I can get back to showing my date just how hot disabled people are.

Let’s Get Vulnerable!

One of my favorite things about dating as a disabled person is the vulnerability that I have to demonstrate.

Because I am severely disabled, I need to get real deep, real fast.  I love this part of dating because there is no sugar-coating, no pretending, no pretense or anything like that.

This is a great way of learning whether or not someone is ready to be with me.  I enjoy employing vulnerability as my superpower on a date, and if it isn’t received well, I can move on – no harm, no foul.  It brings me joy that my disability ensures that I won’t waste my precious time on someone who isn’t ready.

But of course, dating while queer and disabled comes with its own difficulties, so let’s crack into those too.

The Difficulties of Dating While Queer and Disabled

One of the biggest difficulties that I find to dating while disabled and queer is my own internalized ableism.  I spend so much time worrying that my disability will get in the way, that I often give my dates an out before even letting them in.  For instance, I’ll often say before a date something like, “Are you sure my disability is okay?” giving them the chance to say, “Of course, I’m out.”  I wish that I could quiet my own voice sometimes that tells me my disability is too much.

Queer Spaces Don’t Center Accessibility

Inaccessibility of queer spaces is another huge difficulty I have trying to date while queer and disabled.  Most of the queer spaces queer people go to meet, express their sexuality and have access to each other are barred to someone like me.  What’s worse is that our community, you know, the one that screams “love is love” from the rooftops, doesn’t do anything to ensure accessibility. Having nowhere to be yourself and connect your queerness and disability is definitely hard.

Learn More

I hope that as you read this, you thought about your own joys and difficulties as a queer, disabled person.

If you read this and you are not disabled, I hope that you thought about some ways you can make dating while disabled less difficult and less ableist.

For anyone who feels PrEP is not accessible to them for any reason, give my friends at Q Care Plus a try. They make things easy, convenient, and affordable for anyone who struggles to get on PrEP. They do this through at-home testing, virtual provider visits, and Rx sent directly to your door in discreet packaging.

Megan Standhaft

Megan Standhaft

Megan Standhaft (she/they) is a public health communication professional with 7+ years of experience in a variety of public health sectors, including water insecurity, domestic violence prevention, sexual violence prevention, and HIV prevention. They believe that creating relatable, fun, people-centered content about pertinent issues is the only way to continue driving change. Megan is also a public speaker, having the opportunity to speak at The White House Gender and Policy Council, The Jana's Campaign National Conference, the National Domestic Violence Hotline webinar events, and more.