I might be passing up a really nice fella that way, but at least it’ll keep me out of traction.
My friend’s suggestion also got me thinking about dating men with disabilities in general. I joined a disabled dating site in addition to my memberships on the regular sites Match, POF, and Senior People Meet.
We talked for a long time and found so much common ground, sharing similar online dating experiences with the able-bodied, sharing a developed sense of humor and upbeat attitude about being in the world.We agreed that we have got our shit together better than the able-bodied people we’ve dated.It’s hard enough trying to find the right chemistry, someone who possesses the qualities I need and desire and whose life path runs parallel to my own. Add a set of disabilities to that challenge and the equation seems to balloon to a level of complexity that would leave Einstein scratching his head in utter confusion.But a new set of thoughts has sent me in another direction.His physical affectations made it very difficult for me to understand his speech. I had turned the tables on myself with a vengeance. And yet I found myself wishing he were just that—an able-bodied man, but with the character that was shaped by the trials and tribulations of living with a disability.
And though I understood most of what he said, I had to ask him to repeat himself a few times, which he did with great patience and clarity. I had become a person who rejected a potential romantic partner because of his disabilities. Our dating experiences–frustrating, disappointing and painful as they might be–do, I think, serve a positive purpose. And though I’ve come to realize that the odds of meeting the right person at the right time are quite slim, it won’t prevent me from having hope and keeping my heart open. Staying in the game is what life is all about for those of us with medical conditions.After a protracted and difficult online communication with an able-bodied man on Match came to an end, I met a guy on the disabled site who has Cerebral Palsy.I’ll call him Jake, though that is not his real name. He was genuine, appreciative, discreet, upbeat, smart and funny.These things do not encourage us to accept our lot.They give us hope that some day we will be free of it.And he was fearless, unlike the fit, able gents I’d been wrangling with on other sites that were uncomfortable with the notion of even talking to me on the phone. We met for lunch at my favorite Lebanese restaurant.