Hello Dalhousie, and welcome to the first official installment of a weekly column in which I hope to shed some light on a topic I feel many people wonder about but we don’t discuss: sex and disability.
Wait…who are you?
Oh I’m sorry, I’m getting ahead of myself. Hi, I’m Vicky! I’m a Gender and Women’s Studies major here at Dal. I read cheesy romance novels. Oh, and I use a power chair to get around.
Is this really necessary?
Yes, and I’m not just saying that because sex is one of – if not my favorite – topics. Growing up, society taught me – intentionally or not – many negative lessons. Here are the ones that stuck with me until very recently. In fact, despite having very encouraging parents and friends. as well as years of therapy, they occasionally pop up:
- You’re not normal: The people who design inaccessible buildings might as well say it to my face, it would be less insulting.
- I don’t think your capable/ smart: You won’t believe how many people call me inspiring for getting out of bed or drinking a coffee – yes, really. Also, if I get called a big girl one more time, I may snap.
- You aren’t sexy: This is the misconception I hope to debunk in these pieces. As I mentioned in the article I wrote for last month’s sex ad love issue of the Gazette, people with disabilities are often infantilised. As a result, we are viewed as asexual. Are some people with disabilities asexual? Of course, but like the majority of the population, we have sexual desires and take pleasure from it. Granted, many people do this in non-traditional ways, but I think that’s more fun anyway.
Another of my goals with this column is to teach readers what they wish to know, so ask away! I’m a very open person and don’t shock easy so feel free to ask something, even if it’s “weird.” In fact, those are my favorite. You can email me with questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I look forward to the journey ahead and hope you can join me as I provide the naked truths in every dirty detail.