Summer Series – Relationships

Hello blog readers! You may remember I launched a new series of blogs called the ‘summer series’. The idea being to pull together my wealth of knowledge and experience of kicking ass in life, while doing so on 4 wheels. The plans are for broader blogs around education, employment, travel (locally and worldwide), learning to drive and many more that you can request over the coming months.

However some recent experiences have pushed me somewhere I had decided not to go with my blog anymore – relationships. This is because I rightly got burned with my very descriptive account of my past relationships in my younger blogging years. Clearly, my intentions were to assist other disabled people who worry about this subject with some tips and inspiration that there is always someone out there for you. So why the change?

Well to reassure any ex’s and indeed ladies in my life currently, no names or details will be divulged here. I recently had the most positive liberating experience with dating that I want to share because I learnt so much for myself. Furthermore the subject remains a taboo for so many disabled people. I would also like to say this is actually no different to someone without a disability trying the world of dating, there are just additional, sometimes trickier factors to consider.

So having been single a while, going to the office, meeting friends and family and ticking along, I realised I really was not at uni anymore where relationships just kicked off with ease. Many people of my age will agree the time after uni is about setting up independently, finding a nice home, beginning a career and to a degree finding yourself. Hitting my late 20’s and having nailed most of this, I began thinking about relationships. I had actually thought I would be married by 28 and a dad by 30 a few years back. While in no hurry to fulfil this, I realised I was looking for a companion to share my current and future world with. However with London being so big, never bumping into someone twice and so forth, my problem/solution mentality kicked in.

I very gingerly signed up on Match Affinity see what its all about. I like the ad in the record store so seemed a good choice (yes my masters was in marketing, sorry). I had a stigma with these sites and I certainly didn’t share this step with anyone else, for fear of ridicule. With a sharp photo, my profile details completed (I didn’t feel mentioning my disability was necessary here), and a feeling of peeing in the wind, I began looking around. Very surreal! I am known to be too sensitive and about having a connection with a loved one, so quite how you spot that from a photo and minor details, who knows. I plucked up the courage and messaged this beautiful girl of a similar age.

Having got back on with life the next day, I had forgotten about the site and if I am honest was blocking out the fact I had signed up. Then later an email came back in a positive way. Out of nowhere I responded with a ‘fancy coffee sometime’? I don’t even drink coffee but its what you say, right!? She responded later on with a yes. Oh my god, what have I done. I had done this as a small step towards a solution, but not so much so fast. Then it dawned she didn’t know about my disability. If I mention it, will she cancel? My view is someone falls in love with me and sees passed the chair, however this internet malarkey seemed different and maybe shallower. If I didn’t tell her and she freaked out on meeting it would be worse! What would you do?!

I decided she looked sweet and I should have faith in humanity. If I was then stood up, I would have to rethink my ‘announcing wheelchair’ strategy a little. The night we met I was really nervous and felt like a teenager again. I can talk with anyone and have had relationships, so it wasn’t that, it was because it was my first blind date with so many unknowns. From the moment she arrived everything was amazing. We talked loads, some about my disability, care etc, but more so about everything else. I landed on my wheels so to speak J

I am not going to conclude with an end. In life there is no end (apart from death, lol) and where the story is now, I am keeping that much private. What I will say is this – if you are disabled and feeling down and in a rut with relationships know this:

  • Everyone worries, disabled or not, but if you think your disability is the reason you might be making it the reason
  • Have faith someone is out there for you, but don’t dwell and make it consume you
  • Enjoy all of life but be ready to charm and ignite when someone special does come along
  • Be honest to yourself and others of your limitations when appropriate, but positively
  • Take a risk every now and then
  • Just enjoy every moment, relationship wise or not, and do not stress

Would love to hear your views, and remember I am offering my opinion, so feel free to share yours too.

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  • Jestershepherd

    this is a factor of life we all share in relationships, the choice to give your vulnerabilities and if you willing to accept possible rejection, then its all good. myself, i’ve always made small off the big worries and loved the feeling of being excepted for who i am.    yours is a well written blog. sorry about mine.

  • Big up Sibbers.  Did my email the other day inspire you?  And I will get the next part of the story, I will.

  • Match.com Sibbers how things change. You must be getting old.  Bi!g up yourself

  • Ann Hawkins

     What a wonderful, thoughtful piece of writing Martyn. Thanks for sharing you experience. I’m sure a lot people disabled or not will get a lot from it. 
    Good luck with the relationship. From what I’ve come to know about you through your wrting you’ll make a great husband and dad. 

  • Ann Hawkins

     What a wonderful, thoughtful piece of writing Martyn. Thanks for sharing you experience. I’m sure a lot people disabled or not will get a lot from it. 
    Good luck with the relationship. From what I’ve come to know about you through your wrting you’ll make a great husband and dad. 

  • Ann Hawkins

     What a wonderful, thoughtful piece of writing Martyn. Thanks for sharing you experience. I’m sure a lot people disabled or not will get a lot from it. 
    Good luck with the relationship. From what I’ve come to know about you through your wrting you’ll make a great husband and dad. 

  • Sarah

    I enjoyed reading this – thanks x 

  • Gaina

    The fact that you have an ex – which means you’ve *had* at least one relationship – gives me hope, thanks! 😀

  • Another fab post.  Its always been one of my dilemmas.. When you’re out and about, people already get to see the disability and so if you get chatted up, you already know that they’ve seen past it.  

    I joined a dating site 9yrs ago when they were still relatively new and were perceived as a bit dodgy.  I decided not to mention my disability and my view was that although I have a disability, it doesn’t define who I am.  Once people got to know me and we’d got to the meeting stage, then I would tell them.  Whether they wanted to meet or not then defined them as a person.  Those that didn’t, well their loss not mine.

    The ones that did meet for coffee, I had mixed reactions.  Mostly positive, one pretty bad although in his defence, he was already a self righteous asshole beforehand.

    Most of the guys I met, I have stayed in contact with and they have become good friends.

    I say never try to be someone else, because its a waste of the person you are xx

  • Jaaaas3

    Maybe there’s hope for me after all lol thanks for sharing your experience. I guess it boosts my confidence in hearing so many stories like this but I just simply can’t do it for myself! Maybe it’ll happen for me sooner or later. Best of wishes with that girl or many others to come 😉

  • Liesl

    If I recall correctly – you had some of the hottest girlfriends at uni 🙂 I’m sure that hasn’t changed …