Love…. what does it mean?
“A strong feeling of affection”
“A warm feeling of personal attachment”
It’s natural to love, but it’s not for everybody, but if you bring ‘disability’ into the equation, it makes it a challenge.
I don’t know if you’ve watched the programme ‘The Undateables’ on Channel 4? It’s such a lovely programme and relates so much, it’s a reality documentary about adults with disabilities or learning difficulties trying to find love. Some moments are quite tearful, as it makes me think how lucky I am that I don’t have such a severe disability, but also that I have the most amazing deaf boyfriend whom I can share my life with.
Back to primary school, we all had our playground flings! There was this one guy, who I was ‘in a relationship’ with throughout year 5/6, I always thought of it as my first experience of love. I’d watch him play football every lunch time; he’d give me a hug (and a kiss on the cheek!) at the end of the school day. Anyway, one lunchtime he was with this other girl, and I was told I was dumped… so that was that. I’ve never really seen him since, so I don’t know if he’d remember those days! He only lives down the road, so I hope he doesn’t read this! Cringe!
A couple of years ago, I was with another guy in the year below, (now my ex!) and let’s just say it only lasted a week and I dumped him! A lot of my friends laughed at this because we obviously didn’t suit each other. He was hearing, and I felt that he didn’t understand my needs as he didn’t always look at me so I could lip-read and he was too clingy when we were around each other and I didn’t like it! A part of me thinks that I went out with him because I felt sorry for him. Ever since, I’ve just been avoiding him because partly as I’m with D now but also because I just don’t really want to be friends as I often wish that it never happened! But hey-ho, the past is the past.
Anyway… the next stage of my ‘love life’ changed for the better! I’ll save the ‘how we met’ story for another post! I’ve been with D for almost two years now, although he’s deaf too, he is the most genuine, caring, funniest boyfriend I’ve ever had and I wouldn’t change a thing! Sorry if I cause a ‘pass the sick bucket’ moment! But I don’t know where I’d be today if it wasn’t for him!
Since I met D, he’s always asked: ‘how come you’re with me, as you’re stunning!’ – This makes me blush! Here’s the answer…
Even though I’ve never really had a proper boyfriend before I met D, It‘s just because dating when you’re deaf is challenging, particularly as most hearing guys aren’t as sympathetic and understanding as deaf guys. I’d try my hardest to get a hearing guy to notice me, but I noticed that most of them were too immature to bother with, and we girls always had to put the effort in. If I started a conversation, they’d often turn away after realising I was deaf… wish some guys would grow up! My confidence wasn’t great back then, and I hadn’t found the right person. I don’t agree with all the quick dating/dumping lark that teenagers do, as it shows they’re not mature enough to save themselves. I’m glad that I waited because I got to cherish love more!
My mum always said to me… and I totally agree with this…
‘It’s often those who are disabled have the kindest hearts, as they know the way that people deserve to be treated’…
So here’s my advice to deaf singles;
Never give up, keep trying!
Be true to yourself, don’t change who you are to impress someone.
The right person is out there, you’ve just got to find them, and it’s often when you least expect it! (It happened to me!)
That’s all for now, Love E x