SB, Bathing Suits, and Dating

In Features, Letters To The Editor, We Hear Ya! by Our Readers

Our readers had plenty to say about the December and November issue in Audacity! Read on!

This explanation of SB in the NOVEMBER SPOTLIGHT is all well and good. However, you fail to post anything about how we live through adulthood. By the way, I was born in 1973 so its been a while since people have died shortly after birth due to this birth defect. You didn’t mention that many people with SB also live with Hydrocephalus and that is the cause of many of their learning disabilities not just the SB. Also, Hydrocephalus and Spina Bifida does not occur concurrently all the time. Did you know that SB is becoming less common in the US due early detection during pregnancy and abortion is becoming a growing option?

Please in the future before writing an article regarding SB or any other disability it would be helpful to understand the full scope of the disability.

It’s so important for everyone to be informed with the right information. With the ADA and so many people with disabilities entering the mainstream it’s imperative that we unite and keep all the facts straight.

Don’t let your disability disable you!


In response to the July Issue BATHING SUITS FOR EVERY BODY from Colorful You!
Has anyone designed the bathing suit for dialysis patients who have grafts in their arms? A graft is an artificial vein inserted into the upper or lower arm that gives access to the patients’ blood for dialysis. A fistula is the patients own vein which has been developed over time into a larger vein, these sometimes can grow to enormous size and can look quite shocking. Most dialysis patients are ashamed to show their arms because of their access. Is the fashion industry aware of this?

The article DISABLED OR NON DISABLED: WHO HAS IT EASIER? from the November Issue is very well written and makes valid points, however there is one thing that she failed to consider: Physical risk and vulnerability.

I was older when I acquired a disability, prior to that I experienced no lack of male attention. Even when I was using standard crutches nothing much changed, after all that signals “temporary” inconvenience. But when I finally got a brace, and later when I started using a cane to prevent falls, that all changed. Here I was, washed up in the dating game at only 27. I can’t tell you how it hurt! Guys would flirt with me and then when they spotted the “equipment”, disappear.

Ok, that’s life and I could deal with it; I figured I’d connect with someone the slow way through work, friends, or school…but not too many years later I was pursued by the ex-boyfriend of a “friend” of mine from college. Unfortunately his intentions were far from “noble” and his actions became intrusive and abusive, culminating in a sexual assault.

Worse yet were the attitudes of the people surrounding me! My stepfather seemed to think I should have been grateful for the attention, my brother (at first) felt it didn’t count as “forced”, since the attacker hadn’t “hit” me. How could I get away? I couldn’t breathe let alone fight! Most troubling was the attitude of the local police, they dismissed my report completely. Mostly because I hadn’t fought back. My disability wasn’t taken into account at all, and I had suffered an undiagnosed brain injury from asphyxiation and hadn’t recovered enough from that, or the trauma to fight the system.

Sadly, statistics validate my experience. Disabled people are many times more likely to be the victims of sexual assault, and domestic violence.

Men and women. While non-disabled people need to be cautious while dating, it goes triple for us. And given the financial as well as physical vulnerabilities of the disabled, it’s no real surprise that we are so much more likely to be victims, we inadvertently attract the type of people willing to exploit and hurt us.

So date, seize life, love and live! Just be careful out there, and don’t let ANYONE get away with that type of behavior. I plan on offering a future article on warning signs, if the editors of this excellent magazine desire. Let them know if you’re interested! (I have a BA in Psych and in the process of being trained as a counselor)

L Page
Dear Editor,

I agree totally, self confidence and a high esteem is more important than looks, and anything else. The hardest part is the initial point of contact, as I have experienced people see the disability and naturally shy away. The first contact is the one to work out, let the people see who you are and not what you are.

Claire West
12 Days of Christmas (December Issue)

Should be four air tires and two hearing aides…makes more sense that way! LOL

Cute, but would it work with A
“a one armed Santa amputee” as well…
Chad McDaniel
Joan of Arcadia from Everybody Has One…An Opinion in the December Issue

My fear with this show is that Kevin will turn into a cliche; ‘the angry guy in the wheelchair’. So far they’ve shown his frustration and pain, and they’ve done a very realistic portrayal. Let’s hope they keep it up!

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