Sunday, 2 October 2016

Undefined: Sexuality, Gender, Disability...and me!

I went to see Josh Widdicombe’s touring comedy show the other day (link to Josh’s website).  I love watching ‘The Last Leg’ (LL link) and a few years ago I was lucky enough to see Adam Hills perform his stand-up and he was fantastic (Alex Brooker, watch out you’re next!).  Whilst Josh was not the best at improvising (microphone breathing is not attractive!) his stand-up routine did make me laugh and his reminiscing of his younger years was highly amusing.

Josh was supported by a very funny lady called Suzy who I had never seen or heard of before and it is her stand-up routine that has inspired me to write this blog entry (thank you Suzy x).

There I was, all dressed up for the show wearing my semi-new and expensive ‘going out’ top from Next (well £30 is a lot for a top in my terms!), with a touch of make-up and my new hairdo and in the fabulous company of my sister…then some of Suzy’s comedy made me simultaneously laugh out loud and blush like mad (thankfully the lights were down!).

Side note: it is physically impossible to shrink down and hide whilst sitting in a large power chair with a chest strap!!

Embarrassing comedy moment number one:
Suzy: "This haircut is not an accident – yes I am a lesbian."
Well thank you, my new haircut is remarkably SIMILAR TO YOURS!!

Embarrassing comedy moment number two:
Suzy: "I know all about checked shirts because I’m a lesbian."
Yes, you guessed it, my NEW TOP IS CHECKED!!

Fear not Suzy you have not ‘outed’ me. There is nothing in my closet except my clothes and occasionally a nephew pretending to look for Narnia.

This very funny occurrence (together with reminiscing about various throwaway, teasing comments from others over previous years) got me thinking about sexuality and disability.  This is not an unfamiliar subject for me as I wrote several assignments on this subject for my feminism module as part of my Health Sciences degree.

Over my three years at University I had several relationships and spoke with/witnessed the ups and downs of the personal relationships of my friends, all abilities, all genders.  Currently I happen to be an eternal singleton, having been so for the past 15 years and I do not see this status changing, however to be honest I am not looking for it to change and that status, for me, is filed under the name ‘unimportant things’.  I have enough meaningful relationships in my life through friends and family and so many physical issues that maintaining a relationship with a boyfriend/girlfriend or whoever I would choose to be with in that manner, is just not a priority for me.

It makes me laugh that in stereotypical terms, your sexuality can be (wrongly) judged upon by something as stupid as your clothes or hairstyle so in order to straighten out a few rumours and stereotypes, here is my list of rights and wrongs:

Everybody should be able to have a relationship with whoever they want regardless of gender, sexuality or ability (or clothing!).

Disabled people are asexual (definition link).  (My singleton status is not only due to my disability, there are other issues at play such as my impossibly high standards).

Just because I have a framed picture of Angelina Jolie as Lara Croft hanging in my room does not makes me a lesbian (She is hot though right!?).

I am pansexual (definition link) as I have #Pan on my twitter page.  (I have this on my page as I believe in total non-discrimination, though I would also include ‘all abilities’ in this definition too).

Just because I have ‘a little thing’ for Matthew McConaughey does not mean I am definitively heterosexual (He is hot though right!?).

People should ‘come out’ and declare their orientation, beliefs and preferences
Some people choose to be out and proud and that’s okay.  Some people don’t and that’s okay too.  Really though I do not care how you define yourself just be a good, kind, respectful person.

So in conclusion I, like most disabled people, would not define myself asexual – you may just consider me as undefined, just, as with my disability, accept me as I am.

(Maybe because I have not had enough experience to be able to define myself and A. I don't want to, B. I shouldn't have to justify myself and C. It amuses me to let people wonder!!)

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