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My one boyfriend in college, a blue eyed, dark haired hunk, raised in Hawaii with the Aloha spirit, told me all women are beautiful no matter how they look. ) With him I learned that approaching sex was easier than I thought it would be. But some of his friends weren’t so enlightened, and asked him if my body was cold like a cadaver. In fact, it was and is as nice and warm as any other living, breathing body).Information emerged organically as we spent time together. ” As we reached different stages of intimacy, he asked more questions. I graduated from law school and got a good job (no small thing when the unemployment rate for people with disabilities is 65 percent). And people told me all the time what a saint he was for marrying me.The prospect of romance is really the only thing that makes me think of myself as disabled. Everything I have to do because of it is background noise. The only way out of the building for me was a metal wheelchair lift.

I woke up on the side of the road, paralyzed from the chest down.

(Of course, as so many women do, I see myself in the worst light possible).

Then there were the nitty-gritty matters: my anxiety about how and when to tell a romantic interest that I control my bowel and bladder in a manner wholly unfamiliar to most people.

Anne Thomas " data-medium-file="https://tbmwomenintheworld2016.files.wordpress.com/2015/04/alexander-photo-2-131.jpg? w=300" data-large-file="https://tbmwomenintheworld2016.files.wordpress.com/2015/04/alexander-photo-2-131.jpg? w=1024" / Recently a friend asked me how my love life was going and I drew a blank. In 1976, at the age of 18, I dropped out of college after three semesters and went hitchhiking alone in Europe—to find myself.

It’s not just that I’m 57: I also live with a disability.

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