Did you know that people with disabilities have a sex life? Many people assume they do not. Shockingly, it is sometimes medical professionals (and other ‘caring’ professions) who make that assumption. This is so disheartening, and it infuriates us. As I was taught in the Air Force: Assume makes an ASS out of U and ME.
We are both disabled. We have sex. Whenever we are able.
Silverdrop is a wheelchair user who is otherwise bed-bound by severe fatigue and pain. I walk with a stick, as I have had osteoarthritis attacking me for more than 25 years now.
We were both able-bodied when we met almost 20 years ago. We soon found ourselves in a 24/7 BDSM relationship. For new blog readers: SilverDom is a dominant and sadist, Silverdrop is a submissive and masochist. We both also suffer from Fibromyalgia which, amongst other things, causes nerve endings to send the wrong messages. This is a huge problem when you want to beat a masochist. *understatement alert*
The (sometimes extreme) nerve sensitivity caused by Fibro means that, over time, it has become almost impossible to do anything but the lightest of impact play with Silverdrop. I recently commissioned an extremely soft cat o’ many tail flogger from @HT_Honey (featured in a recent Sinful Sunday post). Still too much. 🙁
We recently got into a DM/e-mail conversation with a person about this subject. They were asking for any advice or experience we might have on the general subject of ill-health (or disability) and kink. Although in their case, the partner is healthier and less kinky. Below is an large part of our side of the exchange (somewhat edited) where we think about how to communicate our needs.
Note: We have anonymised the conversation to remove gender and other clues as to whom we were talking with.
Most of our BDSM is now mental. I re-collar Silverdrop most nights when she’s OK, and say The Words that go with our collaring ceremony. We also do a lot of verbal BDSM. This is usually during sex, and often consists of humiliation stuff. Perhaps oddly, given what I’ve already said, we often have very rough sex, in terms of thrusting.
The spankings I can give her are purely symbolic, but they still matter to our dynamic.
My disabilities limit what I can do physically…. I can no longer wrestle her into submission, even if she could take it.
We are both hard wired into our BDSM. We have often said “BDSM is something we are, not something we do.”
Silverdrop, who is a plainer speaking ‘murrican than this Englishman, had words from her perspective:
For us, it’s all about communication. I tell him when things are too painful for me, or if they cause problems the next day – (the reason we had to give up impact play was because the fibro wouldn’t let the impact areas heal easily, even if it was a very light flogging.) He trusts me to tell him if my body or mind is not well, and I trust him to listen and understand.
We have our desire to protect each other (mostly me) pushing us apart sexually, but we have our obvious libido pushing us together. Having a vanilla partner (in your case) means they are getting a lot more of the desire to protect than any desire for kinky sex.
My advice is to sit them down and go over exactly how kinky sex might be impacted by your health. What might go wrong (be honest!), and what is most likely to happen. Then compare it to what happens if you *don’t* have kinky sex – THIS IS IMPORTANT!!!!
Make it clear that kinky sex is NOT something that you are willing to go without. When people become disabled, they have to give up things, one at a time, and there’s always something that is the last thing. People usually think of that ‘last thing’ being something like driving or walking, because they think of their independence, but driving or walking isn’t nearly as important as sex. If they think that sounds crazy, ask them if they’d rather have a lifetime driving ban, or permanently lose the ability to orgasm.
So there you have it, a small glimpse into our reality of trying to live as hard-wired kinksters around also living with chronic pain and other effects of our illnesses and disabilities. I apologise if I have shattered any illusions about our lifestyle.
This post is somewhat disjointed – not just because it is based on a conversations somewhere else. We could write so much more on this subject. Feel free to ask questions – we’ll answer anything – in comments. You might even trigger a further blog post.