Attractive and Disabled

G’day, friends, and welcome back!!



I have always struggled most of my adult life with feeling confident, attractive and desirable.



For the last 18 months, I have been trying to figure out why I believed them and how I could feel confident, desirable or attractive.


Desirable, attractive and disabled have rarely been said in the same sentence. And the times it has been said, the world almost gasps in horror!


Unfortunately, society puts so much emphasis on being physically attractive that you must fit a particular box. Regardless of whether you are disabled or not, if you don’t fit into the box, then there is nothing you can do; you are undesirable and unattractive. Add having a disability to the list of attributes, then yes, definitely, without fail, not desirable.



I feel at times, having a disability heightens the need for people to comment on appearance. One guy on Instagram with a disability was even told, ‘Imagine if you weren’t disabled, you would pick up chicks everywhere’. It proved the point to so many of us that disability makes you undesirable and unattractive.



I was told that I needed to lower my standards when it came to what I wanted in a partner because ‘not everyone will date someone like you who has a disability’.



Having things like that said, it almost confirmed to me that I wasn’t attractive or desirable. That then snowballed into having major self-worth issues and not feeling worthy of attention, love, or even relationships. Or heck, even just feeling attractive!



I struggled for years, feeling like I didn’t deserve to wear a dress with cutouts or a high-leg slit. I didn’t feel wearing things that showed off my figure was appropriate. I always felt that was for the ‘attractive’ women.



A mirror selfie from when I was about 17 or 18 wearing a high neck pink top with a black skirt.

The feeling of not being a woman, unattractive or undesirable, was partly due to that feeling I speak about constantly of still feeling like a child due to being infantilised, whether that be in the media, film, television or even just in society. So, the idea of wearing things that a mid-20-year-old would wear terrified me… Hello, high-neck tops 24/7.



I also used clothing as a mask or a barrier between me and the outside world. I dressed in clothes that were a size too big. I treated clothing as a safety blanket.



I wanted to be invisible. I didn’t feel attractive and worried about the extra stares I would get if I wore something more form-fitting or a lower-cut top. I didn’t want to deal with any of that.


As I said before, the media also played a big part in not feeling attractive or feeling like I could be a woman and feel confident in my skin. How many times did I see a disabled role in a television show or movie that was a romance or even a rom-com that wasn’t the supportive sidekick friend? Not one.



I am still very hopeful we will start to see disabled love stories become more mainstream, but for now, I will gladly kick back with a bag of chips and watch any rom-com! 



However, back to the topic, I gradually realised that I cared too much about what people told me or what they thought. But honestly, people are too obsessed with their lives and trying to remember if they locked up the house before leaving to care about your walk, your cane, walking frame, wheelchair, crutches or how you dressed for a day out.



Gradually, though, as I started doing things I enjoyed, like exercising more and pushing my comfort zone by riding horses, training for that 5km and even going to University Law Balls, I slowly discovered a level of inner self-confidence I hadn’t experienced before. I started feeling comfortable in my skin.



A photo of me from a couple of years ago. I am wearing a one shoulder rose gold sequin dress with a slit up the side, I have one hand on my hip and the other holding my rose gold clutch back

I was developing a sense of self-worth and self-love that wasn’t dependent on what I looked like or what others thought about me.



Sure, this inner confidence then translated over into my wardrobe. I started wearing things my size and playing around with different combinations of clothes; I started dressing in a way that made me feel even more confident.



I realised that feeling attractive should never be based on outside opinions or validation and should never be focused only on looks; being a decent human being, especially today, is attractive, and it doesn’t matter whether you are disabled or not to be a decent human being!



I dress in a way that makes me feel confident and for no one else but myself. I know how I want to feel about myself, and clothing, hair, and makeup should always be an expression of yourself. It shouldn’t be used as an invisibility cloak.


I don’t need society to tell me I am attractive or desirable because I love myself, what I stand for, what I value, and, yes, indeed, how I look. Punishing myself and trying to fit society’s expectations serves no purpose. I would lose who I am as a person, which is more important than fitting in a box society deems the required standard.



Just because I am disabled doesn’t mean I shouldn’t wear that dress, that body suit, or feel attractive or desirable. My disability doesn’t make me any less human or any less of a woman. Because that is precisely what I am, a woman who deserves to feel desirable, attractive and confident for myself and no one else.


Till next week,


1 thought on “Attractive and Disabled”

  1. Jeff Collins

    You are a beautiful person, inside and out. I met you at Animal Instincts a couple of years ago and have watched your blog ever since. I used to be Jake’s support worker.
    I love reading your perspectives and agree with them all.
    If I can ever assist you, as a friend. give me a shout. Unfortunately you’re way of of my league ( and I’m old and married).
    I look forward to reading more

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