How sex can help the disabled person’s self-esteem

Meeting the needs of people with disabilities is natural in families. Ensuring that your needs are met does not surprise anyone.

Helping to dress, clean, walk or eat are normal attitudes. But things change when basic needs are sexual in nature.

Sexuality in people with disabilities for many is still taboo. Although, according to UN calculations, there are more than 500 million people with some type of disability.

However, there are many misunderstandings and prejudices. So it is advisable to learn a little more about this portion of the population.

Sexuality does not end with an injury 

A few years ago, during a tribute to actor-director Christopher Reeve, his wife, Dana, took the stage to sing a song.

Before starting the number, she talked about her love for Reeve, paralyzed by a spinal cord injury resulting from a fall from a horse.

Then, she turned to her husband, sitting in the audience, and secretly smiled at him: “Chris? You still do that for me, dear! ”She said.

At this point, Dana and Christopher Reeve told the world what scientists and sex therapists already know: sexuality does not end when a person suffers from a disability. There are hundreds of ways to experience sexual pleasure.

Even when someone apparently loses all physical sensation in their genital regions, couples can still achieve sexual closeness, pleasure and even orgasm.


However, there is still a heavy taboo around sex and disability in our culture.

A survey by the charity Scope found that only 7% of people without disabilities date a person with a disability.

While young people with disabilities are disappointed when it comes to sex education, they often receive none or nothing appropriate to their needs.

Therefore, it is important to emphasize that people with disabilities generally have the same level of sexual desire as anyone else, something as natural as maintaining the same desire to eat, laugh or the same need for sleep.

Thus, these people have a unique difference in this case: sex often becomes a taboo and is something we must break.

 things you might not know about sexuality in people with disabilities

1. People with disabilities are interested in sex

It is no secret that eroticism and sexuality are part of a vital impulse and are considered essential for development and health, and are also recognized as a means of communication between human beings.

Even so, in the case of sexuality in people with disabilities, there are many limitations that society or relatives may place on them, due to the lack of information or because they consider that they have no interest in privacy.

Furthermore, it is believed that all people with disabilities will be children throughout their lives and this is a mistake.

Even when some areas of development are compromised by each condition, sexuality remains a different area, present in all human beings.

Finally, it is overlooked that the fact that eroticism is a way of getting in touch with others, experiencing bodily sensations that are perceived sexually beyond the genitals.

The sexuality of people with disabilities is not an isolated factor. They are interested in dating, getting married and even being attracted to physical aspects of sex.

People with disabilities are also wanted

Like many people without disabilities, they may have a relationship with others who may or may not have some form of disability.

In addition, there are many social paradigms that break.

In this case, the couple is connected by deep aspects of their being, desires, feelings, interests. So that any barrier disappears, which is beneficial for both.

3. They can experience sexual satisfaction and have children

This aspect of sexuality in people with disabilities will depend on the level of injury in each person.

Some may experience difficulties with erection and ejaculation.
Read more about the problem!

There may also be a decrease in sperm mobility, causing infertility.

Thus, it should be noted that all of these possible drawbacks are related to the person’s disability.

In addition, therapies that include stimulation and medication use can be applied.

In the case of women with disabilities, if there is a serious injury, they can retain the impulse to orgasm. Also, in some cases, they may lose the ability to satisfy. However, they can conceive children without any problem.

On the other hand, people with Down Syndrome are those who most express an interest in getting married and having children, which is entirely possible if they receive adequate guidance and support.

Feeling in the skin

The youtuber Mariana Torquato, owner of the channel will one Mãozinha , feels this difficulty on the skin. Due to a complication in pregnancy, she was born without her left arm and dedicates her channel to the representation of people with physical disabilities.

The youtuber is from Florianópolis and, through the videos, speaks with good humor and without taboos about disabilities and minorities. On her facebook, she made a post about sex that generated a lot of positive repercussions!

“I bet the vast majority of people who read this post have never had sex with someone with a disability. And it is not because we are few – more than 30% of the Brazilian population has a disability.

You probably never stayed with a person with a disability because our bodies cause pity, fear, disgust. Anything but horny. ”

Thus, the youtuber continues, saying that they are not seen as sexual beings.

Later, she says that she heard friends saying that they were already attracted to wheelchair users, but they were afraid because they did not know how (and if) they could have a sexual relationship.

“As if sex were just that pornographic script and limited to standardized bodies. Come on, be honest: it would be strange if tomorrow Shawn Mendes or a Cauã Reymond of life went around taking on a wheelchair-bound girlfriend, right? Prejudice lives there and realizing that it exists within you is the first step to getting rid of it. People with disabilities do have sex! And they like it. And they can surprise you, ”concludes Mariana.

Society barriers

According to writer and activist Penny Pepper, who writes extensively on disability and sex, including in her erotic collection Desires Reborn: “If people with disabilities are not having sex, they would like it.

And the reasons why they don’t have sex have to do with society’s barriers. I know some people with disabilities who [because of that] resigned themselves to never having sex ”.

She continues: “This is wrong because of the obvious: sex is fun, it makes procreation possible and, for many people, it is vital for well-being and self-esteem .

It is also wrong because it is part of a process of denying people with disabilities all of humanity, which facilitates marginalization in other ways ”.

Prejudice stimulated by culture

Look, television and cinema often promote myths about sexuality and disability.

For example, people with spinal cord injuries are often portrayed in films as sexually frustrated men and women, who need to trust the purchase of sex from a prostitute or resign themselves to having no sex. Anyway, nothing could be further from the truth.

Much more than penetration

Sexuality encompasses the totality of our being and is not fixed at just one point.

People with disabilities – particularly those with limited sensation in the “traditional” sexual parts of the body – should talk to partners about many ways to have erotic pleasure that does not involve the genital area. Sensuality and sexuality are much more than the genitals.

Above all, from giving and receiving touch on areas of the body, such as the cheek, neck or back of the hand, to using perfume – candles and aromatherapy – or music, you can use all your senses for erotic pleasure.

People with disabilities have adapted their erogenous zones to respond to different stimuli. For example, someone with paralysis may be aroused by nipple caresses or ear massages and whispers.

Certainly different sounds, aromas and landscapes can bring us pleasure. For example, you may like to peel grapes and feed your partner.

They are alternative options – paths to sexual pleasure that do not involve the exchange of body fluids.

Lessons from Eastern traditions

Even if a person with a disability cannot experience the “traditional” orgasm, it does not mean that their sex life is over.

In this way, acceptance means abandoning all of your old notions, such as ‘sex equals sexual intercourse’.

In fact, comparison is something that really ends up with a possible advance. When we are not tied to old ways of being, we can allow pleasure to happen. People with disabilities can incorporate tantric approaches in their relationships.

It is an oriental model, focused on sexuality as an altered state of consciousness, instead of the western model of sex, working towards a goal.

In fact, through it, you can have an orgasm without having to touch your genitals.

A person with a disability can make their own decisions

The sexuality of people with disabilities is up to them.

We must also remember that it refers not only to the sexual act, but also to eroticism through the skin, so that all people with disabilities have the right to enjoy their sexuality, in a responsible and free way.

For this, it is important to provide adequate guidance on sexually transmitted diseases and prevent abuse. We must do everything possible to ensure that everyone is considered to be included.

Anyway, the main thing is to teach them patiently about what and how contraceptive methods , such as condoms, are useful, always assuming that they are already adults and have their own healthy sexual activity.

Undeniably, the family is essential in this process, it is she who must allow freedom for these people with disabilities to develop and fulfill their desire to have sex like anyone else.

Thus, it is essential that she remember that sex is as natural as human relationships, and these special people will be considered normal, as long as society treats them as such.

Reviewing our attitudes

If we think of a group of people with defects and disabilities, they will be immediately excluded, so it is important to review our attitudes.

Therefore, we must fight for the disabled person to be the protagonist of their own life.

That they know each other as much as possible, that they accept and be accepted, with their differences and peculiarities, considering real men and real women. They must learn to express their sexuality in a satisfactory way and live it in their own way!


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