Enabling Romance: A Guide to Love, Sex and Relationships for the Disabled
I’m not sure why I picked this book up, except that I’ve been reading about diability issues lately and this seemed to be a logical extension of the other boooks I had been reading. The book is written by a couple, he is disabled, she is not. They discuss all manner of disabled relationships and sex, with chapters devoted to specific disabilities -- blindness, polio, deafness, MS, cerebral palsy, quadriplegia -- as well as just general information for people contemplating a relationship with a disabled partner. The bulk of the book is told in the words of the disabled people that were interviewed by the author; many are in or have been in fulfilling sexual relationships. Some have not. The tone is matter-of-fact “well why shouldn’t I be having a healthy sexual relationship?” and is full of chatty advice on how to re-engineer sexual relationships to accomodate various sorts of disabilities, including the often problematic situation of working with an aide. The book also has accompanying Joy of Sex style drawings which depict disabled people in sexual situations. The models themselves seem suspiciously able-bodied, but the drawings serve to normalize the book as a how-to manual for any sort of people. The authors admit in the introduction that the respondents to their survey were all heterosexual, but stress that they are as much in favor of homosexual relationships as heterosexual ones.