[picture discription: 2 cartoon people sitting with their backs to us and with their arm around each other looking at a bright red heart as if looking at the sunset]
So last school year Hillel somehow found someone going to school to become a licensed clinical professional counselor to come once a week for an hr (sometimes we ran into an hr and a half) to do some semi-group therapy as part of the hours she needed to graduate. We called it Dating Mating & Relating. By semi-group therapy I mean that everyone that came were good friends of mine, so it had quite a different dynamic then "traditional" group therapy. I went last year partly due to peer pressure and partly because I really needed the extra day/week of therapy and this was free. I found that I really liked it. I liked the person who was leading it and I liked the conversations we got into. Although I was friends with everyone and we talked about things we already talked about, there was a different dimension to it; it was deeper and I enjoyed the structure of it. The same held true for a bunch of us who all decided we wanted it to continue.
It took WAY to long to get the thing rolling (apparently there were bureaucratic issues or something), but we finally had our first meeting today. Unfortunately many of the "key players" were missing. There was me and only 2 other of the originals, but a freshman showed up. I like him. I see him contributing a lot. In the course of 45mins the conversation went from the most meaningful event/time in your life, to what makes a parent, to something else, to dating. That was good because at the moment it seems as if the freshman and I are in the same place in regards to that subject-- contemplating the same issues.
Freshman brought up something and then looked at me, as I was the only "girl" in the group today. He wanted to know if girls place more importance on looks or personality? Well, first off, all girls are different in their preferences and priorities, so I said I can't speak for the entire female gender. I said I really can't answer because I'm not like other girls. In what way asked a friend of mine? Well, for lack of better words, I said "I'm 'damaged goods'." Now don't go posting comments telling me how good looking I am and how much I have to offer a guy. I know that. I just wasn't sure how to most clearly articulate the point I was trying to make.
My point was that a guy has to be willing to really take the time to get to know me. They need to go slow. I'm far from perfect, if you know what I mean. Being a gimp, I automatically weed out all jerks (a very good thing) just by the simple fact of me being me. Anyway, the whole thing really got me thinking. Who am I, as a person with layers and dimensions up the wazoo, to demand perfection of another human being? I feel as though I don't have that right. I'm quirky and guys have to be willing to except my quirkyness. I, in turn, can't just cast off all quirky guys as ineligible. The thought that went through my mind was, as a person with multiple disabilities, I have to be more open and inclusive whether I'd want to in reality or not. What I'm wondering now is if I'm being overly judgmental and completely unfair. Should we, as people with disabilities, have the same right as any AB to be completely shallow, or are we, by our very nature, automatically mandated to overlook the exterior (and minor mental quirkyness) of potential mates?
I'd like to think that I prefer quirky, dorky guys because of the open and accepting person that I am, and that I would still prefer the nice guy even if I never had a disability. But as Kara said, that's impossible to tell.