Life Possible with Karen Roy Podcast

Sponsored by Numotion

My dear friend, Karen Roy, was gracious enough to host a beautiful podcast with Billy Warden and myself on our outing where I took Billy for a night on the town. I offered Billy a different perspective on being a wheelchair user by fitting him with a Permobil F3 power wheelchair and taping his hands up to make little “paws” as my hands are as a C6 quadriplegic.

Naturally, I cannot offer any able-bodied person a true experience of what it’s like to be a quadriplegic, but I did have the ability to offer him a perspective shift for a day a few of the challenges many of us wheelchair users and quadriplegics go through on a regular basis.

As Ms. Wheelchair America 2023 I am constantly looking to push boundaries with respect to inclusion, but also focus heavily on changing people’s perspectives in many arenas in life. Karen Roy, Ms. Wheelchair America 2019 was such an inspiration for me running as we shared similar platforms with respect to health insurance, adaptive exercise equipment, and medically necessary equipment.

Dating with a Disability: Intimacy

Working with Wheel:Life on part two of Dating with a disability. Such an honor to work with a great team.

Getting Intimate

Five years after Ali’s shallow water diving accident that left her paralyzed from the chest down with limited hand mobility, she went on a dating experiment (read more in part one). Healing from major surgery for a pressure sore, preparing for her 11th surgery from her injury, navigating life with a catheter and desperately wanting to experience romantic connection, Ali decided to approach dating with vulnerability, sexuality, and experimentation.

“I certainly did not approach dating as many do because I was in an experimentation phase of my life,” admits Ali. “When something didn’t work, I would try a new strategy, keep experimenting, and make sure to maintain some type of humor. Dating is supposed to be fun, even when it doesn’t always work out.”

Read the rest on: https://wheel-life.com/dating-with-a-disability-intimacy/

Dating with a Disability

Thank you Wheel:Life sponsored by Comfort Medical to allow me to get back to my roots to dive into how the Quirky Quad first began with Dating and Disability.

Click Here for Wheel:Life Article

Excerpt:

“The Dating Mindset

Dating – a word loaded with so many emotions and often, a word that evokes the feeling of being utterly overwhelmed.  If you add in dating with a disability, heightened anxiety tends to be the “norm” in our community. 

After I broke my neck in 2010, becoming a C6 quadriplegic, I spent the better part of six years believing dating was a fairytale conceived for the able-bodied population. 

I went through internal struggles living in hospitals for years on end with seemingly insurmountable medical complications and learning to accept my body the way it was. I didn’t see myself as a sexually beautiful human being.  Essentially, I felt as if I was asexual, and I couldn’t fathom the concept of another person finding me sexy because I couldn’t muster up the strength to even look at myself in the mirror for nearly two years. 

When my medical life started to become stable, something very interesting happened to me almost overnight – I decided to take on the Herculean mission of trying to date.  I didn’t know where to start.  Prior to my accident I had no trouble dating.  I simply went to a bar and there were men everywhere.  When I went back to bars in my wheelchair, trying to meet men, I was devastated to realize men were not looking at me as they used to.  I didn’t look any different other than the fact that I was in a wheelchair.  This changed everything for me.

I quickly came to the realization that I was going to have to change how I date.  I spent several weeks researching different online dating websites and decided to take the dive into an unfamiliar world.  I asked many of my friends in wheelchairs what their experiences were like and most responses were quite negative, unfortunately. 

I had a different philosophy – the worst someone can say is no. ….”

Read the rest …

Online Wheelchair Dating Tips

“ONLINE WHEELCHAIR DATING TIPS”

New YouTube episode out now – My dating life in a wheelchair as a C6 quadriplegic

Talking to you today about disability dating. Specifically, online dating tips I’ve used as a woman in a wheelchair and a C6 quadriplegic. Dating is challenging no matter who you are, but online dating is even more daunting – now online dating with a disability presents its own unique set of challenges! Several years ago before I got married I went on a giant dating experiment. I was facing a major surgery for a pressure sore I had and I had about five months to go before my 11th surgery.

I decided, quite truthfully, to just try and sleep with as many men as I could to explore my disability and sexuality. I probably should not be writing about this online or making a video, but this is my reality.

It took me 5 years to gain the courage to even start dating after my accident when I broke my neck in a shallow water diving accident in 2010 leaving me paralyzed from the chest down with limited hand mobility. Throughout my dating adventures I ran into all kinds of strange people, great people, and some guys who simply were curious about what it was like to sleep and/or date a woman in a wheelchair.

I have a very quirky sense of humor, so I created an Excel spreadsheet to monitor my success for online dating. I have been through it all. Hopefully some of what I have been through you will not experience, but I was on an experiment in the name of research! specifically, disability dating research! Even through my failures and successes I learned so much. Let me take you on a journey of some of my dating mishaps and wonderful successes!

Caregiving & Sexuality

Very cool podcast I was part of that offers a very unique perspective on how many of us with disabilities approach the conversations with our caregivers when we want to be intimate with a new person in our life, and how we handle those conversations.

Probably not something you think much about, but it’s an important topic that constantly gets pushed aside and is left unrecognized!

I personally have had a lot of really interesting experiences and conversations when I was engaged in the dating part of my life prior to getting married. Some wild conversations for sure 😉

#disabilitylife #relationships #disability #sexuality #disabilityinclusion #caregiversupport #caregiver #caregiving #disabilitysexuality #openconcept #disabilitylife #perspectiveiseverything #perspectiveshift

YouTube Channel Live – “Shower Talk with Ali”

YOUTUBE CHANNEL LINK: https://www.youtube.com/c/QuirkyQuad_Ali

This has been a project near and dear to my heart that I have been working on for the better part of a year, but projects have just been popping up left and there never really seemed to be a right time to take the leap. So, I decided weeks ago to just dive right in as they say (figuratively of course because I already took the physical dive 12 years ago;) – and, I certainly don’t have any desire to do that again!

I am incredibly humbled, honored, and proud to announce the launch of my new YouTube channel called

“Shower Talk with Ali – Where No Topic is Limit”

To complement my website and my writing I appreciate many people love to watch videos. In light of this, I’ve created this YouTube channel with the sole focus of approaching and normalizing uncomfortable topics in my life and the disability world so that folks from all walks of life can understand what many of us go through on a daily basis. This is not a channel just about inspiration, but really diving into understanding some of what many of us with disabilities live through each and every moment of our lives.

In the spirit of who I am I have approach many topics through the lens of dark humor, determination, and sheer grit at times. No matter what situation I may me dealing with in life I always seem to find the comedy behind every experience my life.

I do hope you enjoy, follow my channel, like, subscribe, and comment so that I might be able to make videos on what you are all interested in! This channel is by no means just for people with disabilities, but for EVERYONE may just be curious and loves to learn about topics that are very unfamiliar in your own life.

Introduction to My YouTube Channel:

PODCAST with Kevin Lowe

I was the guest on a super cool podcast with the most amazing gentleman named Kevin Lowe.

Kevin has an incredible story in his own right and he certainly makes the most of life with his incredibly quirky, and hilarious sense of humor.

Kevin too, shares a disability with me, but his is in the realm of sight. He is blind and has navigated his life so eloquently, with grace, and a ton of humor.

We had such a fabulous time during this podcast that I felt like I was chatting with an old friend who I had known for years!I would love for you to check out his podcast and start listening to him!

A Life Through the Lens of Dark Humor

The absurdity of spinal cord injury with respect to the fact that being paralyzed is oftentimes the least of your challenges as compared to the endless secondary medical complications, caregiving challenges, financial burdens, to name a few, can turn a perfectly sane individual into one who is tinkering on the edge of insanity.  The question remains is how do so many of us with these life altering changes cope with, what can only be described at times, as a revolving circus carnival of animals? 

We each develop and build upon our own coping mechanisms as the year’s progress and as we become a little bit older and wiser in spinal cord injury years.  For me, dark humor is, bar none, my number one savior to get me through most days.

Continue reading

Rebel Love Podcast Now Live

Love, Sex & Orgasms …Yup, I went there live on Rebel Love Podcast!It was a blast speak with Talia on so many subjects and shedding light on disability and sexuality.

Naturally this is a topic near and dear to my heart since my website has a tagline on this very topic!I don’t know if many of you know this, but my entire advocacy mission in life started 6 years ago because of a dating experiment I would write about on my Facebook page.

This is actually how the QUIRKY QUAD Diaries was founded… Simply trying to show women with disabilities that a love life is absolutely possible even in a wheelchair 🙂

Also, to be completely honest it was super fun to write about sex at a time when I was dealing with major life changing surgeries!

EP39: Life As A Quadriplegic After A Shallow Water Diving Accident: Ali’s Story