LGBTQ INFORMATION NETWORK │ RAINBOW OF RESOURCES

DISABILITY
 

Tokyo Paralympic Games Welcomes Record Number of LGBTQ Athletes
LGBTQ People Living With Disabilities

Disabled LGBTQ Creatives Imagine a Better Tomorrow
T11 Incomplete: Queer Disabled Love Story

Disabled LGBTQ Activists Redefining Sex and Sexuality

Special: Gay Disabled Comedy TV Series

Rainbow Alliance for the Deaf

Sign: Silent Film Project

 

 

Addressing Needs of LGBTQ People with Disabilities

Hell No: Ingrid Michaelson ASL Music Video

Blind and Gay Man Discovers He's Not Alone

Video: Push Girls

LGBTQ People with Developmental Disabilities

Netfilx Series: Queer and Disabled

PBS Video: Differently Abled and Bisexual

Black, Gay, Autistic and Beautiful

Deaf Queer Resource Center

Being Blind and Gay

Jessica: Disabled and Gay

Embracing My Queer Disabled Identity

MAP Report: LGBTQ People With Disabilities

 

Addressing Disability Within the LGBTQ Community

 

One of the nice things about being part of the LGBTQ community is that itís incredibly diverse. Yet diversity isnít just about race, of course. Issues of disability can pop up in the community, leaving room for very awkward pauses. The truth is that we have to do more than just tolerate people with disabilities. We have to embrace them as full-fledged members of this community. People assume that someone with a disability doesnít have any interest in relationships, but that couldnít be further from the truth. In reality, it makes sense. Say you lose your arm tomorrow. Does this mean that you no longer have a desire to be with your gay partner? Not at all.

 



Itís a great idea to start looking at disability issues, because itís up to all of us to be great advocates for each other. The more attention that you give towards handling everyone with respect, the more likely it is that respect will be paid back to you. Here are some tips to keep in mind if youíre going to be a strong advocate for disabled LGBTQ people.

Let Go of Stereotypes - Hollywood is full of stereotypes with disabled people. Not every disabled person wants to break world records or stand out. Theyíre regular people living everyday lives, and they want their feelings respected. Assuming that someone lives a wildly radical life simply because theyíre disabled is disrespectful. Instead of stereotypes, focus on what they want as individuals.

Be a Great Listener - This is a great chance to hear how someone else lives. You can be a great friend as long as youíre willing to never stop learning and keep an open mind. This isnít the time to go on some big long rant just because you feel like you have a ďcaptiveĒ audience. Hear the other person out and be sure to ask questions only after theyíre done talking. Giving them a chance to speak up is great because we never really know what someone is going through, or feeling.

 



Stand Up For Their Real Life - Want to know a secret? The life of gay people doesnít differ all that much just because disability is involved. So why then is the community often too silent when it comes to people with disabilities? We assume and act like their lives are completely different, when that isnít the case. At the end of the day, they deserve the same rights that weíre fighting for. They have other issues that they have to face because they are disabled, and this means that they deserve good allies.

However, there has to be a balance between the two points as well. Just as you donít want to be disrespectful, you also donít want to assume that everyone needs your help. Itís important to keep this to the individual at hand, rather than what you think they need. They will speak up and let you know, believe us.

Keeping these tips in mind encourages not just open communication, but a true exchange of ideas. You canít have that without respect being at the start of everything. People dealing with disabilities just want to feel like theyíre truly part of the community, rather than just a convenient talking point when you want to win an argument. Donít ignore these tips if there is a chance for genuine communication and sincere connection. You wonít regret it!

 


 

LGBTQ People Living With Disabilities

Netfilx Series: Queer and Disabled

Video Roundtable: Disability, Sex, Relationships, Dating

Dandy Dodlez: Artist, Queer, Disabled, Sexually Active

One-Third of LGBTQ Adults Identify as Having a Disability

Black, Gay, Autistic and Beautiful

Living With a Disability in the Gay Community

Queer and Disabled: Misconceptions

Disabled LGBTQ Activists Redefining Sex and Sexuality

Respect Ability: One-Third of LGBTQ Adults Have a Disability

Jessica Kellfren-Fozard: Gay and Deaf

Scholarly Paper: Intersectionality of Disabilities and LGBTQ Identity

Rainbow Alliance for the Deaf

Video Talk: Disabled LGBTQ Couple

Gay and Disabled: Nothing Can Stop Me

Queer and Disabled: Misconceptions

Tiphany Adams: True Love Within Yourself

Inter-Abled Relationships: Benefits of Dating a Disabled Person

Addressing Needs of LGBTQ People with Disabilities

Interview With Kay Ulanday Barrett

Mobility Aids: Time to Sit Down

Jessica and Claudia: Wife as Caregiver

Disabled LGBTQ Creatives: Imagining a Better Tomorrow

Disabled World Report: Over One Third of LGBTQ Adults Identify as Disabled

 

 

Books

 

Eyes of Desire: Deaf Gay and Lesbian Reader by Raymond Luczak

Do You Dream in Color by Laurie Rubin

Mean Little Deaf Queer by Terry Galloway

Queer Crips: Disabled Gay Men and Their Stories by B. Guter and JR Killacky

My Life as a Deaf Gay Man by Peter Beach Morier

 

 

New Film: Queer Disabled Love Story

 

ďT11 IncompleteĒ is a medical term, which refers to a paraplegic patient whose spine is severed but who still has some feeling in their legs. It is also the title of a groundbreaking new film in which two broken people, Kate Murphy (Karen Sillas) and Laura (Kristen Renton), find love through a caregiver-patient relationship.

T11 Incomplete is groundbreaking for several reasons. One is its director and writer, Suzanne Guacci, a former state trooper who lost her leg and went on to begin a production company, Aspire Productions, dedicated to telling stories at the intersection of disabled and LGBTQ identities.

Second is how the film, which was recently released, fulfills this promise, centering historically marginalized people while also employing them on set and behind the camera. Such is Guacci's commitment to uplifting these communities that a cat named Peanut Butter is blind in real life.

Third, T11 Incomplete is a universal film about damaged people who have wronged others but are fighting for a brighter future for themselves and their loved ones. In addition to disability, the film also addresses substance abuse, recovery, and the work that goes into maintaining and repairing family relationships, a topic that any viewer can relate to.

Guacci discusses these themes, the lessons Hollywood can learn from the film and its creation, and her own survivor story.

 



Tell us what inspired you to write and direct T11 Incomplete.
 

It started with me wanting to write a story about nursing. I think they are extraordinary human beings. Weíve all seen it now through COVID, but nurses played a major part in my own recovery, and over the past 10 years Iíve had a host of aides and hospice nurses and RNís and LPNís in and out of my house for my aging parents and my in-laws, so they have been very prevalent in my life. And simultaneously to that, I wanted to write a story with a lesbian female disabled character. T11 Incomplete is what came out of all that.

There are still so few representations of LGBTQ disabled characters. What did it mean to you personally to bring this visibility to film?
 

It was very important to me to bring this story and the character of Laura to light because Iíve never seen a character like her or an LGBTQ story like this. Itís different and itís timely, and being disabled myself, I felt a responsibility to get it right.

Kate and Laura are not only abled and disabled; there is also an age gap in their relationship. As the filmmaker, what was it like exploring a romance between characters who are bridging different divides?
 

It was interesting for me as a writer to explore this relationship because on one hand, it is complex with all those different divides, but in its true essence, after you peel away those differences of age and ability and socio-economic, it is really quite simple. Itís just two souls who cling to each other in their mutual suffering. Suffering knows no divide. That is indeed the bridge. And then as a filmmaker, watching Karen Sillas and Kristen Renton embody these characters, was just so beautiful.

 



What were some of the challenges of creating a protagonist like Kate who is at once sympathetic and flawed?
 

It is tricky because as a writer you donít want to tip the scale either way. You need to find the balance. But I always strive for the truth, and I think if the character is grounded in truth, it works. You canít fake a character like Kate. It wonít work if you do. And thatís why as a director, putting Kate into the hands of magnificent Karen Sillas, who hit all the right notes, was just incredible to watch every day on set.

The film deals with good and bad (and the gray area that falls in between) from the point of view of criminal justice as well as individual judgment. How did your career as a New York state trooper influence how you judge others and how you wanted to present judgment and forgiveness in the film?
 

As a former trooper I was very aware that I held peopleís lives in my hands. Whether I was arresting someone for DWI or giving someone a speeding ticket. The power I held, I took very seriously, and how you handle a situation when you hold the power means everything. But I tried always to see people and not the act they were committing. And I learned that nothing is completely black and white. No two speeding tickets are the same, no two DWIs are the same. There is so much gray, and it requires discernment when you deal with people. It requires listening and understanding. And I think in T11 Incomplete I wanted to really emphasize all of that. The characters are neither completely good or bad. They have moments of each, and they are all learning and growing at different paces and stages. But to judge them on one act is unfair. We are all more than our mistakes or our poor decisions.

How did losing a leg in the line of duty change your point of view of the world?


I had never known an amputee before I lost my leg. Actually, my only reference was from movies I had seen or veterans, who in many cases were in wheelchairs as opposed to ambulating with prosthetics. So just in that regard, my world opened because I was thrust into becoming a member of this group that I knew nothing about. But I was hit by a young girl when I was on duty. She had smoked a little and drank a little, and I was in her path that fateful night, but I have to say I never felt anger or blame. It always just seemed to me that this was lined up for me. My destiny, so to speak, and her destiny would be her own. It wasnít my job to judge her. Not that it wasnít earth-shattering at the time because it absolutely was, and it took time to grieve the loss of not only my limb and my physicality but my career and my abilities. But after a while, I moved past all of that, and I realized the gift that I was given. Not only to be alive but to have known excruciating pain and to have persevered through and healed. To have felt my world crumble but to rise and start anew. I know grace and appreciation in such a profound way today that I am always on the verge of tears. It has truly been an awakening. I am aware now of the amazing disabled community that I am very proud to be part of. I am so proud of actors like Katy Sullivan and Kristen Renton and Lauren Russell who do their thing and give their all, no matter what their day brings or how they are feeling. And my hope is that I can continue to be an advocate in my work and in my own way.

 



Many of the characters are struggling with or recovering from addiction ó a struggle that is, unfortunately, disproportionately seen in the LGBTQ community. What message did you hope to send about folks who are struggling and recovering?


I'm not sure I wanted to send a message, and I certainly have had my own struggles with abuse before I came out. But Kate's character surely knows the struggle. Her sobriety is what changes her life and connects her to her family again. And although temptation is always there, she holds steady to the love. Especially of her grandson Brady. Thatís her driving force, that is what gives her the strength she needs to stay sober. So I say, cling to the love in your life and let it be your source of strength.

The film is not only centered on queer and disabled people ó it also employs them as actors and crew members. What lessons can Hollywood learn from this?


To open your eyes and be creative. Judy Bowman, our casting director, and I took the task very seriously of thinking outside the box when casting and putting actors in spots that allowed them to be seen as actors first and foremost. We have Zach Booth playing a straight character, Katy Sullivan playing an able-bodied character, Kristen Renton playing a wheelchair user. We flipped the labels while still being inclusive and representing our communities. For me as a disabled lesbian director, I felt a great responsibility not only to serve the story with superb actors but to represent our communities honestly, and that extended to having disabled crew members as well. And, believe it or not, we chose a blind kitten to play Peanut Butter! So this was the way for me that felt like I was satisfying everything and gave me peace about it.

What do you hope is the takeaway for audiences?


I hope that the story resonates with people. Itís a human story about loss and forgiveness and suffering, but itís also about hope. And I think as human beings, especially after the last year weíve had, we can all use a little hope.

[Source: Daniel Reynolds, Advocate Magazine, April 2021]

 

Movie Trailer: T11 Incomplete

T11 Incomplete: Queer Disabled Love Story

Disabled LGBTQ Activists Redefining Sex and Sexuality

Special: Gay Disabled Comedy TV Series

Rainbow Alliance for the Deaf

Disabled LGBTQ Creatives: Imagining a Better Tomorrow

Sign: Silent Film Project

LGBTQ People Living With Disabilities

Addressing Needs of LGBTQ People with Disabilities

Hell No: Ingrid Michaelson ASL Music Video

Blind and Gay Man Discovers He's Not Alone

Video: Push Girls

LGBTQ People with Developmental Disabilities

Netfilx Series: Queer and Disabled

PBS Video: Differently Abled and Bisexual

Black, Gay, Autistic and Beautiful

Deaf Queer Resource Center

Being Blind and Gay

Jessica: Disabled and Gay

Embracing My Queer Disabled Identity

MAP Report: LGBTQ People With Disabilities

 

Deaf and Gay

 

Hands and fingers move through the air with amazing speed and precision. I sit watching, hoping the weak smile on my face will mask my befuddlement. All I see in these movements is a blur. Everyone else at the table sees jokes, anecdotes, and answers to the omnipresent dinner party question, "What have you been up to lately?"  I am at a birthday dinner for a deaf friend of my sister, and I am only one of two hearing people in attendance who doesn't sign. The other looks like she has suddenly been transported to a marketplace in downtown New Delhi and she has no idea what to do or how to act.

 

     

I imagine as I am sitting there that this is but a small taste of the daily experiences of the deaf. Far too often, they find themselves at the table, so to speak, but excluded from the conversation. In the decade since that dinner party, fortunately, there has been advances in awareness of the challenges facing deaf people, in large part due to efforts to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act in the United States and similar laws elsewhere. Consequently, deaf individuals aren't excluded from the conversation quite as often, anymore, but still too much.

While the rest of the world catches up and works to include the hearing impaired in the fabric of society, the deaf have created their own community through organizations, social gatherings, and internet forums. In this way, the deaf community is much like the LGBTQ community, and a substantial body of research that looks at issues of inclusivity and diversity has included sections on challenges facing both deaf and LGBTQ individuals, as they are often the same. However, scant research has been done on those individuals who are both LGBTQ and deaf. This is surprising, considering what my sister, an interpreter for the deaf, has told me: "You'd be surprised how many deaf people are gay."  How many exactly? According to the Deaf Queer Resource Center, there are about 2.8 million deaf LGBTQ persons in the United States alone.

 



Perhaps because of the lack of widespread attention, the deaf LGBTQ community has developed its own subculture. Several organizations exist to help facilitate the spread of information about LGBTQ persons with hearing impairments and to bring together the community as a whole. Among those organizations is the previously mentioned Deaf Queer Resource Center, whose primary function is the dissemination of information about and for deaf LGBTQ individuals.

More proactive is the Rainbow Alliance for the Deaf (RAD), which advocates for the rights of the deaf and LGBTQ, as well as having a bi-annual conference. Not only does the conference educate and have workshops, they also name a man and woman of the year, for those individuals who have excelled in advocacy and charity work in their communities. Additionally, they have a pageant with a Mr. RAD, Ms. RAD, and Miss RAD named.

 

ASL Music Video: This is Me

Waiting to Be Heard: On Being Deaf and Gay

Dino Petrera: Gay and Hearing Impaired

Rainbow Alliance for the Deaf

Jessica: International Week of the Deaf

You Need to Calm Down: Sign Language

Sign: Silent Film Project

Deaf Queer Resource Center

Jessica: Disabled and Gay

Short Film: Signage

Interpreting Queer Words in ASL

ASL Music Video: The Way I Am

Queer and Deaf: Tackling Oppression Together

Deaf and Gay and Totally Okay

Jessica Kellgren-Fozard: Disability Misconceptions

LGBTQ in the Deaf Community

Queer Signing


 

According to a 1990 study by Daniel B. Swartz, Perceptions & Attitudes of Male Homosexuals from Differing Socio-Cultural & Audiological Backgrounds, deaf gay men very likely to join organizations and gay rights groups. Further, deaf gay men are happier in their relationships and have more positive self-images than hearing gay men. However, Swartz found that the level of confusion about one's sexuality was the same for hearing and deaf men who had deaf parents, which suggests a general lack of knowledge of LGBTQ issues among straight deaf individuals.

Unfortunately, a couple of separate studies found that deaf LGBTQ persons are more likely to be victims of sexual, physical, and psychological abuse or assault. Gay deaf individuals are also more likely to contract HIV. Klinger concluded that the more comfortable an LGBTQ person is with his or her identity and feels a connection to the community, the more likely he or she is to have acquired sexual knowledge, although this is more likely among deaf gay men than deaf lesbians.

Of course, those who are deaf and gay aren't the only ones facing challenges. Anyone who deals with both disability and sexual orientation issues must navigate a different path. While there is a dearth of literature on being gay and deaf, it's an abundance compared to the amount of literature available concerning LGBTQ individuals who are blind. Fortunately, there has been more research devoted to handicapped individuals who are LGBTQ. Regardless of how much attention or research has been devoted to them, those with disabilities who are gay or lesbian must deal with an extra burden of both societal judgment and misconceptions.
 

[Source: Michael Abernathy, Pop Matters]

 

 

 

Blind and Gay Man Discovers He's Not Alone

Out: Opera Singer Inspires With Her Story

Being Blind and Gay

Short Film: The Way He Looks

You Tube: Do You Dream in Color?

Blind LGBTQ Pride International

Dating a Blind Gay Person

Washington Post: Laurie Rubin Describes Her World of Color

 

Celebrities: LGBTQ People and Disabilities

 

Frida Kahlo - Artist

Laurie Ruben - Opera Singer

Peter Beach Morier - Author

Geri Jewell - Writer

Justin Chappel - Political Activist

Aaron Philip - Model

Umber Ghauri - Make-Up Artist

Dino Petrera - Actor

Jennifer Restle - CFO, Educator
Bethany Stevens - Educator
Riva Lehrer - Artist
Josh Feldman - Actor

Andrew Gurza - Activist
A Andrews - Author

Reggie Greer - White House Advisor

Jessica Kellfren-Fozard - Educator, YouTuber

Dr. Laura Rifkin - Professor, Therapeutic Recreation Specialist

Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha - Artist, Author

Jess Thurber - Communication Designer

Tiphany Adams - Model, Actor, Speaker

Sky Heyn Cubacub - Designer, Artist

Melissa Yingst - Journalist

Nomy Lamm - Musician, Filmmaker

Patrick Califia - Writer
Kay Ulanday Barrett -Artist

Eli Claire - Artist

Eva Sweeney - Educator

Dandy Doodlez - Artist, Illustrator

Julian Gavino - Writer, Activist

Chella Man - Fashion Model

 

 

Infographic: LGBTQ People With Disabilities

Honoring LGBTQ People With Disabilities

LGBTQ Disabled Women in History

One-Third of LGBTQ Adults Identify as Having a Disability

Excluded: Queer and Disabled

Activists Who Are Disabled and Transgender

Video Roundtable: Disability, Sex, Relationships, Dating

Disabled LGBTQ Creatives: Imagining a Better Tomorrow

 

Paul and Matthew

A message from Paul, a blind gay man, about his relationship with Matthew...

 

As a person with gradual vision loss, I had only been using a white cane for 2 years when I met Matthew. Honestly, I should have been using one much earlier in my life, but I struggled to accept it. Mostly because I didnít want to ďlook disabledĒ and draw attention to myself. I felt embarrassed and lesser-than; all the things a disabled person grapples with at some point on their journey.

Eventually, my safety became a priority and I applied for cane training. It was a life-changing decision in many ways. It allowed me to be more independent, and it forced me to get comfortable with having a visible disability. It wasnít always easy, and there were some days I didnít leave my apartment.

 

 

But when Matthew came into my life, something rather unexpected happened: I got a seeing-eye boyfriend! I hadnít anticipated the benefits of being able to hold hands and link arms with a fully sighted human being. I could tuck my cane away and let Matthew guide us through the busy streets of Seattle, the even busier streets of New York City, and all the airports in between.

One year ago, my seeing-eye boyfriend became my seeing-eye husband and together weíve traveled to Mexico, Canada, Australia, and all over the United States. Always hand-in-hand while Matthew describes the various sights around us (thatís something heís very good at doing!)

Another thing heís good at doing is encouraging me to use my cane for independence, and not to rely on him too often. And you know something? I no longer feel embarrassed or lesser-than. I actually feel pride in my disability. And I owe so much of that to my Matthew.
 

Video: Push Girls

LGBTQ People with Developmental Disabilities

Video Talk: Gay, Disabled, and Just Fine

Deaf Queer Resource Center

Video Roundtable: Disability, Sex, Relationships, Dating

Jessica and Claudia: Dating a Disabled Lesbian

Living With a Disability in the Gay Community

Being Blind and Gay

Push Girls: Tiphany Adams

Gay and Disabled: Nothing Can Stop Me

3000 Attend NY's First Disability Pride Parade

 

   

 

Report: LGBTQ People and Disabilities

 

The Americans with Disabilities Act was passed and signed into law by President George HW Bush on July 26, 1990. The ADA is a civil rights law that protects people with physical or mental impairments that substantially limit major life activities from discrimination in all areas of public life, including jobs, schools, transportation, and all public and private places that are open to the general public. People living with HIV are also protected from discrimination by the ADA. Research shows that LGBTQ people are more likely than the general population to have a disability and face systemic challenges finding employment, community, and more. Even 30 years after the passage of the ADA, more work is needed to ensure that people with disabilities, including LGBTQ people with disabilities, have full and equal access in American society.

An Estimated 3-5 Million LGBTQ People Have Disabilities


2 in 5 transgender adults
1 in 4 lesbian, gay, bisexual adults

...compared to 27.2% of the overall population

40% of bisexual men
36% of lesbian women
36% of bisexual women
26% of gay men

...reported having a disability

 

 

MAP Report: LGBTQ People With Disabilities

Special: Gay Disabled Comedy TV Series

Blind and Gay Man Discovers He's Not Alone

Disabled LGBTQ Activists Redefining Sex and Sexuality

Jessica: Disabled and Gay

Mobility Aids: Time to Sit Down

Inter-Abled Relationships: Benefits of Dating a Disabled Person

Interpreting Queer Words in ASL

Disability and Dating: Sexy, Seated, and Single

Dino Petrera: Gay and Hearing Impaired

Jessica: People Accept My Gayness But Not My Disabilities


Unique Challenges for LGBTQ People with Disabilities

Limited access to LGBTQ-inclusive and fully accessible services. Accessing affordable, accessible, and inclusive health care, community services, and more is challenging for LGBTQ people with disabilities. This is particularly true for people in rural communities. Not only are people living in rural areas more likely to have disabilities, but the distances needed to travel to find LGBTQ-competent and fully accessible service providers, community programming, and more placed LGBTQ people with disabilities in rural communities at a greater risk for isolation and increased discrimination.
 

Bullying and exclusion for LGBTQ youth with disabilities. LGBTQ youth with disabilities report high rates of harassment and are more likely to be bullied or harassed than students without disabilities. LGBTQ students with disabilities are more likely to be disciplined in school and to drop out of school, compared to LGBTQ students without disabilities.

 


 

Added barriers to employment. People with disabilities report incredibly high rates of employment discrimination and unemployment. In 2017, only 36% of adults with a disability were employed compared to 77% of those without a disability. This discrimination compounded by the discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, as well as racial and ethnic discrimination, means that LGBTQ people with disabilities may struggle to find and keep jobs, and to access support services like unemployment benefits, leaving them and their families economically insecure.

Invisibility within both communities. LGBTQ people with disabilities often report that it is challenging to have their identities fully recognized. In spaces focused on disability, their unique experiences as LGBTQ people may not be recognized. And in LGBTQ spaces, services and facilities may not be inclusive or accessible, including having accessible buildings or restrooms, ASL interpretation and/or CART captioning for deaf or hard of hearing people, and more.

 

LGBTQ people are more likely to experience mental health conditions that can impact daily life. Mental health conditions can potentially impact a personís daily life to such an extent that it is a disability in the eyes of the law, medical professionals, and/or the individual living with that condition. Research finds that LGBTQ people are more likely to have a mental health disorder in their lifetimes, including mood disorders such as depression, anxiety, and substance use disorders. A growing body of research links experiences of discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity, as well as race, ethnicity, and disability status, prejudice, barriers to competent health care, lower rates of health insurance, poverty, experiences of violence, and more to these health disparities.

 

 

 

LGBTQ People Living With Disabilities

Dino Petrera: Gay and Hearing Impaired

MAP Report: LGBTQ People With Disabilities

Disabled LGBTQ Creatives: Imagining a Better Tomorrow

Gay and Disabled: Nothing Can Stop Me

Dandy Dodlez: Artist, Queer, Disabled, Sexually Active

Rainbow Alliance for the Deaf

Sign: Silent Film Project

Black, Gay, Autistic and Beautiful

PBS Video: Differently Abled and Bisexual

Jessica Kellgren-Fozard: Dating a Disabled Lesbian

Queer and Disabled: Representation and Accessibility

Addressing Needs of LGBTQ People with Disabilities

Blind and Gay Man Discovers He's Not Alone

Video: Push Girls

LGBTQ People with Developmental Disabilities

Huff Post: Queer Disability Anthology

 

Laurie Rubin: Blind Lesbian Opera Singer

Blind since birth, mezzo-soprano Laurie Rubin tells her empowering story in memoir Do You Dream in Color? Insights From a Girl Without Sight. Acclaimed mezzo-soprano opera singer Laurie Rubin has been blind since birth, is openly lesbian, and of Jewish background. What better reason to write a memoir? On paper, she was, obviously, not your typical everyday teenager growing up. But with determination and a strong support system, she continually surpassed and redefined othersí expectations, both professionally in the music industry and outside of it.

 


Defying the naysayers since childhood, the lively and charismatic Rubin released Do You Dream in Color? Insights From a Girl Without Sight in 2012, recounting her experiences from childhood to full-fledged opera singer. An uplifting story about her journey to follow her dreams, Rubinís story asks those universal questions (Who am I? and Where do I fit in?) while giving an insight into a musical world you probably know nothing about. Not only does she have a busy concert schedule, Rubin is also in developing a curriculum for Yale music (where she earned her master's degree) that will aim to dispel stereotypes and better the perceived value of people living with disabilities by allowing people of all ages and walks of life to share in the experiences of blindness.

 

MAP Report: LGBTQ People With Disabilities

Blind and Gay Man Discovers He's Not Alone

Disabled LGBTQ Activists Redefining Sex and Sexuality

Jessica: Disabled and Gay

Mobility Aids: Time to Sit Down

Inter-Abled Relationships: Benefits of Dating a Disabled Person

Interpreting Queer Words in ASL

Disability and Dating: Sexy, Seated, and Single

Dino Petrera: Gay and Hearing Impaired

Jessica: People Accept My Gayness But Not My Disabilities

 

 

Dandy Doodlez: Artist, Queer, Disabled

Artist Dandy Doodles is proving you can be disabled, queer and sexuality active one powerful illustration at a time. She has opened up about sex, the intersection between queerness and disability, and why the LGBTQ community is so inaccessible. Dandy developed Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME), a complex neurological disease that presents with symptoms in multiple body systems, around two years ago.

 

ďOvernight, I sort of lost everything in my life. I was a very active person,Ē she said. ďI was doing a degree, and I was working for Oxfam. I was doing all these different things, and it just suddenly struck me down. I lost the ability to walk, to tolerate light or sound, to read, to count. I had all of this joint and muscle pain, and fatigue. I spent about just over a year in the dark in my room. I couldnít tolerate any kind of light. I had to wear my sunglasses in bed. It was it was very, very extreme."
 

 

Before she developed ME, Dandyís biggest passions were writing novels and music, and she desperately needed a creative outlet. At the beginning of 2020, it was suggested to her that she could start drawing using an iPad. ďI found it was really, is really a great way of expressing myself,Ē she said. "Having been isolated for so long, I didnít really have a voice. So I started to post these things on Instagram as a way of connecting with other disabled people and queer people, just like having that sense of community. From there it just kind of exploded.Ē

Dandy began receiving messages from companies who wanted to work with her, and was even commissioned by Warner Brothers and the BBC. But her most recent project she describes as ďastoundingĒ. Sex toy company Lovehoney has entered into a partnership with disability start-up Handi to overhaul the taboos on sex and disability through a new book, titled The Handi Book of Love, Lust & Disability, which features the stories and poetry of 50 disabled contributors. Dandy was originally approached to be one of the contributors but while in talks with Handi, she found herself ďoffhandedlyĒ offering to illustrate the entire book, on top of contributing her story.

 

Dandy Dodlez: Artist, Queer, Disabled, Sexually Active
Queer and Disabled: Representation and Accessibility

Disabled World Report: Over One Third of LGBTQ Adults Identify as Disabled

Gay and Disabled: Nothing Can Stop Me

Disability and Dating: Sexy, Seated, and Single

Special: Gay Disabled Comedy TV Series

Jessica: People Accept My Gayness But Not My Disabilities

Video Roundtable: Disability, Sex, Relationships, Dating

Inter-Abled Relationships: Benefits of Dating a Disabled Person

You Need to Calm Down: Sign Language

Netfilx Series: Queer and Disabled

Respect Ability: One-Third of LGBTQ Adults Have a Disability

Disabled LGBTQ Activists Redefining Sex and Sexuality

Black, Gay, Autistic and Beautiful

Video Talk: Disabled LGBTQ Couple

Scholarly Paper: Intersectionality of Disabilities and LGBTQ Identity

Living With a Disability in the Gay Community

Jessica: Disabled and Gay

Deaf Queer Resource Center

Being Blind and Gay

 

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QUEER CAFE │ LGBTQ Information Network │ Established 2017