In episode 9, get ready for some fun ’cause it’s the dating episode. All four ladies attend an art gallery opening together (and get lots of stares), Tiphany reconnects with an ex-flame (a guy this time!), Angela dates a hunk 12 years her junior and Mia goes kayaking on a first date. The Bachelorette has nothing on this episode.
SPOILERS AHEAD ****
The episode begins checking in with Tiphany and Angela. Tiphany is on her computer in the living and checking her dating profile. Tiphany says most people assume you have no dating life if you use a chair, but admits that being in a chair can make you more vulnerable. “Trusting people can be tough.”
Angela rolls in asking her if she puts down she uses a wheelchair in her profile (while Tiphany points out an alternative-looking she thinks is hot who has ginormous gauged ears; Angela squirms and asks, “What in the heck is on his ears?” lol). And then Angela brings up one of the most creepy issues you’ll discover after being paralyzed – wheelchair fetishists (they have an attraction to people in wheelchairs).
I hate them personally, and Angela does too, which is why she’s concerned about Tiphany putting she uses a wheelchair in her profile. “Then, all the freaky deaky guys out there who are all into wheelchairs will find you.” Tiphany says she doesn’t put it in her profile, but she does tell a guy right away once she can trust him after a few emails. “I won’t go like, ‘Surprise! I’m in a wheelchair,’ she jokes.
Angela and Tiphany begin to write her profile. “Witty,” Angela says. “A little sass,” Tiphany adds. “Smart ass,” Angela corrects her. Then Tiphany opens up to the camera about her past dating experiences and how she trusted a lot of the wrong people.
She describes the time she went out on a date with a guy and was thrown out of her wheelchair, hit her head on a wall and got a concussion. “My head was slammed in between a door.” “I felt completely hopeless,” she says. Then she admits she wonders if she’ll ever find the person that’s going to love for unconditionally for the rest of her life.
In the next scene, we are brought to Auti and Eric’s house. Auti is chopping veggies with a cutting board on her lap and is looking really sexy for just culinary adventures. She is going to an art gallery showing with Mia, Angela and Tiphany that evening (this should be good).
Eric tells the camera, “I always panick when Auti goes out without me.” “She’s fiercely independent.” Eric tell her she looks pretty, have fun and to make sure she post pictures on Facebook (love how the couple trusts each other like that). “I love having my freedom, like being able to go out with my girls -we experience new things together, and we like sharing that experience.”
Mia picks up Auti in her sleek black convertible (Mia’s chair is in the back seat while Auti puts hers in the trunk). These girls are ninjas I swear to God. “Holy Moses, your trunk is tiny,” Auti complains. And then Auti adjusts her “ghetto clip” (giant barrette) in her hair before they take off, points forward-ho and says, “Ret!”
In the next scene, the girls arrive in a bustling LA neighborhood for the art gallery showing. Tiphany struggles to get up a curb. “I have a 20 pound a purse on my ass,” she complains jokingly, and gets a push up from a stranger. The girls finally arrive at the art gallery, it’s not accessible, so they get the help of some nearby guys to get lifted inside. Auti tells Tiphany to use her flirting skills. “You are a hormone,” she jokes.
Angela talks about how people stare when the four of them go out together. “People stare up the ying yang we’re together. I’ve got this acronym – PS -people staring,” she says. “You can’t help but look. You don’t see four women in wheelchairs together that often,” she admits. Tiphany says guys must wonder what it’s like to date a girl in a wheelchair when they see her.
Mia says its all about making guys comfortable, “The best way to put guys at ease is to show that the wheelchair is nothing, means nothing. It doesn’t stop you from being flirty.” And then Tiphany talks about something that always happens to me, “Sometimes there’s this one guy that always feels the need to come up to you and tell you you’re the most beautiful woman he’s ever seen. But he’s only doing that because he thinks you never get any compliments.”
Auti talks about the time she was at the beach line in her bikini and a guy comes up to her and says, “Too bad you can have sex. I bet you give great had though.” “Who says this stuff??” Auti says, appalled as she recalls the story. Outside the art gallery, Mia and Tiphany take a break and rest up against the wall as people pass by.
Mia talks about dating in LA and then a guy walks by and says rudely, “Clearly you’re disabled” (he thought they were faking being in wheelchairs. Because of how they looked?). “He just said the ‘disabled’ word,” Tiphany jokes.
“They think we’re just playing around or trying to make a scene,” Mia says confused. “I think that when they see one of us it’s one thing, but then when they see four of us they’re like, ‘Nah,'” says Mia. And Tiphany just laughs it off, “Haha we’re art.”
In the next scene, Chelsea visits Tiphany, so she takes her to a nail salon for a manicure and pedicure. Tiphany is wearing a fluffy hat, a puffy jacket and her hair is in pigtails. “It’s my snow bunny look,” she jokes.
Tiphany tells Chelsea she got a text from her ex Matt, a guy from her hometown she dated after her injury (who was once temporarily paralyzed during a Moto cross accident so he relates to her). “I never had to worry he would put his hands on me in any wrong way.”
We get the back story: Tiphany wants to be his girlfriend, but gets no commitment. They have sex for awhile, and she gets a call from a friend saying he is at the bar trying to take home two girls, so she calls off. “I can’t deny that I’m still attracted to him,” she adds when chatting about him with Chelsea.
Next, we see a cool shot of Mia driving down a road, over-dubbed with her talking about dating in her thirties. “You don’t have that much time left, but on the other hand, you don’t wanna be wrong.” “It’s pretty complicated.” And then we see her at her desk at work, her cell phone rings and it is Edhan, a guy she met at a Jewish singles group. He asks what she’s doing for the weekend, and invites her to go kayaking. She agrees. “You can’t wear anything cute on a kayak,” Mia worries out loud.
In the next scene, the girls meet for lunch at a cool outdoor bistro (Pig ‘n Whistle), and have a very Sex in the city-esque catch up session. Mia tells them she met a guy. They start questioning her. “He’s taking me kayaking.” “Is it adaptive kayaking?” inquires Auti skeptically.
By the way, another fashion OMG moment: Angela’s chocolate off-the-shoulder mohair sweater (combined with a black scarf and dangly hearings), is one of the prettiest outfits I’ve ever seen her in. “If a guy likes you without makeup on and you’re wet, he’s the one,” Angela tells Mia, who’s stressing about having to give up her vanity (being in a wet suit) on a first date.
Auti gives her a motherly warning, “Don’t have him come pick you up.” “You don’t know who’s out there these days. “You don’t know if they might be, like, a devotee.” Tiphany calls them “wheel chasers” and says you know you’re having to deal with one in public if they begin following you.
“If you’re at the grocery store and they’re in every aisle that you’re in, and then there behind you at the checkout, then you know.“ Tiphany says some of these guys will even say, “Ooooh I’m gonna make her walk again.” (ugh gross)
In the next scene Angela goes out on a date with a guy 12 years younger than her (who she met at a dinner party) named Luke. He talks about how when he met her at the party, he didn’t even know she was in a wheelchair, or didn’t notice rather (and they kissed). He says he didn’t intend to date someone in a wheelchair, but is open to anything, “if it’s positive and beneficial.” Angela can’t believe he didn’t notice the wheelchair at the party. “I sometimes forget that you use a wheelchair. I just didn’t notice.”
And then she gets on him about her age. “You really don’t mind?” “No,” he says. And then she asks if he’s ever had a fantasy about having sex with a woman in a wheelchair (holy cow Angela is a confrontational first date. Not always the best idea, ladies). “I have no response to that, all right?” And they laugh it off.
Luke talks about the first time they were in bed together and how he would touch her body and ask where she could feel. “Most guys my age would write off this type of relationship out of fear and ignorance,” he admits. But he says once you get to know the world of paralysis, the wheelchair really isn’t that big of a deal.
Finally, in the next scene Mia has her date with Edhan. They meet at the marina and the kayak instructor insists she wears a wet suit, so poor Mia has to struggle putting on a wet suit in the locker room, withher date was outside waiting. They get a quick lesson on how to paddle (use your core not your arms!) and the two hop in a kayak built for two people (aw romantic).
They begin paddling and it looks really fun. Mia is in front and there’s a really cool backrest to help her stay upright. They have nice conversation as they paddle. Mia likes the anonymity of being out of her wheelchair once the while, and they see a seal. Jealous!
After kayaking, Edhan surprises her with a picnic on the beach. He picks her up and helps her on the blanket. “This must be one of the best parts about being in a wheelchair, huh?” he jokes. They talk about things they both wanna do in their lifetimes, but then Mia tells the camera off-screen that she doesn’t feel a spark with him and she isn’t going to settle. “I’m definitely looking for something more” she says. Gah I just love how picky Mia is. She shows girls in chairs NEVER have to settle.
In the final scene of the episode, Tiphany decides to meet her ex-flame Matt at Angela’s house (and he brings his son Hayden). Tiphany has a heart-to-heart with him, which she says she needs to do before she decides she can bring him back in her life. Matt denies that he lied to her to get her to sleep with him, to which Tiphany says says, “That’s denial, and it’s not the truth.” “I was really hurt,” she tells him. “Well I didn’t want to hurt you,” Matt replies. “In that moment, I realized I was definitely over Matt,” says Tiphany.
“I was holding on to him because he saw beyond the chair,” she says. “But now I realize that truly isn’t enough.”
Matt leaves the house on friendly enough terms, but they are definitely over. After he’s gone, Angela turns to Tiphany and asks with a coy smile, “So…what’s next?”
What did you think of this episode? Do you date? What dating rules do you have for yourself?