Dating On Wheels: Dating newbie with CP afraid to say she’s disabled

Dear Tiffiny,

Hi, my name is angel and I’m a 19 yr old college student in Buffalo. Many of my friends have had a dating life; some are engaged. It always made me feel socially behind. I felt like i’d be in the “always a bridesmaid , never a bride situation.” I’m tired of that now. So I’m gonna try dating now.

I’m afraid to do F2F (face to face) because I’m afraid of rejection. Therefore I wanna start online, so my question is at which point in online dating do I tell the person about my Cerebral Palsy?




Dear Angel,

Oh I remember when I was 19, desperately wishing to have my first date. You have friends at your age that are engaged?  Here me loud and clear when I say: They’re rushing it, and don‘t be jealous.

You know, a lot of people with disabilities end up starting a little bit later than their peers when it comes to dating. I would say at age 19, and not having been on a date yet, is really not that bad. It’s not easy breaking through stupid high school mentalities.  Sometimes you have to wait until after high school to find people worth your time. I started dating at 19 and it was the best thing I ever did.

Online dating has so many pros, that the cons almost don’t matter.  But there are important rules you need to follow when dating online with a disability.  The first rule I always tell everybody, the most important rule, answers the very question you asked me: At what point should you tell someone online that you have a disability?

Angel, I think you know the answer (even though it’s not easy). The answer? You should tell a potential romantic interest you have a disabled right away.  That way, you don’t waste their time or yours. Don’t try to get someone to like you “because of your personality,” and then drop on them that you you have a disability.  Put yourself in their shoes. No want wants to be fooled. Honesty is always the best policy right up front.

Also, mention that you have a disability right away in your dating profile (in the first sentence of the first paragraph). It should go something like this: “Hi!  My name is Angel. I’m 19 years old and I have a disability. If you want to learn more, please ask.” And then you can go into everything else about your awesome life. You never have to go into specifics about your disability in your profile. You can always save that later in one-on-one chat.

Alright girl, I hope you take heart to what I said. Don’t do what I did when I was your age: I carried on a long distance relationship with a guy from Europe for six months, not telling him I was in a wheelchair. Once I did, I never heard from him again.  See what I mean?  It wasted my time and his.

There’s never no point in beating around the bush at all about your disability when dating online. Be proud of it, own it. You will still attract men; you will. They’ll be even better ones too now, because you‘ll be finding the ones who don‘t care.

Wishing you luck in love,


  1. I agree Tiffiny, you gotta let it be known right from the gate, it’s the right thing to do. Angel, it isn’t going to be an easy process to find love either online, face to face, disability or no disability. What i’ve learned when it comes to finding love is to be patient, and in the mean time, work on yourself. You should continue college, travel, network, enjoy hobbies, study life, volunteer, enjoy family, and most importantly, smell the roses. Life isn’t ‘just’ about relationships…it’s about growth. I’ve always said…if I want to meet someone that is out of this world, I gotta be out of this world. So gear up, chillax, and take your time…that booty will come sooner or later. LOL

  2. I agree as well. Just recently I read of people with physical challenges who are riding Harley Davidsons and flying planes! Anything is possible with the right attitude. Take your time and love who you are and what you can offer… the rest will take care of itself.

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