Question: Handling our physical differences?

Hi, I have met an interesting woman, on an online dating place and online we really hit it off.She did beforehand tell me that she had severe arthritis which have deformed her hands and scoilosis in her neck,leaving a slight hump. We talked for three hours for coffee,holding hands and kissing before we left. I do have an attraction to her heart and mind.personality,she’s a beautiful person inside. I do like her a lot and we’re going to another date this weekend. It’s the stares we got being together that bother me. I’m average looking but no physical ills. It’s mean and cruel to say,but I know what folks are thinking about us. I’m scared about her meeting my traditional mom,who I live with. My heart and conscious is ripping,what do I do? Tell my mom the truth or do as my female friend wants me to do,hide our relationship? I feel horrible and weak and cowardly for thinking this way.

I’m sorry to hear that the seedling of your relationship has had so much outside negative influence already. I can’t predict how your friends, family, and strangers will react to your relationship. I don’t know anyone that would judge so harshly, but I also know that not everyone is kind.

If you are happy, are you willing to fight for your continued happiness?

That is easier said than done when you feel like your relationship is judged for appearing different. Physical differences can be more difficult than internal differences because they are what people can see and judge quickly.

I don’t know that you need to tell anyone anything. Experience this relationship as any other relationship. Accept that there will be people who will judge, as any other is judged.

If that isn’t something you can handle, this woman is deserving of someone who can. She is deserving of someone who likes her the way she is, and wants her the way she is. Do not hide your relationship. Period. Ever. At all. I would never condone hiding a relationship unless it was physically unsafe to be open.

Also try to go into the world believing that people are good and kind even if we know that they aren’t all this way. Don’t project your fears (“people must think we are unusual, people must be staring at us, we are different”) out on to the world. Be confident in your affections. I know that this can be hard, especially for people who are accustomed to being judged or discriminated against.

Good luck exploring this new relationship, and if I hope that if it isn’t something the two of you continue to explore, that you have learned something from it.

Do you have a question about sex or love? Submit at the top by hitting ask advice and I’ll answer it on my blog. 

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