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Gay and handicapped

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gpaulbishop wrote:

We have an extremely narrow scope in mind for the site. Stories that pertain to handicapped & physically challenged Gay teens and Young Adults. (Blind, Mute, Deaf, Wheelchair bound etc.)

I'm sure there are many people who'd be interested in a site like that. I would. (Please let me know how it progresses.)

Well, Perry and Jesse has at least two readers who are visually handicapped, although the story doesn't involve physically challenged / differently abled people. I'm one of them, so if I don't use the politically correct terms, it's because I've heard all the euphemisms and not politically correct words. (And visually impaired or legally blind makes little sense to anyone, but I can tell you exactly what it means.)

The Least of These would probably be one story for consideration.

I think it would be wonderful to have a site for GLBT / questioning / friendly people who are physically challenged. Such folks could use resources to understand and deal with both sets of issues. Fiction that they can relate to would be a big plus.

IMHO, a story doesn't have to have a disabled character for me to get something out of it. But I can definitely identify with what the characters go through for being gay. Handicapped folks are often subjected to similar discrimination because they are perceived as "different" or "strange."

I'd also offer one other caution. I'll be blunt. I've read a few stories on Nifty that did have handicapped characters. Way too often, I got the distinct impression that the author didn't understand what it was like. Or worse, with a couple of stories, an unsettling feeling that something was just...off. Now the first just means the author needs to learn something about what physically challenged people are like and what they go through. The other...that bothers me more than I can say. I don't think we can/should pretend that people will always be gentle and understanding of handicaps or of the feelings and desires of people with handicaps. There's everything from being called gay (even if they aren't), to being treated as asexual, to being taken advantage of, or offered a "mercy (act)" (as opposed to a genuine relationship). Also, sometimes handicapped folks develop social maladjustments, including sexual ones. There can also be a lot of questioning, guilt, or anger, at themselves and at anyone else, at both their sexual and handicapped situation. All that is all too true, so fiction or non-fiction ought to deal with those things.

There are a ton of positive things that can be said, though. Many people, even kids and teens, can be wonderful relatives, friends, and caregivers. Part of that is to make sure a handicapped friend has education and opportunities to explore relationships. (BTW, most handicapped folks are going to be shy about their sexual feelings or questions around others.) Heck, if a friendship becomes something more, that's great.

Hmm. Think I need to work on that a bit myself, says closet-boy.

Well, I didn't expect to get quite that deep into the subject, but maybe the input will help your site plans, Paul, as well as Dude and any story writers.

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Hi Ya Blue,

No I really deeply appreciate the input as Rick and I are striving to achieve a balanced approach for the site. The whole reason we got this idea was a story by Grasshopper entitled "Just Hit Send," that a group of us did a recording of, sortofa "books-on-tape" that I sent to a blind gay teen I mentor on and off line. Marc was so happy he cried when he called me back. Well, we figured that if Marc reacted that way, so after alot of research we began. It's kinda tough cause this is all new to me, the software encoding, Meta tags to trigger the reader program and oh yeah the audio-streaming aspects.

Rick and I just felt that we both needed to give something back to those gay kids so that they too, had a voice and a home on the web.

Paul :mrgreen:

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Well then too Blue, the other part of this, is gathering stories that would hold meaning and evoke an emotional response plus the site is for these folk not to outline differences but to wrap them up into a sense of greater community. It has not been an easy undertaking for Rick or I. Since I do not suffer any form of physical challenge, my viewpoint is skewered and I need to be cautious. Oh I also do not desire to be patronizing either, I merely want to have a place of safety for them that has common ground and expression of similiar needs, desires, and I hope, a place to let them feel included. This is tuff, oh and of course I am refering to Grasshopper's Just Hit Send as a bench mark story in reference back to the flagship story we picked that inspired this website to begin with.

And all here, please, please, feedback is crucial for me as well as my friend, so any suggestions, let me have them! Thanks to All

Paul :mrgreen:

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