Sherry Nevius, single and 52, is looking for a mate with all the important adjectives — caring, sincere, intelligent, funny. Oh, and one more thing: disabled.
Born with cerebral palsy, Ms. Nevius uses a wheelchair. She is independent and mobile, but would prefer to meet a man who could roll alongside her. Nevius has dated several perfectly nice able-bodied men, but none seemed willing to start a serious relationship.
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She lives in Normal, Ill. Several dating Web sites for singles with health problems have started up in the last few years. Nevius ed Dating 4 Disableda site for people with an array of disabilities, including paralysis and multiple sclerosis.
These sites are generally small and run by one person or a small group. They are usually free, although some have a few to cover costs.
Michael T. Maurer, 57, a professor of applied psychology at New York University, came upon POZ Personals while doing research for his work and found it to be a welcoming community where it was easier to get to know someone. Maurer said. He said the worst part of dating was the anxiety over disclosing his H. Getting to know someone in an online community of people with H. Durham said.
The first date? The third? Awkward issues that come with an illness can be discussed frankly and openly in an online space in which everyone is dealing with something out of the ordinary.
The anonymity of the Internet allows people to be forthcoming and honest about what they are truly looking for in a companion. Among the almost 12, members of Dating 4 Disabled, for example, many specify the types of disabilities they would be open to dealing with in a long-term relationship.
Kaplan said. As for Ms. Nevius, the man of her dreams may be paralyzed or blind, but there is one potential deal breaker: He must be an animal lover.