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Ataxia Support

Online dating

My name is Shane, i’m 42 and live in Perth Western Australia.

Has anyone had success in finding a partner online?

Unfortunately, I can’t hide it anymore and need to explain before we meet.

Hi, Shane. Can’t really help as I’ve been married for 43 years, and fortunately he’s stuck by me through a variety of medical issues! I know both my sons have used online dating with varying levels of success. I always think honesty is best…be straightforward but don’t overwhelm with information. I have SCA2 (fairly painless diagnosis presymptomatically as my birth mother was diagnosed and it was suggested her kids be tested), so I had an idea what was coming. Best of luck.

:slightly_smiling_face: I’ve seen recommendations on Facebook Ataxia Support Groups, but can’t recall any offhand. But, I’ll post if I find links.

:thinking: Google ‘disability dating’…lots of links

I have dated after I got my cane. When we first start just talking I let them know my disability and what I use and let them know that if they would like to continue it’s up to them. (some people can handle it and some don’t)

I met my wife in Sept 2012 online and married her in Sept 2014. I’ve actually had a couple of other long-term relationships come from meeting online. I never tried to hide anything, and I was always upfront about my disorder from the get-go. They could either accept it or not. It was too much for most, but there are people out there who could look past it.

I used to be friends with a guy who had Friedrichs (I have SCA). He had an amazing ability to impress women, no matter where he was. I experienced it myself-he was just super likable and we were friends for many years. It was easy to forget about his symptoms because he pushed his personality and interests to the forefront.

I think when you’re a dude, especially at our age (I’m the same age as you), you have to make it obvious that you do not need to be taken care of and the ataxia does not lower your self esteem.

I would probably say nothing in the online profile and then before you meet up with a lady say something like, I have a neuro problem so you might notice that I move a little differently. It’s not a big deal.

Essentially you are telling them how to react. And I’d steer away from the “yes it will kill me” conversation, which is always awkward.