Living a self-determined life as LGBTIQ person with disability

People with disability are often granted less self-determination than those without. How can LGBTIQ persons with disability love and live a self-determined life? How can they empower themselves? What are their rights?

Different people have different disabilities—find what you have by asking yourself the questions below. You may even find that none of these apply to you.

Did you become disabled before, during or after your birth? Is your disability the result of a genetic defect or an accident? Are you mentally or physically disabled? Or do you have a sensory disability? Do you have multiple disabilities? Are your disabilities due to age or wear and tear? Do you in live in a home or in sheltered accommodation? Are your disabilities visible or not? Do you rely on assistance and support from others?

How do I want to refer to myself?

Now that you have a disability, you might be using a self-assigned term/label, which originally devalued other groups, but you have turned it into something positive for your own empowerment. It makes a huge difference if you, as a person with disability uses these terms consciously as opposed to a non-disabled majority deciding what is right or wrong.

You alone decide for your life!

It is important that you achieve the greatest possible degree of self-determination. But this can only happen if your self-confidence is seen as a positive expression of realizing “I am perfect the way I am!” Focus on your special abilities instead of your shortcomings.

It is ok to have sexual needs!

For many people it is difficult to envisage people with disabilities as sexual beings and even more, as being lesbian, gay, trans or intersex. This is true both for the heterosexual majority and as well as for LGBTIQs without disability.

LGBTIQs with disability still face many hurdles when it comes to satisfying their emotional and sexual needs. But this is their human right too. Remember, don’t let others impose their way of life on you.

Same framework conditions for allworldwide

The UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disability came into force in Germany in March 2009. It stands for respect, dignity and self-determination, participation and inclusion in society as well as for respecting and accepting diversity. In this sense, the Convention concretises many life situations for people with disabilities. You can fall back on this at any time.