Romina Puma is a sexy comedian searching for Mr Right, and her hunt has led her into the deep dark jungle of online dating apps.
However, her online matches seem more interested in asking awkward questions about her muscular dystrophy than getting to know her as the fabulous and funny person she is.
Undeterred, Romina is using her stand-up to challenge attitudes to sex and disability.
This blog contains frank information about sex. It’s meant for people over the age of 16.
Disabled people have sex and do it in different positions just like everyone else. One day it dawned on me that I’d never seen a Kama Sutra for disabled people – and why not?
Luckily, Google had the answer. I found a Kama Sutra poster for disabled people and took it to the stage – well the softcore version anyway!
Don’t get me wrong there are some limitations with the poster – it’s designed for male wheelchair-users for a start. A few times in my set I’ve loved inviting male audience members up on stage, to sit in my wheelchair and try out a few of the positions with me. It can be fun but it depends on what kind of an audience you have!
Initially, it was just something fun to put in the act but after experimenting with it on stage, I thought it would be great to try out some of the positions… But I soon realised it was much easier just to go to bed – I guess I’m just a creature of comfort!
The hunt begins
I decided I might find my dream man online. So I got busy. The first one I tried was Plenty of Fish, then I tried Tinder, then I went on Ok Cupid, then I tried Guardian Soulmates – you think if people are paying to subscribe then they’re into something more than just a one night stand.
I was on Guardian Soulmates for one month and no one contacted me. It was really upsetting, like – wow, not even one person got in touch with me. It was really weird. So I’m not on there anymore.
I’m still on Tinder. I use it like playing solitaire, swipe, swipe, swipe – when I’m bored. I get to chat to guys, get some material out of it – it’s fun and then sometimes every now and then you go on a date or you might hang out with that person for a little bit.
When’s the right time?
In the beginning all the pictures I uploaded of me online were without any aids. But then there was always this awkward moment of when is the right time to tell them I have muscular dystrophy?
If we go on a date I can’t just turn up with my wheelchair because they’re going to be shocked!
I would often match with someone on Tinder, start chatting to them and then it would get to a point when we’d arrange a date I would have to say: “Listen I have to tell you something before we go on a date, because I want to be honest and I don’t want you to get a shock, I have muscular dystrophy and I use a wheelchair”.
Some said “no – I can’t do it”. They cancelled. Some were up for new experiences and would meet up with me out of curiosity to find out what it would be like to go on a date with someone who’s disabled.
Everything works properly down there…
I got to a point where I had enough with having these awkward moments and conversations. It’s really hard to digest when guys don’t want to go out with you anymore because you’ve told them you are disabled and you use a wheelchair.
So I decided to change my profile pictures and use ones of me standing with my crutch or in my wheelchair, so they can see I am disabled.
I still got my matches on Tinder but the number of guys who wanted to chat to me dropped completely. Normally I’d have a few guys contact me every day. After I changed my picture, it took ages before someone messaged me. I tried messaging some guys, some would chat back but then that just gets boring after a while.
At least now I don’t have that awkward moment to deal with. Sometimes they ask me questions about my condition – what it is? Can I have sex? Yes I can! Everything works properly down there, don’t worry about that.
I think for that reason – I had to put something it in the show – these experiences have shown me I have to try and change people’s perceptions as much as I can. I’m still waiting for someone to help me try all the positions in the Kama Sutra – can you believe it? – I haven’t had any takers yet!
Romina shared her story as part of Scope’s Romance Classics. You can read more sexy stories from our authors: