The wonderful/icky aspect of humanity is that we can seem to be sexually turned on by just about anything. Invent something and five years later there is a fetish group on yahoo dedicated to it. I bet right now someone is stroking their computer mouse in ecstasy. It wasn’t until I was a wheelchair that I became aware of DPW’s: Devotees of wheelchair users (usually female users), Pretenders (people who pretend to have a mobility impairment for sexual/attention and/or other reasons) and Wannabe’s (people who want to be permanently mobility impaired).
I was planning to do an objective survey about this for some time but every time I have tried I tend to get mentally and physically ill. So, this isn’t going to be objective for a few reasons:
1) One of the ways I found out about DPW’s was finding links to my youtube videos and/or blog photos on sites I couldn’t access.
2) The subject matter is one which I am living through. My mobility is an ongoing issue with high emotional costs. Reading someone having a life fantasy to “replicate” my mobility state while being perfectly healthy brings out strong emotions. Reading about someone enjoying my mobility impairment brings out stronger ones.
3) The methods of some Devotees are very similar to those I used to fight in the UK regarding exploiting naked pictures of young children including: the requirements of sending in x number of pictures to get into a “Sharing” club, taking photos and videos of females in wheelchairs without consent, sharing photos and video and selling them without a person’s knowledge or consent.
Am I saying “Devotee’s are pedophiles.” No. What I am saying is when I come across a “closed” site which says, “to become a member send one movie, which shows a female para with naked feet” and earlier in the week I find that some of the people subscribed to my films also are subscribed to films of women in wheelchairs taken “secretly” I begin to wonder what the hell is going on.
I guess that is the first question: what is going on? What is the focus of the interest in these women? When I look at the blog Wheelchair ladies in movies there are common themes: very traditional looking women and a sexual description of wasted legs: “She gets off when he spanks her lifeless legs.”; “Her atropied little legs are of no use. Raven drags her crippled legs into the car and is on the move.” Linda believes that this is an extension of the view of women who are innocent, helpless, and vulnerable and I agree. Recently I have been approached by several people who come across as “devotees” including some who follow me quite some distance before approaching with a “can I push you?” and ending usually with them giving me their number to call them. A site called Devotee central, which gained 24 members in just the last week, features a photo which clearly makes the wasted legs the most sexual aspect of this woman (indeed, her breasts, hips or other traditional erotic markers are not visable, even in outline). I am sure some good feminist crit could jump in now and tell you why some devotees love the “flaccid useless foot” and others the wasted leg of women in wheelchairs. Since I am watching the atrophy of my own legs, the growing inability to feel and move them in significant ways along with the very, very likely prospect that I will not “get better”; that doctors haven’t talked about recovery in a long time, it is with some horror that my physical degeneration and emotional trauma is getting someone’s dick hard.
You see, when the villain in Seven makes someone waste away, he is a monster. When a woman does it...it’s erotic?
Of course there aren’t too many links to my boxing videos because while there are guys who like being dominated by strong women and guys who like weak, helpless or sexualized women in wheelchairs there aren’t many guys who like strong women beating four types of pain out of heavy bag from a wheelchair. Guess I’m not the right “image” yet, lucky me. My PT said that when one of the children she fits with wheelchairs was a bit actor in some films her picture kept showing up on “sites we needed to get it removed from.” I guess children in a wheelchair are more vulnerable and exciting than just plain old children for some.
See, right now, writing this post, I want to just reach through the internet screen and grab someone and say “I am not a toy, I am not a masturbation fantasy, stop dehumanizing me for your pleasure.” I know that guys with tall fetishes would come up to me a lot, usually with “I saw you.....” Okay, I dealt with that. Yet being secretly filmed or watched during moments of my greatest vulnerability like a chair to pool transfer seems vastly different. Obscene.
I read some wannabe stories, as much as I could. Reading what has been the most difficult, painful and traumatic change in my life being somewhere between an erotic and a wish fulfillment makes me feel nausea, feel angry, feel tired. I wish I could somehow depict my life enough to make these people choke. Wake up! I don’t get attention, I don’t get extra love. Instead, what I want is the assurance I will not shit myself and my bed over the next month. Want me to keep you updated? A pay-per-view blog on my bowel control?
There are some, you know, pay-per-view sites of para’s with sexy wasted leg pictures in various poses. Like Candisland at $29.95 (or $65 for three months) with updated pictures/videos of her crawling up the stairs or transferring into bed and other such erotic events (I wish I was kidding). I guess the idea of pimping my disability as sort of exploitive deconstruction seems interesting, but not until my emotional scabbing heals over. Of course now I am thinking, “Damn, how much money could I have made on those corset shots?” (That was a joke, a sick joke).
I guess the other burr in my paw is that these people are pretty ignorant of the type of people who use wheelchairs. If a woman moves her foot they assume “Pretender” while I assume “Muscular Dystrophy” or “MS.” The fantasies, the pretend, the erotic all tends to assume paraplegics. Life is more complicated than that.
Perhaps the double shock is because for all intents and purposes I have no sexual or erotic currency as a functioning woman. I have asked straight guys how they view women in wheelchairs and it is basically, “Too complicated, look for something as good looking but upright.” Can you have sex? How hard is it? These questions bring all too much complication when on babe alert apparently. So after complaining about the guys attracted to me as tall/strong women for so long, now I started to miss them. I have 20 year old’s calling me sweetheart in the way you talk to a girl who has lost her balloon. Yeah, all those years of getting the doctorate are really paiding off. So now, ho ho, someone is interested in me, only it turns out they like the wheelchair more and talk to me as long as I stay within the bounds of innocent, vulnerable, etc (I scared one off permanently by whipping out the oxygen). Who would have thought I would miss the “good ole days” of some guy staring at my breasts?
Ask me some other time, some other year and maybe I’ll be philosophical about it, or maybe I’ll be selling photos and videos on a CD for home viewing. At one point I felt that at least wannabe’s and pretends have SOME idea of what being in a chair is like. Now I feel that until that squat, inefficient, expensive piece of metal sits in the middle of your conscious, dictating every decision from where you go to eat, to vacation, how you get places, what places you can get, everything, then you don’t know. As usual, I take it all in my mature fashion: I fantasize about getting strong enough to find the next person who puts up my picture on a “site,” slide out of chair and beat them with the wheelchair itself. Eroticize that!
30 minutes ago