Dear Emily,

I’m a 22 year old art student with mobility issues and because of this I still spend most of my time with my parents. I don’t find it hard to meet people and I don’t really feel like my disability gets in the way, but my parents are so worried about me and overprotective that I can’t easily take things to the next level and starting dating someone because I think my mum and dad’s attitude would scare them off if I ever invited anyone home!! Have you got any advice?

 

Thanks

Dan

 

Hi Dan,

First of all, it’s great that you feel so comfortable and confident with meeting people and making connections – very few 22 year olds feel like this, disabled or not! Have you spoken to your parents about this situation and explained how you feel? They might have no idea that their attitude is suffocating you a bit, and a polite and friendly ask from you for them to ‘back off’ a bit might be just what they need! If you’re at University, could you maybe have a couple of dates on campus or at a bar nearby after class? It would be great for you to really get to know someone and for them to know exactly who you are and what you want before they meet your parents. If that’s difficult because your parents often contact you and wonder where you are, it’s vitally important that you let them know that you deserve a social life, you’ll be careful and there’s no need to worry! In terms of inviting a date home, perhaps there’s no rush for that – enjoy someone’s company for a few months before putting parental pressure on anything! Let’s hope that your date has a place of their own, or more liberal parents, so you can enjoy some time alone together too 😉

Good luck!
Em x

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