Sex and Disability on SBS Insight next week

SBS Insight
Airdate: Tuesday, April 12, 2016 at 20:30

Channel: SBS

Imagine: you’ve been married to your partner for 25  years. You live with them, love them, are sexually attracted to them, but physical intimacy? Almost impossible.

This is the reality for David and Jenni Heckendorf, who both have profound cerebral palsy that greatly limits their mobility. In order to have sex, they must use the services of a sex worker; a process of extreme trust, vulnerability and financial cost.

They lobbied to use their NDIS funding to access their sex worker, but others are restricted by state laws and regulations around sex work.

Rachel Wotton is one such sex worker, who works with clients with physical and intellectual disabilities.

What if your child had an intellectual disability? How do you teach them about all the nuances of sex and sexuality: consent, attraction, pleasure, emotion, consequences?

Mary McMahon has helped her gay son negotiate porn. Jarrod McGrath teaches sex-ed classes for children with intellectual disabilities.

And what happens, if and when kids come along? What is the most ethical course of action?

This week, Insight is looking at two issues that are definitely not mutually exclusive: sex and disability.

Tireless voice for women with disabilities wins lifetime award

The Age, November 25, 2015

Are women with disabilities “vulnerable”? Far from it, says Keran Howe. She doesn’t like the term, believing it makes the woman she has worked with as an advocate for more than 30 years seem passive, or submissive.

Instead, women with disabilities are targeted, says Howe, by people who use sexual abuse and family violence to control and intimidate them

Read more here

More sex please: ending barriers in the bedroom [for people with physical disabilities]

Sydney Morning Herald, November 11, 2015

Now 23, Ariane was born with cerebral palsy spastic quadriplegia, which means she has reduced muscle tone in parts of her body and uses a wheelchair.

It also means, like many people with physical disabilities, she has relied on assistance in the past to lead a normal adult sexual life; including help getting undressed before hopping into bed with her boyfriend at the time (who also had a physical disability).

“There’s this idea that we’re not allowed to have sex, that it’s gross,” says Ariane.

  • Read more of this article here
  • Read about the Deakin University study here

 

Tjina Maala Message Book For Families: Stories and support for carers of people with a disability

Tjina Maala Centre, WA, August 2015

The Pika Wiya Kuthupa project aims to investigate the needs of Aboriginal families caring for a child with a disability in the Goldfields region of Western Australia. The project established an Aboriginal community reference group, and during 2013 and 2014 conducted ‘storytelling circles’ community consultations. Aboriginal families caring for children with disabilities, schools, health and disability service representatives were invited to share their stories. Families identified the need for culturally appropriate information and support, and culturally safe models of service delivery. The project team is currently developing Aboriginal disability resources, and continues to raise the awareness of Aboriginal views of disability in the disability sector.

This resource is for Aboriginal families/careers of people with a disability. It provides information on disability, people’s response to disability, rights of people with disabilities, support services, the NDIS, and tips & suggestions. Please note that it does not directly address sexuality.

View this resource online here