Your Score: Shrinking Violet
65 Shyness, 5 Codependency, 0 Denial, 0 Assheadedness
You're too shy! Step away from the wall and mingle! Believe it or not, you probably won't die by talking to people. Try saying hello, or get used to only having yourself to talk to. Chances are, when you get past the awkward introductions, you'll be great in a relationship.
|Link: The Why are you single? Test written by Trepi on OkCupid Free Online Dating, home of the The Dating Persona Test|
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I don't mind talking to people at all. I love it. It's just...so HARD to say anything at first! Unless I'm in an environment that I'm VERY familiar and comfortable with, I won't say a word until someone speaks to me. Then it's off to the races. I'm motormouth. (sigh) It's hard to be human, isn't it?
I was trying to force myself to get sleepy last night (unsuccessfully), and I came across an article on msn.com. I liked it, so I posted it on my okcupid journal:
I found this article on msn.com and thought, hey, I should share this the good people on okcupid! So here it is:
Dear Dr. Gilda, I was married for 10 years, and now I’m single. I’m living with my parents while trying to find work and get my finances back in order. I’m extremely lonely, with the exception of my dog, which I love dearly. I am sweet, attractive, articulate, and intelligent. But I use a wheelchair, and a lot of guys assume I can’t do things that “normal” people can do, and they just ignore me. How can I forge friendships and find a romantic relationship without coming across as desperate or pathetic? The fact that I’m shy doesn’t exactly help things. I want to get on with my life now. – Down and Lonely
Dear Down and Lonely, You describe your assets as “attractive,” “sweet,” “articulate,” and “intelligent.” Your solid self-esteem gives you a great foundation as you go forward to meet people. Let me tell you a story: During one of my TV appearances, I met a politician’s bodyguard who also served in the National Guard. He was quite an active hunk! He proudly showed me a photo of his wife of 5 years—in a wheelchair. I said, “I’m sure there’s a story behind this.” He laughed and said he fell in love with this woman because she was the only woman he had ever met who wanted him, but didn’t need him. He said his wife’s wheelchair was merely incidental to the strong and independent woman she was. As my Gilda-Gram says, “Our greatest disability is the one we believe we have.”
Angelfly72's comments: I used to be in wheelchair, and now I either use a cane or a walker, depending on how far I have to walk. But when I was in a wheelchair, I was embarrassed whenever anyone offered to help me get across street, or hold the door open for me. It was difficult for me to accept help because to me it meant accepting that my left hip is really damaged, and needs to be replaced. It still needs to be replaced, but my mobility has improved enough to where I don't my chair very often. But I understand where this disabled lady is coming from. Being in a wheelchair is not very attractive, and personally, I didn't want any attention. I think the author of the letter is very brave for wanting to get out and meet members of the opposite sex. That's better than sitting at home watching television or DVDs all day.
And with that, more from the good Dr. Gilda: There is no perfect person on this planet. We all have shortcomings, some overt, others covert. The test is how we live with them. Do we allow our disabilities to disable us? You have a choice either to feel self-conscious about your hardware, or lighten up about it! How you perceive your condition first will set the stage for how others view you. Here’s how to get out there, get over your shyness and meet some new prospects: 1. Develop your sense of humor. Read funny books, watch funny movies…let yourself banter a bit with strangers as you go about your day. 2. Take a course in assertiveness and/or one in overcoming shyness. Hear the stories of those in your classes, know you’re not alone, and form support systems for one another. 3. Make sure that you engage in interactive activities where people sit most of the time, such as dinner theatre events, Bingo, or a lecture series. Here’s why: When you are in a wheelchair, you are obviously not on eye level with people standing upright. So going to a cocktail party, for example, where mingling is synonymous with standing, would probably exacerbate your shy feelings. You are likely to feel more confident when you can mingle more easily. Your mission is to make yourself obvious and available to others as a loving and interesting person, not someone “desperate” or “pathetic” as you fear. If you consider your wheelchair of minimal importance to the rapport you build with others, others will learn to do the same.
Angelfly72's comments: I think Dr. Gilda's advice applies to both able-bodied and disabled people. When you focus on your assets, there is a much better chance of receiving more and giving to life. But it's getting over those fears and doubts (in dating, the fear of rejection is overwhelming), and getting OUT there. I recently wrote in my blogspot blog that I would love to attend Comic-con with or without a date. I love comic books, so why not? If I don't try, I'll never know. I'd be sitting in my house day after day, feeling sorry for myself. No thanks. There's so much more going on beyond my living room window, and I don't want to miss it, even if I have maneuver my way through hordes of people with my walker. Life is for the living, not the dead. There's nothing worse than being one of the living dead cooped up in a house all the time. It's all about overcoming those fears and taking chances. Having said all that, I have a question: Would a man date a woman who is confined to a wheelchair if she is a good match as far as personality, goals and values are concerned? Does a disability make a person unattractive? Your honest opinion, please.
So here is one kind response to my journal:
I do not think a disability makes a person unattractive. One of my bestest friends was in an accident and her legs, from the thighs down, are paralyzed. She is in a wheelchair. She is the most upbeat, motivated, positive, adorable single mom of 4 boys! Her husband could not handle her disability and divorced her. She has a steady stream of guys around her, friends, dates, you name it. It's all because of her attitude. That wheelchair is just her mode of transport, it doesn't define her! I just wish she could walk with me on the beach. =)
flibbertygib: 52F | straight | Arcata, California, United States
Today - 11:27am - 59% match, 77% friend, 29% enemy
I appreciate those comments. Throughout my life, other women have always been very supportive of me. I don't take it for granted; without their encouragement I probably would have done something even more awful than wearing out my left hip and eating a hole through my stomach wall. I've seen what happens to people who feel totally isolated and alone in life. I've been blessed with numerous friends over the years who have kept me from falling into that never-ending abyss of darkness. I almost did that for a three year period after gastric bypass surgery. I was severely anemic and weak from the debacle with fibroid tumors, and I spent my days either in a wheelchair or on the couch.
I wouldn't be here writing this blog if it weren't for my friends. Flibbertygib, you are probably a rescuing angel for your friend in the wheelchair. God bless you!
One last item: Here's a quote from my son Marc, who wrote this in an email to a girl after they parted ways:
"Cosmetically cool exchanges on unplanned occasions will 'due' just fine."
I like the rhythm in that sentence. Definitely cool.