Extra vulnerable Lonely Hearts.

What do you think?

  • Time to show that having an impairment doesn’t stop you being utterably adorable and wildly sexy?
  • Are “dating” programmes already toe-curlingly awful without throwing disability in to the mix?
  • Isn’t everyone entitled to their 15 minutes of fame – or folly?

I have to admit that I have mixed thoughts about this request for people with disabilities to take part in the next series of the TV programme “The Undateables”.  Does it make people with impairments appear sadder and more desperate or is it a new way of showing that we, like anyone else, want companionship and care?

You have to make your own mind up – and decide if this is an opportunity for you.  The programme producers say:

“Are you single and looking for love? Do you have a physical, sensory or other impairment, or a long term condition and want to meet the person of your dreams?  ‘betty’ are making a sixth run of the romantic, insightful and acclaimed series The Undateables for Channel 4.

Once again we will be following disabled people and those with a variety of conditions through the highs and lows of their quest to find love. As with all five previous acclaimed series we will explore and challenge some of the issues and barriers that are faced.

‘betty’ will work with several introductions agencies that find matches for their clients across the UK, based on what has been specified by that client in terms of common interests, likes, dislikes, and location. ‘betty’ will be closely involved with the matching process and work with the agencies who will seek to provide introductions with both disabled and non-disabled people.

If you would like the chance to meet your match and are interested in taking part get in touch on 0207 290 0223 or email: undateables@betty.co.uk

The series is about people looking for love but also is a way of looking at impairments through everyday situations such as dating.

If anyone would like to watch previous episodes of the programme, they can do so via this link-

http://www.channel4.com/programmes/the-undateables

To watch audio described and sub titled episodes you can use the link below and click on the AD and S icons at the bottom of the player.

http://www.channel4.com/programmes/the-undateables/ad

We’re currently in the process of talking to a number of organisations, including leading disability networks and charities, about the series idea and to ensure the issues are handled sensitively.  Channel 4’s Disability Adviser is also working with us on the project.   The series will follow key milestones in our contributors’ journeys and explore their thoughts and feelings about their experiences along the way.  From meeting the agency and getting their dating profile set up to preparing for their first date, we will document the highs and lows of their journey.  The intention is that there would also be an accompanying information and help web-pages for viewers.”

I did think about following it up but decided that I’m just too terrifyingly independent and autocratic for anyone to be put through the trauma of a date – and the disability stuff is just irrelevant.   But perhaps that’s just a grumpy Bah Humbug attitude and I’m going to miss out!

 

Penny Melville-Brown

Disability Dynamics ltd www.disabilitydynamics.co.uk

Helping disabled people to work since 2000

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