A friend of mine was very excited about her newest JDate and took two hours to get ready, called me on the way for a pep talk and had high hopes. About three hours later I received a perplexed phone call from her. Her date didn’t have any hands. No prosthetics either. He was more than able to eat and drink and of course his physical disability had nothing to do with the great conversation — or the lack of chemistry — but she was also perturbed that he hadn’t mentioned it earlier because she was in shock. Nor did he address it during dinner and she didn’t feel comfortable doing so either. Even so, she was able to put that aside and enjoy the date and was disappointed when she didn’t feel anything romantic towards him. Yet, she was perplexed about why he wouldn’t have disclosed such an obvious physical disability ahead of time and asked me if that was wrong of her to feel that way.

Although I don’t necessarily think her date needed to write about it in his JDate profile, he could have broached the topic in their emails simply by saying that he has a physical disability which doesn’t hold him back from living a normal life but that he doesn’t want her to be surprised upon arrival. And he absolutely should have addressed it immediately upon meeting her as it becomes the elephant in the room otherwise. It doesn’t need to become a focal point, he should have just said something along the lines of “clearly I don’t have hands, this is why and what happened and how I operate” and let her ask a question or two and then move on. The same would go for a glass eye or a prosthetic leg or anything else that is visually obvious because although it is not a lie to not disclose it ahead of time, it is omitting something important. Of course there are mental disabilities that people don’t have to disclose and can keep under wraps but that’s another post which would be 10x as long!

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