Title Disabled sexuality? A qualitative study on physically disabled people andsexuality issues with personal assistance servicesAuthor Julia BahnerKeywords Physical disability, sexuality, personal assistance, identity
. The aim of this study is to analyze the living conditions of physically disabled peoplefrom the viewpoint of sexuality issues with regards to personal assistance services, identityand attitudes in society on disability and sexuality.
. Not much research is done on sexuality issues for physically disabled people.Even though we live in a society where sexuality takes up a lot of space in the media, theculture and is acknowledged to be of great i
mportance for every person’s wellbeing, the
sexuality of disabled people is often not recognized and discussed. We have little knowledgeof how these attitudes influence professions working with disabled people, their identity andthe opportunities for sexuality in different aspects.
. Interviews were conducted with ten physically disabled people, a personal assistantand a physically disabled person working with a project on disability, sexuality and personalassistance issues in the Federation of Young Disabled. Internet observations have beenconducted in the forum of www.funktionshinder.se (Swedish disability site). The data has
been analyzed using grounded theory.
. From a social constructionist approach, disability and sexuality is explained interms of being socially constructed. Using the social model of disability and the theory of
sexual scripting, shows that a disabled person’s sexuality is surrounded by barriers of societal
and professional taboos and judgmental attitudes. This makes the experience of identity,personal assistance and sexuality ambivalent for the individual.
. Forming a desired sexuality can be harder for physically disabled people andmeans fighting against judgmental attitudes about both disability, assistance and sexuality,when struggling for a sexuality which includes the desired components of assistance orotherwise.