My longterm girlfriend and I are separating but she is the only person who knows how to deal with my disability

Melissa, London – “My longterm girlfriend and I are separating but she is the only person who knows how to deal with my disability and I have become very reliant on her. I am paralysed from the waist down, a wheelchair user and am scared of facing life without the aid of my partner and the prospect of not meeting somebody so understanding. How can I cope?”

Mik – Hi Melissa, as someone who is also paralysed like you, and who had a very similar experience in my past, I can only say do not be scared. I know that I felt I may never find another love when the relationship in question ended, especially as they supported me so much. However in truth it gave me the push I needed to become truly independent, and so I was able to form better and more fulfilling relationships. I am now happily married to someone who has cared for me during some very dark times, and supports me in my daily life but as I had created an independent life for myself before we got together we both know she helps me through love and not sympathy or any other negative reason. I should also say it is vital you do develop independence as you may open yourself up to bad relationships based on your belief that no one else would assist you. I had one of those, and I was brainwashed to believe that so I ended up being bled dry financially. My advice would be contact social services and work with them to put a fullcare package in place for you. Also use what may seem as a negative time to discover exactly how much you are capable of on your own. I know as I discovered how independent I could be it changed my life. Trust me, it might seem scary right now, but it will get better and you will find that this might be the beginning of a fantastic new chapter in your life.

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