With so many disabled people searching the internet to find love and friendship, several mainstream dating sites have also begun including a dating for the disabled service on their sites. This service attracts users with disabilities who are looking for an able bodied companion, who understands their situation. Equally, it helps non-disabled users who are already registered on the site to widen their search for a compatible partner by including those who may happen to be living with an impairment.
By giving users an option to experience dating a disabled person, the service itself also benefits. If this option is utilised by enough members the service attracts advertisers from the disability market and is able to capitalise on profits. The site could also benefit through an improved position on search engine rankings.
Some internet users with disabilities who use the mainstream sites however are not happy with the dating disabled service. They feel it is actually more difficult to meet compatible partners in this way. The onus for revealing the disability often lies with the user and is not mentioned in the profile posted on the site. As a result when the details of the disability come to light the other person is quite likely to back away. This is not so on a specialised dating for the disabled service. Here the impairment is mentioned in the profile and the subscriber does not have to worry about how the information will be received as the contact is aware of it beforehand.
Dating through disabled dating sites are also preferred because of the quality of the service provided. Specialised sites have a wider base of users who understand what it is like to live with a disability. They take into consideration the challenges their subscribers face in order to use the internet and many sites are designed to make it easier for disabled users to access them. Allowing changes to text size to suit members with visual impairments and dyslexia and having spoken text labels attached to pictures are some of the measures employed. Accommodating technology in this way underlines the sensitivity of the specialised dating sites.
Today many mainstream dating sites offer dating facilities for disabled people. But experts continue to view the services with suspicion. They feel that these sites may have a hidden agenda (like profit, for example) and so may not be completely devoted to finding dating solutions for the disabled. They advise disabled singles to choose specialist dating websites rather than opt for general mainstream dating websites. The reasoning being that with the plethora of dating sites on offer, why not choose one that focuses exclusively on your special needs. This is especially so when one is not searching for that special someone and is simply looking to be a part of an active online community that understands disability.
However, in spite of these suspicions, there are some well established mainstream dating sites which are sensitive to issues facing the disabled and are providing quality service. As dating sites for the disabled is a much needed service, the more the merrier!