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September 25, 2006


Lisa M

Everytime I come here, I am totally amazed.

I think that is REALLY neat.


I hope you can find some way to be included in the new minister search process though. I mean, what you are saying here is terribly important input for the process. You and the other guy in the wheelchair are the very people whose opinions should be considered. If you can't find a way to get to a house meeting, maybe you could write up a list of important considerations to have a group read at one of the meetings?


And you know what else? I think about this issue of you communicating with people a lot. I think, "wow, I adore Lisa and I feel like we are really good friends and if we met in person, we would probably have trouble communicating--how weird!" It's one of many--but an important one--reasons I am sticking with the ASL with Nat. I want us to be able to chat as freely as possible one of these days!


And finally--geez, did I feel just the way you described today at the mom group at the park. It's all white, all suburban all bio, all straight moms and I think they feel like maybe there's a right way to act around me or something and they don't know what it is. But I would be happy if they'd just include me in the complaint session about stretch marks or whatever. I'd nod and smile and sympathize. But I felt like such a space alien. I spent a lot of time talking to a Black home daycare teacher and playing with her all-Black group of kidlets instead. Which fact probably made the mom group moms think I was that much weirder. I say it's U.S. society that's weird if we can't just all hang out and talk to each other on the playground.


I am horribly shy and have a difficult time meeting people and making friends. I am going to try to follow your example and put myself out there a little bit more. Maybe you and the other guy should start your own home meeting to discuss the new pastor.


American Family has an excellent idea there.

Pamela Denchfield

Hi Lisa,

Found your blog while I was researching gender ratios from pregnancies during the Holocaust. (A long story....) Started reading and couldn't stop. Love your writing!

Thank you for your wonderfully thorough description of your unique experiences in the UU church and the other groups. I am in a different UU church (not a member, but I started in 2002 and lately became very involved). I'm glad to read your posting because I need to keep your experience in mind when I usher visitors to their seats and call members and friends with requests or for "church business."

Beyond enjoying the rare UU connection, I wanted to say I really appreciated your expressing that "showing up" is a way to become one of "us" instead of the "other." And I love your "1 out of 100" rule!

I look forward to more of your writing.


p.s. I'd love to chat with you sometime via email about UU or whatever other similar interests we might be exploring. I work full-time but I will reply when I can (within a few days, usually). Thanks!


hey there,

sounds like you have the right attitude. my mom always told me when i was a kid that having a few good friends was much better than being with a bunch of superficial people who are not really "friends." i've come to know that she's right.

i've found that the lesbian community has been really good about insisting on timely accessibility issues. i'm not disabled, but i have definitely had my share of differently-abled friends.

you can be darn sure i scout out accessible campsites when i lead a camping trip--no reason to stay home when there's an option. my partner and i are currently looking for a wedding venue. we are making sure to get something accessible--on principle. if no one needs the accomodations, great. but if they do, they'll be there.

i'm not sure where you are located, but check out

i've volunteered for them before, at their day at the beach event. it's a ton of fun, for everyone. i was a safety kayaker. :)

if you are open to going to a women's event, check out the michigan womyn's music festival. there are sign language interpreters, dart (which is the disabled access rv parking/camping area) and even though it's in the middle of nowhere, michigan, it's a safe, fun environment for everyone.

good luck and hang in there.


I live in a foreign country where I speak very little of the language. I am always touched by how willing to meet me halfway people are. People I communicate with are very willing to slow down their speech, use simple words and pretty much play a game of charades with me everywhere I go - either on the street, or at the doctors, or during social events.

I think you are absolutely right that people have to be willing to meet you halfway. And I hope more people out there will start doing it. I certainly have been very thankful for the willingness of the people here to do it for me.


Thanks, Lisa. My name's Lisa as well. My disabilities are Asperger syndrome, ADHD, a chronic physical illness, and an invisible problem in my back. I found your site because I got silly and googled "i am so afraid to find a job." (except not in quotes). I like your attitude--no, employers won't usually hire us, but maybe there's the 1 in 100 and you have to keep looking. I'm terrified to apply for jobs and can hardly do it. I tend to fail at jobs, anyway. Not all the time, but often. And I have lengthy periods of unemployment. So people don't want to hire me, and I'm having a hard time keeping myself indoors. My parents don't believe in Asperger Syndrome but have to help me, and they hate it and take it out on me.

Anyway, to change the subject, I'm afraid I blew off this very nice deaf woman who was trying to make friends with me about 18 months ago because she talks oddly and I have this central auditory processing disorder and it was hard to understand her speech and I didn't think she'd understand and would get annoyed and get her feelings hurt if I had to ask her to repeat things frequently. People don't usually understand when I try to explain things like that (having to do with my disabilities) so I just go away a lot of the time and don't bother.

Now I realize, from what you wrote, that she might actually have been having trouble making friends. She seemed so successful to me in all ways, this didn't occur to me at the time. Thanks. Good luck to you.

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