Do I prefer to date people who are blind or not?

ES_eNews_Love-012216-R1I met today’s guest blogger Alicia Krage years ago when she and her mom attended a presentation I gave at a blind and low-vision fair here in Illinois. Alicia was an 11-year-old squirt back then, but she’s grown up now –she attends College of DuPage and will be transferring to Northern Illinois University in the fall to study criminal justice.

by Alicia Krage

People are curious about what it’s like to be blind. I usually get common questions like, “How do you travel?” and, “How do you watch movies?” But dating comes up, too, and more often than you might think.

I’m sometimes asked if I would prefer to date a sighted person or a blind person, or how blindness affects going on dates. It does affect it, but the relationships I’ve had are more affected by who the person is rather than whether they’re sighted or blind. Quite frankly, I don’t have a preference. I’ve experienced both, and I’ve learned something from each.

Dating a blind person does create a mutual understanding of day-to-day life and struggles, and you know with absolute certainty that the person is seeing you for you. Their first impression of you is strictly personality. That’s what I like about it the most, and that’s the biggest reason why I like dating someone who is also blind.

I met Joe in January five years ago when we were both attending a weekend event called Taste of College where students who are blind or visually impaired tour various colleges together. To be perfectly honest, with all the time that’s gone by, I don’t remember every little detail about that morning. I wish I did, though.

The funny thing about it is that Joe remembers it like it happened just yesterday. We talked about that weekend just a few days ago, actually, and hearing Joe talk about it was kind of like someone telling me a story about how they met someone for the first time. But that someone was me! I didn’t recall a lot of our first meeting, so listening to Joe tell the story was like reliving it all over again.

It took us a while to become friends — – after all, how much can you really discuss on a weekend when you’re spending most of it on college tours?

I saw him six months later at Summer in the City, a week long summer camp run by the same program that did Taste of College. I remember more about that. I was shy, he was confident. I was more introverted, he wasn’t. I think that’s why I liked being around him so much and I made more of an effort to come out of my shell and talk with him.

I liked the way he traveled and interacted with people so confidently and effortlessly; he didn’t let his blindness interfere with anything. If he was ever nervous about crossing the busy streets of Chicago or getting on the train, I never knew. (He’s still like that to this day.)

Joe and I met again one year later when we were both attending the Illinois School for the Visually Impaired in Jacksonville, Illinois, roughly 30 miles outside Springfield. It was a residential school, and we only went home every couple of weeks. Our friendship strengthened and we became the best of friends.

We’d been best friends for a few years before getting into a relationship, which was fine with me. Friends first is always best.

Stay tuned for part two of this post, when Alicia talks about when she and Joe decided to start dating and what their relationship is like now. And read more love stories at


Comments may not reflect Easterseals' policies or positions.

Please read our community guidelines when posting comments.

Leave a Reply