Disabled 2ft 10in woman with brittle bone disease who met her wife online reveals she want to show singletons who ‘don’t feel desirable’ that ‘love is possible’
- Haley Lapkin, who is 2ft 10in tall and has brittle bone disease, met her wife online
- The couple started chatting in 2009 and met in person for the first time in 2010
- They now run a YouTube channel about being in an ‘interabled’ relationship
- Haley says she wants to show other disabled people that they’re desirable
A woman with brittle bone disease who met her wife online reveals she wants to give hope to singletons who ‘don’t feel desirable’.
Haley Lapkin, 37, who is 2ft 10in tall, has type III osteogenesis imperfecta, a severe form of brittle bone disease that has caused 200 breakages over her lifetime.
Searching for love, Haley, from Oregon, signed up to a dating website where she met her future wife, Angie, 34.
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Haley Lapkin, who has brittle bone disease, met her wife Angie online and wants to give hope to singletons who ‘don’t feel desirable’. Pictured, Angie, left, and Hayley at home in Oregon
The couple now run a YouTube channel, Angie and Hayley Present, where they talk about being in a queer ‘interabled’ relationship, a term used to describe a couple where one person has a disability and the other does not.
Hayley said: ‘It’s to show other people in similar situations who don’t think that they’re worthy of love or that they’ll find love, that love is possible.’
Angie added: ‘Love comes in all forms; our channel is a friendly place where people can come. The point of spreading awareness for us is just to enrich people’s lives a little bit more.’
The couple met online in 2009 and spent a year talking before taking the step to meet in person.
The couple met online in 2009 and spent a year talking before taking the step to meet in person. They became engaged shortly afterwards. Pictured, sharing a kiss at home in Oregon
The couple now run a YouTube channel, Angie and Hayley Present, where they talk about being in a queer ‘interabled’ relationship, a term used to describe a couple where one person has a disability and the other does not. Pictured, the couple at work on the laptop
What is Osteogenesis Imperfecta disorder?
Osteogenesis Imperfecta, which is also known as OI or brittle bones disease, is a lifelong genetic condition that is very rare – occurring in between 1 in 20,000 to 1 in 50,000 births.
The disorder disrupts the body’s ability to form strong connective tissue and to grow new bone tissue.
It occurs where there is a lack of high-quality collagen, the protein which forms the framework for the bones.
As a result, the bones as well as other features including the teeth and cartilage can lack flexibility and strength making them more susceptible to fracture.
Collagen also shows up in the sclera, the white portion of the eye and a lack of the protein can give people with OI a blue hue in their eyes.
Children with OI can also get severe scoliosis which is a spinal curvature and may have hearing and heart problems.
While there are drugs used to try to help make the bones stronger, there’s no treatment to alleviate the condition itself.
‘Angie actually was the one who reached out to me, that was unexpected because I’m usually the pursuer,’ Hayley said.
Their connection was instant and it wasn’t long before the couple were engaged, with Angie moving in with Hayley.
Haley continued: ‘Our first visit together, it just felt like a connection. When Angie first moved in with me, I just couldn’t wait until she got here, I was nervous but mostly excited.’
The couple have grown from strength to strength in the 11 years since their first conversation. However they both admit to having fears of the future.
Angie and Hayley run a YouTube channel to create a ‘safe space’ for others. Pictured, the couple work together on a clip at home in Oregon
Haley, pictured with her father Larry, has type III osteogenesis imperfecta, a severe form of brittle bone disease that has caused 200 breakages over her lifetime
Hayley said: ‘I worry, like, is she going to get sick of me one day? Is she going to leave?’
But Angie insists her wife’s disability is not a concern.
‘Being in an interabled relationship, I never thought about it when I first met Haley,’ she said. ‘I love her for her and she loves me for me.’
Hayley urged other singletons who are worried about finding love to put themselves out there.
She added: ‘I would just tell other disabled queer women, “you might not feel desirable but if you know that you’re worth loving then that will show to others and that will attract somebody.” I know it will because it worked for me.
‘Finding love is my favourite thing I’ve gotten to do in my life, it’s the best thing I’ve experienced.’
With 2,000 followers and counting, today, the couple run their very own YouTube vlog
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