This gets a whole section and a soapbox. This section was originally within my review of the Rocks Off Ruby Glow toy, however as soon as it reached 800 words I knew I had to split it all up. 2,000 words is far too much to easily read in one sitting.
So, I know the Ruby Glow wasn’t designed with disabled people in mind, but you don’t get to claim the title after the fact if you’ve not spoken to disabled people about how they use it, and if they can actually use it.
Good Housekeeping rates the toy at around 71/100, however only 3.5 and 3.4 in terms of ease of use and performance. If abled bodied people using the Ruby Glow have a hard time using it, why then should the problems – firmness, noise, etc magically disappear for disabled users? If anything, the problems with the Rocks Off Ruby Glow are ten times worse for people with disabilities.
Let’s break this down. To sit on the Rocks Off Ruby Glow you’d better hope you plonk yourself down on it right the first time because otherwise, you’ve got a lot of adjusting to do – that’s if your curves fit the toy correctly. Just because it’s hands-free, and can be theoretically held in place by your body does not make it good for disabled people. If I have to grind against the Ruby Glow, how am I going to counterbalance my weight when grinding? If I want my clit to touch the bumps designed for stimulation, I have to lean forward, bending my body in half, and I have no gymnastics training. Sitting on it fully hurts I can’t hold any of my weight on my legs, so I can’t take my weight off the toy to relieve some of the discomforts. I’m incredibly sensitive to noise, and vibrations. I can’t use my hands for most things nowadays, let alone sex toys, and I can’t handle the Rocks Off Ruby Glow when it’s on. Turning the toy on leads to problems when I forget which button is which because you’d think the top button would turn the clit section on … nope! Turning it off leads to pain because I have to press it down for 5 seconds. If I want to shut it off quickly, I can’t. You then have the battery compartment to consider – the act alone of getting the plastic cover off is fiddly. My fibromyalgia and unknown burning disorder make that even worse. Don’t even get me started on getting the batteries out. I could go on, but you see my point. The Rocks Off Ruby Glow has all these problems, and more. As a disabled person, the little things impact me in a big way.
Ruby Glow being listed a toy for disabled people is a presumption that’s quite frankly gotten a bit out of control. I’ve seen many articles praising it, and so few disabled people reviewing it. The reviews I did see snippets of have vanished. There’s one disabled user on Amazon that had problems with it – similar to the problems I’ve mentioned, but though I’ve tried I can’t find much else.
People desperately want the Rocks Off Ruby Glow to be a disability-friendly sex toy. They want it so bad because when they make up lists of disability-friendly sex toys, they’re faced with the uncomfortable truth that there aren’t that many toys available. Most sex toy designers don’t design toys with disabled people in mind, it’s always an accident if they do.
We should have a higher standard for the toys people claim are disability friendly, better yet design sex toys that are disability-friendly. Don’t label a sex toy disability-friendly just because they look like they might be okay for people with a certain specific disability, as it does not mean it’s okay for every single disability out there.
If I were just judging it as a sex toy, it wouldn’t do too badly, but because everyone is holding it up as the perfect toy for those with disabilities, I’m judging it as a sex toy for disabled people. All because one person inferred it would be great for disabled people, mainly for those with mobility problems (though that still brings its own issues), people have decided that’s good enough for the disabled community as a whole.
Before you write another article or claim this toy is excellent for disabled people – ask a disabled person who’s masturbated, or attempted to masturbate with the Rocks Off Ruby Glow.
I’m in no way denying that there are those with a disability that have found that the Rocks Off Ruby Glow helpful. However, I do believe there should be more accessible sex toys on the market designed for people with mobility difficulties and a wide range of disabilities.
Before I round off, I’m going to play Devil’s Advocate for a minute. I have issues with my hands, joints, and most of my body. But, let’s focus on hands and using handheld sex toys. After the struggle of changing/popping in new batteries with hand issues, you then have to position it correctly underneath your butt to sit on it. Once that’s all done, you then have to turn on a button or two that’s not exactly user friendly in design. However, that’s it, then you can presumably have a ‘hands-free’ orgasm … if the rest of the issues I’ve pointed out aren’t a problem. I do have a lot of toys that are problematic with my hands – the Doxy is heavy, the Zumio buttons are back to front, and the Purple Heart needs some grip, however, the orgasm outweighs the difficulty. Not the case with the Ruby Glow.
If you’re writing about the Rocks Off Ruby Glow, and you don’t have a disability, mobility issues, or medical problem, check in with someone that does before claiming that it would be great for them. Realise there are also different types of disabilities, for example – there are those who can’t use penetrative sex toys, and in that case, I can see why the Rocks Off Ruby Glow could be good for them.
I did not set out to be this ‘harsh’, I guess? I never intend my reviews to be harsh, but my ire was stoked after I saw the article, after article, promote it as a toy for disabled people … without actually asking even one of disabled people. I’m a bit passionate about the topic of sex, sex toys, sexuality and disability.
We’re not an endnote on a review, we’re 20% of the population.
I think able bodied people have real issues with making leaps for the very reasons you mentioned. They want it to be as friendly as purported because then that leaves nothing for those who have issues with mobility/dexterity/other functions. I have no skin in the game as I am able bodied, but I appreciate you giving an honest evaluation.