February cover story
We had the pleasure of chatting to loved up couple Charlie and Erin who spoke about getting to know each other at ATIK and navigating relationships alongside the craziness of life.
Where did you meet?
Charlie: We had been friends since meeting in February but June 2022 at ATIK was a big night.
Erin: We were chatting lots in the big fancy chairs.
Who made the first move?
C: Erin liked me first, I could figure out that she liked me. She was flirting and I started getting feelings. It’s been really exciting.
E: We became closer than friends and then Charlie asked me out. I liked him, I thought he was funny, protective, good looking and caring.
What has been your most memorable date so far?
C: Our first date was at Lucas in Musselburgh when we were getting to know each other. This is when I told her I liked her. She said she’d liked me for ages too. On our second date I asked her out face to face.
We don’t go on loads of dates, we like going on walks or watching TV. We went on holiday to Glasgow, stayed in a hotel, went to the social and Hard Rock Cafe for dinner. It was my first time going away – I felt a bit nervous but it gave me butterflies and I felt ready with Erin.
E: I loved going to Wetherspoons in East Houses for discoability. We had nice food and chatted – I enjoyed getting to know each other.
What are your hopes for the coming year?
C: I’d love us to stay together and see where things go. You don’t know how things will turn out but I’d love us to celebrate a year together in September 2023.
Being able to see Erin and spend time together makes me feel safe. Being able to talk to a partner like a best friend about everything in your head is so meaningful. We find it hard to communicate when we’re angry or upset, we don’t talk and can push each other away. We talk eventually and being face to face and staying calm helps. We talk about our disabilities and that helps us to understand each other better.
E: I’d love us to stay together and to travel further afield, starting with Linlithgow and Stirling. I think Charlie would be a good travelling companion. We both like to listen to music. I love spending time together.
What can be difficult about being in a relationship?
C: Talking about feelings. I’ve had relationships with girls but it’s not worked out. The problem was communication – I’ve picked up skills and realized ‘people can’t read your mind’. You gotta talk about your feelings.
E: Sometimes it’s hard talking about feelings and being honest, but you’ve just got to do it. It’s important.
How do you make sure you have time together as a couple?
C: I live with my parents and my sister at the moment but I want to eventually move out. Work makes it more difficult to see each other. My job is one of my biggest priorities, I work at scotmid as a customer assistant. I want to build life skills and be independent but I do make sure we video call and I use my bus pass to go and visit Erin.
E: It can be hard because life is busy. Although I live by myself in central Edinburgh, I have 4 days at Positive Paths and 1 day with a support worker. In the future I’d like to do project search or go back to college and study hairdressing.
What would they like to share with other members who are also looking to meet someone?
C: Like I mentioned earlier, ‘people can’t read your mind’. You gotta talk about your feelings. I think I’m quite good at giving advice on speaking about feelings – I used to be really anxious, I felt different, but I can see real positive change in my life. I think I’ve got good experience with dating and talking about feelings that I would like to pass on.
E: If you go to discos or social events, you’ll meet someone nice that you like. There’s a big community with lots of people who want to socialize and get to know you! Maybe Hype on 15th February will be your chance!!!