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A Woman Who Was Paralyzed At Her Bachelorette Party Is Trying To Change The Way People See Those With Disabilities

Rachelle Friedman was paralyzed after a freak accident at her bachelorette party.

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A woman who was paralyzed in a freak accident at her bachelorette party has done a beautiful lingerie photo shoot to prove that having a disability doesn't mean you can't be sexy.

Rachelle Friedman made headlines around the country when she was paralyzed after jokingly being pushed into a pool by a friend in 2010.

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She has since become a disability awareness advocate and a published author. She also has gotten married and is the mother to a baby daughter.

Friedman is also active on Facebook and Twitter, where she frequently discusses disability issues.

Friedman told BuzzFeed News that she decided to do the photo shoot as part of "learning to love myself" after the accident.

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"When the injury happened it took a blow to my self-confidence and to my sexuality," she said. "I identify with that part of myself and I felt like it was gone. I couldn't control how my body looks and I couldn't control the fact that I had to wear a catheter. After five years though, I am not OK with the disability, I am OK with myself and I'm learning to love myself."

But she said, more importantly, she wanted to send a message that just because you are disabled, doesn't mean you can't be desirable.

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"People who are in my situation, especially young people who have sustained a life-altering injury, it can feel very lonely," she said. "I wanted to show other people in my situation that they aren't alone and that they can still be beautiful."

She said she was pretty nervous about the shoot, but loves the pictures because she never gets to see herself without a wheelchair. "It made me feel like me again," she said.

The North Carolina resident has also started a hashtag, #whatmakesmesexy, with the hopes that people will begin to let go of their pre-conceived notions about those with disabilities.

Some people have criticized her as being inappropriate, but Friedman said she is much more concerned about inspiring those in similar situations.

"The people who don't like the photos are not going to remember these but the people that it positively impacted will remember this for a long time," she said. "If one person feels better about themselves and their situation because of what I've put out there then it's 100% worth it."

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