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February 14, 2009


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Ruth Palatnik

Well-written! I was educated early on that the disabled have sexual needs. Our neighbors had a son with intellectual disabilities, and (I think at the urging of the boy's mother)my mom told me to be aware of this. Not to be scared, but to be carefull.

dave hingsburger

Hear, Hear, I am pounding my desk shouting, Hear, Hear


You are so right. Even people with quite profound intellectual disabilities need to learn about their sexuality. There is far too much unnecessary shame, frustration and fear that could be alleviated through training, education, and avoidance of prudery.


I am reminded of a young woman with intellectual disabilities from our neighborhood. She desparately wanted a baby and had inappropriate behaviors around men, much to the embarrassment of her brother whose friends were often the target of her vamping. I often wonder how much of her desire for a baby was part of a desire for an actual child and how much was a desire for physical intimacy. She never got the chance for either.

Lisa Moon

I am absolutely in awe of your well written, thoughtful and honest use of both your recollections and your current situation.

Brava, my dear. And to the previous commenters, I heartily agree and thank them for their thoughts as well. I could not wish for a more heartfelt posting on this subject.


I have a diagnosis of ASD and feel for the situation you are describing, there is also the fact that people with intellectual disabilities or impared social skills can become prey to unwanted attention. ASD disorders in particular can create a kind of 'innocence' that is attractive to slightly more dominant personalities & the ASD sufferer does not always know how to fend these interests off, hence getting into all kinds of difficult circumstances.

At 37 I am now twice married, having two children whom I raise on my own despite having ASD, Tourettes, ME & a mood disorder, it's incredibly difficult to say the least.

I have had very little success in securing a normal relationship and have become so afraid about the potential for abuse that i am now settled into a very distance 'friendship' with someone who is also on the spectrum, with whom I have a sexual connection. i don't think I will ever be able to bring about the kind of intamacy that I trully crave because being with a NT person is simply too confusing & difficult for both myself and them.

I have started writing a short blog (can't concentrate for long), it has some poems & two pieces of writing on my thoughts about being on the spectrum. I have a son who is autistic & starting to show signs of TS, I will eventually write more insights on the subject of ASD because I think I have been able to help my son considerably though no doubt my own limitations will actually inhibit this fully.


My daughter, autistic, is 14. Due to her small "supermodel" physique, we dress her like "a little Mormon girl." Very conservative and not revealing at all. If she had her choices, she'd rather wear the BabyHo styles you find at Target and WalMart. NO WAY. She has no grasp of personal safety, especially from a social facet.

She has a classmate who is her boyfriend, also autistic, and their limitations seem complementary. He seems better able to grasp some social abstractions, but she is more extroverted.

He is in the Unitarian Universalist "Our Whole Lives" program, which explicitely but with respect and communication TEACHES respect, communication, and awareness of one's own and respect for others' sexuality. At this time, at least, I think my daughter has the perfect friend for her developmental place.

Not enough people are addressing this subject in any kind of healthy, non-patronizing way. Good to see your contribution.

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