Adults with Autism are likely to be Sexual Assault Victims

By  ,  Onlymyhealth editorial team
Aug 16, 2014

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Considering that autistic people have little to no knowledge about sex, they are at a higher risk of being victims to sexual assault and sexual victimisation in the form of sexual coercion, attempted rape, rape, unwanted sexual contact, etc. Adults who have Autism Spectrum Disorder gain a majority of their sexual knowledge from external sources such as the television and the internet and little from their social circles that include parents, peers and teachers.

autism and sexual victimisationFor the study, the researchers used an online survey that involved 95 adults with ASD and 117 without it in the age group 19 to 43. Of the 95 participants with ASD in the study, about 78 percent reported at least one occurrence of sexual victimisation compared with 47.7 per cent of the 117 adults without ASD who had participated in the study.

Some people may not know that they have in fact been victimised because they do not know the classification of the term. ”But, if you give them a specific situation like someone touching you inappropriately after you said no, they may be more able to identify that it has happened to them,” said Stephanie Brown-Lavoie, PhD candidate in clinical developmental psychology.

The researchers are hopeful that the study will put light on the need and importance for more programmed aimed at teaching sex education to individuals with disabilities so that they can decrease their risk of victimisation.

The study was published in The Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders.

Article source: thehealthsite
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