Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders

, Volume 21, Issue 4, pp 471–481

Sexual attitudes and knowledge of high-functioning adolescents and adults with autism

  • Opal Y. Ousley
  • Gary B. Mesibov

DOI: 10.1007/BF02206871

Cite this article as:
Ousley, O.Y. & Mesibov, G.B. J Autism Dev Disord (1991) 21: 471. doi:10.1007/BF02206871


Interviewed 21 high-functioning adults with autism and 20 mildly to moderately mentally retarded adults without autism about sexuality and dating. Sexual knowledge and interest were assessed by a sexuality vocabulary checklist and a multiple-choice questionnaire. Group differences were found in experience, with more sexual experiences among the mentally retarded adults, but not in knowledge or interest. In both groups IQ was positively correlated with knowledge scores and males had significantly greater interest in sexuality than females. Implications of sex and group differences are discussed.

Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Opal Y. Ousley
    • 1
  • Gary B. Mesibov
    • 1
  1. 1.Division TEACCH, Department of PsychiatryUniversity of North Carolina at Chapel HillUSA

Personalised recommendations