Historically, it has been assumed that autistic individuals were asexual or maladaptive in their sexual behavior. No distinction in this was made by gender. It is now clear that autistic men and autistic women express a desire for a level of sexuality similar to non-autistic individuals; have satisfying experiences like non-autistic individuals; and have some specific difficulties including communication with others, and for autistic women increased victimization. Compared to the general population sexual desire is similar for autistic men, but lower for autistic women, whereas, rates of sexual encounters and relationships are similar for autistic women, while lower for autistic men. Gender and sexual orientation are more diverse among autistic individuals, which intersect with autism to increase mental health risks. Forensically, victimization is higher among both male and female autistic individuals, but there is little evidence that autistic men are more likely to have sexually offended than others in the general population. Finally, there are some well-developed programs to support autistic individuals to explore, develop, and understand their own sexuality; however, much remains to be understood, particularly in the influence of older age, elder-status, and ID upon sexuality in either gender.
|Title of host publication||Handbook of autism and pervasive developmental disorder|
|Subtitle of host publication||Assessment, diagnosis, and treatment|
|Editors||Johnny L. Matson, Peter Sturmey|
|Place of Publication||Cham|
|Publication status||Published - 2022|
|Name||Handbook of Autism and Pervasive Developmental Disorder|