Teaching boys and young men with ASD about masturbation, privacy and boundaries
Kate E. Reynolds, MSc (Dist) BSc. RGN. PGDipHEd. PGDipCouns., worked for the UK's National Health Service for 18 years, seven of which were in HIV/Aids and sexual health as a Clinical Nurse Specialist, Senior Counsellor and staff trainer. In 2005 Kate's son was diagnosed as having 'classic' autism with intellectual (learning) disabilities. Since then, Kate has written several books for JKP about sexuality education and autism/intellectual disabilities. She is a researcher and public speaker; in 2016 she spoke at an All Party Parliamentary Group meeting about sex education and disability and speaks extensively with parents and caregivers.
Thankfully, we have reached a point where society recognizes that
all people, including those with a developmental disorder such as
autism, are sexual beings who have a right to knowledge and to be
safe. But there are aspects of sexuality that are challenging and
not easy to teach. These attractively illustrated books, with their
clear, anatomically correct pictures and simple, unambiguous text,
deal bravely with these topics and will facilitate discussion and
learning. They will be a very welcome addition to the bookshelves
of families who have an adolescent boy on the autism spectrum.
*Sarah Attwood, author of Making Sense of Sex*
This series is perfect for use in sex education classes. An excellent and very helpful choice for professionals working with people with ASD!
*Ioannis Voskopoulos-Labrini Ioannou, psychologist*
The Tom books about privacy and puberty for boys on the autism spectrum are a wonderful resource for families and young people with ASD. Each of the books addresses a range of relevant topics, to promote safety and healthy practices that will ensure better inclusion in society for boys and men on the spectrum. I have met hundreds of parents and teachers who often find that these issues related to puberty are in most urgent need of being addressed - finally, books that help us help our sons, brothers, students, and friends!
*Dr Helen McCabe, Executive Director, The Five Project for International Autism and Disability Support (www.thefiveproject.org), US*
Full marks to author and mum Kate Reynolds and illustrator Jonathon Powell for tackling a tricky subject with such style and humour. Their set of three books - What's Happening to Tom?, Tom Needs to Go and Things Tom Likes are aimed specifically at young boys with autism to help them understand their developing sexuality and to behave in ways that are socially appropriate and will keep them safe... The books act as a visual guide... An honest approach like this will help them to learn quickly and to ask you questions without any sense of shame or embarrassment.