Webinar 1: Helping Adults with Autism Understand and Develop Romantic Relationships

Presented by:  Mary Van Bourgondien, Ph.D., Clinical Director of the Chapel Hill TEACCH Center and Mindy Govan, Autism Specialist at the Chapel Hill TEACCH Center.

Summary:  The first presentation in our webinar series discusses the complex issues facing adults with ASD in romantic relationships and also reviews the literature and current knowledge around adults with ASD and sexuality and romantic relationships. In helping an individual with ASD develop an intimate relationship, mental health providers will need to help the individual recognize that the goal of an intimate relationship can include meeting needs for social contact or caring, physical pleasure seeking, and /or the need for emotional support and tension release.  The webinar also focuses on how to assess what the individual with ASD is currently doing to meet these needs, and how to work with them to develop concrete strategies for addressing areas where they need assistance.