OU PhD Student Focuses On Sex Ed For Special Needs Children

By
Taylor Pool

Dateline
Updated Wed, Dec 5, 2012 11:16 am

Sex: it's the topic an Ohio University doctoral student is helping parents teach their children about, especially their children with special needs.    

Natalie Williams specializes in the subject of sexuality for the mentally disabled.

“Everyone goes through puberty, everyone grows up, everyone has those types of feelings so yes this information is more than just about active sex so yes, I do think that special needs students need it as well,” said Williams.

Williams says teaching children with special needs should be done differently than teaching children without those needs.

Repetition is key especially for those with cognitive disorders.

Williams says parents should not to be afraid to talk about the topic with their special needs children, and they should use the resources available to them.

One of those resources is a game called "Go Slow Stop" that Williams modified from Planned Parenthood.

This game teaches children about different relationships.

“Say for instance, a student wants to sit next to another student that they really enjoy their company, so that would definitely be a situation “go,” a “slow” might be a situation where a student puts their hand on another student's shoulder, so in that situation if you don't want to be touched, you could call that a slow. And then “stop” would be any areas related to physical or sexual abuse,” said Williams.

Williams also says it’s important to give kids the right information so they can report any incidents of discomfort or abuse.

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