Fostering romantic functioning in autistic adolescents through ToM interventions

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Musgrove, Catherine Dawn
University of Lethbridge. Faculty of Education
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Lethbridge, Alta. : University of Lethbridge, Faculty of Education
While autistic individuals report desiring romantic relationships, many report high levels of anxiety regarding the initiation of and engagement in romantic relationships, as well as difficulty understanding the characteristics of a healthy romantic relationship and having the skills to be involved in one. While neurotypical adolescents often develop romantic functioning through peer learning, social observation, and information provided by parents, autistic adolescents may not be given similar opportunities. As a type of social skill training, Theory of Mind based interventions may provide the type of social skills training capable of facilitating the development of social cognition, communication, and emotional skills through storytelling, role-play, narrative training, sociodramatic play, and deceptive experiences. This project is an educational resource for practitioners, teachers, and parents, and others who wish to support the development of romantic functioning of autistic individuals.
autistic adolescents , healthy romantic relationships , Theory of Mind , romantic functioning , social skills training