While their development of sexuality is equal to their peers, teens with Asperger’s Disorder are found to have less sexual knowledge than their nondisordered counterparts. They are sexually immature, with some researchers reporting a five-year delay in sexual maturity. They engage in more inappropriate sexual behavior, including touching others, touching their own private body parts in public, and publicly talking about sex in ways that are inappropriate compared to the ways their peers talk about sex. They are less aware of rules for privacy, such as knocking on closed doors and not removing their clothing in public. Social skills deficits are believed to be the primary cause of these sexual problems.
Parents of Asperger’s Disorder teens report greater worry about their adolescent’s sexual behavior than do parents of nondisordered teens. The older the teen becomes the greater the parents’ worries. Despite parents reporting that they provided their child with sexual education, they nonetheless report concerns that their teen does not know proper sexual behavior.
These findings emphasize the need to provide Asperger’s Disorder children with a solid foundation of social skills training in childhood followed by specific instructions on dating and making romantic physical contact, as well as sex education.