Holding On, Letting Go

John Drury, Lynne Hutchinson and Jon Wright.
Souvenir Press
ISBN 0 285 63578 6

opportunity and privacy for sexual liaisons are rarely enjoyed by people with
learning difficulties.

book aims to show how this could be changed. It has been written for parents
who find the sexuality of their son or daughter with learning difficulties, a
subject fraught with imponderables. The tension between parents’ protective
instincts and the move towards risk taking and self-determination is a dominant
theme. Yet although the thrust of the text is about empowerment, the voice of
people with learning difficulties is strangely absent.

authors explore topics such as partnerships between parents and professionals,
abuse, vulnerability, and the need for "sexuality educators". At the
same time, sex and sexuality are absorbed into the wider picture of
relationships, health and safety, self-esteem and moral responsibility.

book that serves to open up discussion on the right of people with learning
difficulties to be sexually active is welcome, and this book will certainly
help parents and professionals to better understand their own feelings and one

what the people themselves think about "sexuality programmes" and
about being taught "only what the person needs to know" is a question
not even asked.

Booth is research fellow, University of Sheffield.

More from Community Care

Comments are closed.