INTELLECTUAL DISABILITIES AND SEXUAL HEALTH OF WOMEN: A REVIEW
Afshana Gull1, Dr. Naila Irshad2 , Rakia Koul1 , Danishta Mohi-u-din1
1Research scholar, Institute of Home Science, University of Kashmir, Jammu and Kashmir, 190006, India.
2Senior Assistant Professor, Institute of Home Science, University of Kashmir, Jammu and Kashmir, 190006, India.
Women with intellectual disabilities (ID) have a number of personal and societal obstacles in their sexual life. They face double stigma and discrimination—one because of their disability and the other because they are females. They have low level of competencies that would allow them to better manage their sexuality; consequently, they have low level of control over their own health. In addition, families with disabled members may choose to ‘hide’ them due to the stigma associated with them. They obstruct access to sexual and reproductive health information and services, which is detrimental to their health and wellbeing. This aim of the study is to determine the issues and concerns related to sexual health that women with intellectual disabilities face. Our findings suggest that it is essential to offer women with Intellectual Disabilities, sexuality education in schools that is catered to their level of understanding in order to help them develop the skills necessary to form relationships, comprehend sexual and romantic relationships, and engage in safe sex when they choose this option. Families should give women with ID the chance to discuss their sexual needs and make their own decisions, along with the education and healthcare systems.
Keywords: Sexual health, intellectual disability, sexuality, discrimination