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Journal article

Beyond friendship: the nature and meaning of close personal relationships as perceived by people with learning disabilities

Authors:
LAFFERTY Attracta, McCONKEY Roy, TAGGART Laurence
Journal article citation:
Disability and Society, 28(8), 2013, pp.1074-1088.
Publisher:
Taylor and Francis,

This study uses a combination of dyadic and one-to-one interviews with eight couples with learning disabilities in Northern Ireland to gain a better understanding of the meaning and value these relationships bring to their lives. Data collection and analysis was informed and guided by the core principles of grounded theory. Five significant types of benefits were identified from having close personal relationships, namely: comradeship, a sense of contentment, availability of mutual support, coping with the ups and downs of relationships, and a continuing commitment. Service providers could do more to facilitate the formation of close meaningful relationships, and strategies for doing this need to be identified and evaluated. (Edited publisher abstract)

Book Full text available online for free

My circle of support at my work place

Author:
Hanifa
Publisher:
Foundation for People with Learning Disabilities
Publication year:
2011
Pagination:
12p.
Place of publication:
London

In this presentation Hanifa, who has learning disabilities, describes the circle of support that she has developed in her workplace. Using bullet points and pictures, the presentation includes how she chose her members, what their roles are and what they cover at the meetings. A circle of support is a group of people who meet together to give support and friendship to a person.

Digital Media

See it my way

Authors:
POOLE FORUM, (Producer)
Publisher:
Poole Forum
Publication year:
2011
Pagination:
DVD
Place of publication:
Poole

This interactive film follows the relationships of 9 main characters, each of whom has a learning disability. There are 5 themed storylines, including asking someone out on a date, deciding to take the relationship further and the trauma of being abused. The film allows the viewer to control the outcome of each storyline. Accompanying material includes an easy read information pack, useful for starting debate and discussion, and a CD of additional material.

Book

Living your life: the sex education and personal development resource for people with learning difficulties and disabilities

Authors:
CRAFT Ann, BUSTARD Sarah, STEWART David S.
Publisher:
Brook
Publication year:
2010
Pagination:
366p.
Place of publication:
London
Edition:
3rd ed.

This updated, 366 page ring-bound resource is aimed at all adults who work with young people with learning difficulties whether in specialist or mainstream schools. It offers guidance on preparing a series of sex education and sexual relationship lessons and has been tested with young people and adults with learning difficulties and staff working in education, health and social care settings. The resource provides lesson plans, starting with ground rules and scene-setting for the learning group, and includes line-drawn illustrations that can be photocopied. It addresses human physical development and maturation, emotions, relationships and social interaction, sexual expression and sexuality, including sexual intercourse and masturbation, privacy and toilets, and sexual health and staying safe. The authors aim to provide a logical, accessible and gentle path through what they suggest can be a minefield.

Journal article Full text available online for free

Relationship building

Author:
VALIOS Natalie
Journal article citation:
Community Care, 9.6.11, 2011, pp.26-27.
Publisher:
Reed Business Information

A Leeds based project which supports people with learning disabilities to develop friendships and relationships, helping to combat isolation and loneliness and improving health and wellbeing is described. Luv2meetU receives funding from the Big Lottery, councils and support provider Hft. Anecdotal evidence shows improvements in members' confidence, health and well-being. The project was nominated for an award at the Laing & Buisson independent specialist care awards.

Journal article

Looking for love

Author:
ETHERINGTON Keith
Journal article citation:
Learning Disability Today, April 2011, pp.22-24.
Publisher:
Pavilion
Place of publication:
Hove

The setting up and funding of the Dates-n-mates, a dating and friendship agency run by and for people with a learning disability is described. It operates as a project of C-Change for Inclusion, a Glasgow based supported living organisation and charity that provides creative person-centred services for people with learning disabilities and mental health issues.

Digital Media

Getting together

Authors:
LEEDS ANIMATION WORKSHOP, (Producer)
Publisher:
Leeds Animation Workshop
Publication year:
2010
Pagination:
(12 mins.), DVD
Place of publication:
Leeds

This short cartoon DVD and accompanying booklet are designed to help people with learning disabilities understand more about relationships. The DVD contains six stories about people making friends or starting relationships. All the characters have learning disabilities and one is unable to walk or talk. Topics covered include: meeting new people; falling out and rebuilding friendships; looking for a gay partner; and learning to stay safe and say no when a relationship is not wanted. All the voices on the soundtrack are those of actors with learning disabilities. Getting Together was made in consultation with Mencap and CHANGE.

Book Full text available online for free

Love, sex and you

Authors:
TARLING Clare, DEAN Jimmy
Publisher:
Dorset People First
Publication year:
2008
Pagination:
20p., ill.
Place of publication:
Dorchester

This is an easy to read guide to love and sex for people with learning difficulties and is presented in large text and simple language, illustrated with graphic images.  It is designed to be used by care workers helping clients to go through the information if necessary. It covers relationships, sex, contraception, pregnancy, being safe regarding infection and abuse and ‘your body’ for men and women.

Journal article

Helping people to express their sexuality

Author:
MELLAN Bryan
Journal article citation:
Community Living, 22(2), 2009, pp.24-25.
Publisher:
Hexagon Publishing

The CONSENT team was set up to as a short-term project to assess the HIV/AIDS prevention needs of people with learning disabilities. The project revealed the depth of people's problems in expressing their sexuality needs and gave the team a wider role. Ways in which staff and carers can support people with learning disabilities in the areas of sex and relationships are suggested, the services provided by CONSENT are outlined.

Journal article

Reassurance seeking and depression in adults with mild intellectual disability

Authors:
HARTLEY S. L., LICKEL A. Hayes, MACLEAN W. E.
Journal article citation:
Journal of Intellectual Disability Research, 52(11), November 2008, pp.917-929.
Publisher:
Wiley

Adults with intellectual disability (ID) experience a high prevalence of depression. Yet, little research has investigated interpersonal processes related to depression in this population. This study examined the relation between excessive reassurance seeking, negative and rejecting social interactions and depression in adults with mild ID. Eighty-seven adults with mild ID and staff in the US completed the Glasgow Depression Scale for people with a Learning Disorder and the Reassurance-Seeking Scale. In addition, adults with mild ID reported on their experience of negative social interactions, and staff rated their relative preference to interact with the adult with mild ID. A meditational model of the indirect effect of excessive reassurance seeking on depressive symptoms via negative and rejecting social interactions was tested. Excessive reassurance seeking was positively related to depressive symptoms. Negative and rejecting interactions partially mediated the relation between excessive reassurance seeking and depressive symptoms. Findings identify an important interpersonal process in depression. Efforts to educate staff and adults with mild ID about excessive reassurance seeking and ways to alter it may be useful in treating depression.

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