Mild mental retardation

Mild mental retardation

Mentally retarded people are a forgotten minority. Anyone with an IQ of 70 or below is considered retarded. About two percent of the U.S. population has been diagnosed as retarded. Also considered in diagnosis is the individuals ability to take care of herself/himself and relating to others. There are degrees of retardation: mildly retarded are people those with IQ’s of 50 to 70; moderately retarded with IQ’s 35 to 49; severely retarded with IQ’s of 20 to 34; and the profoundly retarded with IQ’s under 20.
Moderately retarded individuals comprise the largest group. These women and men who will never reach Piaget’s concrete operation stage, still have feelings and needs of and for love and sex. These are topics almost totally ignored by the medical profession and families. The social welfare agencies tend to be the most involved in aiding a retarded couple who marry and have a child.
Most parents of retarded individuals want their children to have some degree of independence and they want to keep them safe. Retarded women and men see the same TV, same ads, same movies as non-retarded. They have hopes and dreams and want to fit in as most people do. Local organizations for retarded individuals help organize social events, dates, and parties. And, when there is a girlfriend and a boyfriend, eventually the couple may want to have sex.
Consensual sex between retarded individuals is a decision that goes beyond the how’s and where’s of sexuality and forces many parents to come to terms with the realities of their children’s lives. Before parents can decide on what to teach their child, they have to determine how much their child can understand. This differs with the abilities of each child.