Autistic Families International opposes therapies aimed at normalisation. We believe that therapies aimed at normalisation, including social skills training and behavioural modification programs, can be damaging to an autistic person’s self-esteem which means that they do not offer long-term positive outcomes.

Unfortunately, very little research includes the experiences of autistic people exposed to these types of therapies, but there is a lot of anecdotal evidence to suggest that they do more harm than good. In addition, a study has recently been conducted into social skills training programs, by Karla McLaren, which has included the experiences of autistic people. The results of this study can be found here.

The following downloadable documents provide you with guidance on the topic of therapy for autistic people:

A guide to choosing therapy for autistic people

Guidelines for therapists working with autistic people

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