Exploring learning disabilities: supporting belonging
Exploring learning disabilities: supporting belonging

Start this free course now. Just create an account and sign in. Enrol and complete the course for a free statement of participation or digital badge if available.

3 Romantic relationships

Research has shown that many people with learning disabilities want to have romantic and sexual relationships. People’s right to do so is supported by law and policy. And yet it can be incredibly difficult for people to develop and sustain the types of loving relationships they want.

Activity 5 Living together

Timing: Allow about 5 minutes

70% of the general adult population live as a couple. What percentage of people with learning disabilities do you think live as a couple?


a) 3%


b) 13%


c) 30%

The correct answer is a.

Earlier in this session you heard from Terry and Charlene who are in a long-term relationship. In the next video you will hear them talk about why they think their relationship has been successful and lasted for a decade.

Download this video clip.Video player: Video 5
Copy this transcript to the clipboard
Print this transcript
Show transcript|Hide transcript
Video 5
Interactive feature not available in single page view (see it in standard view).

Charlene says they want to show people that they can cope, and that she and Terry can manage the usual ups and downs of a relationship. Although Charlene has taken on more responsibility for Terry’s physical care of late, it’s clear that Terry supports Charlene too. Terry suggests their relationship has been strengthened by the fact that they have many shared interests and friends. They also work for the same company, which means they can spend a lot of time together.

Take your learning further

Making the decision to study can be a big step, which is why you'll want a trusted University. The Open University has 50 years’ experience delivering flexible learning and 170,000 students are studying with us right now. Take a look at all Open University courses.

If you are new to University-level study, we offer two introductory routes to our qualifications. You could either choose to start with an Access module, or a module which allows you to count your previous learning towards an Open University qualification. Read our guide on Where to take your learning next for more information.

Not ready for formal University study? Then browse over 1000 free courses on OpenLearn and sign up to our newsletter to hear about new free courses as they are released.

Every year, thousands of students decide to study with The Open University. With over 120 qualifications, we’ve got the right course for you.

Request an Open University prospectus371