Autism Spectrum Disorder: Self-Determination, Dating, and Sexuality

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Autism Spectrum Disorder: Self-Determination, Dating, and Sexuality – Thursday, December 17, 2020 from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm, presented by Courtney Behrens, LSW, and Lauren Erickson, MSW, Options & Advocacy of McHenry County. FREE: 3 CEUs for LCSW/LSW, LCPC/LPC, Psychologists, and Educators. REGISTER NOW!!!


The presenters will provide an overview of gender, sexuality and dating for individuals with autism spectrum disorder via statistics and case scenarios.

Learning Objectives:


  • Participants will be provided with an overview of gender, sexuality, and dating relating to individuals with autism spectrum disorder.
  • Participants will engage in an in-depth discussion related to gender identity and sexual development.
  • Participants will review applicable case scenarios for real-world utilization while serving clients on the autism spectrum.
  • Participants will leave with two applicable strategies to carry over into their daily practice with individuals with autism.


Courtney Behrens, LSW, is a licensed social worker with the Autism Resource Center of Options and Advocacy for McHenry County. She brings with her years of experience with multiple populations and levels of nonprofits. Courtney obtained her Master’s degree from Aurora University in 2016. She then went on to engage in crisis and clinical therapy in cook county. She joined Options and Advocacy over a year and half ago as a service coordinator for individuals and families impacted by Autism. Courtney brings with her a multifaceted experience from macro level development such as grant writing and program development to individual therapy. Her professional work has been largely associated with vulnerable populations, youth, domestic violence victims, and individuals with disabilities. Courtney has also done extensive training and work around gender identity, healthy development and the LGBTQ+ population.

Lauren Erickson, MSW. is a Family Educator at the Autism Resource Center of Options and Advocacy for McHenry County. Lauren obtained her Bachelor’s of Social Work with a minor in Human Services from University of Wisconsin- Whitewater in 2018 and a Master’s of Social Work from George Williams College of Aurora University in 2019. She joined Options and Advocacy as a master’s level intern in 2019 and started as a full-time employee six months later. Lauren works as a Service Coordinator for individuals on the autism spectrum, providing family education and group facilitation among children and adolescents. Prior to beginning at Options and Advocacy, Lauren fulfilled her undergraduate internship at a private practice in Wisconsin. She spent time working with individuals with disabilities in group and community settings while also providing daily living skills and respite care.