Close Intimate Relations between People with Intellectual Disabilities Constructivist Research: The Polish Perspective


    Remigiusz Kijak




How to Cite

Kijak, R. (2021). Close Intimate Relations between People with Intellectual Disabilities Constructivist Research: The Polish Perspective. International Journal of Special Education, 35(1), 37–46.


The issues raised in this article are not often mentioned in the source literature. Available studies demonstrate that partnership issues for people with intellectual disabilities appear to be among the ignored problems. Empirical evidence indicates the participation of people with disabilities in the realization of these roles, but their realization is burdened with difficulties resulting from individual predispositions and social conditions. I am directing my research on partner relationships towards a constructivist–interpretative paradigm based on ontological relativism (the multiplicity of meanings given to the category of relationship can be observed at this point, arising in subjective reconstructions—statements—of the people surveyed), subjective epistemology (arising in the course of the research, which is co-created by the cognitor and the subject), and the naturalism of methodological procedures, which means the rejection of advanced statistics in favor of cognition of the true experiences of the subjects. I have assumed a qualitative nature for the research and the biographical method was used. The research aimed to answer the questions: How are the relationships of people with intellectual disabilities understood? What meaning do people with intellectual disabilities assign to love and relationships and their own intimate relations (sexuality)? A literal linguistic analysis of the statements of those tested with the Atlas.ti software is presented in the results. The article depicts the way people with intellectual disabilities describe their relationships, how they feel in the relationships they create, and thus, what linguistic means of expression they use to communicate their intentions and expectations with respect to their partner.


intellectual disability; parenting; relationship; sexuality


IJSE Vol 35, No: 1, 2020

Volume 35, Number: 1, Year 2020 of International Journal of Special Education