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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Health and Safety Guide

ASERT has put together some resources for those with autism and those who care for people with autism relating to the current Coronavirus outbreak.

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Be Safe: Relationships Social Story, Parts 1-6

Part 1: What is a relationship?

Symbols representing men and women are shown in blue and orange, respectively.

There are many people in the world.

Two women are shown in the top left and a woman with a question mark above her head is shown in the bottom right.

Some people may be new to you, and others you may know well.

Tall building with a cross above

'Relationship' is used to describe how different people know each other.

4 groups of people: two parents and child, girl and a boy, man and woman with question mark, and man and woman with heart.

Relationships can be put in 5 groups: Family, friends, acquaintances, romantic and strangers.

Pyramid with sections from bottom to top: acquaintances, friends, family, romantic. Strangers are to the side of the pyramid.

These 5 groups describe the different types of relationships you may have in your life.

Woman smiling in the center of a circle. Words on the circle around her read family, friends, acquaintances, romantic, strangers.

Not everyone has all of these relationships, but all relationships can be put into these groups.

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Part 2: Family relationships

A family with parents and a brother and sister stands in the bottom left. A man and woman stand together in the top right.

There are many different types of families and different types of family relationships.

An immediate family with parents and a brother and sister stands together in the center of the image.

People usually have 'close' family relationships with their parents and brothers or sisters. This is called your 'immediate family'.

An extended family with children, parents, and grandparents stands together in the center of the image.

Sometimes, people can have close family relationships with grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins. This is called your 'extended family'.

A father stands with his arm around his son in the center of the image.

People in family relationships usually feel love and closeness for each other.

A boy sitting in his chair says to his grandmother,

You can talk to people you have a family relationship with about many different things, including things that are very personal.

A brother and sister hold hands in the bottom left. Two parents and two grandparents stand together in the top right.

Parents, grandparents and other older relatives often provide support and help as part of a family relationship.

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Part 3: Friendships

Two smiling boys stand next to each other in the center of the image.

A friend is someone you know well, enjoy spending time with and choose to have as part of your life.

Two boys' faces are shown with a thought bubble above them reading

For a relationship to be a friendship, both people must think of each other as friends.

Two smiling boys stand together in the center of the image. One boy has his arm around the other boy,

Friends are not related to us like family, but can provide support and help like families do.

Many people are shown in the top left, while a few people are shown in the bottom right. A line separates the two groups.

Some people have many friends, while others only have a few.

A house, work building, and school are shown.

There are different kinds of friendships, usually depending on how long you've known the person or how you know them. Some examples are best friends, family friends, childhood friends or work friends.

Two boys that are friends give each other a high five.

While friends sometimes hug each other or shake hands, most friendships don't involve a lot of physical contact.

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Part 4: Romantic relationships

A man and a woman sit across from each other with a thought bubble of a heart above each of them.

Romantic relationships are between two people who feel strongly attracted to each other, and are not family.

A man and a woman are shown holding cell phones with bubbles to show that they are texting each other.

People in romantic relationships share very personal information with each other, and provide support to each other.

A man and woman sit at a table holding mugs. A heart is shown between them.

Both people have to agree to be in a romantic relationship.

A woman and man sit next to each other at a movie theater wearing 3D glasses. A heart is shown above their heads.

Being in a romantic relationship with someone is sometimes called 'dating'.

A woman and man hug in the center of the image with a circle of hearts surrounding them.

People who are in romantic relationships will sometimes hug, hold hands, kiss or have other kinds of physical, sexual contact.

3 pairs of individuals - a man and woman, two women, and two men - are shown.

Romantic relationships can happen between a man and woman, two women, or two men.

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Part 5: Acquaintances

A smiling girl stands waving to a smiling boy.

Acquaintances, or casual relationships, are people that you see often but don't know very well.

A teacher stands in the top left. A family stands at the bottom. A man and woman stand together in the top right.

People usually have lots of acquaintances in their lives and can include people like neighbors, co-workers, teachers or your parents friends.

A girl and boy who are acquaintances stand smiling in the center of the image.

These are people you may talk to often, but usually not about private or personal topics.

Two acquaintances make small talk. One boy says,

You might talk about the weather, a work or school project you're working on or general things happening in your life. This is called "small talk".

A smiling girl and boy shake hands in the center of the image.

There is usually no physical contact between acquaintances, unless it's a formal handshake.

A smiling girl and boy who have become friends stand together in the center of the image.

Sometimes an acquaintance can become a friend if you get to know them and choose to spend more time together.

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Part 6: Strangers

A man stands in the center of the image.

A stranger is a person that you have never met before.

Two strangers - a man and a woman - are shown in the center of the image.

People walking down the street or shopping in a store are examples of strangers.

A man who is a stranger says

Sometimes strangers will smile or say "hello" if you walk past them, it's okay to smile and say "hello" back.

A man who is a stranger asks a woman,

You shouldn't tell strangers personal things about yourself.

A man who is a stranger stands next to a car and says,

You should never get into a car or leave with someone you don't know.

A woman walks away from a man who is a stranger. The woman says,

If a stranger tries to talk to you, asks you to go somewhere with them, or makes you feel uncomfortable, walk away and find a trusted adult.

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Other downloads

Name Description Type File
Part 1 What is a Relationship pdf Download file: Part 1
Part 2 Family Relationships pdf Download file: Part 2
Part 3 Friendships pdf Download file: Part 3
Part 4 Romantic Relationships pdf Download file: Part 4
Part 5 Acquaintances pdf Download file: Part 5
Part 6 Strangers pdf Download file: Part 6

This information was developed by the Autism Services, Education, Resources, and Training Collaborative (ASERT). For more information, please contact ASERT at 877-231-4244 or info@PAautism.org. ASERT is funded by the Bureau of Supports for Autism and Special Populations, PA Department of Human Services.