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- PublicationProfiles of adolescent perpetrators of CSAStudies of the psychological adjustment of adolescents who sexually abuse other youngsters have shown that they differ from normal control groups, and hold some features in common with clinical control groups with other psychological problems and incarcerated control groups convicted of non-sexual offences. For example, they show more behaviour problems than normal controls but not incarcerated controls; they have difficulties with making and maintaining friendships and establishing empathy with others; they have problems with impulse control, anger management and assertiveness; and they come from families characterized by a variety of problems. Despite the burgeoning international literature in this area, few studies have been conducted on Irish adolescent sexual abusers and non-adjudicated abusers.
- PublicationPsychological profiles of sexually abusive adolescents in IrelandObjective. This study aimed to profile the psychological and psychosocial characteristics of a group of Irish adolescents who had sexually abused other youngsters. Method. Levels of behaviour problems, personal adjustment, anger management and psychosocial adjustment were compared in 27 Irish adolescents with a history of sexual abusing another youngster (SA group); 20 clinical controls who had significant behavioural problems but no history of sexual offending (CC group); and 29 normal controls who were without significant psychological problems (NC group). Measures used included the Child Behaviour Checklist (CBCL); the Youth Self Report Form (YSR); selected scales from Beckett (1997) Adolescent Sex Offender Assessment Pack (ASOAP); and the Family Environment Scale (FES). Results. Compared with the CC group the SA group displayed fewer problems overall on the CBCL and the YSR. The SA group showed problems with self-esteem, emotional loneliness, and perspective taking similar to those of the CC group, but their impulsivity scores were similar to those of the NC group. The locus of control scores of the SA group fell between those of the CC and NC groups. The SA group showed an anger management profile which fell at an intermediate position between those of the NC and CC groups. The SA group showed problematic family functioning in the areas of expressiveness, behaviour control and social support similar to those of the CC group. Their difficulties with family cohesion were less severe than those of the CC group but worse than those of the NC group. Conclusions. Overall the psychological adjustment of adolescents with a history of sexual abusing others was more problematic that of normal controls but less problematic than that of youngsters who had significant behavioural problems but no history of sexual offending.
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