Sexual offenders' perceptions of their early interpersonal relationships: An attachment perspective

  • McCormack J
  • Hudson S
  • Ward T
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Abstract

The present study examined the perceptions of early interpersonal experiences of sexual offenders (child molesters and rapists) and two criminal comparison groups. A grounded theory approach was applied to a comprehensive list of responses provided by the participants to questions about their early interpersonal experiences. The raw data was collapsed into 14 basic categories by grouping together responses of similar meanings. The categories were responsiveness, consistency, acceptance, boundaries, emotional regulation, autonomy, self-evaluation, developmental trauma, sexual abuse and deviation, physical abuse, loss, conflict, safety, and positive mediating interactions. In the second part of the study, the four groups were compared using the categories and the differences noted. All four groups experienced significantly negative early interpersonal experiences.

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Authors

  • Julie McCormack

  • Stephen M. Hudson

  • Tony Ward

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