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Change in Attitude Toward Parents Among Sex Offenders as a Function of Group Psychotherapy

NCJ Number
Journal of Offender Rehabilitation Volume: 25 Issue: 1/2 Dated: 1997 Pages: 175-182
Gregory A. Pope; Lloyd R. Payne; John R. Reddon
Date Published
8 pages
Attitude toward parents among 50 male sex offenders in an inpatient group psychotherapy program were assessed pre-treatment and post-treatment with the Child's Attitude Toward Mother (CAM) and Child's Attitude Toward Father (CAF) scales.
The CAM and CAF are designed to measure the magnitude of mother-child and father-child relationship problems from the child's point of view. Information concerning sexual and physical abuse as a child was available for 44 of the 50 sex offenders. As children, 54.5 percent were sexually abused, 63.6 percent were physically abused, 40.9 percent were both physically and sexually abused, and 22.7 percent were neither sexually nor physically abused. A multivariate-repeated-measures analysis of variance with the CAM and CAF scores indicated significant change after the treatment. The CAF scores improved significantly, but CAM scores did not. The size of the effect for the CAM was small, and the size of effect for the CAF was in the medium range. The study could not examine the relationship between CAM or CAF scores and recidivism due to the small sample and concomitant low base rates for reoffending. All that can be said about the result is that the psychotherapy program used with this group improved their attitudes toward their father but not toward their mother, a finding that has many possible interpretations. 1 table and 26 references