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Featured Documentaries

Boys and Men Healing
by Kathy Barbini & Simon Weinberg
A Big Voice Pictures Production, 2010

Boys and Men Healing premiered at the MaleSurvivor 12th International Conference in New York City on March 19, 2010. It was our privilege to also welcome to the conference the three courageous men who were featured in the film, Mark Crawford and David Lisak, both of whom are members of MaleSurvivor, as well as Tony Rogers and film producer Kathy Barbini.

Boys and Men Healing is an excellent education and training resource that is now being distributed throughout the United States, as well as worldwide.

 

Back on Track - Men talking about Childhood Sexual Assault

Back on Track Men talking about Childhood Sexual Assault
by SECASA (South Eastern Centre Against Sexual Assault)

Back on Track is a unique uplifting short film about the healing journeys of men who have experienced childhood sexual assault. To view a trailer of this documentary, please click on the above graphic.

Home > Prevention & Education

Prevention & Education

One of our most important missions is preventing the sexual abuse of males by working to prevent all forms of sexual victimization. We do this through public education, advocating treatment for victims and perpetrators, and offering our voices and experience to those developing prevention programs.

We recognize that some survivors of sexual abuse struggle with thoughts and feelings to offend against others. We understand to that some abuse survivors have offended, though perhaps only in an isolated incident during childhood or adolescence. People for whom this is true may want to develop greater understanding of these issues. Although the public is concerned in the abstract about sexual abuse victims, we believe that education can persuade people to advocate for specific treatment methods that involve compassion for the victims as well as firm treatment and monitoring of the perpetrators.

If you have questions or concerns about a situation that affects you or someone you care about, you can email us.

Head Heart Hands

In order to affect changes in the distorted thinking processes which support anti-social behaviors, all the environments and persons in which the offender comes into contact must work to achieve the same expectations for community safety and treatment adherence.

This requires finding a common language of accountability that balances the use of authoritative intervention and nurturing to guide the client toward prosocial and self directed behaviors. The client will experience high risk situations and opportunities to offend and needs intensive opportunities for planful forethought, safety planning, and external monitoring and surveillance oriented accountability measures previous to unsupervised exposure to community settings.

Judicial Intervention
It is inhumane to allow the offender to continue to damage themselves and others.
Treatment Delivery Experiential Focus Community Response
The trust between the client and the community is a very tenuous and conditional by-product.
Accountability Thoughts Knowledge Recognition
Consequence Feelings Attitude Humane
Community Safety Behaviors Skill Opportunity
Engagement Intervention Integration Transition

Authority
Anti-Social

Nurture
Pro-Social

Guiding Principles of Prevention & Education
Adopted from
Teaching Humane Existence
Treatment Program, Inc.

The solution - what is needed.

We must take complete control of sexual predators. To accomplish this, we must first admit that we are failing. Since there is no cure and they are predators, we need to let them know, that when they are caught, here is the new deal: "If you want to be in the community, you will be on probation for life, and it will cost you more than it costs the community in time, energy, and money. It is offender's job to make it worth our while."

Paradoxically, controlling sex offenders is the only way to manage them. At T.H.E. it is called the No-Cure Solution. It can be implemented only if the leaders of our community back it. It is up to the leaders of our community, who in the past have reasonably relied on the system, to now stand up and say, "We are not being served and we are going to get into the act."

Because sex abuse is such ugly business, the offenders have been able to count on people not wanting to have anything to do with them - this must no longer be the case.

What's been tried so far.

Because of the large number of sex offenders, and because decent people try to help others (even these predators) the criminal justice system and mental health professionals have been giving perpetrators 1 to 2 years' probation and therapy hoping to impart "tools" the offenders may choose to use.

Why this does not work.

When a sex offender is caught he, usually, does not go to prison. Instead he goes right back into the community leading a largely unchanged life. The treatment business is controlled by what the sex offender will pay, and the control over his life is limited to what can be done by probation officers with 100 plus sex offenders to manage. Additionally, polygraph failures, like treatment noncompliance, receive no meaningful consequences. What's worse, all treatment outcome studies show that the effects of treatment wear off. This leaves the community waiting to be molested and raped again. Intervention has led us to think we are safe when we are not. Despite the fact that there is no cure, treatment programs base their operations on an implied or stated promise to the offender, that he will be allowed to graduate within a few years. This makes these programs popular with those desiring simple solutions - this is disastrous with sex offenders.


Community safety is our primary concern and the community is our primary client.


Community safety is primarily achieved through containment. Containment is defined as a case management model, which develops and maintains a circle of control around each client offering them more than the traditional psychotherapy.

  • The first circle of containment includes primarily programmatic personnel, which includes positive peer culture, counselors, treatment specialists, therapists and probation and parole officers.

  • The second circle of containment will consist of the judicial system, district attorney's office, employers and extended family members. Without effective containment there is reason to believe that the client's distorted thinking processes will not change. Subsequently it is likely that the dysfunctional behaviors and deviant arousal patterns will continue to promote the capacity for engagement in abusive behaviors.

Sex offenders are dangerous.

  • When a sexual assault occurs there is always a victim. Both the literature and clinical experience demonstrates that sexual assault can have devastating effects on the lives of victims and their families.

  • There are many forms of sexual offending. Offenders may have more than one pattern of sexual offending behavior and often have multiple victims. The propensity for such behavior is often present long before it is detected. It is the nature of the disorder that sex offenders' behaviors are inherently covert, deceptive, and secretive. Untreated sex offenders also commonly exhibit varying degrees of denial about the facts, severity and/or frequency of their offenses.

  • Prediction of the risk of reoffense for sex offenders is in the early stages of development. Therefore, it is difficult to predict the likelihood of reoffense or future victim selection.

Sexual offending is a behavioral disorder which cannot be "cured".

  1. Sexual offenses are defined by law and may or may not be associated with or accompanied by the characteristics of sexual deviance which are described as paraphilias. Some sex offenders also have coexisting conditions such as mental disorders, organicity, or substance abuse problems.

  2. Many offenders can learn through treatment to manage, with the help of professionals and others, their sexual offending behaviors and decrease their risk of reoffense. Such behavioral management should not, however, be considered a "cure," and successful treatment cannot permanently eliminate the risk that sex offenders may repeat their offenses.

  3. Programming should create a treatment intervention requiring such persistence that clients who are "masking" will be unable to complete the program.

  4. Focusing on the length of treatment is counterproductive because clients can modify their behavior for long periods of time with little intent toward permanent change.

    1. It is the goal of programming to require clients to make changes to generate concerned interest and anxiety about their capacity for continued abusive behaviors. Sufficient change has been achieved only when that concerned interest and anxiety endures and is permanent.

    2. Staff should anticipate when working with power and control behaviors that the client will attempt to get out of the program and will look to blame others to implying they have been treated unfairly.

Assessment and evaluation of sex offenders is an ongoing process.

Progress in treatment and level of risk are not constant over time.

The effective assessment and evaluation of sexual offenders is best seen as a process. Criminal sexual offenders are first assessed and referred for a mental health sex offense-specific evaluation during the presentence investigation conducted by the Probation Department. Assessment of sex offenders' risk and amenability to treatment should not, however, end at this point. Subsequent assessments must occur at both the entry and exit points of all sentencing options, i.e. probation, parole, community corrections and prison. In addition, assessment and evaluation should be an ongoing practice in any program providing treatment for sex offenders.

In the management and treatment of sex offenders there will be measurable degrees of progress or lack of progress. Because of the cyclical nature of offense patterns and fluctuating life stresses, sex offenders' levels of risk are constantly in flux. Success in the management and treatment of sex offenders cannot be assumed to be permanent. For these reasons, monitoring of risk must be a continuing process as long as sex offenders are under criminal justice supervision. Moreover, the end of the period of court supervision should not necessarily be seen as the end of dangerousness.

Measuring progress versus recognizing real change.

Incremental progress.

Offenders learn Relapse Prevention (RP) skills incrementally and we must teach these skills as part of treatment.

  1. Treatment providers must measure the incremental acquisition of these skills. Incremental measurement mistakenly leads to viewing the offender as necessarily having an incremental reduction in risk. It is inherent in all work to want to see positive results.

    1. Treating sex offenders is no different. The offenders' acquisition of RP skills is a positive result that must be valued. However, these positive steps must not compel us to necessarily view offenders as having the concurrent reduction in risk that is typically associated with progress.

    2. Progress in Skill Acquisition versus Risk Reduction. A sex offender may learn the language and skills of Relapse Prevention (RP) but retain original personality structure weaknesses. This renders the offender more competent yet more dangerous. This is especially true if there is a decrease in monitoring and control.

    3. Real Change Needed. Given that there is no known cure for sex offenders and that each sex offender has many potential and unforeseeable routes to reoffense, the single most important change sex offenders can make is to truly accept the permanence of their condition. When recognizing change, there is only one change that counts - that offenders accept they will always be sex offenders and orient their lives accordingly. This is not easily measured as a part of "routine progress" in treatment.

Recognizing Real Change.

Offenders' acceptance of the permanence of their condition is demonstrated through two factors; behavioral indicators, and belief systems.

Behavioral Indicators

  • The acceptance of the permanence of their condition has been achieved only when offenders prioritize personal accountability and demonstrate community safety. This is recognizable when the offenders commence and maintain a desire to burden all aspects of their life with additional layers of responsibility.

  • The community and professionals often have a hard time imposing this additional burdensome layer of responsibility because it is well beyond what they have to endure, and it challenges their sense of fairness.

Belief Systems

  • Motivation to sustain the acceptance of the permanence of their condition requires sex offender to develop an appropriate belief system to guide them through the rest of their lives. The belief system compels offenders to exhibit sufficient commitment to victims, community, and self by prioritizing a restorative and enhancing approach to life. This should direct the offenders' use of their time, actions, and money.

  • It is important to note that the desire to avoid negative sanctions is an insufficient guiding principle. The avoidance of negative sanctions as a primary way to orient one's life does not adequately clarify how to positively orient one's life, nor does it necessarily restore and enhance the offender, victims, or community.

Assignment to community supervision is a privilege, and sex offenders must be completely accountable for their behaviors.

Sex offenders on community supervision must agree to intensive and sometimes intrusive accountability measures, which enable them to remain in the community, rather than in prison. Offenders carry the responsibility to learn and demonstrate the importance of accountability, and to earn the right to remain under community supervision. This demonstration must include a positive attitude toward the acceptance of the conditions of probation, treatment, and the ongoing containment system.

Sex offenders must waive confidentiality for evaluation, treatment, supervision and case management purposes.

All members of the team managing and treating each offender must have access to the same relevant information. Sex offenses are committed in secret, and all forms of secrecy potentially undermine the rehabilitation of sex offenders and threaten public safety.

Victims have a right to safety and self-determination.

  1. Victims have the right to determine the extent to which they will be informed of an offender's status in the criminal justice system and the extent to which they will provide input through appropriate channels to the offender management and treatment process. In the case of adolescent or child victims, custodial adults and/or guardians ad lit em act on behalf of the child to exercise this right, in the best interest of the victim.

  2. The behavior of sex offenders can be extremely damaging to victims and that their crimes can have a long-term impact on victims' lives. Moreover, the level of violence and coercion involved in the offense does not necessarily determine the degree of trauma experienced by the victim.

  3. Victims' involvement in the criminal justice process can be either empowering or revictimizing. These standards are based on the premise that victims should have the option to decide their level of involvement in the process, especially after the offender has been convicted and sentenced.

  4. Under the provisions of Colorado's Constitutional Amendment for Crime Victims, victims may state whether they wish to be notified about any changes in the offender's status in the criminal justice system. These standards and guidelines also suggest that, upon request, a victim should also be informed about the offender's compliance with treatment and any changes in the offender's treatment status that might pose a risk to the victim (e.g. if the offender has discontinued treatment). In certain situations the interagency team may also communicate with a victim's therapist or a designated victim advocate. Further, if a victim is willing, s/he may be contacted for information during the presentence investigation, in order to include additional victim impact information in the investigation report.

  5. Professionals in the criminal justice, evaluation, and treatment systems should contact victims through appropriate channels to solicit their input, since victims may possess valuable information that is not available elsewhere. In particular, a victim's information about an offender's offense patterns can assist evaluators, treatment providers and supervisors to develop treatment plans and supervision conditions that may prevent or detect future offenses.

A continuum of sex offender management and treatment options should be available in each community in the state.

  1. Many sex offenders can be managed in the community on probation, community corrections, and parole. ãIt is in the best interest of public safety for each community to have a continuum of sex offender management and treatment options.

  2. Research on relapse intervention informs us that Seemingly Irrelevant Decisions leading to reoffense can be made from any aspect of offender's lives. It follows that initial determination of risk, treatment needs, and supervision elements are difficult to calculate prior to and during early treatment stages. Prior to treatment and during early treatment, it is unsafe to assume sex offenders can adequately or safely manage any aspect of their lives without external control.

  3. Based on community safety, initial community placement of sex offenders should always be made into the highest level of containment available. Movement to less restrictive environments in the continuum of care should be undertaken only when offenders have demonstrated real change over a significant period of time. Such a continuum should provide for an increase or decrease in the intensity of treatment and monitoring based on offenders' changing risk factors, treatment needs and compliance with supervision conditions.

  4. Sufficient initial intervention must be guided by the principle of meeting both the safety needs of the community and the treatment needs of the offender rather than what the offender can afford.

  5. The policies of "minimal intervention" and "least restrictive environment" are dangerous. The majority of sex offenders will repeat their crime unless they are controlled. To begin treatment when we know the offenders have not changed is the worst time to use the least control.

Standards and guidelines for assessment, evaluation, treatment and behavioral monitoring of sex offenders will be most effective if the entirety of the criminal justice and social services systems, not just sex offender treatment providers, apply the same principles and work together.

The management of sex offenders requires a coordinated team response.

All relevant agencies must cooperate in planning treatment and containment strategies of sex offenders for the following reasons:

  1. Sex offenders should not be in the community without comprehensive treatment, supervision, and behavioral monitoring.

  2. Each discipline brings to the team specialized knowledge and expertise.

  3. Open professional communication confronts sex offenders' tendencies to exhibit secretive, manipulative and denying behaviors.

  4. Information provided by each member of an offender case management team contributes to a more thorough understanding of the offender's risk factors and needs, and to the development of a comprehensive approach to treating and managing the sex offender.

Sex offender assessment, evaluation, treatment and behavioral monitoring should be non-discriminatory and humane, and bound by the rules of ethics and law.

  • Individuals and agencies carrying out the assessment, evaluation, treatment and behavioral monitoring of sex offenders should not discriminate based on race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, disability or socioeconomic status. Sex offenders must be treated with dignity and respect by all members of the team who are managing and treating the offender regardless of the nature of the offender's crimes or conduct.

  • The process of treatment with sex offenders frequently leads to offenders perceiving themselves as not having some aspect of their humanity respected when they are being required to confront their culpability for their actions. In the face of this defensiveness, We must not be deflected from the offender's culpability while attending to the humane needs of the offender.

There is a nurturing side to treatment.

Sex offenders should have their positive qualities recognized to help develop their sense of self worth. Nonetheless, we should not fall prey to the offenders' frequent attempts to pass responsibility to the treatment staff for the feelings of misery offenders have during treatment.

Due to alienation of sex offenders, we must create a treatment community.

  1. Offenders must have "real" membership in this community.

  2. During the initial years of treatment, the treatment community must encompass all aspects of the offender's lives. Therefore, everyone the offenders associate with must be a constructive participant in the treatment process.

  3. Effective treatment communities will only be established through the maximum amount of monitoring, direction, and control available.

  4. It is through this community that sex offenders and members of their families can find (under supervision) support, empathy, understanding and confrontation. It is the first time for many families that they have not felt isolated, alone and filled with secrets.

Successful treatment and management of sex offenders requires the positive cooperation of family, friends, employers and members of the community who have influence in sex offenders' lives.

Sexual issues are often not talked about freely in families, communities and other settings. In fact, there is often a tendency to avoid and deny that sex offenses have occurred. Successful management and treatment of sex offenders involves an open dialogue about this subject and a willingness to hold sex offenders accountable for their behavior.

We must successfully manage the unavoidable power struggles to be able to penetrate the client's life.

  1. Staff should not "join with the client", rather they should insist that the client join with them.

  2. Staff must accept, welcome, and manage power plays endemic to this work if they are to avoid being manipulated and getting burned out.

It is far better to not treat sex offenders who do not make themselves treatable clients.

It is our responsibility to:

  1. Learn to recognize clients who are not currently treatable in the community.

  2. Refuse to treat these clients.

  3. Recommend to authorities that the client be placed in a closed setting for purposes of public safety.

While we must provide for community safety, it is the responsibility of the offender and the community to provide sufficient funding to accomplish this goal.

We not only use the RP model but also the relevant aspects of the other relevant models of treatment including psychodynamic treatment approaches, family therapy, therapeutic community, addictive treatment approaches, and various adjunctive and experiential interventions.

By definition apparently irrelevant decisions can come from any aspect of life. Because of this, we treat the entire lifestyle and functioning of the client and do not assume that the lessons learned in weekly tools group will be translated into sufficient life style changes. A long time ago, we realized that treatment 1 or 2 times a week does not get the job done. Thus we not only learned what the specific SO was not changing in his life, but how the other programs were insufficient.

In the literature on relapse prevention, motivation is handled in the following way:

"An important precondition for applying RP interventions is that the offender be motivated to stop offending." -Richard R. Laws

We recognize the fundamental flaws in the concept of self-management and they are:

  • There is no cure because we cannot remove the attraction to deviant arousal.

  • RP involves eliminating lifestyle to avoid dangerous situations and the consistent use of cognitive behavioral tools.

  • These are restrictions and discipline the average person or therapist does not have to endure.

  • It is completely unrealistic to expect the SO to maintain such a lifestyle for life without external support.

No Cure Solution

Everyone knows that there is no known cure for habituated sex offenders. Even the most encouraging studies are methodologically weak and none profess to have a "cure". So what do we do?

Sex offenders will offend again and damage another person's life forever. This tells us what to do; we must control sex offenders if they are to remain in our community, and they will remain in our community because there are too many habituated sex offenders to lock up. To control sex offenders we must tell them what to do with all of their time; unprescribed time is dangerous time.

The damaging effects of having been sexually abused can go on for life. The likelihood of reoffense absolutely goes on for life. So it is most reasonable for the community to expect the offender to dedicate his life in the community to the reduction of the threat he presents (removal is not possible). This means the sex offender must be made to give of his time, energy, and money to the cause of stopping sex abuse. And he should do so for life.

Lifetime probation is being tried in at least one place. What will stop this from being an expensive, unsustainable drain on the community's minimal resources is if the community adopts the position that the offender must give enough time, energy, and money to make controlling his life worthwhile. Herein lies the "solution".

Virtually all of what is actually done in the "solution" already exists in what is being done with the management of sex offenders or some other group. What is unique is that the NO CURE SOLUTION employs an amalgamation of these methods and interventions for life and have the offender pay for it. When the sex offender, who is placed in the community, becomes functioning well enough at the basic tasks of being accountable, safe and earning a living, they should move from being a drain to being an asset. Thus we need to keep them working and paying the rest of their lives so we can profit from our investment in them. Instead of evaluating the offender's progress from the perspective of "when has he done enough", change to "what else can he do" - there is always a lot.

Basically when an offender is caught, he needs to be told that, if he is going to be granted the privilege of probation, he must commit to a life of recovery and public service. Naturally since he can never be fully trusted, probation for life will be expensive. We must remember there is no cure and he is the problem so it is most humane to expect him to participate in his problem enough that he can do some real good. We must also remember his problem is not just his private life, but the threat he presents to everyone.

All of the existing community interventions are flawed in the same way; they are designed with the idea of termination of the intervention in mind. The NO CURE SOLUTION takes the problem of sex offender management a different direction. In short this proposal is a variant on "if you can't beat them join them". The way we can join sex offenders is to demand they make it worth our while.

The mental health community, the criminal justice field, and the county, state, and federal legislators have come up with all sorts of useful interventions. Unfortunately, some of these interventions, like Megan's Law, are often hyped to the point of giving a false sense of security. Other's, like castration, either do not work or violate our sense of civilization. Still other interventions like, drug therapies (depro prevera, antidepressants, antabuse, etc.) and mental health treatments, are also useful, but how can we afford to keep the individual sex offender using all of the interventions he may need to be using to stay safe?

So far the mental health providers and the criminal justice system professional charged with managing sex offenders have used cost effectiveness studies to justify begging funding sources for paltry handouts to pay for this or that intervention. While cost effectiveness studies provide convincing arguments for why we should give more money out of our coffers to the management of the sex offender problem, the average member of our community is going to be rightfully asking "why should I be paying more for these creeps?" He is correct; something is wrong here. We need to make the sex offender pay and keep paying. The sex offender should not only pay, but also pay enough. Enough equals not just all of the cost associated with him as an individual but also the costs associated for at least one or more other sex offenders according to his level of productivity. A more meaningful cost effectiveness measure is when the sex offender has been taxed enough to be a part of the permanent solution for the permanent problems he has caused.

Once we accept that there is no cure, then we are free to accept the NO CURE SOLUTION, which is a philosophy, and guide to policy. It is noteworthy that if we find out later in some reliable way that sex offenders are curable then the worst we have done is tax them heavily during the time we did not have a more efficient and safe method of management. Also with the NO CURE SOLUTION we can start small, say in given test communities; such a policy will either see new highs in compliance with probation or drive the individual sex offender out of the community. This will incline the members of that community to see the NO CURE SOLUTION as successful for them. Also those sex offenders who stay in the community will see themselves as not just surviving there but as contributors in unique ways only they can contribute. This policy thus offers the sex offender the chance to live a humane life in a humane community that also never minimizes the dangers.

Before going further, this approach is not suggesting putting the fox in charge of the hen house. It is not the intent to allow the sex offender to run anything, particularly not allow the sex offender to run other sex offenders. Nonetheless, if the sex offender does not know more about sex offending than most people when he is caught, he sure does after a few years of treatment; so we had better find a way to manage these now smarter sex offenders. To do this we need a way to afford to manage these offenders and direct the use of their knowledge because it will get used. The NO CURE SOLUTION gives a way to think and direct our policies.

Developing A Sense of Purpose

Helping the Sex Offender develop a vision of his sense of purpose.

We expect the sex offender to develop guiding principles as well. We call this the sex offenders belief system. We believe the nature, clarity and strength of the offenders belief system is all important in sustaining sufficient motivation to do all of the additional work that others do not have to do to live safely in the community. While we believe in life long treatment as well as life long probation, we assume much of a sex offender's life in the community will require him to be more than adequately motivated to manage himself in a healthy way when he will be in a position to gain control that could result in everyone's disinterest. Rather than leave the development of this motivation to be an article of faith, we see this as the centerpiece of treatment. To accomplish this motivation development, and to be able to measure it, and to be able to hold the sex offender accountable for it (i.e. its nature, clarity and strength), From the very beginning of treatment, we must play a very active role helping the sex offender create a vision for how the rest of his life will look.

How can we expect the sex offender to adopt a healthy and appropriate vision unless we can describe what that looks like ourselves? We must tell him what his life will look like for the future. To do this presents several challenges:

  1. Maybe the largest challenge is that we are taking the role of telling another human being that there is a purpose to life and what it is. (Purpose is distinguished from meaning because it is more demonstrateable and in keeping with vision.) In our culture, each of these three concepts has been distinctly private and personal choice. Therapists and professionals, involved in helping people get their lives to be more functional, have limited their efforts to giving insights about how an individual got into a specific problem and what he can do to get out of the problem if he chooses. Professionals have wanted to stay away from defining someone's destiny choices.

  2. They also have never wanted to take the position of working with a client for the rest of his life. This level of involvement has been construed as inappropriately controlling. Just one of the ways it has been seen as inappropriate is that it could be inferred that the professional is creating an annuity for himself if he defines his treatment as being for life.

  3. Why do we have the right to impose our vision about how someone runs the rest of his life, especially in the area of where he expresses his sense of purpose?

  4. Why do we have the responsibility to do the above?

  5. What are the practical matters of doing the above? Assuming we do have the right and responsibility, how do we get this done?

  6. What do we do about the fact that therapists, to date, have been unwilling to take this approach?

How All Of The Other Programs Go About Failing

This list is not intended to be complete or in any order. Rather it is simply provided to orient the reader to some of the clinical and case management holes that sex offenders walk through and come out without their lives changed.

  1. Therapists treat sex offenders in an out patient basis versus a environmental milieu basis. This means the offender is being seen only a few hours at best per week and that is the only intervention. All real control is left up to polygraph (which happens two times per year at best) or possible communications from family members.

  2. Therapists allow the sex offender to remain living/hanging out with the same people (even if he is told to move out of the home, which also does not always happen).

  3. Treatment programs say treatment can be completed in 1 or 2 or 3 years. This is exactly the kind of reassurance sex offender's use for how they are going to cope with the intrusion of therapy in their lives. The length of other programs is within the length of time that So.'s can hold their breath. Anything short of life is doable for the SO.

  4. While therapists have learned to say their is "no cure" they treat the sex offender as if there is a cure. "No cure" has become merely verbal patter for therapists, judges and probation officers alike.

  5. There is no viable aftercare program for sex offenders.

  6. The field of sex offender management thinks in terms of "aftercare" and even worse "booster sessions" instead of "continued care". This is one of the ways people minimize the dilemma that no cure presents.

  7. Therapists are hiding behind the skirts of the polygraph examiners. Their lack of response to what the polygraph examiner learns about their sex offender clients demonstrates that the use of the polygraph examiner is done to make a good show of commitment to the need for accountability. If therapists were truly interested in accountability the use of the polygraph exam would not be noticed as a change in the way they manage the sex offenders they are responsible for; these therapists would already be known for controlling their clients' behavior.

  8. Therapists tend to be professionals who choose the profession because, among other reasons, they are good listeners. This means they are naturally oriented towards wanting to form comfortable "therapeutic alliances" with their clients. When you are working with manipulative sex offenders, that inclination makes therapists putty in the hands of the offenders. As Phil Tedeschi says, "Therapists are sheep; sex offenders are predators; and the court gives the sex offender licenses to hunt them through the requirement of treatment." Essentially the wrong kinds of personalities are doing the work of sex offender management; they are "do gooders" vs. manipulators with a conscience. (Of course we are not trying to say who should participate in this profession; we are simply saying many therapists are too "nice" for the job.)

  9. We overlook that, by definition, treatment makes sex offenders sharper and more able to manipulate. Yet we do not keep the now-more-powerful sex offenders controlled, we release them from probation and treatment.

  10. We inevitably measure success by saying/thinking we can now trust him (the sex offender). Trust should never be a part of success; rather success should solely be a function of the sex offender's ability and willingness to take on the anxiety of having a non-curable predatory condition.

  11. We also recognize there are fundamental flaws in the concept of self management as a goal for sex offender:

    1. There is no cure because we cannot permanently remove the attraction to deviant arousal.

    2. Relapse prevention requires limiting the offender's lifestyle to avoid dangerous situations and the consistent use of cognitive behavioral tools.

    3. These are restrictions and discipline the average person or therapist does not have to endure in their own lives.

    4. It is completely unrealistic to expect the sex offender to maintain such a lifestyle for life without external support (the average person could not do this).

    5. It is also unrealistic to expect the sex offenders family to provide adequate support:

      1. Family members need to relax, especially at home. Therefore they can't always be vigilant.

      2. It is unrealistic to expect family members who could not control the offender before to get to the point they can control him in the future.

      3. To make such an expectation is unfair to the innocent members of the family.

Self-management without external support as a goal is implying there is a cure and promotes denial. Thus reoffense becomes not a matter of if, it is a matter of when. Even if some sex offenders do not reoffend in a self managed lifestyle without external support, we do not know who they are.