Sexual coping, general coping and cognitive distortions in incarcerated rapists and child molesters1.

Steven Feelgood, Franca Cortoni, Anthony Thompson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

58 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Sexual coping, general coping and cognitive distortions were investigated in 25 rapists, 36 child molesters and 25 violent offenders. Rapists did not report more support for rape-supportive distortions than the violent offender comparison group. Child molesters scored higher than the other groups on the measure of molestation-supportive distortions, although mean scores were at the low end of the scale. Consistent with previous research, all offender groups reported ineffective coping styles and child molesters reported using more emotion-oriented coping than the non-sexual offenders. Child molesters but not rapists scored higher than violent offenders on deviant aspects of sexual coping, although mean scores were at the low end of the sub-scales. Evaluation of these comparisons was aided by effect sizes. The effect sizes reveal that there may indeed be differences between rapists and the comparison group with respect to cognitive distortions and sexual coping. Modest correlations were found between deviant sexual coping and cognitive distortions. The findings are interpreted in terms of etiological development and the sexual offence process. 1 This research was completed as partial fulfilment of the degree for Master of Psychology at Charles Sturt University by Steven Feelgood and was supervised by the two co-authors.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)157-170
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Sexual Aggression
Volume11
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2005

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