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Working with adolescent girls who display harmful sexual behaviour Denise Moultrie.

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Presentation on theme: "Working with adolescent girls who display harmful sexual behaviour Denise Moultrie."— Presentation transcript:

1 Working with adolescent girls who display harmful sexual behaviour Denise Moultrie

2 The Taith Service  Established in 2000  Specialist service for children and young people with  Sexually harmful behaviours, (8-21 years)  Dedicated staff team and expert consultancy  Work with circa 120 young people per year  Over 1000 referrals  The Taith Service accepts referrals across Wales

3 Girls with sexually harmful behaviour  11% referral rate Taith (2011/ 12)  Big Innovation lottery funding 2012-15

4 Research  Limited research available in regards to assessment of adolescent females – however, growing body in regards to adult females – still small comparisons to adolescent males.  May be due to relatively fewer females reported to display sexually harmful behaviour as compared to males.

5  Considerable variations regarding the numbers of females who display sexually harmful behaviour – ranging from 5% (Hislop) 2001 to 40% (Risin & Koss)1987, males who were incarcerated for sexual offences.  Also socio-cultural resistance in acknowledging females as abusive as opposed to caring/ nurturing, or vulnerable victims. May lead to under reporting

6 Problem definition  Considerable information and models of why men, women and boys sexually assault others  Currently no basic systematic information on girls who sexually harm others  Current interventions with girls based on models of why boys, particularly, commit sexual assaults

7 What do we think we know about girls and SHB?  Own victimisation may be higher  Trauma, PTSD more prevalent-impact on mental health  Relational development is important  Parental, particularly maternal relationship is key  Exposure to domestic abuse, parental abuse leads to negative beliefs about self/ relationships

8  Early maturation, risk of increased sexualisation/ exploitation  No one single motivation to offend  ADHD/ conduct problems more likely to be undiagnosed  Relational or other aggressive behaviour present

9 Typologies  Limited studies regarding typologies of adolescent females who display sexually harmful behaviour - (Matthew et al ) 1997 described 3 subtypes.  Those who are acting out their own abuse for other reason other than to gain power/ control.

10  Those who abuse out of curiosity  Those who are psychosexually/ psychiatrically disturbed – usually high levels of trauma  May also apply to males

11 One size does not fit all!  Like adult male, adult female and adolescent boys, girls who display SHB are a heterogeneous group  Assessment should be about this girl with good case formulation  Although… there may be some common risk and protective factors

12 Assessment approach STATIC RISK Unchangeable factors in a young person’s life DYNAMIC RISK Factors that are changeable over time

13 Static factors Adult information (Beckett) 2006

14 Dynamic factors

15 Psychometrics  Used with children and young people aged 12+  Sufficient reading and comprehension  Assess factors such as self esteem, emotional loneliness, general empathy, sexual knowledge, victim impact, cognitive distortions  Attitudes towards females, endorsement of violence  Standardised on non offending populations, adolescent males and adult females

16 Results taken from psychometrics

17 Specific objectives of girls’ project  Develop standardised assessment measures  Develop treatment manual  Evaluation of treatment manual  Increased awareness through training of professionals and publication of project findings

18 Group task We need your views!

19 Group task  What aspects of sex education/ sex and relationships education might girls with sexually harmful behaviour particularly benefit from?  What other areas of health related input might be particularly relevant?

20  Feedback  Any questions   Thank you

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