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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 166775 Find in a Library
Title: Introduction: A Personal and Professional Perspective on Burnout (From Impact: Working With Sexual Abusers, P 5-9, 1997, Stacey Bird Edmunds, ed. - See NCJ-166774)
Author(s): R E Freeman-Longo
Date Published: 1997
Page Count: 5
Sponsoring Agency: Safer Society Press
Brandon, VT 05733-0340
Sale Source: Safer Society Press
P.O. Box 340
Brandon, VT 05733-0340
United States of America
Type: Report (Technical Assistance)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Twenty years of experience with sex offender treatment has produced both personal and professional impacts on the author and suggest ways to address the need for clinicians' awareness of these impacts and the potential for burnout.
Abstract: The author began treating sexual abusers in 1978. It was his second job after graduate school. He had no previous training or education about sex offender treatment. Among the impacts of his work were difficulty in trusting people he met, a heightened awareness of being a male in society, and other effects. Eventually he conducted a personal inventory and became able to achieve the necessary balance to continue work in the field. He has worked in prisons, State hospitals, mental health programs, private clinics, and youth programs. He has experienced deaths of colleagues from suicide and murder and has been shunned by other mental health professionals for working with sexual abusers. He has experienced the joys of treatment successes and the frustration and self-blame of treatment failures. He helped develop a questionnaire covering impact issues for clinicians and attended a 1996 conference that included a discussion of caring for caregivers. These experiences indicate the need to consider how to deal with staff impact and burnout before hiring someone for any offender-contact position, to provide an initial orientation and training session, and to maintain an open forum for staff to discuss the impacts of working with sex offenders.
Main Term(s): Criminology
Index Term(s): Burnout syndrome; Offender mental health services; Sex offender treatment; Stress management; Work attitudes
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