skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 186032 Find in a Library
Title: Attachment Styles and Violence in Child Molesters
Journal: Journal of Sexual Aggression  Volume:5  Issue:2  Dated:2000  Pages:88-98
Author(s): Sheelagh Jamieson; W. L. Marshall
Date Published: 2000
Page Count: 11
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United Kingdom
Annotation: Research that used data from a group of 20 incest offenders, 20 nonfamilial child molesters, and 20 nonsex offenders from 2 Canadian Federal penitentiaries, and from 21 nonoffenders recruited from the local community examined implications of the theory that sex offenders lack the capacity to engage in or maintain intimate relationships and that their attachment styles are insecure.
Abstract: The participants completed a self-report questionnaire that detailed their characteristic relationship style. Institutional files provided information on the level of violence used by sex offenders. Results revealed that nonfamilial child molesters were five times more likely to report a fearful avoidant relationship style than a secure style, when compared to the community group. The ratings of the nonfamilial child molesters were significantly higher than the ratings of community participants and incest offenders on ratings of the degree to which they considered themselves to be fearful avoidant. Among the pooled group of child molesters, dismissively avoidant offenders used higher levels of aggression in their offenses than did secure or fearful avoidant offenders. Findings offered partial support for the hypothesis that sex offenders have patterns of attachment that differ from nonoffenders, but did not reveal any differences in attachment styles between sex offenders and nonsex offenders. Findings also suggested the need for further research on some specific topics. Tables and 24 references (Author abstract modified)
Main Term(s): Juvenile victims
Index Term(s): Canada; Child molesters; Child Sexual Abuse; Foreign offenders; Sex offender profiles; Sex offenders; Sex offense causes
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.