A Self-Regulation Model of the Sexual Offense Process

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Abstract

Models of the offense chain or relapse process provide a description of the cognitive, behavioral, motivational, and contextual factors associated with a sexual offense. In a sense these micromodels represent the touchstone of more general theories of sexual offending and serve to identify possible clinical phenomena that subsequent theory sets out to explain. In this paper we present a self-regulatory model of the offense process that we suggest can integrate existing theoretical work in the area. We first briefly comment on and critique a number of influential models of the sexual offense chain, then review the literature on the self-regulation of behavior. Following this we formulate a self-regulatory model of the offense process based on the idea that there are three core offense pathways: underregulation, misregulation, and intact regulation. We then briefly discuss the model's theoretical and clinical implications.

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