Some effects of EMDR on previously abused child molesters: Theoretical reviews and preliminary findings
Ten child molesters with reported histories of childhood sexual abuse underwent eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) trauma treatment as an adjunct to standard cognitive-behavioural therapy-relapse prevention (CBT-RP) group treatment. Trauma resolution produced significant pre/post changes on all relevant subscales of the Sexual Offender Treatment Rating Scale (SOTRS). One unanticipated benefit was a consistent and sustained decline in deviant sexual arousal compared to the control condition. As measured by the SOTRS, decrease in arousal was also correlated with a decrease in sexual thoughts, increased motivation for treatment, and increased victim empathy. Deviant arousal is strongly associated with sexual recidivism. Clinical observations support the notion that those sexual offenders with histories of childhood sexual abuse may be left with aberrant sexual arousal, which is one pathway to sexual offending. The adaptive information processing model offers an explanation of the decreased and sustained deviant arousal observed in this study. This preliminary evidence supports a call for further research into this phenomenon.
Original Work Citation
Ricci, R. J., Clayton, C. A., & Shapiro, F. (2006, December). Some effects of EMDR on previously abused child molesters: Theoretical reviews and preliminary findings. Journal of Forensic Psychiatry and Psychology, 17(4), 538-562. doi:10.1080/14789940601070431
“Some effects of EMDR on previously abused child molesters: Theoretical reviews and preliminary findings,” Francine Shapiro Library, accessed April 10, 2021, https://emdria.omeka.net/items/show/16130.