Here are some articles, books and chapters that may be
Note: the following references are provided for educational and informational purposes only. The views expressed in a specific article are those of the author or authors and do not necessarily represent those of the Leadership Council.
Ford, Hannah (2006). Women Who Sexually Abuse Children.
Gannon, T. A., & Cortoni, F. (Eds). (2010).Female Sexual Offenders: Theory, Assessment, and Treatment. Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell.
Saradjian, Jacqui (1996). Women Who Sexually Abuse Children: From Research to Clinical Practice. Chichester: John Wiley & Sons.
Mitchell, J.M., & Morse, J. (1998). From victims to survivors: reclaimed voices of women sexually abused in childhood by females. PA: Taylor & Francis Group.
Rosencrans,Bobbie. (1997). The Last Secret: Daughters Sexually Abused by Mothers. Safer Society .
This book reports on and analyzes a survey of 93 volunteer adult women across the Nation who self-reported sexual abuse by their mothers, primarily, but not exclusively, during their childhoods. The data were provided in 1990. The respondents heard about the study in a variety of ways, including at a conference or workshop, through their therapists, and in other ways. There were no responses to surveys through direct mail contact. Over 500 survey items focused on five major areas: survivors and the survivors' families of origin, the abusive experiences, the impact of the abuse on the survivors' development, major areas of impact on the survivors, and daughters' therapy experiences. The data were collected solely as self-reports, and no attempt was made at other validation; thus, the results rely on the memory and truthfulness of each respondent. The author's interpretations of the data are based in her experience in treating women sexually abused by women as well as clinical observation. The formulation of definitions of sexual abuse by mothers and other females requires information from adult survivors about what was abusive, what was damaged, and what keeps this abuse hidden. The survey elicited such information, such that abuse was defined very much by the daughters' subjective experience of it in accordance with David Finkelhor's standards of traumatic sexualization, betrayal, powerlessness, and stigma. Three chapters address the characteristics of the survivors, the perpetrators, and the survivors' families. Two chapters report on the nature of the abuse experiences, and three chapters focus on the effects of the sexual abuse by mothers, followed by one chapter on the emotional, behavioral, and physical aftermath of the abuse. The concluding chapter discusses adult survivors' relationships with their mothers. An appendix presents findings from a survey of nine men who experienced sexual abuse from their mothers, including a comparison of this survey with that of the women.
Making Daughter's Safe Again
Munro, Kali. (2000). Mother-daughter sexual abuse: A painful topic. http://kalimunro.com/wp/articles-info/sexual-emotional-abuse/mother-daughter-sexual-abuse,
Philby, Charlotte. (2009, Aug. 7). Female sexual abuse: The untold story of society's last taboo, The Independent.
Adshead, G., Howett, M., & Mason. F. (1994). Women who sexually abuse children: The undiscovered country. The Journal of Sexual Aggression, 1, 44-56.
Women who sexually abuse children are rare. Nonetheless, between 50 and 100 women each year are convicted of sexual offences against children in England and Wales. Like their male counterparts, such offenders require supervision and assistance not to reoffend during any court-imposed period of supervision, probation or detention, and thereafter. The comparative rarity of female offending results in a lack of knowledge about such offenders, and the imposition of male models of offending, which may be inappropriate. This paper offers a review of what is known about female sex offenders, and describes three case histories as examples. Models of sexual offending by males will be described, and a comparison made with female sexual offending. Suggestions for further research conclude the paper.
Allen, C. M. (1991). Women and men who sexually abuse children: A comparative analysis. Orwell, VT: Safer Society Press.
Abstract: The purpose of this study was to develop a comparative profile of women and men who sexually abused children. The study sample consisted of 75 male caretaker offenders randomly drawn from the Iowa Child Abuse Registry, 65 female caretaker offenders from the Iowa and Missouri Child Abuse Registries, and 8 female offenders in treatment programs for sexually abusive women in the Minneapolis area. All offenders participated in a 2-hour interview that included both verbal and written questions covering demographics, substance abuse, antisocial behavior, family background and relationships, child sexual abuse patterns and perceptions, and the investigation experience and its legal consequences. Female offenders had a lower income and occupational status than male offenders. Females were more likely to be unemployed or engaged in part-time work, and they were less residentially stable. Female offenders also tended to experience harsher childhoods, including more physical and emotional abuse and more criticism from their parents. Female offenders differed little from male offenders in marital instability, although females appeared to be less satisfied with their marital partners. Female offenders seemed to have higher needs for emotional and sexual need fulfillment than male offenders. Further, female offenders were more likely to have a history of being sexually victimized as children. Fewer female than male offenders were willing to admit acts of sexual abuse; consequently, it was difficult to determine if female offenders committed fewer and less intrusive forms of sexual violence on children.
Boroughs, Deborah S. (2004). Female sexual abusers of children. Children and Youth Services Review, 26(5): 481.
In 1996, the National Center on Child Abuse and Neglect (NCCAN) investigated more than two million reports alleging maltreatment of more than three million children. More than one million of these children were identified as victims of abuse. Of the one million children, 12% were sexually abused. The sexual abuse of children by women, primarily mothers, once thought to be so rare it could be ignored, constituted 25% (approximately 36 000 children) of the sexually abused victims. This statistic is thought to be underestimated due to the tendency of non-disclosure by victims. This paper examines the statistical data regarding sexual abuse by women, the psychological profiles of these women, how and why society excuses female abusers, the impact on the sexually abused children, and available treatments for the perpetrators.
Bouchard, V. A. (1998). Women who sexually abuse children: Phenomenological case studies of 11 women. Dissertation Abstracts International: Section B: The Sciences and Engineering59(10B):0410.
DeCou, C. R., Cole, T. T., Rowland, S. E., Kaplan, S. P., & Lynch, S. M. (2015). An ecological process model of female sex offending: The role of victimization, psychological distress, and life stressors. Sexual Abuse, 27(3), 302-23.
Female sex offenders may be implicated in up to one fifth of all sex crimes committed in the United States. Despite previous research findings that suggest unique patterns of offending among female sex offenders, limited empirical research has investigated the motivations and processes involved. The present study qualitatively examined female sex offenders' offense-related experiences and characterized the internal and external factors that contributed to offending. Semi-structured interviews with 24 female sex offenders were analyzed by a team of coders with limited exposure to the existing literature using grounded theory analysis. A conceptual framework emerged representing distinctive processes for solo- and co-offending, contextualized within ecological layers of social and environmental influence. This model extends previous work by offering an example of nested vulnerabilities proximal to female sexual offending. Implications for future research, prevention, and treatment are discussed.
Deering, Rebecca, & Mellor, David (2011). An Exploratory Qualitative Study of the Self-Reported Impact of Female-Perpetrated Childhood Sexual Abuse. Journal of Child Sexual Abuse 20 (1): 58–76.
The limited findings on the impact of female-perpetrated sexual abuse of children are often contradictory, particularly in relation to males. In this exploratory qualitative study, a sample of nine men and five women who reported that they had been sexually abused by women in their childhood were recruited from the general community. They completed a questionnaire that asked them to describe various aspects of their abuse experiences and the perceived consequences. For both men and women, the abuse was associated with negative outcomes across a range of functional areas in both childhood and adulthood. Many impacts were similar to those reported by victims of male-perpetrated sexual abuse. It is argued that the consequences of female-perpetrated child sexual abuse are serious, and further research is required to bring these issues to the awareness of both the public and professionals working in the field of child protection and counseling.
Denov, M. S. (2003). To a safer place? Victims of sexual abuse by females and their disclosures to professionals. Child Abuse & Neglect, 27(1), 47-61.
To explore the experiences of victims of female sex offenders with regard to disclosing sexual abuse to a professional, and importantly, the impact of professional responses on victims.
The data were derived from one-to-one semi-structured interviews with 14 (7 males, 7 females) victims of child sexual abuse by female perpetrators. Victims ranged in age from 23 to 59 years and were recruited through professional referrals or through poster advertisements in counseling services. Participants responded to questions on their family background, experience(s) of sexual abuse, experience(s) disclosing the sexual abuse to a professional, and the impact of professional responses.
The majority of victims reported sexual abuse by their mothers. The average age of onset of the sexual abuse was age 5, lasting, on average, 6 years. Five participants reported experiencing severe, moderate and mild sexual abuse, four reported experiencing both severe and mild sexual abuse and five reported experiencing moderate and mild sexual abuse. The findings underscore the significance of professional intervention in relation to victim disclosures of sexual abuse by females. Professional responses to disclosures, whether positive or negative, appeared to have a crucial impact on the well-being of victims. Supportive professional responses including the acknowledgment and validation of victims' experiences of sexual abuse appeared to mitigate the negative effects of the abuse. In contrast, unsupportive responses where professionals minimized, or disbelieved victims' allegations of sexual abuse appeared to exacerbate the negative effects of the sexual abuse, ultimately inciting secondary victimization.
The study highlights the need for the development and implementation of professional training initiatives to sensitize professionals to the issue of female sex offending and the intervention needs of victims. Failure to do so could have negative consequences for victims sexually abused by females.
Denov, M. S. (2004). The long-term effects of child sexual abuse by female perpetrators: A qualitative study of male and female victims. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 19(10), 1137-56.
This qualitative study explores the experience and long-term impact of sexual abuse by women. The data were derived from in-depth interviews with 14 adult victims (7 men, 7 women) of child sexual abuse by females. Most respondents reported severe sexual abuse by their mothers. The vast majority of participants reported that the experience of female-perpetrated sexual abuse was harmful and damaging. As a result of the sexual abuse, male and female respondents reported long-term difficulties with substance abuse, self-injury, suicide, depression, rage, strained relationships with women, self-concept and identity issues, and a discomfort with sex. In light of the popular and professional perceptions that sexual abuse by women is relatively harmless as compared to sexual abuse by men, the implications of these long-term effects are discussed, particularly in relation to professionals working in the area of child sexual abuse.
Elliott, M. (1994). Female sexual abuse of children: 'The ultimate taboo'. Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine, 87(11), 691-4.
Full text: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1294939/pdf/jrsocmed00079-0063.pdf
Discusses 127 cases of sexual abuse of children by a female. Approximately 33% of the victims were men; 67% were women. Eighty-three per cent of the women who could remember, said the sexual abuse started before the age of 5, 16% were between the ages of 5 and 10; 1% were between the ages of 10 and 15. Fifty-five per cent of the men reported the abuse started before the age of 5; 35% were between the ages of 5 and 10; 10% were between the ages o f 10 and 15. The kinds of abuse reported by the survivors included: touching genitals; oral sex; penetration with objects; sucking breasts; forced mutual masturbation; intercourse; and a combination of beating and sexual abuse. Overall, 86% of those who tried to tell anyone were not believed
the first time they disclosed. Most were adversely affected by the abuse. Many turned to drugs or alcohol, some attempted suicide; and some had gender identity problems. Many of the survivors say that, though they hate their mothers for what they did, they still want to be loved by their mothers and would not confront them.
Faller, K. C. (1987). Women who sexually abuse children. Violence & Victims, 2(4), 263-76.
This article describes a clinical sample of 40 women who sexually abused 63 children. Sixty percent of the female perpetrators victimized two or more children. Almost three-fourths of these women sexually maltreated children in polyincestuous family situations. More than four-fifths were mothers to at least one of their victims. The most common form of sexual activity was group sex; the next most common was fondling. The mean age of these women was a little over 26; they were poor and poorly educated. Their victims were also young, having a mean age of 6.4 years at the time the case was identified. About two-thirds of the victims were female and one-third were male. Female perpetrators evidenced marked difficulties in psychological and social functioning. About half had mental problems, both retardation and psychotic illness. More than half had chemical dependency problems, and close to three-fourths had maltreated their victims in other ways in addition to the sexual abuse.
Female offenders have been found more likely than male offenders to offend with an accomplice. Further, those who offended with a male were frequently involved in abusive relationships with their co-offenders. Women who molested children independently were more likely than women who molested with an accomplice to have been severely molested themselves prior to the age of 10.
Fitzroy, L. (1997). Mother/daughter rape: A challenge for feminism. In Cook, S., & Bessant, J. (Eds). Women’s encounters with violence: Australian experiences. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
Gannon, T. A., & Alleyne, E. K. (2013). Female sexual abusers' cognition: A systematic review. Violence & Abuse, 14(1), 67-79.
Until recently, the sexual offending literature focused on male perpetrators and neglected to examine the characteristics of female perpetrators. As a result, treatment provision for female sexual abusers has been either nonexistent or inappropriately adapted from programs designed for males. What we do know is that male and female sexual abusers share similarities; however, there remain distinct differences that warrant empirical and theoretical study. The current review systematically examines the literature on offense-supportive cognition in female sexual abusers. The aim of this systematic review is to aid clinical practitioners who work with female sexual abusers by providing an evaluation of current available research regarding implicit theories, rape myth acceptance, violence-supportive cognition, gender stereotypes, beliefs about sex, and empathy. We conclude that further research examining the offense-supportive cognition of female sexual abusers is needed in order to facilitate more effective empirically driven clinical practice.
Gannon, T. A., & Cortoni, F. (2010). Female Sexual Offenders: Theory, Assessment, and Treatment an Introduction. In Gannon, T. A., & Cortoni, F. (Eds). Female Sexual Offenders: Theory, Assessment, and Treatment. Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell.
Introduction to edited book which describes the most recent research, clinical assessment, and treatment techniques with female sexual offenders.
Gannon, T. A., Rose, M. R., & Ward, T. (2008). A Descriptive Model of the Offense Process for Female Sexual Offenders. Sexual Abuse, 20, 352-374.
Full Text: https://www.kent.ac.uk/psychology/people/gannont/Publication%204.pdf
Although considerable efforts have been made to develop and validate etiological models of male sexual offending, no theory is available to guide research or practice with female sexual offenders (FSOs). In this study, the authors developed a descriptive, offense process model of female sexual offending. Systematic qualitative analyses (i.e., grounded theory) of 22 FSOs' offense interviews were used to develop a temporal model documenting the contributory roles of cognitive, behavioral, affective, and contextual factors in female sexual abuse. The model highlights notable similarities and divergences between male and female sexual offenders' vulnerability factors and offense styles. In particular, the model incorporates male co-offender and group co-offender influences and describes how these interact with vulnerability factors to generate female sexual offending. The gender-specific research and clinical implications of the model are discussed.
The vast majority of the women experienced sexual, emotional and/or physical abuse as children. Prior to the offense, all the women's lives were characterized by domestic disturbances, general lifestyle deterioration, multiple caregiver responsibilities (e.g., children, sick relatives), financial adversity, criminal activity, and general negative affect associated with this. The vast majority of women (91%, n = 20) had experienced some type of domestic abuse prior to the onset of their offending. Most of the women had a co-offender. Only 27% offended alone. The co-offending males (both coercive and non-coercive), and other co-offenders played a significant role in the planning of the offense preparation. For example, not only did some co-offending males groom FSOs, encouraging them to see sexual behaviors with children as relatively innocuous, but they also orchestrated the first initiation of abuse, praising the coerced FSO for any parts of the abuse initiated by her successfully.
Gillespie, S. M., Williams, R., Elliott, I. A., Eldridge, H. J., Ashfield, S., & Beech A. R. (2015). Characteristics of females who sexually offend: A comparison of solo and co-offenders. Sexual Abuse, 27(3), 284-301.
Although recent typologies of female sexual offenders have recognized the importance of having a co-offender, the clinical characteristics of solo and co-female sexual offenders remain poorly understood. The aim of this study was to compare solo (n = 20) and co- (n = 20) female sexual offenders on a variety of clinical characteristics. It was found that although solo and co-offenders reported similar developmental experiences and psychological dispositions, differences were found in environmental niche, offense preceding, and positive factors. Specifically, solo offenders demonstrated a greater presence of personal vulnerabilities including mental health and substance abuse difficulties. Co-offenders reported a greater presence of environmentally based factors, including a current partner who was a known sex offender and involvement with antisocial peers. It is suggested that these results have implications for understanding assessment and intervention needs for these groups of sexual offenders.
Grayston AD, & De Luca RV. (1999). Female perpetrators of child sexual abuse: A review of the clinical and empirical literature. Aggression & Violent Behavior, 4(1), 93–106.
Although female perpetrators of sexual abuse are a heterogeneous mix, it is possible to draw some general and preliminary conclusions about the "typical" female offender based on the literature review. Caution must be exercised in interpreting these summary statements, however, given the small samples of perpetrators who have come to professional attention as well as the fact that studies have been uncontrolled. Tentative conclusions are that female perpetrators of child sexual abuse are young women in their 20s or 30s who are likely to have come from a dysfunctional family, possibly having experienced physical, emotional, and/or sexual abuse as a child, adolescent, or adult. As an adult the female perpetrator is likely to be experiencing problems in many areas of her life. She is likely to be from the lower socioeconomic strata, and if employed may be poorly paid in a stereotypically feminine occupational role. Often, marital and peer relationships are absent, and those that do exist may be dysfunctional, abusive, or otherwise distressed. In many cases, the offender may be isolated from social supports and may suffer from a range of mental health problems. Although some female offenders may have deviant arousal and interest patterns, deriving some sexual gratification from their abusive behavior, current data also indicate that abusive women may act out for a number of other reasons, including distorted perceptions of motherly affection and unmet emotional needs. Female offenders are most likely to abuse a female child. The abuse is typically of moderate intensity, without the use of force or threats. In many instances, the sexual abuse may coexist with neglect or physical abuse. Assessment and treatment implications are drawn from these findings.
Green, A. H., & Kaplan, M. S. (1994). Psychiatric impairment and childhood victimization experiences in female child molesters. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 33, 954–961.
Hendriks, J., & Bijleveld, CCJH. (2006). Female adolescent sex offenders--An exploratory study. Journal of Sexual Aggression, 12(1), 31–41.
Lawson, L. (2008). Female sex offenders' relationship experiences. Violence & Victims, 23(3), 331-43. Free PMC Article
Interventions for child sexual abusers should take into account their perspectives on the context of their offenses, but no descriptions of everyday life from the offender's point of view have been published. This study therefore explored female offenders' views of their strengths and challenges. Documented risk assessments of 20 female offenders were analyzed using inductive content analysis (Cavanagh, 1997; Priest, Roberts, & Woods, 2002; Woods, Priest, & Roberts, 2002). The Good Lives Model provided the initial coding framework and ATLAS.ti software (Muhr, 1997) was used for simultaneous data collection and analysis. The content analysis yielded 999 coding decisions organized in three themes. The global theme was relationship experiences. Offenders described the quality of their relationship experiences, including their personal perspectives, intimate relationships, and social lives. These descriptions have implications for treatment planning and future research with women who have molested children.
Levenson, J. S., Willis, G. M., & Prescott, D.S. (2015). Adverse childhood experiences in the lives of female sex offenders. Sex Abuse, 27(3), 258-83.
This study explored the prevalence of early trauma in a sample of U.S. female sexual offenders (N = 47) using the Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) scale. Compared with females in the general population, sex offenders had more than three times the odds of child sexual abuse, four times the odds of verbal abuse, and more than three times the odds of emotional neglect and having an incarcerated family member. Half of the female sex offenders had been sexually abused as a child. Only 20% endorsed zero adverse childhood experiences (compared with 35% of the general female population) and 41% endorsed four or more (compared with 15% of the general female population). Higher ACE scores were associated with having younger victims. Multiple maltreatments often co-occurred in households with other types of dysfunction, suggesting that many female sex offenders were raised within a disordered social environment by adults with problems of their own who were ill-equipped to protect their daughters from harm. By enhancing our understanding of the frequency and correlates of early adverse experiences, we can better devise trauma-informed interventions that respond to the clinical needs of female sex offender clients.
Mathews, R., Matthews, J. K., & Speltz, K. (1989). Female sexual offenders: An exploratory study. Orwell, VT: Safer Society Press.
The study sample included 16 female sexual abusers who were referred to Minnesota's Genesis II Female Sex Offender Program from May 1985 to December 1987. Interviews were conducted over a 1-year period, data were analyzed using qualitative methods, and case studies were constructed for inductive content analysis. Three categories of female sexual offenders emerged from the research data: teacher/lover, predisposed (intergenerational), and male-coerced. These terms indicated a cluster of attributes pertaining to crimes the women committed, their perceptions of victims, the involvement of co- offenders, and psychological similarities and differences. The teacher/lover was generally involved with prepubescent and adolescent males to teach young victims about sexuality. The predisposed offender was usually a victim of severe sexual abuse initiated at a very young age and persisting over a long period of time; her motive was to achieve nonthreatening emotional intimacy. The male-coerced offender acted initially in conjunction with a male who had previously abused children; she exhibited a pattern of extreme dependency and nonassertive behavior.
McLeod, D. A. (2015). Female offenders in child sexual abuse cases: A national picture. Journal of Child Sexual Abuse, 24(1), 97-114.
Female sexual offenders are significantly underrepresented in the literature. Largely due to a failure of our society to recognize women as offenders, we allow them to avoid detection, prosecution, and interventions like tracking, registration, or mandated treatment. This could be partially due to differences that exist in their offending behaviors, victim profiles, and personal characteristics that set them apart from male offenders, to whom our systems have become more attuned. This article features an examination of virtually every substantiated child sexual abuse case reported to child protective services in the United States for 2010. Findings detail observed differences between male and female offenders on multiple domains and affirm female sexual offenders to be distinctly different from their male counterparts.
Nathan, P., & Ward, T. (2001). Females who sexually abuse children: Assessment and treatment issues. Psychiatry, Psychology and Law, 8, 44-45.
This paper addresses the neglected and under‐researched subject of female sex offenders who abuse children. More specifically, it provides a review of the nature of female sexual abuse of children and considers key issues associated with its assessment and treatment In particular, we consider the important question of typology and its relationship to treatment Our major aim is to provide an overview of the important factors and issues associated with this poorly understood group of offenders, rather than provide an exhaustive review of the literature.
Peter, T. (2008). Speaking about the unspeakable: Exploring the impact of mother-daughter sexual abuse. Violence Against Women, 14(9), 1033-53.
By embarking on multiple interviews with eight survivors (a total of 29 interviews), this article examines the impact of maternal sexual abuse on daughters. Although it is important to recognize the abuse that women lived through, it tells little about their struggles. Thus, as a way to honor the lives of the women interviewed, I have chosen to follow the model of Liz Kelly (1988), who focuses on the impact of sexual abuse in terms of coping, resisting, and surviving. Findings suggest that the impact of mother-daughter sexual abuse on survivors is particularly profound and experiences of maternal violence are often fraught with disbelief.
Roe-Sepowitz, D., &, Krysik, J. (2008). Examining the sexual offenses of female juveniles: The relevance of childhood maltreatment. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 78(4), 405-12.
Research on female juvenile sex offenders is limited by small clinical samples. Little is known about the characteristics of female sexual offending and how it is related to child maltreatment. This study examines data from the case histories of 118 female juvenile sex offenders. In contrast to portrayals in previous research, this study shows that female sex offenders are not a homogeneous group. Findings also included differentiation between female juvenile sexual offenders with a history of child maltreatment and those without a history of child maltreatment. Female juvenile sex offenders who had a history of child maltreatment were more likely to have a current mental health diagnosis and experience clinical levels of anger--irritability and depression--anxiety than those without a history of child maltreatment. The impact of a history of sexual abuse for female juvenile sex offenders was found to be important with regard to higher levels of coercion of their sexual abuse victims. Important distinctions are highlighted that have implications for female-specific assessment, treatment, and prevention
Sandler, J. C., & Freeman, N. J. (2007). Typology of female sex offenders: A test of Vandiver and Kercher. Sexual Abuse, 19(2), 73-89.
Using all 390 female sex offenders registered in New York State, this study attempted to test the analyses and findings of Vandiver and Kercher (2004). Although the current sample varied geographically from Vandiver and Kercher's sample, they were remarkably similar on key demographic variables (e.g., offender age and race, victim age), allowing for close comparison of the findings. Results of the hierarchical loglinear modeling analysis reinforced the importance of variables such as victim and offender ages to categorizing offenders. The present cluster analysis indicated the existence of six distinct types of female sex offender (with the clusters themselves differing substantially from those found by Vandiver and Kercher), supporting the view that female sex offenders are a heterogeneous group.
Syed, F., & Williams, S. (1996). Case studies of female sex offenders in the Correctional Service of Canada. Ottawa: Correctional Service Canada.
Full text: http://www.csc-scc.gc.ca/text/pblct/so/female/female-eng.shtml#P9_66
This discussion of the literature and study of female sex offenders examined the cases of 19 female sex offenders incarcerated in Canada. The typologies which best fit this population of female sex offenders are: teacher/lover (1), angry-impulsive (1), male-coerced (4), male-accompanied familial (3), male-accompanied, non-familial (2).
Tsopelas, C., Tsetsou, S., & Douzenis, A. (2011). Review on female sexual offenders: findings about profile and personality. Int J Law Psychiatry. 34(2), 122-6.
Although in the past sexual abuse was perceived as an issue connected only with males the contemporary literature is placing increasing emphasis on the role of female sexual perpetrators. There is still disagreement about the definition of sexual abuse, the frequency that it occurs and the characteristics of the women that are sexual abusers.
Thorough research of the main databases (MEDLINE and PsycInfo), for case reviews and studies along with restriction on European and North American literature, is due to perceived culture differences. Further investigation for relevant studies through web search engines such as Google, locates agencies and organizations that are interested and connected to sexual abuse issues.
Distinction between sexual offense and sexual abuse has as a result difference in the characteristics of female sexual perpetrators. They are mainly young (age up to 36 years old), friends or relatives of the victim, using more persuasion and psychological coercion and legally charged in a lesser extent compared with male abusers. However the psychological consequences for the victim can be more severe.
A unanimous view of what is female sexual abuse is difficult to reach. Often it is under reported, unrecognized or considered ethically more acceptable than male abuse. It is also connected with an increased self-report of history of sexual abuse of the perpetrators. A typology of female sexual abusers should be developed. Treatments focusing on different psychological interventions along with prevention and public awareness can be a powerful tool in reduction of sexual abuse perpetrated by females.
Tsopelas, C., Tsetsou, S., Ntounas, P., & Douzenis, A. (2012). Female perpetrators of sexual abuse of minors: what are the consequences for the victims? Int J Law Psychiatry, 35(4), 305-10.
The definition of sexual abuse changes according to the moral values and culture of each era. In the past the perpetrators of sexual abuse were perceived to be exclusively male. However, contemporary literature is placing increasing emphasis on the role of female sexual abusers. The aim of the current literature review is to focus on the consequences of sexual abuse in minors when the perpetrator is female.
A literature search of the main databases for studies was conducted. Restriction was placed on European and North American literature due to perceived culture differences.
Victims of sexual abuse by female perpetrators are usually friends or relatives of the abuser and find themselves sometimes under persuasion and psychological coercion to participate in sexual acts. The percentage of male victims is growing. There are severe and longstanding psychological consequences for the victims which are further analyzed.
Contemporary studies offer limited information about this issue and the consequences it has on the victims. The majority of such cases are not reported. Sometimes sexual abuse by female perpetrators is considered more acceptable than sexual abuse by males. Psychological interventions could be a powerful tool in reduction of female sexual abuse and its consequences on the victims.
Vandiver, D. M. (2006). Female sex offenders: A comparison of solo offenders and co-offenders. Violence & Victims, 21(3), 339-54.
Even though much of the prior sex offender literature focuses on males, recent research has included females as offenders. Such research, however, has been limited by small sample sizes. Several researchers have proposed typologies of female sex offenders that include both females who act alone (i.e., solo offenders) and females who act with another person (i.e., co-offenders), often a male. The current research includes a cross-national sample of 123 females who were solo offenders and 104 who were co-offenders. It was found that the two groups of females were not significantly different in regard to their age, race, time of offense, and the location of the offense. Co-offenders were more likely than solo offenders to have more than one victim, to have both male and female victims, to be related to the victim, and to have a nonsexual offense in addition to the sexual offense listed.
Vandiver, D. M., & Kercher, G. (2004). Offender and victim characteristics of registered female sexual offenders in Texas: A proposed typology of female sexual offenders. Sexual Abuse, 16, 121-137.
Found six subclusters of women who varied according to criminality, victim preferences, and offense motivations: (1) heterosexual nurturers, who victimized young males, appearing to view their abuse as a relationship, (2) non-criminal homosexuals, who offended against post pubescent girls, and held fewest number of arrests, (3) female sexual predators, who offended mainly against young males and appeared to hold a generic criminal disposition and background, (4) young adult child exploiters, who offended against prepubescent victims of either sex, (5) homosexual criminal subtypes, who often offended against females, typically to gain economic rewards (e.g., enforced prostitution) economic rewards (e.g., enforced prostitution) and (6) aggressive homosexual offenders who sexually assaulted adults, typically within intimate relationships, and possibly as part of domestic violent interactions. A prominent shortcoming of this research is that the researchers were unable to obtain information regarding whether women were acting alone, or in the company of others.
Vandiver, D. M., & Kercher, G. (2006). Offender and victim characteristics of registered female sexual offenders in Texas: A proposed typology of female sexual offenders. Sexual Abuse, 16(2), 121-37.
Victim and offender characteristic of all registered adult female sexual offenders in Texas (N = 471) were examined. The most common offenses the females were arrested for were indecency with a child--sexual contact, sexual assault on a child, and aggravated sexual assault on a child. The majority (88%) of the females were Caucasian and the ages ranged from 18 to 77 (M = 32). The results of Hierarchical Loglinear Modeling yielded a complex relationship between offender and victim characteristics; thus, identification of preferred victims is mitigated by more than one variable. Additionally, the employment of cluster analysis yielded 6 types of female sexual offenders. The most common group includes 146 offenders, heterosexual nurturers. They were the least likely to have an arrest for a sexual assault. The victims were males who averaged 12 years of age. The other types of offenders included, noncriminal homosexual offenders, female sexual predators, young adult child exploiters, homosexual criminals, and aggressive homosexual offenders.
Williams K. S., & Bierie D. M. (2015). .An incident-based comparison of female and male sexual offenders. Sexual Abuse, 27(3), 235-57.
Identifying the ways in which male and female sex offenders differ is an important but understudied topic. Studies that do exist have been challenged by a reliance on small and select samples. Improving on these limitations, we use the National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS) to compare male and female sex offenders among all 802,150 incidents of sexual assault reported to police across 37 states between 1991 and 2011. Findings indicated some broad similarities between groups, including the most prominent offense location (home), most common victim-offender relationship (acquaintance), and the rarity of injuries or drug abuse during crimes. However, the data also showed several important differences between male and female sexual offenders. Most notably, females offended with male accomplices in more than 30% of their sexual crimes--far more often than occurred among male sexual offenders (2%). Likewise, females offended against a victim of the same sex in nearly half of their crimes, yet this was only true in approximately 10% of male sexual offenses. Implications for future research are discussed.
Wijkman, M., Bijleveld, C., & Hendriks, J. (2010). Women don't do such things! Characteristics of female sex offenders and offender types. Sexual Abuse, 22(2):135-56.
The authors studied offender, offense, and victim characteristics in a cohort of 111 adult female sex offenders comprising all female sex offenders known to the criminal justice authorities in the Netherlands between 1994 and 2005. In 77% of the cases, the female sex offenders had abused children; almost two thirds of the women had co-offended with a male co-offender. Their backgrounds are on average problematic with sexual abuse being prominent (31%); mental disorders were also prominent (59%). Using multiple correspondence analysis, the authors distinguished four prototypical offender types. They identified the young assaulter and the rapist who are relatively young solo offenders. Two prototypes, the psychologically disturbed co-offender and the passive mother, comprise older women. They mostly abused their own children together with their male/intimate partner. These prototypes partly overlap with previous typologies. The authors discuss implications for theory and treatment.