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Group CBT for men with intellectual disabilities and/or autism who have harmful sexual behaviour

Murphy, Glynis H., Sinclair, Neil, Melvin, Clare, Langdon, Peter E. (2023) Group CBT for men with intellectual disabilities and/or autism who have harmful sexual behaviour. British Journal of Clinical Psychology, 62 (3). pp. 592-604. ISSN 0144-6657. E-ISSN 2044-8260. (doi:10.1111/bjc.12427) (KAR id:101472)


Objectives: Men with intellectual disabilities and/or autism sometimes engage in harmful sexual behaviour (HSB), but it may be harder for them to access treatment, than it is for non‐disabled men. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of attending an adapted CBT group, known as SOTSEC‐ID, on men with intellectual disabilities and/or autism who had HSB. Method: Ninety‐eight men from intellectual disability services, who had ID and/or autism and a history of HSB were recruited, and they received group CBT for a year (46 of these men have been previously reported). Harmful sexual behaviour, sexual knowledge, distorted cognitions and victim empathy were measured before and after treatment, and at 6 month follow‐up. Results: There were low levels of further harmful sexual behaviour: 12% of men engaged in further HSB during the 1‐year period of the group, and 8% engaged in further HSB in the 6‐month follow‐up period. There were also significant improvements in sexual knowledge, distorted cognitions and victim empathy following treatment, maintained at 6‐month follow‐up. Men with autism showed significantly more non‐contact HSB, were less likely to have been interviewed by police and had higher rates of further HSB, compared to men without autism. Conclusions: It is concluded that SOTSEC‐ID is a promising treatment for men with ID/autism and HSB. Nevertheless, the study had a number of limitations and lacked a control group, so there is now an urgent need for a proper controlled study.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1111/bjc.12427
Uncontrolled keywords: Autism, harmful sexual behaviour, group CBT, intellectual disabilities
Subjects: H Social Sciences
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare
Divisions: Divisions > Division for the Study of Law, Society and Social Justice > School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research > Tizard
Funders: University of Kent (
SWORD Depositor: JISC Publications Router
Depositing User: JISC Publications Router
Date Deposited: 06 Jun 2023 14:37 UTC
Last Modified: 15 Aug 2023 09:15 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

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