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The Big Picture: Sexual Offending Among Other Sexual Self-Regulation Problems

Wineke Smid


Sexual offending behavior is often defined as sexual- or sexually motivated behavior that is forbidden by law. As such, it construes a rather random subset of sexual behavior, varying over time and place. In this workshop we will be talking about sexual offending behavior within the wider frame of sexual behavior in general. First we will discuss terminology. What is legal, what is not? What is problematic, what is not? What is normal, what is not? And how do these qualifications relate to each other? We will try to find a way to discuss these issues without needless judgment, yet with sufficient clarity. Next, we will use those terms to explore the relationship between various forms of offending behavior, such as child pornography consumption, and their legal problematic counterparts, such as the overuse of internet pornography. Various examples from forensic psychiatric practice, non-forensic clinical practice, movies and literature will be used as examples. Active participation of attendees is encouraged.


Wineke Smid is head of the research department at Forensic Care Specialists in Utrecht, the Netherlands. She divides her time between conducting and supervising empirical research projects, carrying out individual (risk) assessments of residential high-risk sex offenders and providing feedback of state of the art knowledge to various stakeholders in Dutch society. She conducted a national study on Sex Offender Risk Assessment in the Netherlands and is currently involved in research projects focusing on the assessment and treatment of sexual self-regulation factors (sexual deviance, sexual preoccupation, sexual coping) as well as fundamental sexological research on the Incentive Motivational Model. She provides (risk assessment) training to police officers, prosecutors, judges, treatment providers and probation officers. She is a fellow of the Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers (ATSA) and a member of ATSA’s research committee as well as a member of the editorial board of Sexual Abuse. She is the cofounder of NL-ATSA (www.nl-atsa.org).

(Full link to thesis: https://www.dropbox.com/s/3usqwge9ea9tuu6/Thesis%20Wineke%20Smid.pdf?dl=0 )