Hope in the treatment of sexual offenders: the potential application of hope theory
The present paper attempts to demonstrate how hope theory is conceptually consistent with current positive approaches to sexual offender treatment. Hope theory and its components of goals, pathways thinking, and agentic thinking is reviewed as defined by Snyder and his colleagues. A theoretical relationship exists between the role of hope and many aspects of sexual offending and treatment. Developmental course, attachment style, and the formation and maintenance of coping styles are reviewed as they relate to hope and sexual offending. A framework by which to apply hope theory to pre-treatment, treatment, and more specifically, self-management or relapse prevention for sexual offenders is proposed. Emphasis is placed on the use of techniques that target hope components, particularly in pre-treatment programs.