Treating Nonoffending Parents in Child Sexual Abuse Cases: Connections for Family Safety


Jill S. Levenson & John W. Morin

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  • Chapters
  • Front Matter
  • Back Matter
  • Subject Index
  • Dedication

    This project is dedicated to Stephanie, Merissa, Rachel, Chloe, and Adam, who remind us every day how precious childhood truly is.


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    The Connections program that this book describes is the culmination of years of shaping our work with sexually abusive families into a structured format. As we watched families struggle to change, so did our ideas, theories, and practices change. Working daily with the complexities of sexual deviance rarely has brought us to firm conclusions but has continually expanded our ways of thinking about the dynamics of sexual violence within families. In this edition, we have added a significant amount of new material to the version we selfpublished several years ago as Connections.

    This book has been inspired by the courage it takes families to survive the trauma of child sexual abuse. It would not have been possible without the contributions of the men, women, and children we've worked with, who bravely faced their problems and shared with us their stories, their pain, their fears, and their hopes. Of course, all names and identifying information have been changed to protect the confidentiality of our clients.

    Special thanks to Cory Jewell and Steve Jensen for allowing us to borrow the “journey” created by their mothers in treatment and for their review, support, and encouragement of this project. Thanks also to Cindy Lawlor for her review, suggestions, and reminders about the victim's point of view. We have watched Denise Hunter, our associate, make the program come alive as she has empowered clients to make profound and sometimes unexpected changes in the interests of family healing and child safety. We thank David Wood for believing in our work and encouraging us to pursue professional publication, Terry Hendrix for helping to make it happen, and Nancy Hale for her support as our editor.

    We hope the Connections program makes a difference for victims of sexual assault, who need their families to come to their rescue.

  • Resource: Suggested visual Aids for Group Sessions


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    About the Authors

    Jill S. Levenson, MSW, is a licensed clinical social worker and a full-time faculty member at Florida International University (FIU) School of Social Work. She earned her master's degree in Social Work at the University of Maryland in 1987, and has worked in the Child Welfare field since 1985. Beginning her career as an investigator of child abuse and neglect cases, she has since worked in several community agencies treating abused children, perpetrators, adult survivors and non-offending parents. From 1994–1999 she served on the faculty at FIU's Professional Development Center, where she provided training and consultation for the Florida Department of Children and Families. In her private practice, Ms. Levenson provides evaluation and treatment for sexual offenders and nonoffending parents, and provides consultation and expert witness testimony on the topic of child sexual abuse. Ms. Levenson is a member of the National Association of Social Workers, the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children, and the Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers (ATSA). She sits on the Board of Directors of ATS A's Florida chapter. She has presented locally and internationally on the treatment of sexual offenders and their partners.

    John W. Morin, PhD, is a licensed psychologist who earned his doctorate from the University of Miami. He has specialized in sexual deviance for the past eight years in both community and institutional settings. In 1991 he became the director of the sexual offender program at an outpatient mental health center and in 1994 founded the Center for Offender Rehabilitation and Education in Fort Lauderdale. As a contracted consultant and treatment provider for both the Florida Department of Corrections and the Florida Department of Children and Families, Dr. Morin specializes in the evaluation of sexually violent predators. Dr. Morin has lectured locally and nationally on the management of sex offenders. He is a member of the American Psychological Association and ATSA and sits on the Board of Directors of the Florida chapter of ATSA.

    The authors have also published The Road to Freedom, a comprehensive, competency-based program for sexual offenders in treatment.

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