2015 Family or caregiver instability, parental attachment, and the relationship to juvenile sex offending.

This study investigates how parental attachment and carer instability affect the incidence of adolescent sex offences. The relatively low correlation between disrupted parental attachment and juvenile sex offence in this study may be due to the detained adolescents’ inclination to idealize their parents or carers. The results of this study’s investigation into the consequences of parent and carer instability are in line with previous studies that suggest weak parental boundaries and family upheaval may contribute to juvenile sexual behavior and crime (Dallaire & Wilson,2010; Merrick, Litrownik, Everson, & Cox,2008). Also, the lack of supervision in a homeless setting, observing hitting, slapping, or punching in the home may serve to reinforce negative behavior in the juvenile’s mind and, in turn, cause them to display such behavior when involved in an intimate relationship.