A PCL-R, Rorschach, and PAI Investigation of Females with Sex Offenses Against Minors and a Rorschach Comparison with Male Pedophiles

  • Jason M Smith FBOP
  • Carl B Gacono Private Practice
  • Aaron J Kivisto
  • Ted B Cunliffe Private Practice


In this study, the Psychopathy Checklist-Revised (PCL-R), the Rorschach, and the Personality Assessment Inventory (PAI) were used to elucidate the personality functioning of incarcerated females with sex offenses against minors (FSOAM; N = 31). There was significant convergence among the PCL-R, PAI, and Rorschach data. Both the PAI and Rorschach suggested: 1) borderline/psychotic reality testing and idiosyncratic thinking; 2) damaged sense of self, entitlement, and victim stance; 3) abnormal bonding and dependency; 4) affective instability; 5) impulsivity; and 6) chronic anger. Our comparison with a sample of males with sex offenses against minors (MSOAM; N = 36) highlighted gender specific issues with the women. Specifically, the women had more emotional deficits, ego-syntonic aggression, idiosyncratic thinking, and inappropriate attachments. A case study and our findings suggest a conceptual model for understanding the dynamics that result in female sexual offending behavior.