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Children Who Act Out Their Pain: Problematic Sexual Behaviors

Thursday, June 10 @ 12:30 pm - 4:00 pm

This event is being offered virtually. A link will be shared with all registrants.

Children who act out sexually can present a challenging and complex diagnostic picture. This workshop will present a typology of sexual behavior problems in children, contrasting each category to what would be developmentally usual and expected.  Implications for placements and treatment planning will be discussed for impulsive, attachment-seeking, neuro-atypical, trauma reactive, compulsive and exploitive sexual behaviors. We will focus on children in alternative care such as foster care, special school settings, residential treatment centers and inpatient hospitals.


  1. To differentiate types of sexual behavior problems based on motivation and history
  2. To make appropriate treatment planning and placement decisions for each type
  3. To understand the role of past trauma in the children who engage in sexual behavior problems


Linda T. (Lynn) Sanford, LICSW began her career working with victims of sexual assault, and worked for 20 years with youth who have been convicted of crimes against people (e.g., homicide, attempted homicide, and multiple sexual assaults). She has taught at various graduate schools of social work in Massachusetts, achieving the rank of Professor of Practice in 2009. Sanford received the Massachusetts National Association of Social Workers “Outstanding Contribution to Social Work Practice Award” and the Devereux Foundation “Legacy of Caring Award” in 2010. She is the author of Strong at the Broken Places: Building Resiliency in the Lives of Survivors (1990, 2004) and The Silent Children (1980).



Thursday, June 10
12:30 pm - 4:00 pm
Event Category:


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