Mental Health Professionals
Advice and resources for therapists who are working with MAPs
Are you a MAP in need of therapy?
MAP Resources provides no-cost consulting services to organizations that provide support to minor-attracted people. Groups working to establish new services or improve existing offerings are eligible. Consultations include the following:
Informal review of your support service under our Content Guidelines
Advice and suggestions from MAPs with experience seeking support
Accuracy check for the information provided in your promotional content
To request a consultation, reach out using the contact information on our About page and include details about your organization's service and the content of relevant online and physical promotional materials. Consultations are provided at our discretion and are dependent on staff availability.
The first step to effectively treating minor-attracted people is learning how to approach the unique mental health needs they may have due to intense societal stigma and isolation.
Responding to a disclosure
When a client discloses that they experience attractions to minors, your response sets the stage for any future treatment that you provide. Begin by explaining your reporting obligations and any information that may help them stay safe while discussing related topics. Reassure them that your goal is to provide support, then ask what they hope to gain by discussing their attractions with a therapist.
Understanding a client's needs
In general, clients should be in charge of the goals for their treatment and the approach taken to achieve those goals. However, it is important to note that internalized stigma may make it hard for some MAPs to identify their own needs. For example, self-hating MAPs may desire conversion therapy or chemical castration when they would benefit more from coping mechanisms and self-acceptance
It can be tempting to focus on sexual abuse prevention when working with MAP clients. However, doing so without reason may worsen internalized stigma and any associated mental health issues. The vast majority of MAPs never offend, so focusing on preventing sexual offenses is only necessary and beneficial when a client expresses concern about their risk of offending or demonstrates high-risk behaviors.
MAPs often encounter pitfalls when accessing mental health services. To prevent this, some organizations provide educational materials for practitioners who work with MAPs.
Psychotherapy for Minor-Attracted Persons
This guide answers questions that many mental health professionals have about treating MAPs. It also contains advice on developing trust with a group that has been subjected to harmful forms of "treatment."
Minor-attracted persons: A neglected population
This paper shares basic information that therapists should know about MAPs and their experiences. It also addresses common misconceptions and details acceptable forms of support for this stigmatized group.
Join the Conversation
Improving the availability and effectiveness of support for MAPs requires active discussions between MAPs, the researchers that study them, and mental health professionals.
Dialogue on Therapy
A monthly discussion for mental health professionals to better understand the support needs of MAPs. Each meeting focuses on a specific relevant topic, and many include thoughts from both therapists and MAPs.
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