Chapter 5: Discussion and Recommendations

To date, the research conducted on sex offenders has thoroughly indicated that labeling individuals as sex offenders will create long term negative effects. These effects can lead to consequences that are oftentimes beyond the control of the individuals, as well as their families.  Due to these consequences and long term negative effects, high stress levels are often associated with the sex offender status.  Such stress levels in the general population often serve as risk factors in alcohol abuse (Dion & Earn, 1975).  Also, there are individuals in the general population who cope with these negative life circumstances by using drugs and alcohol to offset the stereotypes that society has placed upon them.  They also use drugs and alcohol in many cases to cope with various issues in their daily lives including but not limited to subpar living conditions.  These individuals may participate in self-medication to alleviate the psychological distress (Hall & Queener, 2007), brought about by a culmination of indicators that are described in the preceding sections of this paper.