When you think about the term “youthful offender” you probably picture a troubled teenaged boy with an anger problem.
However, court dockets across the country are full of cases involving not just boys and young men, but also girls and young women.
Social and personal stimuli for the delinquency of minors
While adolescent males are more likely to engage in physically aggressive criminal acts, young females are also capable of antisocial and criminal conduct. Social science research shows the reasons for adolescent criminal behavior are usually the same for both male and female offenders. Typically, young people act out irrationally due to one or more of the following risk factors:
- Substance abuse
- Mental illness
A few issues that are more specific to young females than males include victimization and depression, both of which can lead to violent outbursts.
Rehabilitation efforts for female offenders
The curriculum for criminal reform of youthful offenders often treats young women the same as young men, which assumes a single theory or treatment model can rehabilitate everyone in the juvenile detention system. In fact, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to rehabilitation, and effective treatment programs for female offenders must address their individual emotional and attachment needs.
Tips for helping your teen daughter
If a young woman in your life has landed in the criminal justice system, then she needs long-term support to achieve healthy reassimilation. It is important for you to know and recognize common teen issues that lead young people astray, and address them with your loved one to prevent future delinquent activity.