Polygraph Question about Test

Question about Pre-employment Polygraph Testing:

I am a social worker with a client who is scheduled to take a polygraph with the Maryland Sheriff’s Dept. on Wednesday.  He’s received the pre-screening questions & is troubled by the question concerning having sex with animals.  He explained to me that, while he was a young boy, he experimented with homosexual urges, playing with a dog’s penis.  When he got older, the urges left him and after experimenting briefly with a homosexual relationship, he got married and has children and remains happily married.

How much of this should he reveal to the examiner & should he answer this question honestly? Will this disqualify him from employment with the county government?

I appreciate Your Response,

Dan’s Answer –

I recommend that your client tell the truth about his youthful experimentation with the dog. If he was a child this issue, by itself, should not disqualify him?  The homosexual issues are not or should not be asked or explored by the examiner.  Oftentimes withholding information whether the examiner asks direct questions about the undisclosed issue or not may cause the person to feel guilty and consequently he will react deceptively to closely related questions.

My advice would be to answer all the questions asked truthfully but don’t expand his responses into areas not questioned.  At some level, however I think the sexual experimentation with animals will be a negative in the selection process.

I would rather have a candidate pass his test because this would make it more difficult to reject him on the sexual issues we have discussed.

Good luck to your client.