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NCJ Number: 134313 Find in a Library
Title: Family Environments of Victims of Intrafamilial and Extrafamilial Child Sexual Abuse
Journal: Journal of Family Violence  Volume:6  Issue:4  Dated:(December 1991)  Pages:365-374
Author(s): K C Ray; J L Jackson; R M Townsley
Date Published: 1991
Page Count: 10
Type: Survey
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The present study investigates the hypothesis that certain family characteristics common in incestuous families may also place children at risk for abuse by persons outside the family.
Abstract: Of the 80 victims of child sexual abuse participating in the study, 31 were college women identified as victims of childhood incest, and 49 were victims of extrafamilial abuse. Forty-nine participants were nonvictims. The participants completed a questionnaire on demographic and abuse relevant information and the Family Environment Scale (FES). Multivariate analysis of variance and descriptive discriminant analysis of FES scores indicated that both intrafamilial and extrafamilial victim groups differed significantly from the nonabused group. The intrafamilial and extrafamilial abused subjects' families were less cohesive; less involved in recreational activities; less likely to encourage personal growth by emphasizing moral-religious issues; less likely to encourage independence; and less organized in terms of mutual responsibilities, family activities, and family rules. The results support the hypothesis that family characteristics associated with the intrafamilial abuses are also associated with extrafamilial sexual assault. Further research is warranted to determine how family characteristics increase a child's vulnerability to abuse and how to enhance the effectiveness of sexual abuse prevention programs. 21 tables and 20 references (Author abstract modified)
Main Term(s): Child Sexual Abuse
Index Term(s): Abused-nonabused child comparisons; Children at risk; Environmental influences; Home environment; Incest
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