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NCJ Number: 158160 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Evidence for Specific Effects of Childhood Sexual Abuse on Mental Well-Being and Physical Self-Esteem
Journal: Child Abuse and Neglect  Volume:19  Issue:10  Dated:(October 1995)  Pages:1255-1262
Author(s): R M Brayden; G Deitrich-MacLean; M S Dietrich; K B Sherrod; W A Altemeier
Date Published: 1995
Page Count: 8
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Mental Health
Bethesda, MD 20852
Grant Number: R01-MH38373
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study addresses the association between childhood sexual abuse and a woman's psychological functioning, independent of the quality of parental nurturance received during childhood and other variables that may influence mental health.
Abstract: Of 609 women who completed mental health and self-concept measures, 98 reported sexual abuse; 110 of the remaining women were selected as comparisons. Women who were sexually abused as children scored lower on measures of mental health status. Both sexual abuse and fewer years of education were related to lower scores on a psychological well-being scale after variance accounted for by family and demographic variables was removed. Sexual abuse was not a predictor of general self-concept scores after the removal of family and demographic variables, but sexual abuse was independently associated with the subscale that measured the physical aspect of self-concept. These findings lend support to theorized causal links between child sexual abuse and some aspects of later psychological difficulties. Overall, the authors conclude that women who are sexually abused are at increased risk for having mental health problems long after the abuse. Other nonexploitative experiences can also be psychologically detrimental, may coexist with sexual abuse, and may explain some portion of subsequent mental health problems. 1 table and 27 references
Main Term(s): Child victims
Index Term(s): Adult survivors of child sexual abuse; Child Sexual Abuse; Mental disorders; Mental health; Psychological victimization effects
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