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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 220479 Find in a Library
Title: Vicarious Trauma: Predictors of Clinicians' Disrupted Cognitions About Self-Esteem and Self-Intimacy
Journal: Journal of Child Sexual Abuse  Volume:16  Issue:4  Dated:2007  Pages:81-98
Author(s): Ineke Way; Karen VanDeusen; Tom Cottrell
Date Published: 2007
Page Count: 18
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study explored whether female and male clinicians who provided sexual abuse treatment experienced different levels of disturbance in cognitions regarding self-esteem and self-intimacy based on gender, age, and childhood maltreatment history.
Abstract: The findings indicate that while males and females who provide sexual abuse treatment do not differ in ethnicity or work setting, they do differ in age, length of time providing sexual abuse treatment, childhood maltreatment history, and level of disrupted cognitions about self-esteem and self-intimacy. Specifically, male clinicians were older, had longer tenure providing sexual abuse treatment, and reported lower rates of childhood sexual abuse and emotional abuse than their female counterparts. Further analyses indicated that male gender predicted greater disruption on cognitions about self-esteem and self-intimacy. The implications for practice are that if the effectiveness of sexual abuse treatment can be predicted on the clinician’s ability to be empathic, offer hope and be objective, disrupted cognitions about self-esteem may negatively impact a clinician’s capacity to engage in an effective therapeutic relationship. Similarly, disrupted cognitions about self-intimacy may negatively impact a clinician’s capacity to effectively process their own emotional response to therapeutic content. Future studies should explore clinician variables such as level of empathy, client population served, and role of personal and professional coping strategies in order to learn more about the other predictors of disrupted cognitions about self. Perspective studies should also examine disrupted cognitions about self and other vicarious trauma effects in clinicians over time to learn which factors increase and/or reduce vicarious trauma effects. With additional research, more effective prevention and treatment efforts can be implemented. The sample included 150 male clinicians and 233 female clinicians who provided sexual abuse treatment (113 served survivors and 270 served offenders; some served both) with an average age of 46; more than half had 10 or more years tenure, with the majority having a master’s degree or higher. The study used the Traumatic Stress Institute Belief Scale (TSIBS-R-L) which measures disrupted cognitions in self-esteem and self-intimacy. Tables, references
Main Term(s): Child Sexual Abuse; Comparative analysis; Gender
Index Term(s): Mental health; Mental health services; Treatment effectiveness; Treatment/Therapeutic Community
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