Relationship to Perpetrator, Disclosure, Social Reactions, and PTSD Symptoms in Child Sexual Abuse Survivors

ArticleinJournal of Child Sexual Abuse 16(1):19-36 · February 2007with34 Reads
Impact Factor: 0.75 · DOI: 10.1300/J070v16n01_02 · Source: PubMed


    This research examined victim relationship to the perpetrator, disclosure characteristics, social reactions, and PTSD in adult survivors' of child sexual abuse (CSA) identified in a convenience sample of 733 college students. Results indicated that relationship to the perpetrator was related to CSA characteristics and outcomes. More negative reactions such as disbelief were observed for those victimized by relatives compared with acquaintance and stranger victims, especially for those disclosing in childhood. Victims of relatives had more PTSD symptoms if they delayed disclosure, received more negative reactions in childhood, and engaged in self-blame at the time of the abuse. Results are discussed in the context of Freyd's (1996) betrayal trauma theory, in order to better understand the traumatic impact of CSA.