Child sexual abuse and PTSD symptoms : children's self-blame and age at abuse

by Else-Marie Augusti

Institution: University of Oslo
Year: 1000
Keywords: VDP::260
Record ID: 1279005
Full text PDF: https://www.duo.uio.no/handle/10852/18254


Abstract The purpose of the present study was to explore the relations between self-blame attributions in child sexual abuse (CSA) victims and later post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms in adulthood. Furthermore, the effect of age at abuse was examined in relation to the number of PTSD criteria met in adulthood. This research is based on a study by Goodman et al. (1992) and a follow-up study by Quas et al. (2005) conducted using a prosecution sample. Out of 218 participants, 129 completed a PTSD measure, and hence were included in the present study. Regression analyses were employed to explore relations between variables related to the abuse (relationship to perpetrator, child s sexual acts), child (age), attributions (victim s self-blame), maternal support, disclosure, and traumatization (PTSD criteria met, number of life traumas). The results indicated no significant relation between self-blame in childhood and PTSD in adulthood. However, a significant age effect emerged, indicating that older age when abuse ended was related to more PTSD symptoms in adulthood. Implications of these results are discussed in relation to previous studies findings. Limitations and directions for future research are also addressed.