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The impact of child sexual abuse on victims/survivors: Exploring posttraumatic outcomes as a function of childhood sexual abuse

Publication Date
  • 170106 Health Clinical And Counselling Psychology
  • Posttraumatic Growth
  • Sexual Abuse
  • Childhood Trauma
  • Counseling
  • Medicine


There is sparse systematic examination of the potential for growth as well as distress that may occur for some adult survivors of childhood sexual abuse. The presented study explored posttraumatic growth and its relationship with negative posttrauma outcomes within the specific population of survivors of childhood sexual abuse (N = 40). Results showed that 95% of the participants experienced clinically significant post-traumatic stress disorder symptomatology related to their childhood sexual abuse. In conjunction with these high levels of negative symptoms, the population evidenced posttraumatic growth levels that were comparable to other trauma samples. This research has clinical relevance in terms of adding to the knowledge base on sexual abuse and the usefulness of this knowledge in therapeutic interventions and relationships.

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