59 research outputs found

    Women\u27s risk perception and sexual victimization: A review of the literature

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    This article reviews empirical and theoretical studies that examined the relationship between risk perception and sexual victimization in women. Studies examining women\u27s general perceptions of risk for sexual assault as well as their ability to identify and respond to threat in specific situations are reviewed. Theoretical discussions of the optimistic bias and cognitive–ecological models of risk recognition are discussed in order to account for findings in the literature. Implications for interventions with women as well as recommendations for future research are provided

    Posttraumatic stress and sexual functioning difficulties in college women with a history of sexual assault victimization

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    © 2018 American Psychological Association. Objective: College women are at risk for exposure to sexual victimization, which is a risk factor for posttraumatic stress (PTS) and sexual dysfunction. Contemporary models of female sexual functioning identify the role of distal (e.g., sexual abuse) and proximal (e.g., psychological) variables in contributing to female sexual response. This study examined whether and how PTS symptom clusters are related to specific domains of sexual functioning in a sample of sexually active college women who reported a history of sexual victimization. Method: A nonclinical sample of 108 women, recruited from a midsized university, completed online questionnaires assessing sexual victimization history, PTS symptom clusters (i.e., intrusion, avoidance, and hyperarousal), and difficulties with sexual functioning (i.e., desire, arousal, lubrication, orgasm, pain, and distress). Results: Regression analyses indicated that greater intrusive symptoms were associated with more difficulties with orgasm and higher sexual distress. Conclusion: Results confirm the importance of intrusive PTS symptoms in understanding subjective distress and orgasm difficulties in sexual assault survivors. Possible implications of these findings include the integration of trauma-focused therapy with treatment of sexual dysfunction among women with a history of sexual assault. Future research should examine prospective relationships between sexual assault exposure, PTS response, and female sexual dysfunction

    Stalking and Psychosocial Distress Following the Termination of an Abusive Dating Relationship: A Prospective Analysis

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    The purpose of the current study was to utilize a prospective methodology to better understand the extent to which women report stalking behaviors perpetrated by their abusive ex-partners and how these stalking experiences affect women’s psychological adjustment. Participants included 56 college women who completed measures of partner abuse and psychological adjustment prior to and after terminating an abusive dating relationship. A little over half of the women (51.8%) reported some type of stalking victimization following the termination of the abusive relationship. After controlling for baseline levels of psychological distress and partner abuse variables, experiences of post-relationship stalking victimization predicted greater levels of posttraumatic stress symptomatology and interpersonal sensitivity, whereas post-relationship stalking victimization was unrelated to depression and personal empowerment

    Prediction of Women\u27s Utilization of Resistance Strategies in a Sexual Assault Situation A Prospective Study

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    The present study prospectively explored the predictors of resistance strategies to a sexual assault situation. Participants were assessed at the beginning of an academic quarter on a number of variables, including past history of sexual victimization, perceived risk of sexual victimization, and intentions to use specific types of resistance strategies. Only women who reported being victimized over the interim ( N = 68) were included in the analyses, which suggested that women\u27s Time 1 intentions to utilize assertive resistance strategies (e.g., physically fight, run away) and offender aggression predicted women\u27s use of assertive resistance strategies in response to the assault that occurred over the follow-up. Women\u27s utilization of nonforceful verbal resistance (e.g., reason, plead, quarrel) was predicted by perpetrator aggression and previous sexual victimization. Women\u27s immobility (e.g., turn cold, freeze) during the assault that took place over the interim was predicted by experiences of childhood sexual victimization and previous sexual victimization
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