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Terapia psicológica

On-line version ISSN 0718-4808


SARASUA, Belén; ZUBIZARRETA, Irene; DE CORRAL, Paz  and  ECHEBURUA, Enrique. Risk and Protective Factors in the Emotional Impact of Adult Female Victims of Sexual Aggression. Ter Psicol [online]. 2012, vol.30, n.3, pp.7-18. ISSN 0718-4808.

The aim of this paper was to describe the psychopathological reactions of the victims according to the circumstances surrounding sexual aggression, the previous clinical record, and the role of family/social support. The sample consisted of269 adult female victims who suffered any kind of sexual aggression either in childhood or in adult life. Participants were assessed with the PTSD Severity Scale, the STAI, the BDI, the Self-Esteem Scale and the Misadjustment Scale. The results showed a high prevalence of emotional trouble (63.6%), low self-esteem (59.7%), PTSD (44.5), guilt feelings (48.3%), sexual avoidance (38.9%), as well as a poor adaptation to daily life activities. The severity of emotional problems was related to the circumstances of sexual aggression, such as vaginal/anal penetration or physical injuries, the history of victimization, the recent stressful life events and the lack of family/social support. However sexual avoidance behaviors were not associated with circumstances of sexual aggression.

Keywords : sexual aggression; adult female victims; psychological impact; risk and protective factors.

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