The role of emotion in the psychological functioning of adult survivors of childhood sexual abuse

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APA Citation: 

Marx , B. P., & Sloan, D. M. (2002). The role of emotion in the psychological functioning of adult survivors of childhood sexual abuse. Behavior Therapy, 33, 563-577.

Type of Publication: 
ACT: Empirical
Abstract: 

This study examined the role of two aspects of emotion in the psychological distress of individuals with and without a history of childhood sexual abuse (CSA). It was hypothesized that experiential avoidance and expressivity would mediate the relationship between CSA status and psychological distress. Ninety-nine participants completed measures that assessed for a CSA history, experiential avoidance, emotional expressivity, and psychological functioning. The results indicated that CSA status, experiential avoidance, and emotional expressivity were significantly related to psychological distress. However, only experiential avoidance mediated the relationship between CSA status and distress. These results contribute to the growing body of literature indicating that experiential avoidance has an influential role in the development of psychological symptoms.

Comments: 
Correlational study showing that childhood sexual abuse (CSA), experiential avoidance and emotional expressivity were significantly related to psychological distress. However, only experiential avoidance mediated the relationship between CSA and current distress.
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