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Surviving Childhood Sexual Abuse

Bolden, Brittney, MSMFT • March 01, 2014

Childhood experiences greatly influence our adult relationships, choices and habits. Some experiences children face, though, are far more detrimental than others. Childhood sexual abuse (CSA) is an atrocity that causes a great deal of pain and suffering for adult survivors, and researchers have continued to study the long-term effects of CSA on adults.

References & Citations

Asberg, K, & Renk, K. (2013). Comparing incarcerated and college student women with histories of childhood sexual abuse: the roles of abuse severity, support, and substance use. Psychol Trauma-Theory Res Pract Policy, 5(2), 167-175. doi:10.1037/A0027162. 

Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers. (2011, April). A reasoned approach: Reshaping sex offender policy to prevent child sexual abuse. Retrieved from

Davis, J. L., & Petretic-Jackson P. A. (2000). The impact of child sexual abuse on adult interpersonal functioning: A review and synthesis of the empirical literature. Aggression and Violent Behavior. 5:291-328. 

Fairweather, A., & Kinder, B. (2012). Predictors of relationship adjustment in female survivors of childhood sexual abuse. Journal of Interpersonal Violence. 28, 538-557. 

Finkelhor, D. (2009).The prevention of child sexual abuse. Future of Children, 19, 169-194. 

Forouzan, E., & Van Gijseghem, H. (2005). Psychological adjustment and psychopathology of men sexually abused during childhood. International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology, 49, 626-651. 

Freud, S. (1953). Three essays on the theory of sexuality. In J. Strachey (Ed. and Trans.), The standard edition of the complete psychological works of Sigmund Freud (Vol. 7, pp.125-245). London: Hogarth Press. (Original work published 1905). 

Jehu, D. (1988). Beyond Sexual Abuse. Therapy with Women who were Childhood Victims. Chichester: John Wiley and Sons. 

McCarthy, J. A. (2010). Internet sexual activity: A comparison between contact and non-contact child pornography offenders. Journal of Sexual Aggression, 16, 181-195. 

Neumann, D. A., Houskamp, B. M., Pollock, V. E., & Briere, J. (1996). The long term sequelae of childhood sexual abuse in women: A meta-analytic review. Child Maltreatment, 1, 6-16. 

O’Dougherty Wright, M., Crawford, E., & Sebastian, K. (2007). Positive resolution of childhood sexual abuse experiences: The role of coping, benefit-finding and meaning-making. Journal of Family Violence, 22, 597-608. 

Roberts, R., O’Connor, T., Dunn, J., & Golding, J. (2004). The effects of child sexual abuse in later family life; mental health, parenting and adjustment of offspring. Journal of Child Abuse & Neglect, 28, 525-545. 

Roche, D., Runtz, M. G., & Hunter, M. A. (1999). Adult attachment: A mediator between child sexual abuse later psychological adjustment. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 14, 184-207. 

Wilson, D. R., Vidal, B. B., Wilson, W. A., & Salyer, S. L. (2012). Overcoming sequelae of childhood sexual abuse with stress management. Journal of Psychiatric & Mental Health Nursing, 19, 587-593. 

Wurtele S. K. (2009). Preventing sexual abuse of children in the twenty-first century: preparing for challenges and opportunities. Journal of Child Sexual Abuse, 18, 1-18.