Childhood Sexual Abuse Profiles and Psychological Functioning in Adult Males

Jennifer Lyons, Elisa Romano
Journal of Child Sexual Abuse 2019 January 24, : 1-20
This study used a person-centered approach to generate profiles of males' sexual abuse characteristics and then link profiles to other types of childhood maltreatment and adversity, and adult outcomes. Data were drawn from 215 North American males (86% Caucasian) aged 17-61 years recruited from websites offering support for sexual abuse. Latent profile analysis identified three profiles, ranging from 1-2 instances of fondling by an unfamiliar extrafamilial perpetrator to chronic, penetrative abuse by individuals within and outside the family. Profiles were labeled Severe (26%), More Severe (33%), and Most Severe (41%). Chi-squares and analysis of variance showed that men in the Most Severe profile were more likely to experience childhood emotional and physical abuse, and a greater number of non-victimization adversities, than men in the other two profiles. After controlling for multiple victimization and adversity, men in the More Severe and Most Severe profiles reported significantly greater internalizing problems than men in the Severe profile, and men in the Most Severe profile reported significantly more trauma symptoms than men in the Severe profile. While these results require replication, they suggest that treatment should be tailored to the individual needs of male survivors.

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