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Title:The Effects of Previous Victimization on Women's Psychological and Health -Related Outcomes Following Sexual Harassment
Author(s):Fuller, Tamara Lynn
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Fitzgerald, Louise F.
Department / Program:Psychology
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Psychology, Social
Abstract:Recent models of the effects of sexual harassment have suggested the importance of previous victimization as a factor that may mediate women's outcomes, and several studies from the sexual assault literature have demonstrated the importance of previous victimization on women's responses to sexual trauma. To examine the effects of previous victimization on women's psychological and health-related outcomes following sexual harassment, a sample of one hundred sexually harassed women were interviewed about their sexual harassment experiences, previous victimization experiences, and current psychological and health functioning. Results indicated that previous adult sexual assault was strongly related to poorer outcomes following harassment, even after controlling for the effects of sexual harassment frequency. Women with a history of adult sexual assault were approximately four times more likely to receive a diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder than women without sexual assault experiences during adulthood. These women were also more likely to experience increased symptoms of phobic anxiety, decreased self-esteem, decreased feelings of intimacy with others, and increased health-related problems. Previous childhood physical abuse was related to increased symptoms of phobic anxiety and decreased feelings of intimacy with others. In addition, the effects of multiple types of previous victimization were examined. Multiple victimization experiences seemed to have a cumulative effect on several outcomes, including PTSD diagnosis, self-esteem, beliefs about self-safety, other-trust, and other-intimacy, and health problems. The results are discussed in terms of their relationship to previous research and their implications for clinical work with sexually harassed women.
Issue Date:2000
Description:138 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2000.
Other Identifier(s):(MiAaPQ)AAI9971077
Date Available in IDEALS:2015-09-25
Date Deposited:2000

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