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Alcohol and Substance Use Disorders as Predictors of Child to Adult Sexual Revictimization in a Sample of Community Women

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Alcohol- and substance-related diagnoses were examined as factors in child to adult sexual revictimization. Three hundred community women completed interviews and self-report instruments to obtain information regarding victimization and to diagnose substance use disorders (alcohol and substance abuse/dependence). Childhood sexual abuse (CSA) survivors were more likely than nonvictims to meet criteria for both substance use disorders and to report rape (e.g., unwanted intercourse due to threat or use of force, or due to the inability to consent due to the respondent's alcohol or drug use) and coerced intercourse (e.g., unwanted intercourse due to verbal coercion or misuse of authority by the perpetrator) by acquaintances, strangers, and husbands. In general, both CSA and substance use disorders were predictive of adult sexual victimization, but there were no significant interactions between these factors. Overall, substance use disorders were related to rape for all women; this relationship was not unique to CSA survivors. Alcohol- and substance-related diagnoses predicted rape by all three types of perpetrators, but CSA was predictive of rape only by acquaintances and strangers and not husbands. In contrast, CSA predicted coerced intercourse by all three perpetrators, while alcohol- and substance-related diagnoses predicted coerced intercourse by acquaintances and strangers, but not husbands. Results highlight the need to continue the study of revictimization of CSA survivors, including examination of both rape and sexually coercive experiences by different types of perpetrators. Findings support continued research of substance use disorders as risk factors for sexual victimization among all women.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: June 1, 2002

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