Child sexual abuse is a prevalent issue that may affect multiple dimensions of the victim's life. Past studies suggest that child sexual abuse is associated with a heightened risk of sustaining dating violence, yet no studies were conducted in France to explore this issue. The aim of this paper was to document the association between child sexual abuse and dating violence victimization in a sample of teenage girls and young adult women from France, while controlling for age, length of the romantic relationship and other forms of interpersonal trauma.
Material and methods
Relying on data from the France Youth Romantic Relationships Survey, we analyzed responses of 1322 girls ages 15 to 23. Participants completed measures on sexual abuse, dating violence victimization, and past experiences of other forms of interpersonal violence (psychological and physical abuse within family, parental neglect, exposure to interparental violence).
Bivariate analyses showed that child sexual abuse is linked to a greater prevalence of all forms of dating victimization. Results of multivariate analyses revealed, once age of the participant, length of the romantic relationship and other forms of interpersonal traumas experienced are controlled for, a history of child sexual abuse predicted physical and sexual dating victimization, but not psychological dating violence.
In addition to universal programs, selected dating violence initiatives should target adolescent girls and young adult women who have experienced child sexual abuse, since they are more vulnerable to revictimization in the context of their romantic relationships.Le texte complet de cet article est disponible en PDF.
Keywords : Child sexual abuse, Dating violence, Interpersonal trauma, Revictimization