Document Detail

Relationships between maternal adult attachment security, child perceptions of maternal support, and maternal perceptions of child responses to sexual abuse.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  16221649     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
This study assessed the relationships between maternal adult attachment style, children's perceptions of maternal support following disclosure of sexual abuse, and maternal perceptions of children's behavioral and emotional responses to sexual abuse among African-American child sexual abuse victims aged 4 to 12 (n=96) and a comparison group of non-abused subjects (n=100). Mothers with insecure attachment styles reported significantly higher rates of internalizing behaviors in their sexually abused children than did securely attached mothers. Among mothers of non-abused children, those with insecure adult attachment styles reported significantly higher rates of externalizing behaviors shown by their children in comparison with mothers with a secure adult attachment style. Mothers with insecure adult attachment styles also reported higher rates of overall behavior problems in their non-abused children that approached statistical significance. Sexually abused children's perceptions of maternal support were not related to maternal attachment style nor to child functioning. Contrary to our prediction, mothers of sexually abused children did not show lower rates of secure attachments when compared to mothers of non-sexually abused children. Our findings indicate that fostering parent- child attachment is important in order to decrease the risk for behavior problems and symptomatology in sexually abused children.
Myra Leifer; Teresa Kilbane; Linda Skolnick
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural; Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of child sexual abuse     Volume:  11     ISSN:  1053-8712     ISO Abbreviation:  J Child Sex Abus     Publication Date:  2002  
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2005-10-13     Completed Date:  2005-12-07     Revised Date:  2007-11-14    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  9301157     Medline TA:  J Child Sex Abus     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  107-24     Citation Subset:  IM    
School of Professional Psychology, Chicago, IL 60603, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Child Abuse, Sexual / psychology*
Child Behavior / psychology*
Child, Preschool
Crime Victims / psychology
Maternal Behavior*
Mother-Child Relations*
Object Attachment*
Grant Support

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