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Sexual Victimization in Close Relationships and Self-Blame Among College Women
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by Pamela E. May - State University of New York, College at Geneseo
Although past studies of self-blame for sexual victimization have focused on
self-blame for rape, women may blame themselves for a range of victimization
experiences perpetrated within close relationships. In Study 1, undergraduate
women (N = 159) provided self-reports of sexual victimization from adolescence
through college and self-blame for unwanted sexual experiences. Results showed
that past sexual perpetration by friends and partners predicted greater self-blame
than perpetration by more distant acquaintances. In Study 2, first-year female
undergraduates (N = 39) completed questionnaires at the beginning and end
of an academic year. Women who reported sexual perpetration by a friend or
partner showed increased self-blame at the end of the year. Victimization in close
relationships is prevalent and fosters self-blame.
Fall 2010 | Psi Chi Journal of Undergraduate Research (Vol. 15, No. 3, p. 158), published by Psi Chi, The International Honor Society in Psychology (Chattanooga, TN). Copyright, 2010, Psi Chi, The International Honor Society in Psychology. All rights reserved.