Psychology, Department of

 

Date of this Version

2009

Comments

Published in Journal of Child Sexual Abuse, 18 (2009), pp. 40–60; doi: 10.1080/10538710802584627 Copyright © Taylor & Francis Group, LLC. Used by permission.

Abstract

This study examined the influence of parental expectations on the functioning of sexually abused children. Participants included 67 sexually abused youth and 63 of their nonoffending primary caregivers. Parental expectations about how sexual abuse will impact children were predictive of parents’ ratings of children’s behavior at pretreatment, while parental expectations of children’s overall future functioning were not predictive of parents’ ratings of children’s behavior. Parental expectations about how sexual abuse will impact their children and about their children’s overall future functioning were not predictive of parents’ ratings of children’s behavior at posttreatment. Results highlight the influential role the sexual abuse label has in shaping parental expectations about children’s functioning. Recommendations for research and intervention are discussed.