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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1860/2800

Title: An investigation of the role of shame and attributions in adjustment following child physical abuse
Authors: Smith, Susan L.
Keywords: Clinical psychology;Child abuse--Psychological aspects;Shame--Psychological aspects
Issue Date: 11-Jul-2008
Abstract: Child physical abuse (CPA) has been associated with a number of negative outcomes (Cerezo-Jimenez & Frias, 1994; Cicchetti & Toth, 1995; Deblinger, McLeer, Atkins, Ralphe, & Foa, 1989; Kolko, 1996; Runyon & Kenny, 2002). However, not every child who experiences physical abuse exhibits significant maladjustment. A prominent model has been proposed in the sexual abuse literature attributing variability in adjustment to cognitive (attributions) and emotional (shame) processing (Feiring, Taska, & Lewis, 1996). The present study was a pilot examination of the relationship between variables in this model within a CPA population. Data from 64 children between the ages of 7 and 17 presenting for treatment subsequent to confirmed or suspected CPA was extracted from a research repository for analyses in the present investigation. As has been demonstrated in previous literature, more self-blame was associated with higher rates of depression and PTSS among this sample. A significant relationship between severity of abuse and adjustment was not detected. Furthermore, self-blaming attributions remained significantly related to negative adjustment, even when controlling for severity of abuse. The present study also supported a relationship between the experience of shame and negative adjustment in children who have experienced physical abuse; however, shame did not mediate the relationship between attributions and adjustment in this CPA sample. Given the smaller than projected sample size and limited power, data collection is ongoing, and analyses of the present investigation will be re-run in the future when a more complete data-set has been obtained.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1860/2800
Appears in Collections:Drexel Theses and Dissertations

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