The current study examined the relationship between disclosure of sexual assault and several outcomes that have been linked to sexual assault; specifically whether receiving negative reactions to disclosure increased posttraumatic stress symptoms, drug use, and alcohol use. Females who were at least 18 years old, had experienced sexual assault, and had told at least one person about the assault were recruited from both the online community and a regional, Midwestern university. Results of regression analyses indicated that both positive and negative social reactions were related to increased PTSD symptoms. Positive reactions to disclosure were related to less self-reported drug use, though no relationship between negative reactions and drug use was supported. Finally, relationships between social reactions to disclosure and alcohol use were not supported, suggesting that although alcohol use is a potential outcome of sexual assault, whether a survivor receives a positive or negative response to a disclosure may not directly impact the likelihood of use.
Year manuscript completed
Year degree awarded
Sexual assault, posttraumatic stress, reactions to disclosure, alcohol abuse, substance abuse
Thesis - Murray State Access only
Ross, Kaelin, "THE IMPACT OF NEGATIVE REACTIONS TO DISCLOSURE OF SEXUAL ASSAULT ON PTSD SYMPTOMS, DRUG USE AND ALCOHOL USE" (2018). Murray State Theses and Dissertations. 89.