Posttraumatic symptoms and self-dysfunction as consequences and predictors of sexual revictimization



Posttraumatic symptomatology (PTS) and self-dysfunction (SD) were examined as correlates and predictors of sexual revictimization in a prospective study of 339 college women. Both PTS and SD were associated with a history of child and adult sexual victimization. Compared to a history of child victimization, a history of adult victimization was associated with greater self-dysfunction. Both PTS and SD predicted revictimization during the study; however, self-dysfunction also predicted victimization in the absence of prior victimization. In a multivariate model, PTS did not directly predict victimization during the study, although SD mediated the relationship between PTS and victimization. Sexual victimization (child or adult) prior to the study predicted PTS, which predicted SD, which predicted victimization during the study. Findings suggest that prior child and adult victimization are directly related to later sexual victimization, and are indirectly related to later sexual victimization via the impact of PTS on SD.