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Trauma-Specific Reflective Functioning in Adults who Experienced Childhood Sexual Abuse

11 January 2017

Publication Date
November 2016

Original Abstract
Little is still known about the mentalizing capacities of childhood sexual abuse (CSA) survivors.

This study is aimed at measuring and describing the mentalizing capacities of 30 adult CSA survivors using an interview discussing disclosure of experiences as coded by the Trauma-Specific Reflective Functioning Scale. Forty percent of the sample presented mentalizing failures in relation to discussions of trauma, 33 % had low mentalizing abilities and 28 % had good mentalizing abilities. Specific examples of mentalizing manifestations were identified. These results will help researchers and clinicians better understand the mechanisms through which survivors respond and adapt to trauma.

Maheux, J., Collin-Vézina, D., MacIntosh, H., Berthelot, N. and Hétu, S. (2016). Capacités de mentalisation spécifique au trauma auprès d’adultes ayant subi des agressions sexuelles durant l’enfance. Revue québécoise de psychologie 37 (3). DOI: V037N3A093.

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sex, sexuality, sexology, french, trauma-specific reflective functioning, mentalizing, childhood sexual abuse, adults


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