Disclosing campus sexual assault to formal support systems increases posttraumatic stress symptoms due to more negative social reactions
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One in five women experience campus sexual assault (CSA) at some point during college (Muehlenhard et al., 2017). Victims may disclose their CSA to formal or informal supports. Victims feel more comfortable reporting to Informal supports such as peers, and family ((Dworkin, Brill, & Ullman, 2019; Starzynski et al., 2005). Formal supports such as, police, campus resources and doctor are more likely to give negative social reactions. Negative social reactions result in risk of PTSD. The hypotheses for this study are 1) that disclosure to a formal source will predict more negative social reactions (NSR) and more severe PTSD symptoms; and 2) that unsupportive acknowledgement reactions will mediate a link between disclosing to a formal source and more severe PTSD symptoms.
Department of Psychology
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