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Title: Early trauma and the developing mind
Author: Bannon, Alisha
ISNI:       0000 0004 2747 234X
Awarding Body: City University London
Current Institution: City, University of London
Date of Award: 2013
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The area of childhood sexual abuse (CSA) has been the focus of increasing attention over recent years. In particular, research has emphasised that the sexual abuse of children is a major societal problem because of its high prevalence and devastating impact on the victimised child. A growing body of research suggests that the experience of CSA can have a lasting impact on adult interpersonal functioning. The majority of existing research studies have employed quantitative methodologies. This study explored in depth the lived experience of relating amongst women who have experienced CSA. A qualitative methodological approach was employed. Data was collected using semi-structured interviews and analysed using Interpretive Phenomenological Analysis (IPA). The participants were eight women who had experienced sexual abuse during childhood. The three superordinate themes that emerged from the data included: ‘Protection’, ‘Disturbed Intercourse’ and ‘Responsive and unresponsive mothers and others’. The women’s experience of relating was complex and multifaceted. Much of the women’s experience of relating was overwhelmingly negative as they depict worlds occupied with threatening and malevolent others who could invariably cause harm. A resounding communication evident throughout all of the dialogues appeared to suggest that present relating is inextricably bound to past experiences. The narratives revealed the difficulties and disturbance experienced within the context of relating and how the past has in some way formed an invisible template for present day relating causing terror, angst and uncertainty. This study presents rich descriptions of the lived experience of relating amongst this group of women. Implications for the clinical practice of Counselling Psychology are considered within.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: BF Psychology