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Title: Women's lived experience of recovery from childhood sexual abuse, and their perception of the role of mental health services
Author: Jackson, Carly Jayne Marcia
ISNI:       0000 0004 6425 5854
Awarding Body: Cardiff University
Current Institution: Cardiff University
Date of Award: 2017
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Background: The scale of childhood sexual abuse (CSA) in the UK is larger than previously believed. Evidence shows a lack of research surrounding women’s experience of recovery from CSA. Furthermore, the role of mental health services within this experience has largely been ignored. The aim of this research was to explore how women who were sexually abused as children understand their experience of recovery and the role they perceived mental health services to have had throughout. Method: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with seven women who had experienced CSA and accessed support from statutory mental health services. Interviews elicited narratives regarding perceptions of recovery and the role of mental health services. Transcripts were analysed using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis to identify themes. Results: Four superordinate themes were identified: ‘the on-going, unfinished journey of recovery’- capturing the nature of the process of recovery; ‘the power of being silenced by others’- encompassing the influence of others inhibiting their ability to speak out and the related consequences; ‘acknowledging the past and uniting it with my life’– describing vital internal processes experienced during recovery; ‘I can’t do this alone: ingredients for connections with others’– specifying that recovery is better experienced in unison with a supportive other. Conclusion: Results were considered in light of existing evidence and psychological theory. This provided an evidence-base to inform the development of services for women who have experienced CSA, and outline a number of clinical recommendations that could aid recovery. Recommendations for future research, and dissemination approaches are also discussed. Key words: Child sexual abuse; Women; Recovery; Qualitative; Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis; UK.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Clin.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available