AuthorBailey, Jennifer Ann
Committee ChairMcCloskey, Laura A.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThis study aimed to 1) replicate existing research linking childhood sexual abuse and later substance use, 2) identify intergenerational parallels between the substance use and sexual victimization experiences of adolescent girls and their mothers, and 3) evaluate early pubertal timing, depressive self-concept, and behavioral under-control as potential pathways to substance use for sexually abused girls. Data were drawn from 150 mother-daughter pairs participating in a longitudinal study of the impact of domestic violence on the lives of women and children. Structural equations modeling revealed that girls' childhood sexual abuse was associated prospectively with their later substance use. This relationship held (retrospectively) for mothers as well. Mothers' risk for sexual abuse and substance use was transmitted to their daughters. Early pubertal timing, depressive self-concept, and behavioral under-control among girls were all predicted by childhood sexual abuse. Only behavioral under-control was, in turn, related to adolescent substance use. Depressive self-concept contributed to behavioral under-control among girls. A series of hierarchical regressions revealed that these relationships persist when controls for co-occurring forms of child abuse (physical, exposure to domestic violence) are included. Implications and limitations of the study as well as directions for future research are discussed.