Profiling the Psychosocial Impacts of Child Sexual Abuse in Ethiopia

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Dr. Yemataw Wondie
Workie Zemene


Objective: This study sought to study the psychosocial effects of child sexual abuse (CSA) and to provide some insight about appropriate interventions.
Method: Data was collected from 318 female children who were sexually abused through early marriage (n = 114), rape (n = 118), and child prostitution
(n = 86). The Amharic version of the Children’s Impact of Traumatic Events Scale-Revised (CITES-R) and the Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale (RSES) were employed.
Results: K-means cluster analysis classified respondents into four distinct and clinically meaningful clusters labelled by further discriminant analysis as
acute trauma, chronic trauma, avoidant, and resilient. While more than half (53%) of the respondents belonged to the acute trauma cluster, the remaining
16%, 17%, and 14% to the chronic trauma, avoidant, and resilient clusters, respectively. A discriminant analysis predicted that there was a 96% hit rate of
cluster membership. Specific predicted membership rate ranged from 98% in respondents belonging to the acute trauma and resilient clusters to 91% in the
avoidant trauma cluster. ANOVA and the associated post hoc tests on personality related validating variables, and a Chi-square test on abuse related and
demographic validating variables yielded significant and valid associations with the clusters.

Conclusion: Findings of the present study are important in that the four clusters formed based on abuse consequences were found to be distinct, valid, and
clinically meaningful. Practice Implications: Differential therapeutic and counselling interventions targeted to eliminate symptoms and to promote approach coping over avoidance coping are recommended.

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