Differences in childhood sexual abuse experience between adult hispanic and anglo women in a primary care setting

David A. Katerndahl, Sandra K. Burge, Nancy Kellogg, Juan M. Parra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


The literature on racial and ethnic factors in childhood sexual abuse is limited. The purpose of this exploratory study was to document Hispanic-Anglo differences in childhood sexual abuse experiences and assess whether these differences may be explained by socio-demographic and family environmental differences. Adult Hispanic (n = 69) and Anglo (n = 19) women from a family medicine clinic waiting room reporting a history of childhood sexual abuse completed an in-depth survey concerning the sexual abuse experience and their childhood environment. In this study, Hispanics were more likely to report a family member as the perpetrator and to experience more self-blame as a result of the abuse. Hispanics were also more likely to take action in response to the abuse, especially those who were more acculturated to U.S. culture. However, most of the observed differences in this study could be explained by socio-demographic or family environment variables, not by ethnic background. Qualitative research on the family environments of Hispanic victims of child sexual abuse may further explicate the dynamics and risk factors for abuse by family members.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)85-95
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Child Sexual Abuse
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2005


  • Childhood trauma
  • Ethnicity
  • Family
  • Hispanic Americans
  • Sexual abuse

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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