OSR Journal of Student Research

Article Title

The Role of Sexual Victimization on Sexual Dysfunction Mediated between Relationship Satisfaction and Disclosure


The National Crime Victimization Survey estimates that every two minutes an, American is sexually assaulted. The National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey indicate that 18.3% of women have experienced rape and 16.9% have experienced sexual violence. Sexual assault can cause various psychological effects on survivors. Recent studies have shown that sexual assault can contribute to women’s development of sexual dysfunction. Sexual dysfunctions are described in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) as an individual’s inability to respond or experience sexual satisfaction. In addition, the DSM-5 indicates the relevant relationship, intrapersonal and interpersonal contexts can lead to sexual dysfunction. There are three types of sexual dysfunctions female can experiences: female orgasmic disorder, female sexual interest/ arousal disorder, and genito-pelvic pain/penetration disorder. A national probability sample found that 43% of women experience sexual dysfunction. The goal of our study was to examine the relationship between sexual victimization severity and sexual functioning and its potential mediators. Specifically, we aimed to determine if relationship satisfaction and disclosure would mediate the relationship between sexual victimization severity and sexual functioning. In addition, we aimed to determine if sexual assault survivors with more severe levels of sexual victimization would have greater sexual dysfunction as compared to those with lower levels of victimization. Participants were assessed for level of sexual victimization using the Sexual Experiences Survey, relationship satisfaction, and disclosure. Data collection is ongoing. However, preliminary findings suggest a positive relationship between sexual victimization severity and sexual functioning. Findings have possible implications for determining indicators of sexual dysfunction by the 76 5th Annual Student Research Symposium severity of sexual victimization.

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