Association between childhood sexual abuse and adult sexual victimization in a representative sample in Hong Kong Chinese

Ko Ling Chan

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34 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: The current study investigated the prevalence and impact of childhood sexual abuse (CSA) on adult sexual victimization (ASV) in Hong Kong, China. This study also examines correlates of demographic characteristics, depression, suicidal ideation, and self-esteem with ASV. Methods: A total of 5,049 Chinese adult respondents were interviewed face-to-face about their experiences of CSA, childhood witness of parental violence, ASV (by non-partner), and intimate partner violence (IPV). Self-reports also measured depression, suicidal ideation, self-esteem, and demographic details. Results: Of all respondents, 0.9% reported some form of CSA, with a higher percentage being women. CSA was found to pose a significant risk for preceding year IPV (sexual) after controlling for demographic factors. Gender, age, indebtedness, alcohol and drug abuse, depression, and low self-esteem significantly increased the odds of IPV (sexual), whereas suicidal ideation and being newly arrived from China increased the risk of ASV (by non-partner). Childhood witness of parental psychological aggression and physical violence were also associated with a higher risk of IPV (sexual). Conclusions: Childhood sexual abuse may have an independent association with future sexual victimization in adulthood, but many covariates can also affect the impact of CSA and increase the risk of revictimization. Practical implications: Intervention with ASV should include an assessment of CSA history and thus a screening for multiple victimization from IPV among victims. Prevention of revictimization for IPV victims with CSA histories may focus on making social and individual changes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)220-229
Number of pages10
JournalChild Abuse and Neglect
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Mar

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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