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#250666 - 09/22/08 11:49 PM Research Study Examining Sexual Abuse
Nathan LaChine Offline
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Registered: 02/22/03
Posts: 5381
Loc: Washington State
Hannah Stockton is a PhD student at the University of Nottingham (UK) and is working on a project examining the impact of traumatic life experiences such as sexual abuse or assault on people's psychological health and well-being. She is particularly interested in the experiences of sexually victimised males, and is keen to represent them in a research area that has traditionally focused virtually exclusively on the experiences of women.
She is currently running an online questionnaire examining potential factors that may both impede and facilitate recovery from such experiences, with a long term view to understanding how best to work with people who have experienced traumatic life events such as sexual violence. She is looking for people who would be willing to participate in her research by completing the questionnaire, which asks about the impact of a distressing or traumatic experience on the way you feel about yourself, your life and how your life may have changed following this event. The study is completely anonymous and strictly confidential. You have the option to exit the study at any time, and once you have started you are not obliged to continue if you do not want to. If you would like to know more about the study and your rights as a potential participant, follow the link provided below, where you will find further information and the questionnaire itself. If you have any questions, you can contact Hannah at lwxhs@nottingham.ac.uk

Research Study Examining Sexual Abuse: Opportunity to Participate


This study has gone through peer review by Ken Singer.
Nathan


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#250675 - 09/23/08 12:15 AM Re: Research Study Examining Sexual Abuse [Re: Nathan LaChine]
Nathan LaChine Offline
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Registered: 02/22/03
Posts: 5381
Loc: Washington State
Everyone,

Kind of a long survey but after my email exchanges with Hannah it is my hope that some good comes out of these answers.

Nathan


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#250712 - 09/23/08 12:25 PM Re: Research Study Examining Sexual Abuse [Re: Nathan LaChine]
king tut Offline
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Registered: 02/13/08
Posts: 2469
Loc: UK
I just did it, i would recommend that others complete it too, i think things like that are good in that they make you think about where you are and analyse yourself.

The section that asks for you to describe the most traumatic event seems almost premature, i answered mine in a more explanatory way, an answer about feelings rather than a detailed de>
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#250714 - 09/23/08 12:49 PM Re: Research Study Examining Sexual Abuse: trigger [Re: Nathan LaChine]
Sans Logos Offline
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Registered: 05/31/03
Posts: 5791
Loc: in my own world in pittsburgh,...
i did this the first day it was posted before it was pulled prior to having received proper clearance from the board.

it is a good survey questionnaire in my experience, but its subtitle is:

'stressful life events questionnaire'

so i suggest it be posted with a high trigger warning.

ron

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#250716 - 09/23/08 01:00 PM Re: Research Study Examining Sexual Abuse [Re: Nathan LaChine]
joelRT Offline
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Registered: 09/11/08
Posts: 1357
Loc: Québec, Canada
Ok, I've just done my part - completed the questionnaire. I believe that every bit that each of us contributes to the whole is to the ultimate advantage of us all. C'mon guys, get on board.

Thanks Nathan, for posting this.

Joel

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#250717 - 09/23/08 01:02 PM Re: Research Study Examining Sexual Abuse [Re: king tut]
M3 Offline
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Registered: 09/04/07
Posts: 1392
Loc: Central Ohio
As a grad student myself, I encourage everyone to participate if they can!

Nathan - you might share the feedback in this forum with Hannah, some of the notes below she would probably like to see.

First, when it asks you if these difficulties are related to one specific event, how could we possibly tell? My abuse and then the stalking lasted 11 years, how do I know what specifically is causing these problems?

TUT - the reason question jump back and forth between positive and negative, and some appear to push you to an extreme answer is so they can tell if individuals are going through and just marking answers - they check for internal validity in the study.

9. Section 6: The wording here really seemed awkward and the scale didn't seem to fit. The statements pointed in a positive or negative direction and if your experience was the opposite, you didn't get a chance to say it. Seems like this should have been - do you agree with this statement. An important note is that unlike many other traumatic events that are one time incidents, sexual abuse in many, many cases happens over time and support/recovery don't take place right away. Many of these questions I would give different answers if you are asking: 1) At the time of the abuse, how did the abuse affect you in these areas, versus 2) Now that you've been in recovery, how do these things affect you. Many of the changes that the abuse made in my life I've reversed since I've been in recovery. So one answer is more directed to the affects of the abuse, but the answer as to how I am now reflects the affects of my treatment and healing.

Did send parts of this back to her...


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#250718 - 09/23/08 01:10 PM Re: Research Study Examining Sexual Abuse [Re: M3]
Barkabus Offline
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MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/09/08
Posts: 809
I agree with Michael:
Quote:
First, when it asks you if these difficulties are related to one specific event, how could we possibly tell? My abuse and then the stalking lasted 11 years, how do I know what specifically is causing these problems?

I took the survey too and I found it confusing and difficult after being asked to relate one traumatic incident in my life then answer all the questions in the survey related to that one event. I think it is impossible for us as survivors who have encountered multiple traumatic events over a course of time in our early lives to concentrate on a single trauma event and try to ascertain all the effects that came as result. I left a comment at the end of the survey about this concern.

About how I have changed questions: Again these are difficult questions to answer. I was a child and adolescent. I had little or no awareness yet of who I was. I think the questionnaire is framed for adults who were traumatized sometime in their adulthood. I suspect that our answers may skew the data by our attempts at answering the questions that don't really apply to survivors of childhood trauma.

Mike



Edited by Barkabus (09/23/08 01:21 PM)
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#250980 - 09/24/08 10:23 PM Re: Research Study Examining Sexual Abuse [Re: Barkabus]
Nathan LaChine Offline
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Registered: 02/22/03
Posts: 5381
Loc: Washington State
Reply from Hannah about everyone's feedback in this thread and in the comments section on the survey.

Quote:

"Hi everyone,
Firstly I would like to thank all of you who have completed the questionnaire so far, I have been thrilled with the response and I am extremely grateful for the honesty and openness with which many of you have responded. Secondly, I would like to thank all of you who have left me feedback, both on the questionnaire and here on the forum - it is really useful for me to hear what you think. Ultimately, I want the questionnaire to be as easy and trouble-free for you to complete as possible, so it is good to know some of the issues that have been highlighted. This is my attempt to address them.

The first issue seems to be regarding the question asking participants to identify and describe one traumatic event, which several of you have quite rightly highlighted that this feels impossible for those who endured prolonged abuse or multiple traumas. This is one of the key problems with research in this area, as it presumes that people can identify one single traumatic experience and refer to that when responding to questions, when in reality it can be extremely difficult to separate out anything specific from periods of prolonged trauma and its consequences. I debated over how to phrase this question for a long time when designing the study, and decided to use the standard format seen in most research studies in this area, but I now see it might be more useful if I rephrase it, or at least clarify here to those of you yet to complete it but intending to do so. Basically, when completing the questionnaire, if you are able to identify one particularly distressing or traumatic incident, then do so, but if you can't then don't worry about it - you can be as general or specific in your response as necessary. Furthermore, as King Tut points out fantastically (and much more eloquently than I would be able to!), it is often the response to the event and its emotional aftermath that is experienced as most traumatic, rather than the details of the event itself. So if you want to write about feelings rather than specific events, that's fine too. I am here to learn from you guys - you know the right way, not me, so answer this question however feels best for you.

The second issue relates to the final section of the questionnaire, which asks about how your life may have changed following your experience. Many of you have pointed out that you were so young at the time that it is hard to see whether these changes occurred because of the event or whether they would have happened anyway. Similarly, did they occur because of the event itself or the experiences people had in its aftermath? All of these are really valid points to raise, and to be honest with you I don't know that there is a right answer, or indeed a question out there that would be able to find the answer. These questions are much bigger than my whole PhD can address!

I guess M3 points out the crux of the matter:
"Many of these questions I would give different answers if you are asking: 1) At the time of the abuse, how did the abuse affect you in these areas, versus 2) Now that you've been in recovery, how do these things affect you. Many of the changes that the abuse made in my life I've reversed since I've been in recovery. So one answer is more directed to the affects of the abuse, but the answer as to how I am now reflects the affects of my treatment and healing."

I agree wholeheartedly with this issue, but I suppose not everyone who participates in the study has reached a point where they can separate their thinking into 'before' and 'after' recovery; or into effects of abuse vs. effects of healing. What this essentially highlights is that every single one of you has had a completely unique experience, and are at different stages in your healing journey. What this means is that the questionnaire will never be a perfect fit for any of you. I am having to use a very broad approach to deeply personal issues - if I could interview every single one of you personally then I could shape the questions to fit better, or I could clarify what I mean, but unfortunately I am having to use a 'blanket' approach in order to obtain as much information as possible in a relatively short time. The consequence of this is that the questions may be more relevant or easy to answer for some of you and not others.

I hope I have been able to clarify a few things for you. I am truly grateful for your willingness to participate in my research project, and I look forward to learning more from the responses.

With best wishes to all members of the MS community,
Hannah"



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