Date of Graduation
College of Education and Human Services
Counseling, Rehabilitation Counseling & Counseling Psychology
Jennifer R. Adams
Child sexual abuse of males is a serious issue that is largely hidden in the United States because many victims never disclose the abuse. The literature review highlights the prevalence and severity of child sexual abuse of males and the negative effects non-disclosure has on the psychological well-being of the victim. The need to study factors affecting whether or not a male victim discloses is stressed, and social support is proposed to be an influencing factor. This study explored the impact of social support on disclosure status for male victims of child sexual abuse in parts of West Virginia and Ohio. It was predicted that higher levels of perceived social support would be positively related to disclosure and be negatively related to non-disclosure. Unfortunately, a small sample size was obtained due to time and geographical constraints, which prevented the intended data analyses of logistical regression to be completed. No statistically significant data regarding the relationship of perceived social support to disclosure was obtained from the analyses that were performed. Despite the shortcomings of the research, this research demonstrated that, by using Child Advocacy Centers, it is possible to conduct research solely on male victims of CSA at or around the time they were victimized, while being able to control for participant safety and control, anonymity, and the recollection of information about the abuse and disclosure status. The information gathered warrants further investigation of the relationship of perceived social support to disclosure status as the males in the study that disclosed abuse perceived higher amounts of social support in all categories than males who did not disclose. The information gathered also warrants further investigation of the relationship between socioeconomic status and disclosure status. Future research should attempt to recruit participants from several different CACs in several different regions of the country and plan to collect data for a longer time period.
Leslie, Abigail, "Disclosure and perceptions of social support in male victims of child sexual abuse" (2014). Graduate Theses, Dissertations, and Problem Reports. 462.