Longitudinal Change in Women's Sexual Victimization Experiences as a Function of Alcohol Consumption and Sexual Victimization History: A Latent Transition Analysis

Amanda E.B. Bryan, Jeanette Norris, Devon Alisa Abdallah, Cynthia A. Stappenbeck, Diane M. Morrison, Kelly C. Davis, William H. George, Cinnamon L. Danube, Tina Zawacki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

23 Scopus citations

Abstract

Women's alcohol consumption and vulnerability to sexual victimization (SV) are linked, but findings regarding the nature and direction of the association are mixed. Some studies have found support for the self-medication hypothesis (i.e., victimized women drink more to alleviate SV-related distress); others have supported routine activity theory (i.e., drinking increases SV vulnerability). In this study, we aimed to clarify the interplay between women's prior SV, typical drinking, and SV experiences prospectively over 1 year. Method: Participants (N = 530) completed a baseline survey and weekly follow-up surveys across months 3, 6, 9, and 12. Results: Latent class analysis (LCA) suggested that women could be classified as victimized or nonvictimized at each assessment month; 28% of participants were classified as victimized at 1 or more assessment months. Latent transition analysis (LTA) revealed that childhood sexual abuse and adult SV history each predicted greater likelihood of being victimized during the year. Typical drinking during a given assessment month was associated with (a) greater likelihood of victimized status at that assessment month and (b) greater likelihood of having transitioned into (or remained in) the victimized status since the previous assessment month. Furthermore, victimized status at a given assessment month predicted a higher quantity of subsequent drinking. Conclusion: These findings indicate a reciprocal relationship between typical drinking and SV, supporting both the self-medication hypothesis and routine activity theory, and suggesting that hazardous drinking levels may be an important target for both SV vulnerability reduction and interventions for women who have been sexually victimized.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)271-279
Number of pages9
JournalPsychology of Violence
Volume6
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2016

Keywords

  • Alcohol consumption
  • latent class analysis
  • latent transition analysis
  • sexual victimization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Health(social science)
  • Applied Psychology

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    Bryan, A. E. B., Norris, J., Abdallah, D. A., Stappenbeck, C. A., Morrison, D. M., Davis, K. C., George, W. H., Danube, C. L., & Zawacki, T. (2016). Longitudinal Change in Women's Sexual Victimization Experiences as a Function of Alcohol Consumption and Sexual Victimization History: A Latent Transition Analysis. Psychology of Violence, 6(2), 271-279. https://doi.org/10.1037/a0039411