U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

NCJRS Virtual Library

The Virtual Library houses over 235,000 criminal justice resources, including all known OJP works.
Click here to search the NCJRS Virtual Library

Post-Traumatic Stress Problems Among Poly-Victimized Spanish Youth: Time Effect of Past vs. Recent Interpersonal Victimizations

NCJ Number
Child Abuse and Neglect Volume: 38 Issue: 8 Dated: August 2014 Pages: 1303-1312
Teresa Kirchner; Maaria Forns; Laia Soler; Irina Planellas
Date Published
August 2014
10 pages
This study of 823 Spanish adolescents (63 percent girls) examined the time effect of past compared to recent interpersonal victimizations on posttraumatic stress (PTS) problems among those who had experienced multiple victimizations (poly-victimization).
For the entire sample, the mean number of lifetime victimizations was 17.05 and was equivalent for both girls and boys. The study's main finding is that the lifetime experiences of poly-victimization were associated with high levels of PTS in the adolescents. The level of PTS symptoms varied with the number of reported victimizations, indicating that the incremental risk for psychological impairment is linked to cumulative experiences of trauma. Girls had higher mean raw scores on the PTS problem (PTSP) scale than did boys in all the victimization groups. For the poly-victimization group, the number of victimizations was associated with a disturbance in relation to specific behaviors, notably intrusive thoughts. For most of the specific symptoms assessed, the means for girls and boys were similar; however, girls reported more intrusive thoughts, nightmares, and mood swings compared to boys; and they were also more sad and depressed compared with males. Regarding the time-based issue, for boys the victimizing events that occurred in the last year had more explanatory weight regarding current PTSP; with girls, it was the victimizing events that had occurred in previous years that had the greatest explanatory power in relation to current PTSP. The study sample was recruited from May 2010 to November 2011 from schools in Barcelona, Spain. Victimization experiences were assessed with the Spanish translation of the Juvenile Victimization Questionnaire. PTS problems were assessed with the Spanish version of the Youth Self-Report, a self-report inventory for adolescent ages 11 to 18 years old. 4 tables and 46 references