Journal of Interpersonal Violence Volume: 31 Issue: 14 Dated: June 2016 Pages: 2475-2491
Since victims of drug-facilitated or alcohol-facilitated/incapacitated rape (DAFR/IR) are less likely than victims of forcible rape (FR) to seek medical or police assistance, the current study examined explanatory mechanisms in the pathway from rape type (FR vs. DAFR/IR) to disparities in post-rape service seeking (medical, rape crisis, criminal justice).
Participants were 445 adult women from a nationally representative household probability sample who had experienced FR, DAFR/IR, or both since age 14. Personal characteristics (age, race, income, prior rape history), rape characteristics (fear, injury, loss of consciousness), and post-rape acknowledgment, medical concerns, and service seeking were collected. An indirect effects model using bootstrapped standard errors was estimated to examine pathways from rape type to service seeking. DAFR/IR-only victims were less likely to seek services compared with FR victims despite similar post-rape medical concerns. FR victims were more likely to report fear during the rape and a prior rape history, and to acknowledge the incident as rape; each of these characteristics was positively associated with service seeking; however, only prior rape history and acknowledgment served as indirect paths to service seeking; acknowledgment was the strongest predictor of service seeking. Diminished acknowledgment of the incident as rape may be especially important to explaining why DAFR/IR victims are less likely than FR victims to seek services. Public service campaigns designed to increase awareness of rape definitions, particularly around DAFR/IR, are important to reducing disparities in rape-related service seeking. 34 references (Publisher abstract modified)
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