A qualitative study of resiliency in women with a history of childhood sexual abuse
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AbstractThe purpose of this qualitative study was to uncover what participants believed fostered their resiliency. Volunteers responded to a university e-mail flyer, through word of mouth and through snowball sampling and were interviewed by a qualitative research method known as the guided interview. Data were analyzed using grounded theory, which includes open coding, axial coding and selective coding. The chosen central phenomenon was the perception that the participants' childhood sexual abuse was traumatic and three categories of strategies used to address this phenomenon were identified. These categories include: regulating the traumatic experience, enlisting important individuals/pets and spirituality. Comparisons among participants showed that many of the same strategies were used to remain resilient, including humour, selfpreservation, imagination, choice and 'unhealthy' strategies. The results indicated that there are degrees of resiliency, that resiliency is a process and that participants shared similarities and they also shared differences.
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