Gender Role Socialization and Male-on-Male vs. Female-on-Male Child Sexual Abuse1

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Abstract

Most images of sexual abuse in contemporary society involve adult male perpetrators and female victims. In this paper, we consider the effects of child sexual abuse on the adult male gender roles of boyhood survivors of abuse. Specifically, we examine the effects of coerced male-on-male (CM), coerced female-on-male (CF), and non-coerced female-on-male (NF) sexual contact on attitudes toward and behavior in adult heterosexual relationships. Using longitudinal data from 105 predominantly African American, working class men, we first document the prevalence of all 3 types of abuse within our sample. Consistent with gender socialization hypotheses, we found that relative to non-abused men, CM and CF survivors were more likely to report violence toward intimate partners. Compared to CF and NF survivors, CM survivors reported being kinder to women. CF survivors were more likely to have committed sex offenses relative to CM and NF survivors.

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