The (randomly) selected focus publication for November 2017 is:
Pulverman, C. S., Boyd, R. L., Stanton, A. M., & Meston, C. M. (2017). Changes in the sexual self-schema of women with a history of childhood sexual abuse following expressive writing treatment. Psychological Trauma: Theory, Research, Practice, And Policy, 9(2), 181-188.
Objective: Sexual self-schemas are cognitive generalizations about the sexual self that influence the processing of sexually pertinent information and guide sexual behavior. Until recently sexual self-schemas were exclusively assessed with self-report instruments. Recent research using the Meaning Extraction Method (MEM), an inductive method of topic modeling, identified seven unique themes of sexual self-schemas: family and development, virginity, abuse, relationship, sexual activity, attraction, and existentialism from essays of 239 women (Stanton, Boyd, Pulverman, & Meston, 2015). In the current study, these themes were used to examine changes in theme prominence after an expressive writing treatment. Method: Women (N = 138) with a history of childhood sexual abuse (CSA) completed a five-session expressive writing treatment, and essays on sexual self-schemas written at pre-treatment and post-treatment were examined for changes in themes. Results: Women showed a reduction in the prominence of the abuse, family and development, virginity, and attraction themes, and an increase in the existentialism theme. Conclusions: This study supports the validity of the seven themes identified by Stanton and colleagues (2015) and suggests that expressive writing may aid women with a history of sexual abuse to process their abuse history such that it becomes a less salient aspect of their sexual self- schemas.
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