Relations Among Childhood Memory, a History of Abuse, Dissociation, and Repression
Journal of Interpersonal Violence
The author of this study investigated several questions regarding the relationships between a history of child abuse, recovered abuse memories, childhood memory in general, repression, and dissociation. Of the total sample (N = 560 undergraduate students), one quarter reported a history of child abuse, and 18% of these reported that they had a period when they lacked memories of their abuse. These participants endorsed a variety of descriptions of their recovered memories, many of which do not suggest a lack of conscious access to the memories. General quality of childhood memory was found to be unrelated to a history of abuse, and most participants, regardless of their abuse history, reported recovering memories from their childhood in general. Repressive personality traits were found to be unrelated to recovering abuse memories, but dissociative traits were found to be weakly associated with recovering abuse memories.