This study builds on previous work suggesting that many survivors report positive life changes soon after a sexual assault and that those who retain those changes over time report the least distress I year postassault (P. Frazier, A. Conlon, & T. Glaser, 2001). The purposes of this study were to assess correlates of early reports of positive life changes and individual trajectories of self-reported positive changes over time among female sexual assault survivors (n = 171) using hierarchical linear modeling. The factors most related to reporting positive life change soon after the assault were social support, approach and religious coping, and perceived control over the recovery process. Increases in these factors also were associated with increases in self-reported positive life changes over time. The relations between social support and positive change also were mediated by coping strategies and control appraisals, particularly perceived control over the recovery process.
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