Altruism in Survivors of Sexual Violence: The Typology of Helping Others

Andrea Warner Stidham, Claire B. Draucker, Donna S. Martsolf, Laura Paisley Mullen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Sexual violence is a significant and prevalent problem that affects many people in the United States. Helping others is one way people cope with, or heal from, sexual violence. OBJECTIVE: To develop of Typology of Helping Others describing how survivors of sexual violence engage in altruism. STUDY DESIGN: Qualitative descriptive methods were used to describe how survivors of sexual violence engaged in altruism in response to their experiences with violence. RESULTS: Helping others was a salient concern for most participants who experienced sexual violence. Participants indicated multiple and varied ways of helping others. Results also indicated that participants experienced some healing from their experiences before they were able to actively engage in, or be effective in, helping others. CONCLUSIONS: Clinicians working with survivors of sexual violence should be attuned to the different ways survivors engage in altruism and the potential influences of race and gender on helping others.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)146-155
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of the American Psychiatric Nurses Association
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 1 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • abuse
  • altruism
  • helping others
  • qualitative description
  • sexual

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Phychiatric Mental Health

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