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Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
The Relationship of Victimization Experiences to Psychological Well-Being Among Homeless Women and Low-Income Housed Women
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Stressful experiences and their effects on the psychological well-being of 113 homeless women and 116 low-income housed women were investigated. Measures of victimization assessed multiple dimensions of this construct, including criminal victimization, sexual harassment, and sexual abuse. Measures of current daily environmental hassles and quality of family environment while growing up also were included. Additional measures assessed positive and negative interpersonal exchanges, sense of coherence, and overall psychological distress. Regression analyses indicated that victimization experiences were significant predictors of psychological well-being for both samples. Results also highlighted the importance of investigating both the positive and negative dimensions of interpersonal influences as well as internal resources, and suggested that these resources for coping with stress may be differentially perceived and utilized by these groups. These findings also suggest the need for specific preventive and remedial interventions to empower homeless and low-income housed women. (Authors)