Recovery from child sexual abuse (CSA) in India: a relational framework for practice

Zoë Chouliara*, Javita Narang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


CSA is prevalent internationally and its negative impact can continue in adulthood. India has a high prevalence of child maltreatment. The present study recorded the ‘recovering’ experiences of adult survivors of child sexual abuse (CSA) in India and developed a clinically applicable framework of recovery. Qualitative semi-structured individual interviews were conducted. Transcripts were analysed using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA) to identify recurrent themes. A total 20 adult survivors were interviewed. Results identified four core stages/processes of ‘moving on from CSA’ based on the descriptions provided by participants in India: The Affected Self - Keeping the Self Together; Accurate Symbolisation; Activation of the Recovering Self; Re-connection, Integration and Growth. We have developed the first survivor-centred relational growth – based model of recovery from CSA in India and potentially internationally. The findings support relational approaches to treatment and service delivery. A clear recovery process within and outwith services has been identified, thus emphasising the need for psychosocial support for facilitating personally meaningful recovery within the community through consistent practice. The findings have implications for continuing professional development (CPD), training, supervision, social reform, service delivery and policy as well as self-recovery of adult survivors. It is recommended to include relational approaches in working with survivors in India and internationally.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)527-538
Number of pages12
JournalChildren and Youth Services Review
Early online date1 Jul 2017
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Child sexual abuse
  • Recovery
  • Relational
  • Qualitative
  • Clinical framework
  • India


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