The Psychology of Trauma

Child Abuse

What do we know about resilient children?

As mentioned above, not all survivors of child abuse develop severe psychopathology. In fact, there are estimates that as much as one-third of children from abusive backgrounds grow up to be reasonably healthy and well-adjusted adults. Such children are considered resilient, which means they can bounce back and develop well even in the face of tremendous stress. Research has found several factors are associated with resilience in children: intelligence; the ability to make emotional connections with people outside the family; moderate self-control; positive self-image; and an internal locus of control all promote resilience. People with an internal locus of control believe they have reasonable control over their environment and that their actions make a difference. In addition, resilient survivors of child abuse are less likely than their less resilient counterparts to blame themselves for the abuse.


This is a web preview of the "The Handy Psychology Answer Book" app. Many features only work on your mobile device. If you like what you see, we hope you will consider buying. Get the App