The authors examined the role of self-reported physical and/or sexual abuse and recent exposure to community violence on three adaptation outcomes in Severe Mental Illness (SMI): psychotic symptoms, demoralization, and substance abuse. One hundred and nine (109) individuals with SMI were administered an extensive protocol that included the pertinent variables. Structural Equation Modeling analyses indicated that abuse predicted psychotic symptoms and demoralization, whereas exposure to community violence predicted substance abuse. These findings point to different possible trauma-adaptation configurations, and suggest that both past and present trauma complicates the adaptation of people with SMI.
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