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The Rosebush picture sort : a diagnostic technique to differentiate sexually abused children from other children Carter, Mary Ann Sheller


This study (N = 123) contrasted a group of sexually abused children in treatment, aged 6 to 12 years, with two comparable groups—other non-sexually abused children in treatment, and non-abused, non-treatment children—to determine whether differences in Rosebush Picture selection could be demonstrated. All children underwent evaluation procedures that included completion of a 12 picture selection (the Rosebush Picture Sort) and the Culture-Free Self-Esteem Inventory-2 (CFSEI-2). A demographic questionnaire for each child was completed. Results showed no differences in picture selection or self-esteem scores of children at the beginning or end-treatment stage. Sexually abused children's Rosebush Picture Sort (RPS) selections at mid-treatment were different than both comparison groups. The self-esteem scores of the two clinical groups in mid-treatment were significantly lower than the scores of the non-abused, non-treatment group, but did not differ from one another. The findings indicate that sexually abused children identify Rosebush Picture Sort pictures differently than other children. It is possible that sexual abuse affects the internal working model of children differently than other types of abuse and trauma.

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