Abstract

The ability of women and men with mental retardation to suggest prevention-focused decisions in response to simulated social interpersonal situations of abuse was investigated. Decision-making performance across three types of abusive situations (physical, sexual, psychological/verbal) was examined. Participants were able to suggest direct prevention-focused decisions aimed at resisting or stopping abuse 45% of the time and other-dependent prevention-focused decisions in the form of reporting 20% of the time. Prevention-focused decision-making was higher in situations of physical abuse (59%) than in situations of sexual (51%) or psychological/verbal abuse (26%). Women and men did not differ significantly in their decision-making responses.

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