Degree Date


Document Type

Dissertation - Public Access

Degree Name

Psy.D. Doctor of Clinical Psychology

Academic Discipline

Clinical Psychology - Florida School of Professional Psychology

First Advisor

Christina D. Brown, Psy.D.

Second Advisor

Eric L. Rosen, Ph.D.


Amongst Veterans served within the Veterans Affairs healthcare system, approximately 1 in 50 men and 1 in 3 women have experienced military sexual trauma (MST). While every individual is different, a common characteristic or identity amongst those who have served is that of a warrior – someone perceived as strong and ready to defend both their country and fellow soldier. Experiencing military sexual trauma can create a painful and discrepant identity as well as impact almost all domains of functioning. Unfortunately, trauma is an all too common occurrence in the lives of many service members and the multifinality of trauma can lead to complex, harmful consequences ranging from mental health issues, physical health conditions, and an increased risk of suicide. This clinical research project explores the prevalence of MST in Veterans, its consequences, treatment approaches found to be most effective for MST-related PTSD, and clinical implications for working with MST survivors. At this time, Cognitive Processing Therapy, Prolonged Exposure, and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing are considered by Veterans Affairs to be the “gold standard” evidence-based PTSD treatments. Suggestions for clinical practice and recommendations for future research are provided.