Cognitive underpinnings of recovered memories of childhood abuse.

TitleCognitive underpinnings of recovered memories of childhood abuse.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2012
AuthorsGeraerts, E
JournalNebr Symp Motiv
Date Published2012
KeywordsChild, Child Abuse, Sexual, Defense Mechanisms, Emotions, Humans, Life Change Events, Memory, Episodic, Mental Recall, Psychotherapy, Repression, Psychology, Suggestion

Recent research on recovered memories of childhood sexual abuse has shown that there are at least two types of recovered memory experiences: those that are gradually recovered within the context of suggestive therapy and those that are spontaneously recovered, without extensive prompting or explicit attempts to reconstruct the past. These recovered memory experiences have different origins, with people who recover memories through suggestive therapy being more prone to forming false memories, and with people who report spontaneously recovered memories being more prone to forgetting prior instances of remembering. Additionally, the two types of recovered memory experiences are linked to differences in corroborative evidence, implying that memories recovered spontaneously, outside of suggestive therapy, are more likely to correspond to genuine abuse events. This chapter highlights the background of the recovered memory debate, summarizes recent studies with individuals reporting recovered memory experiences and points towards applications in the justice system and in clinical practice.

Alternate JournalNebr Symp Motiv
PubMed ID22303767