Influence on self-esteem is often considered as a mediator between sexual abuse and later maladjustment. There seems to be a relation, but not very strong - for example, for 66 women studied by Silliman 1993 there was no significant relation.
Romans et.al. 1996 have found: "Predictors of low self-esteem for women include childhood temperament, a poor relationship with the mother, low qualification attainment, psychiatric morbidity, both previous and current, and, only when it is the most intrusive, child sexual abuse."
Jackson et al. 1990 have found a relation between incest an low self-esteem. They note that these characteristics may be related not only to the incest experience but to the general family environment in which incest occurred, as significant differences in family characteristics were also observed.
Brayden et al. 1995: Sexual abuse was not a predictor of general self-concept scores after the removal of family and demographic variables, but sexual abuse was independently associated with the subscale measuring the physical aspect of self-concept.
Ridley 1993 considers "Kaufman's theory of shame and identity" in relation with sexual abuse.