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A question of who, not if: Psychological disorders in Holocaust survivors' children.
Psychol Trauma. 2017 Aug; 9(Suppl 1):98-106.PT

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

Because findings on the mental health status of Holocaust survivors' offspring have been inconsistent, we aimed to identify factors that place some offspring at greater risk for developing mood or anxiety disorders.

METHOD

Using a web-based survey and structured clinical interviews with adult children of survivors, we attempted to predict disorders from offspring's circumstances, perceptions of parents' posttrauma adaptational styles, and self-reported reparative adaptational impacts. Posttrauma adaptational styles encompass intrafamilial and interpersonal psychological, social and behavioral coping, mastery, and defense mechanisms used by each parent. Reparative adaptational impacts reflect the offspring's self-reported insecurity about their own competence, reparative protectiveness, need for control, obsession with the Holocaust, defensive psychosocial constriction, and immature dependency.

RESULTS

Of the disorders studied, generalized anxiety disorder was most frequent, followed by major depressive episode and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Only 2 variables independently predicted these disorders: participants' age and reparative adaptational impacts. Parents' styles were correlated with the presence of disorder, but had no effect when the child's reparative impacts were controlled. The age effect was consistent with epidemiologic research showing lower prevalence of psychological disorder in older cohorts. The severity of participants' reparative impacts was unequivocally the most important (OR = 5.3) or at least the most proximal precursor to the development of psychological disorders. When reparative impacts were low, frequency of disorder was low (8%); when reparative impacts were high, frequency of disorder was high (46%).

CONCLUSION

Reparative adaptational impacts could guide clinicians in treating children of survivors. (PsycINFO Database Record

Authors+Show Affiliations

Group Project for Holocaust Survivors and their Children.Department of Psychiatry, Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth.Brain Sciences Center, Minneapolis Veterans Affairs Health Care System.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

27642804

Citation

Danieli, Yael, et al. "A Question of Who, Not If: Psychological Disorders in Holocaust Survivors' Children." Psychological Trauma : Theory, Research, Practice and Policy, vol. 9, no. Suppl 1, 2017, pp. 98-106.
Danieli Y, Norris FH, Engdahl B. A question of who, not if: Psychological disorders in Holocaust survivors' children. Psychol Trauma. 2017;9(Suppl 1):98-106.
Danieli, Y., Norris, F. H., & Engdahl, B. (2017). A question of who, not if: Psychological disorders in Holocaust survivors' children. Psychological Trauma : Theory, Research, Practice and Policy, 9(Suppl 1), 98-106. https://doi.org/10.1037/tra0000192
Danieli Y, Norris FH, Engdahl B. A Question of Who, Not If: Psychological Disorders in Holocaust Survivors' Children. Psychol Trauma. 2017;9(Suppl 1):98-106. PubMed PMID: 27642804.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - A question of who, not if: Psychological disorders in Holocaust survivors' children. AU - Danieli,Yael, AU - Norris,Fran H, AU - Engdahl,Brian, Y1 - 2016/09/19/ PY - 2016/9/20/pubmed PY - 2018/5/4/medline PY - 2016/9/20/entrez SP - 98 EP - 106 JF - Psychological trauma : theory, research, practice and policy JO - Psychol Trauma VL - 9 IS - Suppl 1 N2 - OBJECTIVE: Because findings on the mental health status of Holocaust survivors' offspring have been inconsistent, we aimed to identify factors that place some offspring at greater risk for developing mood or anxiety disorders. METHOD: Using a web-based survey and structured clinical interviews with adult children of survivors, we attempted to predict disorders from offspring's circumstances, perceptions of parents' posttrauma adaptational styles, and self-reported reparative adaptational impacts. Posttrauma adaptational styles encompass intrafamilial and interpersonal psychological, social and behavioral coping, mastery, and defense mechanisms used by each parent. Reparative adaptational impacts reflect the offspring's self-reported insecurity about their own competence, reparative protectiveness, need for control, obsession with the Holocaust, defensive psychosocial constriction, and immature dependency. RESULTS: Of the disorders studied, generalized anxiety disorder was most frequent, followed by major depressive episode and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Only 2 variables independently predicted these disorders: participants' age and reparative adaptational impacts. Parents' styles were correlated with the presence of disorder, but had no effect when the child's reparative impacts were controlled. The age effect was consistent with epidemiologic research showing lower prevalence of psychological disorder in older cohorts. The severity of participants' reparative impacts was unequivocally the most important (OR = 5.3) or at least the most proximal precursor to the development of psychological disorders. When reparative impacts were low, frequency of disorder was low (8%); when reparative impacts were high, frequency of disorder was high (46%). CONCLUSION: Reparative adaptational impacts could guide clinicians in treating children of survivors. (PsycINFO Database Record SN - 1942-969X UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/27642804/A_question_of_who,_not_if:_Psychological_disorders_in_Holocaust_survivors'_children L2 - http://content.apa.org/journals/tra/9/Suppl 1/98 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -