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Psychologist / psychotherapist traumatic countertransference in work with trauma victims

- Лазос, Гелена Петрівна ( (2018) Psychologist / psychotherapist traumatic countertransference in work with trauma victims Міжнародний журнал загальної та медичної психології, 1. pp. 57-67.

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Modern science has accumulated vast knowledge about rendering assistance to various categories of victims, including specialists in helping professions. The phenomena of traumatic countertransference (TC), secondary traumatic stress (STS) and burnout syndrome (BS) have been extensively investigated, mostly, by western scientists. At present, STS and BS studies are quite common, while countertransference, which is about the therapists’ reactions to their clients, is the most popular research subject and considered as a starting point in scientific research.Traumatic countertransference is a wide range of the therapist’s emotional reactions as a result of his/her interactions with the victim and analysis of the traumatic events under the influence of the therapist’s own unresolved conflicts. The study into the negative emotional states of Ukrainian volunteer psychologists / psychotherapists who worked with different categories of victims was conducted in 20i5-20i7.The sample included 56 volunteer psychologists / psychotherapists of different sex, age and work experience. The study was aimed at identifying the features of the negative emotional states experienced by the Ukrainian volunteer psychologists / psychotherapists (traumatic countertransference) who worked with trauma and the relationship between these states and the psychologist’s / psychotherapists’ personal traumatic history and trauma-coping experience. The analysis of the obtained data showed that the psychologists / psychotherapists’ trauma index was moderate in terms of the trauma effects on their life. Only crime and physical / sexual violence-related situations had considerabie and long-lasting stress-like effects on psychologist’s / psychotherapists’ life. The analysis of the relationship between the psychologist’s / psychotherapists’ trauma index and their other characteristics allowed suggesting that a history of untreated physical / sexual violence increased psychologist’s / psychotherapists’ trauma index and probably determined the topic of their traumatic countertransference. The longer the professionals worked with trauma victims, the stronger was the impact of the psychologists / psychotherapists’ previous trauma and, probably, the countertransference. The study into traumatic countertransference, as a reaction to the psychologists / psychotherapists’ work with trauma victims, revealed that almost half of Ukrainian professionais identified themselves with the victim, while the other half - with passive observers. No other types of identities were found. The research showed that most psychologists / psychotherapists had no personal experience of coping with difficult situations, which contributed to the risk of their indirect trauma. The follow-up research is planned to focus on the impact of the therapist-client contact on the psychologists / psychotherapists’ traumatic counter-transference, as well as on the production of recommendations and preventive strategies for the reduction of the effects of indirect trauma.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: volunteer, psychologists / psychotherapists, negative emotional states, countertransference, traumatic counter­ transference, primary mental trauma, personal psychotherapeutic experience
Subjects: Science and knowledge. Organization. Computer science. Information. Documentation. Librarianship. Institutions. Publications > 1 Philosophy. Psychology
Divisions: Institute of Psychology after N.Kostiuk > Department of consulting psychology and psychotherapy
Depositing User: с.н.с Гелена Петрівна Лазос
Date Deposited: 03 Dec 2018 20:59
Last Modified: 01 Feb 2019 00:01


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