Mental Health in Holocaust Survivors

1554 Words6 Pages
American immigrant mental health among second generation holocaust survivors Sarah Getz Suffolk University Rationale
 Many American immigrants have been affected in both their mental health and family history by Nazi concentration camp experiences. This group of Americans has a unique cultural and psychological history. Many researchers have focused on this cultural group. The term "survivor syndrome" (Krystal, 1968; Krystal & Niederland, 1971) was coined to describe some of the negative symptoms holocaust survivors experienced. This syndrome is characterized by fatigue and reduced energy, restlessness, inability to concentrate, mistrust of others, pathological expression of mourning related survivors' feelings of guilt, chronic anxiety and depression, dread of the future, recurrent nightmares about traumatic experiences, insomnia, social isolation, and other psychological disorders. Various researchers have proposed that some of these symptoms were transmitted to the offspring survivors and even possibly the survivor’s grandchildren. This syndrome has been called the "children-of-holocaust-survivors syndrome" (CHSS). It has been proposed that the second and third generation survivors may experience loss of identity and difficulty in establishing and maintaining relationships. For example, in an investigation of children-of-holocaust survivors syndrome by Sigal, Silver, Rakoff and Ellin (1973), children of survivors at the Jewish General Hospital in Montreal,
Open Document