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Keywords:

  • terrorist attack;
  • victims;
  • coping;
  • psychopathology

Abstract

Three victims of a terrorist attack were interviewed in order to determine the coping mechanisms they utilized during the attack, the psychopathology present after the attack and the ways they dealt with their psychopathology. Fantasy, the belief in one's ability to positively influence his environment, altruistic actions, and dissociation reportedly helped those interviewed to cope during the incident. Depressive and post-traumatic stress phenomena comprised the major psychopathology present in those interviewed. Altruistic actions, symbolic repetition and mastery of the traumatic situation, self-esteem enhancing activities, avoidance of reminders of the incident and involvement in certain types of relationships reportedly helped these victims to deal with the sequelae of the attack.