In the Narrative, Trauma and Resilience Lab, we study trauma narratives in several contexts. One collaboration is being conducted in conjunction with the Trauma Testimony Center of NATAL, the Israel Trauma Center for Victims of Terror and War, headed by Judith Dor, which collects life stories and testimonies of Israeli war veterans, prisoners of war and survivors of terror. (For further information on the Testimony Center of NATAL, see: http://www.natal.org.il/english/?CategoryID=275). Another collaboration is being conducted in conjunction with Professor Tuvia Peri, in the Bar Ilan Psychology Department's clinic. This collaboration involves studying changes in the trauma narrative,both during and after treatment, via use of narrative reconstruction (NR) therapy. In addition, we look at different aspects of the traumatic experience as narrated by participants (mainly loneliness, the search for meaning and coping styles).
Narrative components of future schizophrenia patients, future suicide completers and healthy controls
In this study, which is being conducted in conjunction with Professor Marc Weiser of Tel-Hashomer Hospital, the pre-induction assessment narratives of future patients with schizophrenia, future suicide completers, and healthy controls (prepared by local army induction centers of the Israel Defense Forces, in accordance with Israeli law), are examined. Comparisons are made between the three groups, with a particular focus on pre-morbid social functioning, self-perception, and general functioning.
The role and impact of national civic service (NCS) on the integration of at-risk youth in civic society
This research is being conducted in collaboration with Professor Anat Zeira of Hebrew University, and Professor Rami Benbenishti and Dr. Drorit Levy of Bar-Ilan University. In this mixed-method study, in an attempt to see how at-risk youth who have served in the NCS subsequently integrate into civic society, we first describe their status and needs in various life domains after having completed their national service; we then describe how this service has contributed to their current status as young adults. We also compare the status and needs of the "traditional" National Service population (e.g., Orthodox Jewish girls) with that of the more-recently involved populations (e.g., girls from disadvantaged backgrounds). The results will provide policy-makers with a solid and valid informational infrastructure on which to base decisions about the differential benefits of NCS for sub-groups and about groups for whom more attention and further development of future interventions would likely improve their integration into civic society.
Motherhood and the maternal psychological experience
The maternal psychological experience at different life stages and in various contexts is the focus of a series of studies in the lab. Specifically, we are currently studying maternal coping in the context of health and illness: either the mother's illness or that of a family member. Completed works include those on the experience and development of maternal ambivalence, the use of the internet by mothers for "virtual" support and guidance, negotiating maternal identity in mothers with eating disorders, maternal coping with a daughter's eating disorder, the experience of mothering a child with schizophrenia, and the experience of the non-biological mother in a combined lesbian family.
The Relational Psychotherapy Lab
In our work, we try to look into the delicate “what and how” of psychodynamic therapeutic processes. We are especially interested in deepening the understanding of interdependent processes that occur both intra-psychically (i.e., within the patient and within the therapist), and inter-subjectively (i.e., between the two members of the dyad), during the evolving therapeutic progression.
For the purpose of our clinical inquiries, we use mixed-method analyses that allow us to explore therapeutic processes and treatment outcomes. Recently, our lab has developed a novel empirical tool, named “TPA” (i.e., Two-Person APES). The TPA measures the quality of movement between self-states, both within the patient and the therapist, as they are mutually inter-related to one another (for further reading, see: HaCohen, 2016, 2017).