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Isr J Psychiatry Relat Sci. 1990;27(3):175-9.

Anniversary reaction as a symptom of grief in traumatized persons.


Anniversary reaction is a somatic or mental illness that can occur near a date which is emotionally important to traumatized persons. Usually, the person thus affected makes no association between his illness and the onset of the reaction. A case history is given of a 49-year-old Jewish woman who was hidden in the Netherlands during the German occupation in World War II. Her parents were exterminated in a concentration camp when she was four years old. She never permitted herself the normal process of grief and bereavement until she began psychotherapy. The anniversary reaction she experienced on the Netherland's commemoration day for war victims, more than 40 years after the war, was the beginning of her process of mourning.

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