Lost Childhood
Holocaust Child Survivors


    Committed to achieve the compensation for "deprived childhood"
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Psycho Social Abstract 

The  process of building a person’s inter personal relationships already begins at a very early stage in childhood, because of sensitivity of children, and every injury or damage done to it can leave it’s mark long term.  For example it has been found that severe losses that were experienced in these children during the Holocaust can lead to significant damage to their intimacy or closeness, as well as their inability in adulthood to have mutual relationships which include giving and taking.

It is found in numerous research, that  people who were children during the Holocaust, they are at higher risk to suffer from depression, constant anxiety, loss of emotional stability, sleeping disorders and even psychosis with significant influences regarding the person’s subjective worldly experiences  as a child survivor, as having images of identity problems and feelings of loneliness and estrangement.

Researches in the area of trauma have provided convincing evidence in relation to long term distress in children who grew up in the shadow of the Holocaust. The most common psycho-pathological expression of happening of events of trauma is post traumatic distress disturbance (PTSD). Research that was carried out amongst survivors who were children during the Holocaust found that a significant percentage amongst them suffer from post traumatic symptoms.

The response to child trauma does not appear immediately after an event, but  awakens only after years. So, it was found, amongst other things, that children who grew up during the Holocaust are at risk for developing post traumatic symptoms that awaken for the first time a long time after the Holocaust, and sometimes only as old age approaches.

All the Holocaust child survivors who were 16 years of age or younger in 1945, had an exploited childhood and were exposed to massive childhood traumatization.  As a result of this, the children had to rebuild anew their existence and deny their bereavement and depression.  In their old age we are witnesses to reactions of denial symptoms such as: anxieties, sleeping disorders, emotional stability

Child Survivor Complex is comprehensive and widespread, creates lifelong, irreparable damage to one’s psycho social life, in the area of academic achievement and culture, which expresses itself in a wide spectrum of disturbances, feelings of loss,  missed opportunities, due to being unable to realize their potential.

For diversified reasons not the survivor children themselves and not the adults and  not even the specialists diagnosed the existence of the ubiquitous complex-the late syndrome.

There is no doubt that child survivors of the Holocaust suffer from deep and widespread stress expressed by suffering that does not fit into previous accepted categories.

Summary:  There are clinical symptoms that are clear such as long term depression and anxieties that are common to all of the Holocaust children:  Traumatization due to long term reasons, countless losses and as a result are in various stages of bereavement until this very day.

From the professional literature there is no doubt that the” robbing of the childhood” of the children of the Holocaust  had a severe negative affect on their development, their level of education and earning ability. 

The Psycho Social Committee

Prof’ Zahava Solomon 

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