Victimology from clinical psychology perspective: psychological assessment of victims and professionals working with victims
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Victimology concerns victims of various traumas from accidents, disasters, assaults to wars. Survivors of trauma are also an area in clinical psychology since it is interested in the assessment and diagnosis of psychopathology and psychotherapy. Stress and mental health are intertwined; increased stress results in difficulties in feeling, thinking and behaving. The stress symptoms are an intrusion, avoidance, negative cognitions and mood, and arousal and reactivity. A trauma survivor might develop post-traumatic stress disorder. Healing trauma is so comprehensive that many professionals work from different aspects. From attorneys to mental health workers, many professionals deal with the aftereffects of trauma. Engaging with details of the trauma endangers not only the victims but also the professionals working with the victims. These professionals end up having psychological effects such as secondary trauma, vicarious trauma, compassion fatigue, countertransference and occupational burnout. Trauma has serious effects on its victims but not all effects are negative and paralyzing. Trauma victims might change their priorities in a way that they report more personal control over their life. This phenomenon is called posttraumatic growth. The paper aims to collaborate victimology with clinical psychology by highlighting psychopathology and psychological assessment.