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Brief Treatment and Crisis Intervention Advance Access originally published online on October 12, 2005
Brief Treatment and Crisis Intervention 2005 5(4):340-355; doi:10.1093/brief-treatment/mhi028
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© The Author 2005. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail:

Original Article

What We Learned From 9/11: A Terrorism Grief and Recovery Process Model

   Karin Jordan, PhD

From the Graduate Department of Counseling at George Fox University

Contact author: Karin Jordan, Associate Professor and Chair, Graduate Department of Counseling, George Fox University, 414 North Meridian Street, Newberg, OR 97132. E-mail: kjordan{at}

This article presents a terrorist grief and recovery process model of 3 stages: Stage I: Disequilibrium—the Immediate Aftermath; Stage II: Denial—Outward Adjustment; and Stage III: Integration—Coming to Terms. Protective factors, such as stress buffers and resiliency, are focused on, and personal factors, which include but are not limited to age, gender, and ethnicity, are also discussed. Predisposing factors (e.g., psychiatric histories, previous trauma, and educational disadvantages), peridisposing factors (e.g., proximity and duration of exposure to the terrorist attack), and postdisposing factors (e.g., family and other support systems) are also described. All these factors are believed to influence the grief and recovery process. After a terrorist attack such as that on the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, people's beliefs are often impacted, specifically beliefs held about (a) the world as they knew it, (b) human nature, (c) spirituality, and (d) themselves, because their inner world cannot continue in the same way as before the attack, so they must go through some transformation in order for them to "find their place" and reintegrate themselves into the world. For many, this requires a grief and recovery process. Although many will need to assimilate or accommodate new values, some will be able to return to their old values and beliefs. Others might "get stuck," unable to deal effectively with the terrorist attack and its impact.

KEY WORDS: terrorism, 9/11, grief, recovery process, trauma, PTSD, traumatology, World Trade Center

This article has been cited by other articles:

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