The original framework used by McCann and Pearlman, 1990 was reviewed for relevance by 22 counsellors registered as trauma therapists in New Zealand. As predicted by the vicarious traumatization theory, the counsellors who were interviewed were profoundly impacted by their work with trauma survivors, particularly within the first five years of practice. The experience of vicarious traumatization generated a search for meaning which enabled the counselors to evolve strategies and ways of being that effectively fostered personal and professional resilience. This immersion in trauma, paradoxically, enhanced the participants' ability to 'bounce back' or buffer the more negative effects of the work. Clinical supervision, the use of support, humour, spirituality, and ongoing training were variables identified by the participants as ameliorating vicarious traumatization. © The Author(s) 2013.
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