Changes in self-perception following breast cancer as expressed in self-figure drawings: Present-past

Ziva Ariela Barel-Shoshani*, Shulamit Kreitler

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This study examined expressions of distress and changes in self-perception in women who had breast cancer, via analysis of their self-figure drawings. The Machover Draw-A-Person test was administered to 70 survivors twice: first they were asked to draw themselves today, then they were asked to draw themselves as they had seen themselves pre-illness. The expressions in self- figure drawings were compared using seven indicators: breasts, hair, body outline, lower body, mouth, eyes, head outline. The findings indicated differences in self-perception pre-post cancer by three drawing indices: hair (short, shaggy), body outline (double, bold) and eyes (dots, hollow, shaded), which express disillusionment and connection to self, accompanied by signs of distress, anxiety, and damage to self-esteem and sense of femininity. In conclusion, we will demonstrate that the projective tool tested could be used as an aid for structuring supportive care to alleviate the distress of such women as part of a rehabilitation program.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)136-145
Number of pages10
JournalArts in Psychotherapy
Volume55
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2017

Keywords

  • Breast cancer
  • DAP
  • Draw a person
  • Projective tool
  • Self-esteem
  • Self-figure drawing

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