Reviews Personal views

How war affected my life and work

BMJ 2002; 324 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.324.7333.372 (Published 09 February 2002) Cite this as: BMJ 2002;324:372
  1. Aferdita Goçi-Uka, child psychiatrist
  1. Prishtina

    After two years of war in Kosova, air strikes began in Prishtina. I lived through three months of extreme anxiety. Every day I expected to get killed by the Serbian police, the paramilitary, a soldier, or even a neighbour. I remember listening to the BBC news, hearing horrific stories of civilians who were killed and buried in mass graves: young people, old people, women, and children. Nobody was safe, not even the politicians who were supposed to have immunity under international law. For the first two weeks I didn't go out at all, not because I felt safe at home, but because I wanted to be near my family in case something happened.

    I was so anxious during those three months that sometimes I felt as if my head would explode. I was sure that we would all get killed, but hoped that by some miracle my children would survive, or that I would be …

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