top of page

Post-Trauma Expansion and Transformation
Research Lab

Exploring change through trauma at the mind, brain, body, spirit, and soul.

What happens when the spirit and soul are brought into trauma healing?


How do the body, brain, mind, and heart shift, heal, grow, and transform?


What role do intuition and intuitive abilities play?


And just how impactful are holistic approaches in creating lasting change for those who've survived the unfathomable?

The Post-Trauma Expansion and Transformation Research Lab aims to find out.

About the Lab

Lenore Matthew, PhD, MSW is a practitioner and researcher, and an expert in program evaluation research and evidence-based practice as well as post-traumatic growth and spiritual/intuitive awakenings.

Previously, Dr. Matthew worked as a research and evaluation specialist with international humanitarian organizations, including the United Nations. Today, she blends her background as a researcher and social worker with her intuitive abilities and spiritual perspectives, to explore the nature and impact of spiritual and intuitive experiences and practices on trauma survivors' health, mental health, well-being, and spirituality.

Dr. Matthew's intuitive abilities suddenly awoke when her late husband suddenly passed by suicide loss. The awakening of her ability of mediumship and her late husband's traumatic passing opened her up to a path of holistic healing through a multitude of spiritual, intuitive, and mind/body practices. Through these practices, she found deep healing and transformation at the mind, body, and soul. As a Brainspotting practitioner as well as an intuitive, she has witnessed the same in many peers, colleagues, and clients.


By bringing the body, deep brain, spirit, and soul into healing, survivors of various kinds of deep trauma were not only healing and surviving, but they were evolving into states of purpose, joy, and alignment with self.


These experiences inspired the creation of the Post-Trauma Expansion and Transformation Research Lab.

Aims of the Lab

1) Conduct mixed-method evaluation and intervention and studies on the clinical effects of mediumship and other intuitive practices on people's mental health and well-being, particularly in contexts of trauma, grief, and loss.

2) Conduct observation studies on intuitive experiences, such as unexpected psychic awakenings, and document their relationship to experiencers' mental health and well-being.

Current Studies

The Effects of Mediumship Readings on Widows' Mental Health, Spirituality, and Grief Processing

Principle Investigators: 

Drs. Lenore Matthew, PhD, MSW, private practice and founder of the Post-Trauma Expansion and Transformation Research Lab; and Liza Barros-Lane, PhD, MSW, professor of Social Work at the University of Houston-Downtown and founder of the Young Widowhood Project.

This study assesses the impact of multiple mediumship readings across time on female widows' mental, emotional, and spiritual health as well as their grieving process.


Specifically, it examines ways in which mediumship readings (with Dr. Matthew and mediums in general) have affected widows' healing process and connection to their loved ones in Spirit. The study focuses on the effects on mental health, emotional health, spirituality, and the overall healing process.

The purpose of the study is to set forth evidence that will help evolve and expand mental health care for survivors of partner loss, focusing on implications for the mental health and grief support community, and the field of intuitive and spiritual healing.

All study participants are women and range in age from their mid-twenties to eighties. All study participants lost either their spouse or fiance.

The study uses a phenomenological approach, a form of qualitative inquiry which examines a person's lived experience. It aims to understand a given phenomenon as an individual personally experienced and perceived it. 

The study participants received two mediumship readings from Dr. Lenore Matthew over one year. Some study participants received readings from other mediums as well.


Data was collected in 2023 at two points in time via two methods. First, each widow completed an in-depth, qualitative survey examining the effects of mediumship readings on her mental health, emotional health, spirituality, and grief processing. The survey was administered several months after the first mediumship reading, and qualitatively captured effects over time.


Second, an in-depth interview on the effects of mediumship on grief was conducted. The interviews took place on the day or within a few days of the second reading with Dr. Matthew. This captured impressions and shifts attributed to the second mediumship reading, and the immediate experiential and physiological effects of having a mediumship reading.

Data analysis is currently underway.

Sudden Intuitive Awakenings After the Loss of a Loved One, and the Effects on Grievers' Mental Health and Well-Being

Light and Shadow Portrait

Principle Investigator: 

Dr. Lenore Matthew, PhD, MSW, private practice and founder of the Post-Trauma Expansion and Transformation Research Lab.

Inspired by Dr. Matthew's own lived experience, the aim of this study is to understand the phenomenon of one's ability of psychic mediumship (i.e., the ability to sense and communicate with people in the spirit world) opened suddenly awakening with the loss of a loved one, and the impact of this experience on their grief and mental health.

This study addresses this massive gap in both the spiritual/intuitive world and grief/mental health support. The study aims to understand this experience and set forth ways to support people living through it — in their grief, their intuitive development, and their soul path forward.

Preliminary findings were presented at the 65th Annual Parapsychological Association's Annual Congress in Oslo Norway. The research has also been featured in various news outlets, such as YSF Magazine.

The writing of peer-reviewed articles is currently underway.

Download the preliminary findings here.

bottom of page