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6 High-Stress Events, Family Resilience Processes, and Military Family Well-Being
Pages 203-232

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From page 203...
... to better understand the effects of stress on family well-being. The chapter then places this understanding within the military context by discussing the effects of high impact duty-related stressors, such as physical injury, psychological trauma, bereavement, family violence and child maltreatment to illustrate how stressful challenges can impact family resilience and in turn complicate family well-being.
From page 204...
... While this report addresses a broad spectrum of the experiences of military families, this chapter focuses on military families' most stressful challenges, such as combat or other duty-related mental or physical injuries and military-duty-related deaths, which can undermine family well-being by disrupting normative processes that support family resilience. Family violence and child maltreatment are additional examples of stressful challenges to families, as well as examples of maladaptive responses within overwhelmed, highly reactive, or unskilled families.
From page 205...
... tested a Military Family Stress Model in a sample of 336 post-deployment reserve component military families. Their work revealed reciprocal paths between parental functioning (i.e., posttraumatic stress disorder [PTSD]
From page 206...
... Story and Bradbury (2004) summarize dyadic resilience processes that are likely to protect couples faced with stress, including active engagement and protective buffering.
From page 207...
... adapted these same principles to military families, shifting focus from identification of specific risk and resilience factors to a broad conceptualization of risk
From page 208...
... Although distinct from military family stress, disaster-related family stress shares similar family effects, and the more extensive scientific literature in this area further informs our understanding of the impact of military-related stress on family resilience processes. For example, Noffsinger and colleagues (2012)
From page 209...
... Body handling and other mortuary responsibilities have specifically been shown to increase risk for PTSD among military service personnel, especially in circumstances that involve exposure to gruesome human remains (Flynn et al., 2015; McCarroll et al., 1993, 1995)
From page 210...
... . In addition, PTSD has been associated with intimate partner discord and poorer intimate relationship satisfaction, with two studies showing avoidance and numbing TABLE 6-1  Negative Effects of PTSD Symptom Clusters on Family Resilience Processes Negative Cognitions Re-experiencing Avoidance and Mood Arousal Emotional Closeness – – – – Communication – – Safety and Impulse Control – – – Family Leadership – – Family Hopefulness – – Supervision of Children – Authoritative Discipline of – – – Children SOURCE: Adapted from Cozza (2016)
From page 211...
... . In another report, couples' observed parenting practices mediated the associations between mothers' PTSD symptoms and poorer child adjustment, as well as the associations between couple adjustment and children's behavioral and emotional symptoms (Gewirtz et al., 2018b)
From page 212...
... . Research examining the impact of parental depression within military families is required, especially since family-based interventions have been shown to successfully address these pathways of risk in clinical trials (Beardslee et al., 2003)
From page 213...
... . In addition, the Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center reports that since 2000 nearly 380,000 service members have been diagnosed with traumatic brain injury (TBI)
From page 214...
... . In a study of nonmilitary families by Pessar and colleagues (1993)
From page 215...
... No systematic studies have examined these effects on military family well-being. Although some medically derived interventions to support the health of military families faced with combat-related injuries or illness have been described (Smith et al., 2013)
From page 216...
... Until the time of their spouses' deaths, they and their families will have lived within military communities and among other military families, accessing resources available within these communities. However, after the death of their military spouses, widowed spouses experience sudden and unanticipated transitions to life outside of the military community among civilians who often do not fully appreciate their history or their culture (Harrington-Lamorie et al., 2014)
From page 217...
... Recent efforts have attempted to reverse this practice. Family Violence and Child Maltreatment Family maltreatment includes physical, sexual, or emotional aggression or neglect within a family, either between adult partners (spousal abuse or intimate partner violence)
From page 218...
... Military family violence and child maltreatment serve as examples of maladaptive responses within highly reactive families or those that are unskilled in responding to the challenges with which they are faced. In each of the service branches, FAP currently offers the New Parent Support Program, which targets vulnerable families, including young families with newborn infants and or those challenged by deployments, mental health or substance use problems, medical or developmental disorders, or prior history of maltreatment or family violence.
From page 219...
... For example, families with a member on National Guard or Reserve status remain understudied. Effects on nontraditional families (including single-parent families, female service member families, dual-military families, sexual minority families, and immigrant families)
From page 220...
... . These programs are designed to support families affected by deployment and other duty-related risks through strengths-based approaches that focus on improving couple, family, and parent-child relationships by fostering family resilience processes such as such as emotion regulation, communication, problem solving, and the elements of positive parenting delineated above.
From page 221...
... FIGURE 6-1  Effects of military family stressors at the individual, parent-child, couple, and family-level, targets for prevention/ intervention, and EBP intervention examples.
From page 222...
... Although these evidence-based interventions differ in format, content, and emphasis, all share several essential family-strengthening goals, as listed in Box 6-1. CONCLUSIONS CONCLUSION 6-1: Military families can be adversely affected by some aspects of military life, such as deployments, illnesses, and injuries, due to their undermining of healthy intra-familial resilience processes that support family well-being and readiness.
From page 223...
... SOURCE: Compiled by the Committee on the Well-Being of Military Families. Source for Goal #5 is Dausch and Saliman (2009)
From page 224...
... CONCLUSION 6-5: Evidence-based programs, resources, and prac tices have been developed and evaluated for highly impacted military families that support normative individual and family-based resilience processes, well-being, and readiness; however, these interventions are not widely implemented in routine military family settings. REFERENCES Allen, E
From page 225...
... . Posttraumatic stress disorder and relationship functioning: A comprehensive review and organizational framework.
From page 226...
... . Parenting in military families faced with combat-related injury, illness, or death.
From page 227...
... . After deployment, adaptive parenting tools: 1-year outcomes of an e ­ vidence-based parenting program for military families following deployment.
From page 228...
... . Psychological health of military children: Longitudinal eval uation of a family-centered prevention program to enhance family resilience.
From page 229...
... . Parenting and family support within a broad child abuse prevention strategy: Child maltreatment prevention can benefit from public health strategies.
From page 230...
... . Effect of deployment on the occurrence of child maltreatment in military and nonmilitary families.
From page 231...
... Military Families. New York: Springer.
From page 232...
... . Behavioral consequences of traumatic brain injury.


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