Resilient Family Processes, Personal Reintegration, and Subjective Well-Being Outcomes for Military Personnel and Their Family Members

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Abstract

Deployment affects not just the service members, but also their family members back home. Accordingly, this study examined how resilient family processes during a deployment (i.e., frequency of communication and household management) were related to the personal reintegration of each family member (i.e., how well each family member begins to “feel like oneself again” after a deployment), as well as several indicators of subjective well-being. Drawing from the family attachment network model (Riggs & Riggs, 2011), the present study collected survey data from 273 service members, their partners, and their adolescent children. Resilient family processes during the deployment itself (i.e., frequency of communication, household management), postdeployment positive and negative personal reintegration, and several indicators of well-being were assessed. Frequency of communication was related to personal reintegration for service members, while household management was related to personal reintegration for nondeployed partners; both factors were related to personal reintegration for adolescents. Negative and positive personal reintegration related to a variety of subjective well-being outcomes for each individual family member. Interindividual (i.e., crossover) effects were also found, particularly between adolescents and nondeployed partners.

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