Deployment and Parenting

The first decade of the 21st century saw the United States involved in simultaneous wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. These wars involved the participation of more than 2.2 million service members, with deployments involving both active duty (“regular”) military personnel and a substantial number of National Guard and Reserve service members.

In 2009, approximately 1.98 million children had one or both parents in the military. Thus, a substantial number of children have been affected by the deployment of one parent, and sometimes two parents simultaneously, and by the anxiety and uncertainty associated with having loved ones in harm’s way. A small but growing body of empirical literature has documented children’s adjustment during and following deployment, as well as the influence of deployment on service members’ well-being ...

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